what a wasted season
I still am reeling after seeing this game. What did I just see? Is this all some cruel joke? Again our coaches were terrible with their game plans and adjustments. The following is the email I sent my Steelers buddy, trumpet to voice my disdain...
I'll start with the defense. The unit doesn't lack speed or athleticism, it lacks discipline and fundamentals. While I can see Clark and troy are getting up there in age, and as a result aren't as fast and athletic anymore, that isn't our problem. Our other elderly statesmen played great games. Diesel had a fantastic game, and ike was well, ike. Ike is still plenty fast. Age isn't our problem. Discipline and fundamentals are.
We got our doors blown off by an offense that sucks at throwing the ball. An offense that relies on lots of read option and wildcat looks. To defeat that type of offense you play to your keys and if you stay disciplined, play proper technique, and execute the proper fundamentals you shut this type of offense down everytime. It's simple, you have to know and execute your assignment based on the down/distance/formation keys.
Keep contain (I'm staring at you, Woodley and Jones), maintain gap control, the inside backers need to know who's the got the rb and who's got the qb, while the line needs to keep the backers clean. Be patient and don't over commit trying to be a freaking hero, this scheme feasts on this. We did none of the above in this game.
A line that had 2 backups starting easily blew open huge run lanes because we did none of these things correctly.. the change in scheme lebeau put into place of the line pushing up field is blowing up in our face. Not only has our d line gotten next to no sacks, by pushing instead of eating blockers, it's exposed our backers to clogged lanes to the ball. Usually these lanes are clearly defined, and it reinforces gap control. We have no gap control. We got smoked on so many cut back runs it should be criminal, all because a backer over pursued to the play side zone and ignored his gap assignment. We also got destroyed by many (especially the 93yd rush by Pryor) by not setting the edge and maintaining outside contain. The purpose of contain is to funnel the play back inside where gap control is in full effect. If the ilb's are playing the keys, and sticking to their assignments the one who's responsible for the runner will be there to make the play. If he can't for whatever reason, BOTH safeties are there to cover the miss for a 5 yard gain at the worst.
All that said, some of our poor execution is on rooks who don't know what they're seeing yet (Williams and Jones), most of it is on schematical mistakes. Most of it is on troy being troy, and being out of position to make any difference on said play. Like you said, troy ISN'T troy anymore.. I'll also add Clark ISN'T Clark anymore. He can't play robin to troys batman, and troy isn't batman anymore. We needed disciplined and sound safety play to beat this run option team (like we had when we made Rg3 look mortal last year). We needed safeties ready to catch the overflow for short gains. We didn't need somebody freelancing and forcing his way into the box for ABSOLUTELY ZERO reason, to only get caught in the wash and COMPLETELY negated on the play because the other team was smart enough to scheme away from the freelance. This happened vs the vikes too. Too much troy in the box. A good running team schemes troys freelancing out. Minnesota and Oakland sure did... Had he been playing safety, like he should have been, we wouldn't have seen those long plays we did. It's no mere coincidence, that when the defense stuck to being disciplined vs a much better run option team last year (the redskins) they performed much better, no deviation from being disciplined, no troy trying to be troy when he isn't troy anymore.. troy needs to play safety, no more freelancing.. his freelancing hasn't yielded enough gains to offset the negatives. Be semi-troy in the secondary, save the big plays. Don't leave another old guy in the lurch being the only deep guy...
This game is on lebeau and Haley. The game plans sucked. Coach dad adjusted a little better, but much of that is on the fact the raiders went ultra conservative with a 3 score lead. The raiders rode the clock trying to mitigate potential mistakes, and even when they made them we couldn't capitalize.
Our offense SUCKS, and I 100% put that on Haley. Great game plans the 2 previous games, but where was any of that this game?? This plan wasn't creative, even a little. Lots of telegraphed delayed draws and useless bubble screens. No useful short stuff to open up the long stuff.
Our crown gem is our sandlot qb, and his success with the hurry up. Why in the hell on any planet in our galaxy, did we open up the 2nd half attempting to burn clock with a damn near 10 minute drive DOWN 3 scores. Does Haley not understand the game or the guys he has on his team???
When they went hurry up, all we did was consistently move the rock. If not for 2 dropped passes by AB, we most likely would have scored on both drives.
We don't go hurry up enough and we play polamalu out of position regularly for no reasons what so ever. Why aren't the coordinators adjusting??? I love tomlin, but he hasn't seen this trend.. why NOT?? why hasn't he forced a different direction?? That's the head guys job, save a coordinator from himself, many times that's what differentiates the best hc.
IMO tomlin needs to step in and force his will.. his coordinators are making too many mistakes... Haley especially... Our. Losses have nothing to do with talent or ability, just how it's used.
There's not one game this year we couldn't have won. We have the talent, even if some of it is super young.. the losses have come mostly from coordinator issues not using what we have the right way.
Tomlin needs to be a better boss. Haley needs replaced, immediately, lebeau needs his decisions to be challenged. Tomlin is giving free reign to coach dad.. that's a bad choice. Challenge him more.
Our team doesn't have the most talent, but it has enough. The disconnect is in its coaching. Challenge the coordinators and learn clock management Mike. Prepare the team to play well before halftime. That's all on the coaches, were ALWAYS playing catch up.. why didn't we go hurry up immediately after the 2nd rush td??
The coaches are killing this team...
"If I could start my life all over again, I would be a professional football player, and you damn well better believe I would be a Pittsburgh Steeler." Jack Lambert, 1990 HoF Introduction.