Sunday, January 08, 2012
Blah. Feh. Stinko. The Steelers got Tebowed.
What just happened out there in Denver?
A lot of visiting teams left Denver asking that same question this year. On Sunday, it was the Steelers' turn.
The first quarter was just about all Steelers, but they could manage only two field goals. Tim Tebow abruptly became awesome while leading the Broncos to a 20-6 lead in stunning, spectacular fashion. The Steelers looked finished. Then, Ben Roethlisberger suddenly came to life, and the Steelers rallied to tie the game to force overtime.
Now, we have all winter to critique the Steelers and second-guess Mike Tomlin for allowing Ben Roethlisberger to play after he injured his ankle in the first Cleveland game at Heinz Field on Dec. 8.
Not only did the coaching staff allow Roethlisberger to continue playing in that Cleveland game, they allowed him to play at San Francisco, against the Rams and at Cleveland, where he aggravated the injury.
In Denver, it showed. Although he looked terrific in rallying the Steelers from a 14-point deficit, Roethlisberger looked mostly terrible for much of the game, as did the rest of the injury-ravaged team.
Ike Taylor had an especially unfortunate game, and James Harrison often looked flat-footed and lost in space, as he floundered around chasing Tebow. The Steelers' offensive line had trouble with Denver's pass rush, to put it mildly, and the receivers dropped at least a couple of passes.
This game was a microcosm of the entire season -- a roller-coaster ride of wild twists, turns, ups, downs and general unpredictability. In the end, the Steelers didn't play well enough to win.
Woulda, coulda, shoulda.
As long as the Harbaugh brothers don't both advance to the Super Bowl ... that would be insufferable and, really, just too much.