Monday, December 10, 2012


Once again the Steelers played down to their competition.  A 10-point loss at home in December to a 5-8 team with a lame-duck coach is not a good thing,  The Steelers were outcoached and outplayed from the coin toss. They came out flat and went down from there. The Chargers dominated, and the game wasn't nearly as close as the 10-point margin might suggest.

Ben Roethlisberger looked off, never mind the final stats. He was awful. This was the wrong week to start him. It looked like he wasn't ready, his timing was off, and the entire team seem to lack focus to the point of distraction.  Roethlisberger looked tentative and hesitant in the pocket; his interception was abhorrent; and the hideous pass that bounced off the back of David Paulsen was even worse.

The coaches should have known better. Roethlisberger said he was ready, and the doctors cleared him to play; but he wasn't ready, and neither was the team.

It was not Mike Tomlin's best day, to say the least. Tomlin's decision to go for a first down on fourth and one late in the first half was a mistake, as was the failure to attempt a two-point conversion later in the game. The running game was abysmal, and the offensive line was no help at all. And the special teams once again got burned, this time on a fake punt.

Although the Chargers started a patchwork offensive line, the Steelers front seven couldn't capitalize. San Diego was 12 for 22 on converting third downs. And a 17-play drive covering nine-and-a-half minutes to start the second half?  Puh-leaze.

Another ugly loss in an upsie-downsie season.  This team has given us no reason to feel confident they can beat Dallas, Cincinnati and Cleveland, let alone do anything meaningful in the post-season, if they make it.

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