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Thread: Why 2013 Will Be the Defining Year for Pittsburgh Steelers’ Troy Polamalu

  1. #11
    Pro Bowler skyhawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flippy View Post
    I'm not buying. You can reasonably make the case that Lott is the better form tackler and bigger hitter, but there's a ton of plays Troy makes that Ronnie couldn't imagine making in his dreams.

    Troy covers more field than any player the NFL has ever seen. His game speed makes it look like Lott was playing in slow motion if you go back and watch his highlights. No way is Lott lining up 20-30 yards downfield and making ankle tackles in the backfield. Nor is he lining up in the box and then making plays on the ball in the deep middle.

    Players have gotten a lot bigger and faster since Lott came into the NFL 30+ years ago. The rules have been slanted toward the offense and the passing game over the most recent years. Lott wouldn't be able to play like himself in today's game.

    Despite the size and speed in the modern NFL, every game I've seen live in recent history, there's one guy that looks like he always moving 2x as fast as every other player on the field.
    +1 No one has ever had the game changing speed like Troy has. Many a Steeler fan have takin him for granted. When Troy plays, the Steelers win. When he doesn't, the game isn't as sure.

    I feel that he blends in so much because there really ISN'T anyone in Troy's league to compare him to. His greatness is a foregone conclusion.

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by flippy View Post
    I'm not buying. You can reasonably make the case that Lott is the better form tackler and bigger hitter, but there's a ton of plays Troy makes that Ronnie couldn't imagine making in his dreams.

    Troy covers more field than any player the NFL has ever seen. His game speed makes it look like Lott was playing in slow motion if you go back and watch his highlights. No way is Lott lining up 20-30 yards downfield and making ankle tackles in the backfield. Nor is he lining up in the box and then making plays on the ball in the deep middle.

    Players have gotten a lot bigger and faster since Lott came into the NFL 30+ years ago. The rules have been slanted toward the offense and the passing game over the most recent years. Lott wouldn't be able to play like himself in today's game.

    Despite the size and speed in the modern NFL, every game I've seen live in recent history, there's one guy that looks like he always moving 2x as fast as every other player on the field.
    Yet Lott actually made more plays.
    More tackles (five times bested Troys career high for tackles), more ints, more forced fumbles, more returns for TDs..........

    Troy makes plays that "LOOK" spectacular that we see over and over again.

    Before you dismiss this Flip, follow my observations below:

    Troy "guesses" and takes caculated risks doing it.
    Troy is very fast......but he looks faster because he starts before anybody, thus after the snap he is at full speed when everyone else is just getting started.
    This results in spectacular looking plays where he looks like he has superhuman speed.
    Dude is 20 yards deep and seems to instantly be at the LOS that way. In thge box and is suddenly deep.
    While other players are unsure and "reading" Troy has "read" the play and is a full speed torpedo when everyone else is just starting and appear to be in slow motion.

    Dont believe me? Does Troy run a 3 second 40?
    That is literally the ONLY WAY he can look so fast.

    The flipside of this is that when he is WRONG he is WAY out of position.
    He winds up trailing someone and looks terrible. Troy is actually "BETTER" in coverage than people think but gets beat on occasion, not because he cant cover but because he is out of position to start the play.

    Troy is a "risk reward" guy, more reward than risk. But we have paid dearly for the risk too albiet less often.

    Lott took far fewer risks and STILL made MORE plays, consistently.

    Difference between you and me is that you are looking at "style" plays that make you go "whoa" how'd he do that.
    I am looking at substance who was more productive.

    For example Lott returned more TDs AS A ROOKIE than Troy did in his CAREER........But Troy's touchdowns are spectacular runs.
    Lott had 51 ints in 10 years versus Troys 30......but Troy's fingertip grab is RIDICULOUS.

    Dont look at the spectacular individual play here and there. Look at total games and seasons, who was more impactful?

    Lott created 10 postseason turnovers in 20 games scoring 2 TDs.
    The Niners had 4 rings often in close playoff games.

    Troy is very valuable, is the best safety today, but Lott was better and if one removes all bias it is an easy call.
    Last edited by Captain Lemming; 07-02-2013 at 01:55 PM.

  3. #13
    A briefer way to say the above:

    You can make a highlight reel of Troy that will make him look like the greatest athlete in the history of mankind.
    Lotts highlight film (only first 10 years to make it fair) would be much longer, less spectacular, but with many more game changing plays.

  4. #14
    No one has ever had the game changing speed like Troy has. Many a Steeler fan have takin him for granted. When Troy plays, the Steelers win. When he doesn't, the game isn't as sure.
    Nobody takes Troy for granted.
    He is the best in the game.....now.
    Problem is MOST Steeler fans know Lott was great but have no idea specifically what he accomplished and cannot make a fair comparison.

    I feel that he blends in so much because there really ISN'T anyone in Troy's league to compare him to. His greatness is a foregone conclusion.
    While "I" agree, that is by no means a consensus now is it?
    When I see fan polls it is pretty split between Troy and Reed as the best safety.
    When I hear players they tend toward Reed pretty dramatically (I dont agree.....Reed does not play the run well at all)

    Best in the 80s? There is absolutely NO DEBATE.
    Best EVER?
    Any non-Steeler or Raven centered poll would have Lott over either current player EASY.

    It is Lott who's greatness is beyond debatable and when Troy and Reed retire the only debate will be which of the two of them gets a place alongside Lott on the all time greatest team.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Lemming View Post
    Yet Lott actually made more plays.
    More tackles (five times bested Troys career high for tackles), more ints, more forced fumbles, more returns for TDs..........

    Troy makes plays that "LOOK" spectacular that we see over and over again.

    Before you dismiss this Flip, follow my observations below:

    Troy "guesses" and takes caculated risks doing it.
    Troy is very fast......but he looks faster because he starts before anybody, thus after the snap he is at full speed when everyone else is just getting started.
    This results in spectacular looking plays where he looks like he has superhuman speed.
    Dude is 20 yards deep and seems to instantly be at the LOS that way. In thge box and is suddenly deep.
    While other players are unsure and "reading" Troy has "read" the play and is a full speed torpedo when everyone else is just starting and appear to be in slow motion.

    Dont believe me? Does Troy run a 3 second 40?
    That is literally the ONLY WAY he can look so fast.

    The flipside of this is that when he is WRONG he is WAY out of position.
    He winds up trailing someone and looks terrible. Troy is actually "BETTER" in coverage than people think but gets beat on occasion, not because he cant cover but because he is out of position to start the play.

    Troy is a "risk reward" guy, more reward than risk. But we have paid dearly for the risk too albiet less often.

    Lott took far fewer risks and STILL made MORE plays, consistently.

    Difference between you and me is that you are looking at "style" plays that make you go "whoa" how'd he do that.
    I am looking at substance who was more productive.

    For example Lott returned more TDs AS A ROOKIE than Troy did in his CAREER........But Troy's touchdowns are spectacular runs.
    Lott had 51 ints in 10 years versus Troys 30......but Troy's fingertip grab is RIDICULOUS.

    Dont look at the spectacular individual play here and there. Look at total games and seasons, who was more impactful?

    Lott created 10 postseason turnovers in 20 games scoring 2 TDs.
    The Niners had 4 rings often in close playoff games.

    Troy is very valuable, is the best safety today, but Lott was better and if one removes all bias it is an easy call.
    Looking at the stats, there's really no comparison. I'm with you. But when you watch their highlight reels, there's no comparison either in the other direction.

    They also have played in different eras. So it's tough to compare. Was Lott physically just ahead of the game and had an advantage 30 years ago? Guys are so much bigger and faster now. How would Lott's game translate into the modern game?

    I think it's easier to compare stats of guys that played in the same era. But when you start crossing eras it gets tougher to really know what the stats mean.

    And if we're looking at impact, Troy may be the key player that enabled arguably the best defensive season in NFL history.

    I'm not knocking Lott by any means. I can't. His numbers speak for themselves. On that same note, I've seen many greats over the years play live football games and I've never seen a player live that covers the ground that Troy does. It's like he plays on a different level than everyone around him. And if you sent him back 30 years, he'd probably look 4x as fast as everyone else.

    Perhaps opposing offenses look at the "style" and avoid Troy at all costs thus limiting his opportunities? So while he definitely can't win on stats, maybe the "style" is worth more than the stat sheet implies?

    Didn't Lott also play CB at the beginning of his career? So he had a little bit of a different skillset. Perhaps we should be comparing Lott to Woodson since those guys both started at CB and ended up at S?

  6. #16
    Pro Bowler skyhawk's Avatar
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    Woodson got burned constantly. He was so aggressive. But you were ok with it because he was the best CB/S of his time. Same with Troy.

    Is it apples vs oranges between Troy and Lott? Lott changed the position forever. Undoubtedly one of the best ever. Troy is all that put into the modern player. I think I will enjoy what both are right now and not compare and contrast them. During the 3 SBs the Steelers went to recently we all know what made that defense great (Harrison was also great during his MVP season as well). No way the Steelers get to 3 SB's without #43.

    And going back to Rod Woodson, if he were 100% healthy that SB game in January 1996 - the Steelers beat the Cowboys. (let's not foget Woodson's natural position was S, not CB. He showed his worth with any team he played with making it to 3 total super bowls. He also didn't lead the NFL in INT's until his final year at age 37 so stats don't always tell the whole story).

  7. #17
    Looking at the stats, there's really no comparison. I'm with you.
    Correct

    But when you watch their highlight reels, there's no comparison either in the other direction.
    Yeah you can say the same about Blake Griffin being "better" than Larry Bird, based on who has better highlights.
    Swann better that Rice? Same deal.
    You cannot judge "better" over a decade based on 5 minutes of highlights.

    As I said earlier, Troy has one maybe two interceptions that are truly amazing. But Lott actually MADE more picks and it aint close. What actually matters HOW spectacularly you make picks, or making more picks?

    They also have played in different eras. So it's tough to compare. Was Lott physically just ahead of the game and had an advantage 30 years ago? Guys are so much bigger and faster now. How would Lott's game translate into the modern game?
    I think it's easier to compare stats of guys that played in the same era. But when you start crossing eras it gets tougher to really know what the stats mean.
    Fact is Lott had a corners speed, so he would be a very fast safety, even today. His size would be fine in todays game. Heck Reed has big int numbers today, why not Lott who was both bigger and FASTER than Reed?

    And if we're looking at impact, Troy may be the key player that enabled arguably the best defensive season in NFL history.
    The only year that was put in that conversation was 2008. SILLY compared to the 76 Steelers, but let's look at that season and see WHO was the key figure.

    James Harrison was league DPOY that season with what was the best OLBer season since Lawrence Taylor.
    Harrison got 22 votes, but Troy was close right?
    Harrison was followed by:
    D Ware 13 votes
    ED REED got 8 votes (Troy not voted the best SAFETY never mind comparing him to JH)
    Then came Troy with all of TWO votes.

    That year was Troys best season, NOT 2010 when he was DPOY.
    Harrison was the better, more valuable player BY FAR, in Troys best season.

    In the SB that season James Harrison's int gave the cushion we needed so that when Troy and the rest got TORCHED in the second half the game was in reach for Ben to save.
    I mentioned Troy and his "risk reward" tendancies. Watch that game and you will see that "risk" contributed to the Cards taking a lead.

    I'm not knocking Lott by any means. I can't. His numbers speak for themselves. On that same note, I've seen many greats over the years play live football games and I've never seen a player live that covers the ground that Troy does. It's like he plays on a different level than everyone around him. And if you sent him back 30 years, he'd probably look 4x as fast as everyone else.
    But the truth is that HE IS NOT that much faster than everyone else. He just STARTS before everyone else. Dude is 30 yards deep and is SPRINTING towards the LOS before the ball is snapped. Everyone looks slow but it is because he is top speed when they are just starting to move. This leads to spectacular plays true. It also leads to him blowing past runners, whiffing on tackles, trailing a receiver when he guessed wrong etc.

    As I said earlier if he is so fast that he can go from centerfield to the backfield at the snap the dude can run a 2 or 3 second 40. It aint possible.

    And reality check.....Troy makes a tackle in the backfield about every third game on average. FACT.

    Perhaps opposing offenses look at the "style" and avoid Troy at all costs thus limiting his opportunities? So while he definitely can't win on stats, maybe the "style" is worth more than the stat sheet implies?
    LOL now that is just reaching dude.
    Fact is, Safety is the ONE POSITION that you cannot avoid. They have too much freedom. Troy has the most freedom I have ever seen a safety have.

    Didn't Lott also play CB at the beginning of his career? So he had a little bit of a different skillset. Perhaps we should be comparing Lott to Woodson since those guys both started at CB and ended up at S?
    Entirely different scenario.
    When Woodson lost a step, he was moved to safety.
    Lott was was moved during his prime despite being a probowler at corner because he IS a safety (what he played in college).

    You cannot compare the two because Woodson was a natural corner while Lott was the prototype safety. Each was better at their natural position.

    If you want to make a case that Troy is the GOAT, you gotta compare him to the king.

    That king is Ronnie Lott.

  8. #18
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    For Troy to ascend to Ronnie Lott status, he's going to have a rebirth in the coming year(s).
    If he slowly flames out from this point forward, he will be thought of more in line of a Bob Sanders (although certainly above Sanders) than a Ronnie Lott.

    He has to re-emerge (one more time) as an impact player. If he comes out this year and gives another 29 tackles, 1 INT, 0 FF performance, he won't ever be considered with the all-time greats.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Lemming View Post
    If you want to make a case that Troy is the GOAT, you gotta compare him to the king.

    That king is Ronnie Lott.
    Your king never had to deal with taking guys out of a game with the athleticism of TO to Antonio Gates week in and week out. The NFL is completely different. Nearly every team has a WR/TE or 2 that are athletic freaks. Either they are fast as lightning or they are big as bears. Lott never saw that in his day. He was as big and fast as any of the offensive players he faced.

    Troy doesn't have that luxury.

  10. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by flippy View Post
    Your king never had to deal with taking guys out of a game with the athleticism of TO to Antonio Gates week in and week out. The NFL is completely different. Nearly every team has a WR/TE or 2 that are athletic freaks. Either they are fast as lightning or they are big as bears. Lott never saw that in his day. He was as big and fast as any of the offensive players he faced.

    Troy doesn't have that luxury.
    Yes, Troy doesnt have that luxury. Is THAT why Troy makes fewer picks in a pass happy league?
    Is that why Troy makes fewer tackles? Is his mind so consumed with athletic tight ends that he is les prolific.

    Why do we assume Lott who would be our tallest starting safety cant cover todays tight ends?

    Would LT not be able to be great today? Could Deon not cover todays bigger receivers?

    WOULD 6'3" MEL BLOUNT not be able to cover todays receivers because he never faced that kind of size (well you had an occasional tall skinny like Harold Carmichael, but no Megatron).

    Tell me 250 pound Mike Webster would be a smaller not as strong Legurski today, we can talk.

    But there is no basis to assume a player with todays size would be handicapped.

    If we drafted a young Ronnie Lott in April nobody would say dude is too small to cover tight ends.

    Flippy you keep referring to "highlights".

    Did you watch actual Niner games? Are you too young, or were the games not shown there?

    As I said ealier, I saw a TON of Niners where I lived.

    Lotts greatest skill is that he was ALWAYS around the ball. He was even better than Troy (who shares this talent) at that. Troy reads and anticipates very well but he commits SO early he takes himself plays too. Additionally, whether it was how he tackled or how he covered, Lott was way more sound fundamentally.

    Making more plays, always being around the ball, sound fundamentals do not a sportcenter highlight make. But they matter because you are a factor in more plays.

    If you go by "highlights" James Farrior was a scrub and Kendrell Bell was better.

    I think you can describe the two this way:

    Troy is AMAZING while Lott was close to FLAWLESS in how he played the position.

    Both are great but the guy who makes MORE plays, has more picks, creates more fumbles, and is a much more sound and sure tackler, was better than the hairy human highlight film.
    Last edited by Captain Lemming; 07-08-2013 at 11:12 PM.

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