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Djfan
01-01-2013, 01:49 PM
http://www.timesonline.com/columnists/sports/mike_bires/imagine-that-plax-contributing-to-win/article_ac20d76c-bb11-5653-bc35-5cfeb6bd4048.html


Imagine that, Plax contributing to win

http://bloximages.newyork1.vip.townnews.com/timesonline.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/a/06/a0610424-113d-599b-a5e3-61067dc148f3/50e0ee7d4fe7a.preview-300.jpg (http://www.timesonline.com/columnists/sports/mike_bires/imagine-that-plax-contributing-to-win/article_ac20d76c-bb11-5653-bc35-5cfeb6bd4048.html?mode=image&photo=0) The Times/Sylvester Washington Jr.
Plaxico Burress celebrates his game-clinging touchdown with Leonard Pope in the fourth quarter








Posted: Sunday, December 30, 2012 8:39 pm | Updated: 11:48 pm, Sun Dec 30, 2012.
By Mike Bires mbires@timesonline.com | 0 comments

(http://www.timesonline.com/columnists/sports/mike_bires/imagine-that-plax-contributing-to-win/article_ac20d76c-bb11-5653-bc35-5cfeb6bd4048.html#user-comment-area)

PITTSBURGH -- Let the record show that the Steelers’ final touchdown of a madcap season was scored by Plaxico Burress.
How bizarre is that?
There was Plax, taking a couple bows in the end zone with 3:20 left to play after clinching a win that allowed the Steelers to finish a ho-hum 8-8.
The whole Burress dilemma was one of many mysteries in a season of hope that ended in failure.
After re-acquiring Burress on Nov. 20, the Steelers never knew quite what to do with him. It wasn’t until the season finale, Sunday's 24-10 win over the Browns, that coach Mike Tomlin and offensive coordinator Todd Haley finally put him to good use.
In a game in which no Steelers’ receiver was targeted more than three times or caught more than two passes, Burress proved that at age 35 he could still make significant plays.
He caught two passes, each for 12 yards. He also accounted for 12 penalty yards by drawing a pass interference flag against Cleveland star cornerback Joe Haden.
The touchdown was classic Burress, a high ball from Ben Roethlisberger thrown where only a big man could get it.
It was a classic red zone mismatch: Burress, at 6-foot-5, matched up man-to-man against the 5-11 Haden.
Touchdown, Steelers.
Take a bow, Plax.
“It was nice, it was fun,” Roethlisberger said of his first TD pass to Burress since 2004. “He’s got a big body down there and he made a great catch.”
So the question begs to be asked: Where was Burress last week when the Steelers needed to beat the Bengals?
Why did Tomlin choose not to even dress him in a game the Steelers needed to win in order to keep their playoff hopes alive?
Instead, Tomlin dressed five running backs: Jonathan Dwyer, Isaac Redman, Rashard Mendenhall, Chris Rainey and Baron Batch.
Baron Batch?
Are you kidding?
In a game they really had to win, the Steelers dressed Baron Batch instead of Burress, a former first-round draft pick who caught a winning TD for the Giants in the Super Bowl a few years ago.
Unbelievable.
Batch had zero carries and zero catches in last week's 13-10 loss before breaking his arm covering a kickoff late in the first half.
Even dressing Rainey over Burress was a mistake. Granted, Rainey returns kickoffs but it’s not that he’s a game-breaking specialist. In a game the Steelers had to win, Emmanuel Sanders could have returned kickoffs. As it turns out, Rainey didn’t have any carries or any receptions and only returned two kickoffs for 33 and 34 yards.
What a waste of manpower.
Ever since returning to Pittsburgh, Burress was used sparingly. Out of 195 offensive snaps in his first three games, he was on the field for only 19 of them. He didn’t dress in the loss in Dallas. He didn’t dress in the home loss to the Bengals.
In the locker room after Sunday’ win over the Browns, Burress chose not to criticize the coaches for the way he’s been used.
“You know, all I can do is prepare,” he said.
But Burress looked good enough against the Browns that Roethlisberger envisioned him back in a Steelers uniform next year.
“He has plenty of game left,” Roethlisberger said.
Too bad the Steelers didn’t put Burress to work sooner. Like last week.

MCHammer
01-01-2013, 02:07 PM
It's hard not to agree with that article. It would be nice to see Plax back in uniform next year. Seems the most cost affordable way to keep Ben happy and give him a red zone weapon while letting Wallace go.

Sugar
01-01-2013, 02:31 PM
FWIW, I wouldn't have dressed Burress against the Bengals either. In the past, we've been able to run on them and had a compliment of receivers to do the job. It can't be proven one way or the other, but I highly doubt that not having Burress was the difference between winning and losing against Cincinnati. Against the Browns, Wallace and Heath were out so it made sense to get the old guy back out there.

Mister Pittsburgh
01-01-2013, 03:36 PM
I would of dressed Plaxico no questions asked.....I would sign him for next year and he would be my 3rd WR.

flippy
01-01-2013, 07:06 PM
I'm still a little shocked we didn't dress him too. We can't score in the RedZone. He's a big target. Even as a decoy, he can help open things up in the RedZone. You've gotta cover him and he's always gonna be a mismatch for anyone one on one.

We have a solution to our biggest problem on offense. And we decided not to use him. I hope we bring him back and use him lots.

Mister Pittsburgh
01-01-2013, 07:19 PM
Beyond the red zone, why wouldn't he be valuable on every down as a mismatch. If we are facing 3rd & 7 and need someone to separate and make a catch in traffic I would trust throwing it to Plax over Sanders or even Wallace.

supersteeler
01-01-2013, 09:06 PM
Plax scored eight TD's last season with the Jets and YPC average 13.6 or something, not bad for mid thirties guy.
He can still play and help us win some games, they'll work something out I believe.

Mister Pittsburgh
01-01-2013, 09:09 PM
Plax scored eight TD's last season with the Jets and YPC average 13.6 or something, not bad for mid thirties guy.
He can still play and help us win some games, they'll work something out I believe.

I wouldn't bet on it.

SS Laser
01-01-2013, 09:23 PM
I wouldn't bet on it.

Agreed. I think Gilreath gets a spot. And I think a draft pick or a different FA. Plax is old slow. Same reason people want rid of other old productive players.

supersteeler
01-01-2013, 09:31 PM
I wouldn't bet on it either, then again I wouldn't bet against it. http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-think005.gif

Mister Pittsburgh
01-01-2013, 09:35 PM
Agreed. I think Gilreath gets a spot. And I think a draft pick or a different FA. Plax is old slow. Same reason people want rid of other old productive players.

Unlike you, I still think he has plenty to offer our offense...the decision makers couldn't include him in the plan over Barron freaking Batch though....

skyhawk
01-01-2013, 10:55 PM
I don't get it. Ben needs a big receiver who can get open. His current stable just isn't enough. Steelers fans wearing rose colored glasses don't make a good receiving corps (with the exception of Miller - who couldn't be stopped, and then the coaches forget about him in the second half of the Dallas game).

Starlifter
01-01-2013, 11:46 PM
i think many are still holding anger against plax for sins of the past. he was a physically gifted WR his first run with us, but not a complete package. I think his time with the giants and tom coughlin helped him mature into a savvy vet who knows how to get open, fight for the ball, draw penalties and has the ability to make the clutch catch. yes, he's not a speed demon - but (like hines ward) he can get you first downs. when you add that to the fact that we only have cotchery as the other veteran AND plax has to realize his next opportunity will likely be his last - I think he will be motivated, work hard and if used properly will be an asset. I also think he will not be highly sought after and there's nothing wrong with paying the league minimum for a guy who still has gas in the tank.

I hope we bring him back.

Mister Pittsburgh
01-02-2013, 12:02 AM
i think many are still holding anger against plax for sins of the past. he was a physically gifted WR his first run with us, but not a complete package. I think his time with the giants and tom coughlin helped him mature into a savvy vet who knows how to get open, fight for the ball, draw penalties and has the ability to make the clutch catch. yes, he's not a speed demon - but (like hines ward) he can get you first downs. when you add that to the fact that we only have cotchery as the other veteran AND plax has to realize his next opportunity will likely be his last - I think he will be motivated, work hard and if used properly will be an asset. I also think he will not be highly sought after and there's nothing wrong with paying the league minimum for a guy who still has gas in the tank.

I hope we bring him back.

This! They want to run this all control offense with 3 yard runs and the chain moving pass designs but then have small framed speed receivers that can't get separation off the LOS, run poor routes, don't block we'll for one another or for the RB half the time, and have made some killer mistakes that have thwarted some huge drives.

We had Plax outside but I would play him in the slot with Brown outside.

Sugar
01-02-2013, 01:24 PM
I still don't see Burress as anything special at this point in his career. He's a #4 WR and should be played like one.

Slapstick
01-02-2013, 02:19 PM
If Ben likes him, he can make the occasional catch and he's cheap, why not? As a #4 WR, he'd be a mismatch for whomever would cover him...or, he'd draw a better CB and create a mismatch elsewhere...

skyhawk
01-02-2013, 02:31 PM
A #4 receiver? I believe he can be much higher than that. Sanders is better than Burress? I think us Steeler fans overrate our receiving corps. It needs to be addressed in the draft this year.

skyhawk
01-02-2013, 02:32 PM
This! They want to run this all control offense with 3 yard runs and the chain moving pass designs but then have small framed speed receivers that can't get separation off the LOS, run poor routes, don't block we'll for one another or for the RB half the time, and have made some killer mistakes that have thwarted some huge drives.

We had Plax outside but I would play him in the slot with Brown outside.

TOTALLY THIS!!

Our receivers cannot get open and run routes and create separation. It's one of the reasons Ben holds the ball so long.

feltdizz
01-02-2013, 02:35 PM
Not even a Burress fan but it was stupid to have him out vs Cincy in a must win game. Unlike the other WR's Plax knows how to draw a PI flag. I don't care if he;s old and slow... he is valuable in the red zone and we STINK in the red zone.

Chadman
01-02-2013, 09:14 PM
Given that Haley plays the dink & dunk offense, and there are so many short to medium WR routes, separation just won't happen all the time. This is why a big-bodied guy like Burress is valuable, because even when he's covered, he's open due to his height. Reckon we'd be surprised how much Ben would look Plex's way...

Sugar
01-02-2013, 09:57 PM
Sanders is better than Burress?

At this point? Yes. Yes, he is.

skyhawk
01-02-2013, 10:49 PM
Short to medium routes? What routes? There is very little timing in this offense. The loss of Hines Ward is bigger than people think (although last year he didn't contribute much). I would also tend to think that Holmes was a more phyical receiver and able to run routes better than what we have now.

This is a majpr passing league now. With Ben, these receivers should be doing more. But they clearly are not. Is that Haley's fault? I am not sure. Going through the motions and completing the few pass that are made is irrelevant if this team can't score points. That is the issue. Points.

skyhawk
01-02-2013, 10:50 PM
At this point? Yes. Yes, he is.

Ha, Steeler cool-aid? I think if Burress is worked into the mix more he would be more productive than Sanders. Come on now.