|Isaac Redman fumbles. Photo courtesy of Titansonline.com|
That was pretty much the highlight of the Steelers' season opener, and it was achieved by virtue of nothing they did.
By the late fourth quarter, with about five minutes left, CBS announcer Ian Eagle pronounced, "This has been a nightmare for the Steelers: injuries, poor execution, lack of execution, no running game."
That sums it up pretty well. After the game, head coach Mike Tomlin said, "Inexcusable. Not good enough. Unacceptable."
|Emmanuel Sanders lets the first pass of the season |
go through his hands.
Photo credit: Titansonline.com
Blame it on the catastrophic knee injury to center Maurkice Pouncey? Maybe, some, but just in part. Pouncey's injury didn't help, that's for sure. About David Decastro's cutblock on Pouncey --why? Pouncey had his man contained. Decastro went to Stanford --he should be smarter than that. It appears both Pouncey and linebacker Larry Foote (biceps) are done for the season. Not good.
|DT Jurell Casey tortured Ben Roethlisberger all day.|
|Isaac Redman, bottled up.|
Photo courtesy of Titansonline.com
Pouncey's departure also presumably hampered the Steelers' running game, as well. Eye-catching stat: eight rushing yards halfway through the second quarter, with Redman laying the ball on the ground twice (one lost). Eleven carries for 13 yards in the first half.
On the other side of the ball, the run defense didn't look so good on Tennessee's scoring drive of 12 plays (11 runs) for 49 yards over seven minutes just before halftime. For a mere 49-yard drive, that's a lot of plays taking a lot of time off the clock. That sort of drive used to be Pittsburgh Steeler football.
On the plus side, Lamarr Woodley had a good-looking sack, and rookie linebacker Jarvis Jones announced his presence in a big way with a huge hit on Chris Johnson. Whoopee.
From a fan's perspective, this game was torture to watch.
Next game: At Cincinnati on Monday night, Sept. 16th.
Links Worth a Read:
Steel City Blitz: Tomlin Must Address a Plethora of Issues
Steelers Depot: Pouncey & Foote Injuries
Behind the Steel Curtain: Maybe the 2013 Steelers are Who We Feared They Might Be
Gene Collier: No Excuse for This Awful Performance