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AkronSteel
08-19-2011, 01:17 PM
Well, that was a much better performance than last week in Maryland. It was nice to see the team respond to some adversity. The offense and defense looked pretty sharp last night as we got a glimpse of the dangerous playmakers they have on offense and defense. It was nice to see the secondary respond with a good performance after the way they performed last week. Overall it was a very nice rebound and there were some guys that really stood out.

Tony Hills: This guy looks like he is in fantastic shape. He was doing fairly well in the pass game....he did lose his anchor once at the RG position that allowed a defender to back him into Ben but overall playing at two positions the guy really stood out for the performance that he put on film. If it was me this morning I would say that he has a really good shot at starting at RG come September 11th.

Ben Roethlisberger: We got to see Ben perform as we usually expect. He looked sharp and was at his best improvising. The play to Mendenhall (one hand catch) was the true essence of sand lot football and it works for the Steelers so who can really complain? I'm excited to see what BB can do with all the weapons he has at his disposal this year.

Running Backs Overall: I was impressed with everyone of the Steelers backs last night. Medenhall played well, he showed nice hands and good leg drive on several occasions. The guy really is a stud, I have the feeling he is going to have a monster year. Redman showed he is really a legitimate 2nd horse at the NFL level. The guy is a first down machine. Mewelde is the perfect 3rd down back with good hands and blocking ability. I hate seeing him running out of the I form but it is preseason. Jonathan Dwyer showed he is probably going to make the team as well. He hurt himself by coming into camp out of shape but he responded well last night and his teammates seem to like him....that is always a plus.

Jerricho Cotchery: This guy is going to win the Steelers a game this year. He is going to make plays in big moments. He is a saavy WR who just knows how to get open and he has really good hands. He will make a nice safety valve for Ben for sure. The Steelers have one of the deepest if not the deepest WR corp in the NFL. It's nice to see and nice to have. This unit does really remind of the 1995 set with Thigpen, Johnson, Mills, and Hastings....they are diverse and talented.

Ziggy Hood/Cameron Heyward: These two gentlemen are going to be big time performers for the Steelers for many many moons. They are both strong at the point of attack and capable of making plays on their own. The 4 man rotation the Steelers have at DE is almost scary. If they could add a young NT to go with the team they currently have then there will be no issues for at least a few seasons. Very happy with our 1st round selection again.

Stevenson Sylvester: I thought the guy played a pretty good game last night. He showed a lot of speed and athletic ability. He still seems to be thinking too much on the field though and just needs to go out and play.

Keenan Lewis: He stepped up and played a pretty solid game last night. He is a solid tackler and is a pretty good cover guy. He needs to play with more confidence and he will be a contributor to the team for sure. I hope he continues to progress to the point where he could actually take over for BMac.

Donovan Warren: This kid might actually make the team. He looks good in coverage and seems to have a ton of Steeler like qualities. He even looked nice coming on the blitz last night as he registered at least 1/2 sack. I could see him keeping Cortez Allen off the 53, as much as I don't want that to happen. I would much rather see Willie Gay sent out to pasture.

The only lowlights of the nights were the two injuries to Scott and Gilbert. I was pretty impressed with Gilbert when he was playing though. He looks like he is going to turn into a quality OT at some point sooner as opposed to later. Now lets see some more progress next week against the Falcons!!!

NorthCoast
08-19-2011, 01:48 PM
Agree with many points.

Warren seemed like he has in there the whole game. Staff must really wanted a look-see and I think the guy played a nice game.

This OL is going to get Ben on the injury list at least a couple games this season. It was scary how easily they were pushed into the backfield in pass pro. Run blocking was decent but with our WR corp we need better protection or Ben is in trouble.

Redman >= Mendenhall. Redman runs with power we have been looking for and has a serious burst to be reckoned with. Dwyer looked good but he was playing against scrubs.

Troy was in fine form with some big plays as we have become accustomed to.

Heyward was a man among boys playing with the second team.... his rotation will be a big help to spell the oldtimers.

Cotchery pick-up already paying dividends.

Dixon much improved over first outing.

Bottomline: OL needs to get it together in a big hurry.

papillon
08-19-2011, 02:21 PM
I would like to add this to your comments about Ben. Ben's first inclination is to make a play in pocket, on target and on time to a receiver. The sandlot style that we're so accustomed to seeing and what many believe is the only type of quarterbacking the man can do is his second option in almost all cases.

Someday, people are going to look back at his career and say, "Man, I missed a helluva show, I wished I had paid more attention to the way he played the game." He threw passes on time and on target last night and when the opportunity presented itself he made plays outside the pocket. No other quarterback in the league is even close to being able to do both like Ben.

The Steelers are going to win at least one more Super Bowl with this guy at quarterback. He knows he let an opportunity slip away last season. I doubt that happens again, if the Steelers can get to the big game.

Pappy

Oviedo
08-19-2011, 03:32 PM
This OL is going to get Ben on the injury list at least a couple games this season. It was scary how easily they were pushed into the backfield in pass pro. Run blocking was decent but with our WR corp we need better protection or Ben is in trouble.

Bottomline: OL needs to get it together in a big hurry.

I think that we are going to miss Matt Spaeth alot more than the haters will ever admit. He essentially played as the 6th OL during two TE sets. We don't have anyone now close to his ability to fill that role and I think Ben will pay the price if he is relying on David Johnson...who BTW is mediocre at best.

They need to scan the waiver wire and get a legit #2 TE. They need to do that or just put someone like Hills out there as an extra OL on every play.

hawaiiansteel
08-19-2011, 03:35 PM
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of Steelers Vs. Eagles

AUTHOR: Adam - Courtesy http://www.observer-reporter.com
AUG 19th 2011


Everybody calm down, it was just preseason game #2. BUT OH MY GOD WE JUST MURDERED THE SO-CALLED “DREAM TEAM!!” THEY LOOKED LIKE A JOKE, AHHHHAHAHAHAHAHA!!

Alright, now that we’ve got that out of our system, let’s take a look at this game rationally:

Steelers Offense:

GOOD: Starters looked pretty solid out there. Starting with the run game, the Steelers established that despite their terrible offensive line problems, that they could still move the ball with relative ease. After Mendy took some carries early, the Steelers opted to give Redman and Dwyer the majority of the carries in order to see their progress. Mendy and Redman both ran against the 1st team defense (Dream Team) of the Philly Eagles, and both of them looked like they were running with good vision and good strength. Tons of great blocking out there from the WRs, namely Hines.

Dwyer then took over the majority of the snaps and ran against the first team D some, and then the backups. He broke off a couple nice runs against the first team D, and looked to be playing with a little more gusto than we’re used to with him. He still looks like a high schooler to me, with those skinny arms, though. I don’t know one starting (or even regularly working) RB who isn’t jacked up top. That dude needs to hit the weight room bad.

The Steelers marched all the way down the field in their first two posessions and ended in TD passes from Ben Roethlisberger. The first was a textbook pass/catch to Antonio Brown (about 30 yards), and the second was a classic broken play scramble, Ben rolls right and hits Hines on the run while Hines is improvising in the end zone (about 20 yards). Back-yard football. Big Ben finished 8/12 with 125 yards and 2 TDs (on just two series) against the Dream Team D. Yeah, he’s a chump.

Since those two drives alone took up nearly quarter and a half of time, Byron Leftwich was then brought in to run with the starters for a bit (**sigh**). Leftwich is not the right guy for this offense. He made a couple of nice throws, but his release is so long and slow that he would never last with our offensive line. He did, however, throw a real nice TD pass to Jericho Cotchery, one of the newest additions to this Steelers WR core.

UGLY: The offensive line was a mess from the start. Two injuries to both the starting LT (J. Scott) and the backup LT (Gilbert) almost right away in this game. We had something like 9 penalties for 75 yards and I believe all but one (illegal formation) was on the offensive line for holding. Even with all the holding going on, the O line still couldn’t stop the Eagles from getting hands on Big Ben (sacked twice), and getting big hits on Byron Leftwich. If you’re gonna hold, at least make sure they don’t clobber your QB.

GOOD: The WR core looked scary good last night, despite some of the plaguing injuries (E. Sanders, Hines…). Hines obviously played and looked great, as did Antonio Brown.

The real surprise for me was how much action we saw from newly acquired Jericho Cotchery, and 2nd year Steeler and vet Arnaz Battle. Those dudes both looked stooopid good with some very nice catches.

We didn’t see Dennis Dixon until the second half, and he did as you’d expect someone with his skill set to do against 2nd, 3rd and 4th stringers. He destroyed them. He went 8/11 for 90 yards passing, with no TDs. He did have Grisham open in the end zone, but overthrew him.

We never saw Charlie Batch.

Defense:

Everybody calm down (again). Our defense is fine. last night showed that the first couple of series with the starters in the Redskins game was just our defense still getting used to being out there and laying a beating on someone. There are a lot of young guys in there too because of injuries to Ike Taylor and Bryant McFadden.

GOOD: Four picks is never a bad thing, regardless of how meaningless the second preseason game is. The D looked stout against the pass, actually more so than against the run I thought, and had tips, blocks, picks…the whole 9 yards. Vick was picked 3 times, and Vince Young was picked once. Actually, the guy that impressed me the most was the Eagles 3rd stringer, 2nd year QB Kafka. Dude looked solid, but you know, was playing against the scrubs.

BAD: uhhh…nothing? There’s not much you can say when your first team D shuts out the same team that put up like 60 points in a game last year. All that being said…

MICHAEL VICK WAS PHONING IT IN

There, I said it. Don’t get too crazy over our D. Vick looked like he was playing at half speed and without a care in the world. The Steelers D obviously came out looking to make a statement, which they did, but it’s very clear to me that Vick wasn’t really giving it his all.

“We’re talking about practice”

So, in true Allen Iverson form, Vick sort of just walked through the motions, and our D made him pay for it. He did come up with a tackle on Troy when Troy started doing his thing after he picked a tipped ball from Vick. Troy was dancing around, looked like he was going to lateral it, and then got hit by Vick. Anyone else think this was a little bit of a dirty hit? Looked like Vick just launched his back in the direction of Troys knees to me. Made me nervous to say the least.

Overall it was a nice showing by the Steelers. The O line issues make me a little wary, but Big Ben looked so good…he’s poised for a big year this year. Mark my words, cause I said it first. Other than that, I’m looking forward to see where we are headed over the next couple of pre-season games.

http://nicepickcowher.com/2011/08/19/th ... #more-8854 (http://nicepickcowher.com/2011/08/19/the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-of-steelers-vs-eagles/#more-8854)

Oviedo
08-19-2011, 03:46 PM
I agree with the assessment. I still have serious concerns with our secondary. Vick made them look good with his terrible accuracy.

papillon
08-19-2011, 04:45 PM
I agree with the assessment. I still have serious concerns with our secondary. Vick made them look good with his terrible accuracy.

Yea, that's what I said in a different thread. Michale Vick is getting a lot of love for last year's performance. I still don't see him as a good NFL quarterback from a passing perspective. Yes, he can make plays with his arm and feet, but he isn't accurate enough and doesn't recognize what's happening quickly enough to make the good decisions necessary to become a good to great quarterback.

He's still learning the trade from what I see and last night was proof. Andy Reid kept him out there to try and get things figured out, which caused the Steelers to keep their first team defense on the field for the entire half as well.

Pappy

steelnavy
08-19-2011, 10:39 PM
I agree with the assessment. I still have serious concerns with our secondary. Vick made them look good with his terrible accuracy.

Yea, that's what I said in a different thread. Michale Vick is getting a lot of love for last year's performance. I still don't see him as a good NFL quarterback from a passing perspective. Yes, he can make plays with his arm and feet, but he isn't accurate enough and doesn't recognize what's happening quickly enough to make the good decisions necessary to become a good to great quarterback.He's still learning the trade from what I see and last night was proof. Andy Reid kept him out there to try and get things figured out, which caused the Steelers to keep their first team defense on the field for the entire half as well.

Pappy

I dont know enough about Vick to argue his merits, but during the game last night, they showed his stats from last year a few minutes after showing Ben's, and they were almost identical!

Not sure what that says about either Ben or Vick.

steelfin
08-19-2011, 11:25 PM
This OL is going to get Ben on the injury list at least a couple games this season. It was scary how easily they were pushed into the backfield in pass pro. Run blocking was decent but with our WR corp we need better protection or Ben is in trouble.

Bottomline: OL needs to get it together in a big hurry.

I think that we are going to miss Matt Spaeth alot more than the haters will ever admit. He essentially played as the 6th OL during two TE sets. We don't have anyone now close to his ability to fill that role and I think Ben will pay the price if he is relying on David Johnson...who BTW is mediocre at best.

They need to scan the waiver wire and get a legit #2 TE. They need to do that or just put someone like Hills out there as an extra OL on every play.

Spaeth provided little value his entire career in the Burgh...He was never known as a great blocker and was not that productive in the passing game (for whatever reason).

This will be a non-issue and he will not be missed.

steelfin
08-19-2011, 11:39 PM
Now back to the thread....

Hills - looked surprisingly good

BR - Stud...this was never in question

Running Backs - Dwyer is fat and unispired..We need a better #4, but it will not happen this year

Cotchery - He looks like a stud...this is a big upgrade...Our receiving corp is deep...

Hood / Heyward - Didnt reeally see anything spectacular but wasnt paying attention to the DL....

Sylvester - I thought he played pretty well

Worilds - Did he play in the game? I must have missed it...

Lewis - Not terrible...he will make the team

Warren - I thought he played a good game....I want to see more of him.


SF

papillon
08-20-2011, 06:16 AM
I agree with the assessment. I still have serious concerns with our secondary. Vick made them look good with his terrible accuracy.

Yea, that's what I said in a different thread. Michale Vick is getting a lot of love for last year's performance. I still don't see him as a good NFL quarterback from a passing perspective. Yes, he can make plays with his arm and feet, but he isn't accurate enough and doesn't recognize what's happening quickly enough to make the good decisions necessary to become a good to great quarterback.He's still learning the trade from what I see and last night was proof. Andy Reid kept him out there to try and get things figured out, which caused the Steelers to keep their first team defense on the field for the entire half as well.

Pappy

I dont know enough about Vick to argue his merits, but during the game last night, they showed his stats from last year a few minutes after showing Ben's, and they were almost identical!

Not sure what that says about either Ben or Vick.

I'm not saying he didn't have a good year last year, but it takes more than one good year to be considered a proven winning quarterback like Ben. Michael Vick may become that, but he isn't there yet in my opinion. Teams will be looking for him this year; last year he kind of appeared out of nowhere and led the Eagles to a good season. Lets see what happens when defensive coordinators prepare for him.

He may prove me wrong and become a good or even great quarterback, but I don't think it will happen. I get the feeling that he'll always rely on his legs in a pinch and at some point his athleticism will become ordinary and he'll have to become an NFL caliber quarterback to extend his career.

Pappy

hawaiiansteel
08-21-2011, 03:44 AM
What We Learned from Steelers - Eagles

*Rumblings, observations, and analysis on the Steelers coming out of preseason game No. 2*

Sat, Aug 20th, 2011 by DePaoli


POLAMALU'S RANGE

-- The range Troy Polamalu can cover in the secondary when healthy is still fascinating to watch and that was on display Thursday night. The ground Polamalu covered and aggressiveness at the line of scrimmage was just something health wise he couldn't do last year in the playoffs, most notably in Super Bowl XLV. From a health standpoint, it was very encouraging to see Polamalu so active and dominant in his own way, even if he had no tackles.

Meanwhile, Mike Vick taking out Polamalu's knees on an interception late in the first half was a classless cheapshot by Vick but that was a situation in a preseason game where Troy just has to go down and not leave himself open in the middle of the field for a potential blindside hit.

Polamalu, though, made it clear afterwards that he treats every game like a regular season game.

LEWIS TAKES BIG STEP

-- The Steelers may have something in Keenan Lewis. He played pretty well against the Eagles first team and was rewarded with an interception in the second quarter. He got matched up against DeSean Jackson quite a few times and covered Jackson extremely well on deep routes. Really interested to see if he can build off of Thursday's performance.

WARREN EMERGING FOR ROSTER SPOT

-- Cornerback Donovan Warren has emerged as the surprise of camp. He seemed to have caught the eye of the coaching staff early in camp when opportunities with the first and second team opened up due to injuries and vets not being in camp for the first week, and through two preseason games, he's been impressive. Warren has shown solid cover skills and he closes in on receivers quickly, which is an attribute the Steelers covet in corners due to their philosophy of not giving up yards after the catch. Warren has entered the mix for one of the likely six cornerback spots on the 53-man roster.

HARRISON/BACK ISSUE

-- There continues to be concerns about James Harrison's back holding up. Harrison has admitted he won't be at 100% and there's some in the know who indicate he's lost a lot of lower body strength. Harrison though was a difference maker Thursday night, getting a strong push.

NO WORRIES AT RUNNING BACK

-- It's time for some local columnists and the media to quit fretting about the Steelers running back situation. People continue to overlook the fact that Rashard Mendenhall is one of the league's most complete backs. He can do it all and showed that Thursday night with his blocking and pass catching ability. The Steelers believe the 24 year old is primed for a special season. Primary backup Isaac Redman continues to show that he's a legitimate running back in situational plays. He's running with power and a purpose now at 245 lbs.

VERSATILE, SCARY OFFENSE?

-- The word "scary potential" is being mentioned by the likes of Hines Ward and others about the Steelers offense. This is an offense that is very versatile and has the potential to beat the opposition in several ways. What to watch for this season is whether they can finally develop into a dominant team in the redzone. The pieces are surely there.

MORE BUZZ

-- This may come as a surprise to some but there are observers who since last preseason have felt Tony Hills is on par with starting left tackle Jonathan Scott.

-- 4th round pick Cortez Allen has been seen as a development pick with the Steelers believing when they drafted him that he wouldn't be a contributor until 2012. However, for a win-now team like the Steelers, a 4th round pick, most notably one that can't stay healthy in camp, is not a lock to make the team.

http://insidepittsburghsports.com/story ... ned/41825/ (http://insidepittsburghsports.com/story/steelers-eagles-what-we-learned/41825/)

Shawn
08-21-2011, 09:48 AM
Excellent write up Akron.