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Thread: Gerry Dulac's Two-Minute Drill: Game Two vs. Browns

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    Gerry Dulac's Two-Minute Drill: Game Two vs. Browns

    Gerry Dulac's Two-Minute Drill: Game Two vs. Browns
    Monday, September 15, 2008
    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    Game ball goes to: Hines Ward

    In a game when it was tough to catch passes, Ward finished with five for only 59 yards -- modest numbers to be sure. But, one play after dropping a pass in the end zone, he caught an 11-yard pass on a crossing pattern for the only touchdown in the game and his third in two games. What's more, with the Steelers backed up on their own 2 late in the third quarter, Ward made one of the biggest plays -- giving the offense room to operate and changing field position with a 33-yard catch from Roethlisberger that deflated the Browns.
    The countdown

    A quick look at the top performances from the victory yesterday:

    1. POLAMALU'S INTERCEPTION AT THE END OF THE FIRST HALF: If there was any doubt why there is such skepticism about the Browns' ability to leap past the Steelers in the AFC North Division, QB Derek Anderson provided ample reason at the end of the first half -- with a little help from Pro Bowl safety Troy Polamalu. After the Browns drove to the Steelers' 11 with eight seconds remaining, trailing, 7-0, Anderson tried a pass over the middle for WR Syndric Steptoe that never had a chance. Polamalu made the easy interception and the Browns were, well, the Browns.

    2. ROETHLISBERGER COMING BACK TO WARD FOR A TOUCHDOWN: It's a rare sight -- Hines Ward dropping a pass in the end zone. But he did it on a second-down play from the Browns' 11 in the second quarter. Undaunted, Roethlisberger came back to Ward on the next play for the only touchdown.

    3. PARKER'S 13-YARD RUN ON FOURTH-AND-1: With the game scoreless, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin elected to gamble on fourth-and-1 from the Browns' 40 in the second quarter. All Parker did was break the run around the right side for 13 yards, setting up the first and, as it turns out, only touchdown.

    4. WARD'S CATCH TO GET OUT OF A DEEP HOLE: After a botched kickoff return that almost resulted in the Browns recovering at the Steelers' 2 near the end of the third quarter, Ward and Roethlisberger hooked up on a 31-yard reception on second down to provide some breathing room for the offense.

    5. PLAY-ACTION PASS TO HEATH MILLER IN THE FOURTH QUARTER: After the Browns closed the lead to 10-6 on Phil Dawson's 38-yard field goal with 3:21 remaining, Roethlisberger rolled right on play-action and threw a 19-yard pass to Miller that allowed the Steelers to chew off more of the clock.
    Inside the numbers

    10. That's the number of consecutive victories the Steelers have managed against the Browns, who have lost 16 of the past 17 meetings. It is also the fewest number of points the Steelers have managed in the past 28 meetings against Cleveland.
    What was he thinking?

    What turned out to be a wise decision by punt-returner Mewelde Moore -- one of several he made on special teams -- almost turned into a disastrous one by Anthony Smith. With the Steelers leading, 7-0, in the third quarter, Browns punter Dave Zastudil lofted a 58-yard punt that Moore wisely elected not to catch because the ball was floating in the wind gusts. But with the ball rolling on the field, Smith foolishly came diving into a scrum of Browns players and nearly touched the ball with his body at the Steelers' 16.

    "We were far from perfect, but we are 2-0. We aren't going to apologize for our blemishes. We are very pleased with this win." -- Coach Mike Tomlin, after the Steelers scored only one touchdown and managed just 14 first downs.
    Up next


    The Eagles scored 38 points in their season opener and play in Dallas tonight. The Steelers have lost their past seven meetings in Philadelphia and 11 of the past 15 vs. their cross-state rival.
    X's and O's

    It was not a big game on the stat sheet for tight end Heath Miller, who caught two passes for 33 yards and was even penalized for holding. But it does not begin to illustrate the contribution he made to the offense. Looking more like a pulling guard than a tight end, Miller was used continually as a lead blocker for running back Willie Parker, who finished with 105 yards on 28 carries. Miller would line on the left side and lead Parker through the middle, helping to grind out tough yards.
    First published on September 15, 2008 at 1:46 am

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    Re: Gerry Dulac's Two-Minute Drill: Game Two vs. Browns

    please that was one of the worst games i have seen hines play. yea it was hard catching passes last night, but holmes didnt have any problems. ryan clark so far has played great. he had a couple big hits last night. that hit on edwards was sweet. i thought either clark or edwards or both would of had a concussion. i also thought berger had a very good game


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