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hawaiiansteel
04-10-2011, 02:27 AM
On the Steelers: Roethlisberger, Arians still thinking pass

Sunday, April 10, 2011
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


They think alike, Ben Roethlisberger and his offensive coordinator. So much so, the quarterback says, that both he and Bruce Arians wanted to pass more than they did during the 2010 season but did not for similar reasons -- pressure from others to run more often.

"If he were, I don't want to say 'allowed,' but his preference would be to throw the ball more, use the weapons we have and throw it," Roethlisberger said in an interview this past week with the Post-Gazette, his first since the Super Bowl. "Mine's the same way.

"But we both think the same in the no-huddle, that we call a lot more runs because we know that's what we're supposed to do. And I don't know if that's 'supposed to' from the fans, the media, the owner, who knows? But it's just a feeling that you have that we better run the ball some. So we do think alike in a lot of those ways."

Some fans and media often complain that the Steelers do not run the ball enough, even though statistically they've been one of the most run-oriented teams in the league through the years. It came to a head in January 2010 when Steelers President Art Rooney II expressed the same sentiments in an interview with the Post-Gazette and included coach Mike Tomlin as being on board with that philosophy.

"I think Mike and I certainly agreed coming off the season that we need to run the ball more consistently to get to where we want to get to," Rooney said. "So that's part of the thinking in the offseason: We need to figure out how to get better running the football.''

The Steelers ran 47.4 percent of the time in 2010 compared with 42.2 the previous season. They increased their rushing yards to 1,924 from 1,793, but their average dipped to 4.1 from 4.2 and their average gain on all plays decreased to 5.6 from 5.9 in 2009. They scored 375 points last season, seven more than in 2009. And, of course, they reached the Super Bowl last season while missing the playoffs in 2009 with a 9-7 record.

Arians' contract expired after the 2010 season, and, after speculation on whether he would return or not, he signed a one-year deal to coach the offense for a fifth season with the Steelers, eighth as an assistant coach with the team.

Roethlisberger was delighted to see him return.

"Obviously, a lot of negative things are said about Bruce. But not from me. I really respect Bruce. We have a great relationship. I know he'll be gone at some point pretty soon. It's just the nature of the beast. I was nervous about it being this year ...

"I was telling him, 'BA, I know you want to leave in part because you can retire, you can. Two, you want to leave because you're tired of all the crap you have to deal with. But I know that we're so young and talented on this offense, that intrigues you a lot.' And he said, 'You know you're exactly right.' It does intrigue him. So I am very glad he's back."

Roethlisberger said it's not as if he and Arians don't want to run the ball.

"It's funny because we'll go into some games with the intent of running the ball and establishing it because you do need to run the ball -- I'm not saying you should never run the ball. We do go in and establish that we have to run. But it's funny, it'll be like the fourth quarter and we'll be down or something and Mike will come to me and BA and be like, 'OK, have at it, start throwing the ball.' It's like 'all right it's yours' and usually we go out and throw the ball and win the game.

"Who knows what it is? That's part of the politics probably in coaching, which is why I'm not a coach. I'm just a player. I do what I'm told."

Among other topics Roethlisberger discussed in the interview:

"I enjoy the no-huddle offense. Those are the times I call the plays and go on the sideline and talk to BA. Last year, I didn't think we did it enough. The year before, I thought we did a lot of it. For whatever reason, maybe it was because we had so many young guys ... I think this year we'll be a lot better at it and do it a lot more."

On the lockout by the owners: "Drew Brees I think said it the best -- it's not really affecting him as much as it affects players who came before him and after him. That's so well said I think I'm going to start saying it.

"I just hope the leaders on both sides find a way to get the most popular sport in America back going. And I hope it's fair for both sides. People ask when I think it will get done. I have no clue."

He plans to work with his receivers and perhaps some rookies if the lockout continues. They will move around to various sites where the players live in the offseason.

"I've been in contact with them ... just to let them know if this thing keeps going, be ready at the end of April, first of May, we're going to get together and just throw, catch up and keep fresh. Nothing crazy."

On whether new rules to keep the game safe might reduce his effectiveness if the officials blow an early whistle when a defender has him in the grasp:

"They don't blow many whistles against me, it doesn't seem like. People ask me all the time: What do you think of the no-calls? I really don't complain too much for that reason, I don't want them to blow the whistle too much if I'm going to make a play. I think that there's still a line that has to be crossed with blatantly late hits and stuff like that -- I don't think they ever called anything in my favor last year.

"I don't like to complain much or make excuses. They want to protect guys -- Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, those kinds of guys. Because in all seriousness -- and in no way do I hope anybody takes offense who reads this for the rest of the Colts, Patriots and Saints -- but nobody wants to watch the Indianapolis Colts if Peyton Manning's not playing, nobody wants to watch the Patriots if Tom Brady's not playing. If the backups are in there, they don't want to watch that game; they want to watch Peyton and Tom."

On what the Steelers offense needs from the draft.

"We have a good group of young guys. We have a few older guys, but, if you think, for the most part we're a good, young group. So I think the biggest thing is to get depth at each spot. If you look at the line, we have to get depth there.

"The receivers, we have a great young group. Hines [Ward] is there, and he's going to keep leading these guys. I think if he stays healthy, he's going to keep doing what he does. But we still have to bring in depth there, too, because at some point Hines will retire -- I don't know when, but I assume he's going to retire at some point. He's been doing it for a long time.

"Just add depth. Every spot you can go, even at running back we can add depth."

His impressions of Ward competing on "Dancing With the Stars":

"I was shocked because even he'll admit and has admitted to us that he has no rhythm and can't dance but, obviously, he's doing great. I joke with him and say it's just a popularity contest, it has nothing to do with how good you can dance.

"Because his smile is contagious and he has so much charisma and he's a Steeler and it's football and they go so far, my bet is he'll be in the finals and it depends on who he's against if he wins. But I think he has a good chance of winning."

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11100/11 ... z1J6ArP5ZL (http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11100/1138301-66.stm#ixzz1J6ArP5ZL)

Flasteel
04-10-2011, 10:23 AM
"I enjoy the no-huddle offense. Those are the times I call the plays and go on the sideline and talk to BA. Last year, I didn't think we did it enough. The year before, I thought we did a lot of it. For whatever reason, maybe it was because we had so many young guys ... I think this year we'll be a lot better at it and do it a lot more."

I guess he and BA don't think exactly alike...do they? :D

This is the primary reason I actually welcome BA back with open arms. He used the excuse of too many young receivers as the reason we didn't go no-huddle last season. This year I'm hoping that he'll pick up where he left off in 2009 and start handing more of the offense over to Ben via the no-huddle. A new OC most likely wouldn't do this.

Oviedo
04-10-2011, 01:36 PM
Given that you have to be a very good passing team to win the today's NFL I hope they are thinking about it a lot.

steeler_george
04-11-2011, 03:35 AM
could it be the end to dbl TE sets and more spread 3 wr sets?

feltdizz
04-11-2011, 09:29 AM
I don't know why but I don't believe Ben...

I think the fans know more about this offense and the OC. :stirpot

Oviedo
04-11-2011, 09:35 AM
I don't know why but I don't believe Ben...

I think the fans know more about this offense and the OC. :stirpot

Of course they do, they are "experts". They just choose not to be employed by the NFL and make NFL money because their current jobs are so rewarding and they have achieved self actualization.

Oviedo
04-11-2011, 03:03 PM
Peter King seems to agree


Ten Things I Think I Think

1. I think I couldn't agree more with Ben Roethlisberger. In his interview with Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Roethlisberger said he wished he could have thrown downfield more than the Steelers did. I kept looking at Pittsburgh late in the year, when rookie burner Antonio Brown got to know the offense and was the kind of outside receiver who could be bookended with Mike Wallace to seriously stretch the defense, and wondered why the Steelers didn't do more of it. Wallace needs to be more of a weapon than he was in 2010. It's simple. That has to happen for this offense to reach its potential.



Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/w ... z1JF7AJyji (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/peter_king/04/10/mmqb/index.html#ixzz1JF7AJyji)

hawaiiansteel
04-14-2011, 01:47 AM
HEISER: Steelers' Arians must walk tightrope this season

COLUMN By STEVE HEISER/The York Dispatch
Updated: 04/12/2011


York High graduate Bruce Arians suddenly finds himself walking a tightrope.

In a recent interview with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Pittsburgh Steelers' offensive coordinator was lavished with praise by the team's franchise quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger.

That's usually a good thing. Most offensive coordinators would love to have the loyalty and admiration of the team's two-time Super Bowl-winning QB.

But Roethlisberger also hit a major nerve within the Steelers' organization when he said that he - and Arians - would like to see the Steelers throw the ball more often.

That viewpoint, however, runs contrary to the philosophy favored by Steelers' president Art Rooney II - the man who signs the paychecks for Roethlisberger and Arians.

Rooney, you see, loves the ground game. He made that perfectly clear after the 2009 season, when he said the franchise needed to return to its traditional offensive roots - more running and less passing. He clearly delivered that message to Steelers' head coach Mike Tomlin and the two men said they were on the same page entering the 2010 season.

There were reports after the 2009 season that Arians' job was in serious jeopardy because he was too enamored with the passing game. Tomlin later denied those reports and said Arians' job was never in danger.

Still, in 2010 the Steelers appeared to heed Rooney's demand. They ran the ball 47.4 percent of the time, compared to 42.2 percent in 2009. And Rooney mostly got the results he wanted. After a disappointing 9-7 season in 2009, when Pittsburgh missed the playoffs, the Steelers returned to the Super Bowl last season.

Despite a Super Bowl defeat to Green Bay, all seemed right in Steelers' Nation. Arians' job, despite the normal criticism from disgruntled fans, appeared relatively safe - until Roethlisberger came out with his comments.

Big Ben said that he and Arians are of a like mind - they'd like to throw more often to take advantage of the team's talented receiving weapons. Roethlisberger, however, said that Arians is forced to call more running plays than he'd like because that's what he's "supposed" to do. It was obvious that the QB was referring to Rooney's edict to run the ball more.

So now Arians must walk a tightrope. He must pass enough to please his star QB, but still run enough to satisfy the team's president. That trick will be no easy task. Both Roethlisberger and Rooney will almost certainly be unhappy at times.

Winning - as always - will solve that dilemma. But if the Steelers suffer through a disappointing 2011 season, Arians may find that he's walking that tightrope without a net.

http://www.yorkdispatch.com/ci_17827713

steelcurtain44
04-14-2011, 08:40 AM
Okay, so didn't they get to the SB again? The offense had a chance, but didn't get it done. Sounds like the old Ben is coming back to me. He's blaming the media, fans and management. What an idiot. The were pass happy the year before, and won nothing. They were more balanced last year and went to the SB. WTF?

Oviedo
04-14-2011, 08:43 AM
HEISER: Steelers' Arians must walk tightrope this season

COLUMN By STEVE HEISER/The York Dispatch
Updated: 04/12/2011


York High graduate Bruce Arians suddenly finds himself walking a tightrope.

In a recent interview with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Pittsburgh Steelers' offensive coordinator was lavished with praise by the team's franchise quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger.

That's usually a good thing. Most offensive coordinators would love to have the loyalty and admiration of the team's two-time Super Bowl-winning QB.

But Roethlisberger also hit a major nerve within the Steelers' organization when he said that he - and Arians - would like to see the Steelers throw the ball more often.

That viewpoint, however, runs contrary to the philosophy favored by Steelers' president Art Rooney II - the man who signs the paychecks for Roethlisberger and Arians.

Rooney, you see, loves the ground game. He made that perfectly clear after the 2009 season, when he said the franchise needed to return to its traditional offensive roots - more running and less passing. He clearly delivered that message to Steelers' head coach Mike Tomlin and the two men said they were on the same page entering the 2010 season.

There were reports after the 2009 season that Arians' job was in serious jeopardy because he was too enamored with the passing game. Tomlin later denied those reports and said Arians' job was never in danger.

Still, in 2010 the Steelers appeared to heed Rooney's demand. They ran the ball 47.4 percent of the time, compared to 42.2 percent in 2009. And Rooney mostly got the results he wanted. After a disappointing 9-7 season in 2009, when Pittsburgh missed the playoffs, the Steelers returned to the Super Bowl last season.

Despite a Super Bowl defeat to Green Bay, all seemed right in Steelers' Nation. Arians' job, despite the normal criticism from disgruntled fans, appeared relatively safe - until Roethlisberger came out with his comments.

Big Ben said that he and Arians are of a like mind - they'd like to throw more often to take advantage of the team's talented receiving weapons. Roethlisberger, however, said that Arians is forced to call more running plays than he'd like because that's what he's "supposed" to do. It was obvious that the QB was referring to Rooney's edict to run the ball more.

So now Arians must walk a tightrope. He must pass enough to please his star QB, but still run enough to satisfy the team's president. That trick will be no easy task. Both Roethlisberger and Rooney will almost certainly be unhappy at times.

Winning - as always - will solve that dilemma. But if the Steelers suffer through a disappointing 2011 season, Arians may find that he's walking that tightrope without a net.

http://www.yorkdispatch.com/ci_17827713

This will be Arians' last season. I expect him to say "screw it" and just air the ball out more than ever. The "flying circus" is coming to town and I think we'll see that it can work with the talent we have on offense.

feltdizz
04-14-2011, 10:29 AM
Okay, so didn't they get to the SB again? The offense had a chance, but didn't get it done. Sounds like the old Ben is coming back to me. He's blaming the media, fans and management. What an idiot. The were pass happy the year before, and won nothing. They were more balanced last year and went to the SB. WTF?

I have no problem with our QB wanting to air it out more... great players want the ball in their hands all the time. Ask the opinion of any skill player on our offense and I'm sure they all want the ball in their hands and think it's the best way to get a W.

I actually think we ran too many times with Mendenhall last year.

feltdizz
04-14-2011, 10:31 AM
This will be Arians' last season. I expect him to say "screw it" and just air the ball out more than ever. The "flying circus" is coming to town and I think we'll see that it can work with the talent we have on offense.

I don't see it working... you can't air it out all game and win in this league. Now if we air it out and 30% of the passes are in the flat to the RB's then I think it works. If it's pump, scramble, 15 yards downfield every play we will have problems.

Oviedo
04-14-2011, 10:50 AM
This will be Arians' last season. I expect him to say "screw it" and just air the ball out more than ever. The "flying circus" is coming to town and I think we'll see that it can work with the talent we have on offense.

I don't see it working... you can't air it out all game and win in this league. Now if we air it out and 30% of the passes are in the flat to the RB's then I think it works. If it's pump, scramble, 15 yards downfield every play we will have problems.

Obviously they aren't passing every play, but they may do something like pass more on first down versus the obligatory run.

feltdizz
04-14-2011, 03:34 PM
This will be Arians' last season. I expect him to say "screw it" and just air the ball out more than ever. The "flying circus" is coming to town and I think we'll see that it can work with the talent we have on offense.

I don't see it working... you can't air it out all game and win in this league. Now if we air it out and 30% of the passes are in the flat to the RB's then I think it works. If it's pump, scramble, 15 yards downfield every play we will have problems.

Obviously they aren't passing every play, but they may do something like pass more on first down versus the obligatory run.

I think we pass more on first down then we remember. I think it was good ole Crash who posted a play log of a game or 2 that put the run on first down theory to rest.

Shawn
04-15-2011, 01:36 AM
Call me old fashioned but I still believe balance is the best ball. I think the balance was there this year.

Personally, with this O I like trip sets. A team must prepare for the pass. We seen much success running out of trip sets this season.

feltdizz
04-15-2011, 11:11 AM
Call me old fashioned but I still believe balance is the best ball. I think the balance was there this year.

Personally, with this O I like trip sets. A team must prepare for the pass. We seen much success running out of trip sets this season.

I love the balance.... but I think we need to be a little better at recognizing a teams weakness and exploiting it.

steelz09
04-15-2011, 11:41 AM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

steelcurtain44
04-18-2011, 08:54 AM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

The runners are out in the flat, because that's what the plays calls for. They are there, Ben just have to (quoting one Keshawn Johsnon) "throw him the damn ball". But alas, Ben doesn't do it enough.

feltdizz
04-18-2011, 09:44 AM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

The runners are out in the flat, because that's what the plays calls for. They are there, Ben just have to (quoting one Keshawn Johsnon) "throw him the damn ball". But alas, Ben doesn't do it enough.

Ben needs to get the ball to them quickly and not as a last resort... Mend in the open field always makes the first guy miss and it's damn near an automatic first down when our RB's catch the ball in the flat.

Imagine what the last SB drive may have looked like if we went to the flat instead of those awful passes to Wallace.

ikestops85
04-18-2011, 10:05 AM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

The runners are out in the flat, because that's what the plays calls for. They are there, Ben just have to (quoting one Keshawn Johsnon) "throw him the damn ball". But alas, Ben doesn't do it enough.

There is a difference having the RB out in the flat as a safety valve and having a pass play designed for the running back. I think what some, or at least me, is advocating is that we run some pass plays designed for the RB out in space. We don't have the dominant offensive line so these plays would help take the pressure off the running game. The eagles are very good at utilizing their running backs that way and I think we could also be good at it. We just have to call the damn plays.

Oviedo
04-18-2011, 10:10 AM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

The runners are out in the flat, because that's what the plays calls for. They are there, Ben just have to (quoting one Keshawn Johsnon) "throw him the damn ball". But alas, Ben doesn't do it enough.

There is a difference having the RB out in the flat as a safety valve and having a pass play designed for the running back. I think what some, or at least me, is advocating is that we run some pass plays designed for the RB out in space. We don't have the dominant offensive line so these plays would help take the pressure off the running game. The eagles are very good at utilizing their running backs that way and I think we could also be good at it. We just have to call the damn plays.

Totally agree. "Dink and Dunk" works as well as the running game for opening things up.

My displeasure with Arians, and Ben, is that we don't use the short passing game to open thing up and slow down the pass rush by forcing LBs to back off the LOS.

feltdizz
04-18-2011, 10:36 AM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

The runners are out in the flat, because that's what the plays calls for. They are there, Ben just have to (quoting one Keshawn Johsnon) "throw him the damn ball". But alas, Ben doesn't do it enough.

There is a difference having the RB out in the flat as a safety valve and having a pass play designed for the running back. I think what some, or at least me, is advocating is that we run some pass plays designed for the RB out in space. We don't have the dominant offensive line so these plays would help take the pressure off the running game. The eagles are very good at utilizing their running backs that way and I think we could also be good at it. We just have to call the damn plays.

Totally agree. "Dink and Dunk" works as well as the running game for opening things up.

My displeasure with Arians, and Ben, is that we don't use the short passing game to open thing up and slow down the pass rush by forcing LBs to back off the LOS.

I think D&D works better than the running game.

RuthlessBurgher
04-18-2011, 01:45 PM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

The runners are out in the flat, because that's what the plays calls for. They are there, Ben just have to (quoting one Keshawn Johsnon) "throw him the damn ball". But alas, Ben doesn't do it enough.

There is a difference having the RB out in the flat as a safety valve and having a pass play designed for the running back. I think what some, or at least me, is advocating is that we run some pass plays designed for the RB out in space. We don't have the dominant offensive line so these plays would help take the pressure off the running game. The eagles are very good at utilizing their running backs that way and I think we could also be good at it. We just have to call the damn plays.

Unfortunately, we look downright AWFUL whenever we try to execute a traditional RB screen pass. Pathetic.

feltdizz
04-18-2011, 02:59 PM
No screens.... hopefully the new coach and Pouncey will give them a little flexibility on a few middles screens. Screens to the right and left look terrible.

ikestops85
04-18-2011, 03:16 PM
Agreed

We could pass more if we utilized a short pass game involving our RE and TE.

Unfortunately, Ben and Arians don't know how to do that which means we need to run the ball more to keep teams honest and keep our QB alive.

The runners are out in the flat, because that's what the plays calls for. They are there, Ben just have to (quoting one Keshawn Johsnon) "throw him the damn ball". But alas, Ben doesn't do it enough.

There is a difference having the RB out in the flat as a safety valve and having a pass play designed for the running back. I think what some, or at least me, is advocating is that we run some pass plays designed for the RB out in space. We don't have the dominant offensive line so these plays would help take the pressure off the running game. The eagles are very good at utilizing their running backs that way and I think we could also be good at it. We just have to call the damn plays.

Unfortunately, we look downright AWFUL whenever we try to execute a traditional RB screen pass. Pathetic.

I have to agree whole-heartedly with this. How is it that a professional football team can be so inept at running a screen? The linemen seem lost on the play, the running backs sit right next to a defensive player and the screen pass is Ben's biggest weakness.

feltdizz
04-18-2011, 05:29 PM
I think Ben struggles with screens because he excels at just about every other pass a QB is required to throw.