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    Default Steelers Team Report

    Steelers Team Report
    Yahoo! Sports
    INSIDE SLANT

    Pittsburgh is back on track after crushing the Raiders 35-3, the most lopsided beating in the series’ 25-game history. The Steelers rediscovered their defense that was shredded the previous week by Tom Brady, and their passing game was on the money again.

    Doubts crept in after that shellacking put on them by the Patriots. Especially haunting was when it happened. A year ago, the Steelers opened at 6-2 and then lost five straight. They fell to 6-3 after the New England loss, and they were preparing to face Oakland, one of the five teams that beat them during that awful stretch last season.

    It was no contest this time, and the Steelers head to Buffalo on Sunday feeling better about themselves, especially on defense.

    “I liked the intensity. It was necessary,” coach Mike Tomlin said. “It was a nice bounce-back performance for us.”

    “Last week was embarrassing,” linebacker LaMarr Woodley said. “New England kind of just walked up and down the field on us. So we wanted to come in here with a new attitude. We’re trying to get to the Super Bowl. That’s the goal at the end of the year. We knew what kind of team that Oakland was, and we wanted to go in here and shut down the run. Once we did that, we forced them to go to the air, got some turnovers, hit their quarterback a few times and came out on top.”

    The Steelers set a team record with 163 yards on 14 penalties, and they’re starting to believe they are a target of the league and the officials.

    “There’s nothing you can do about it—just continue to go out here and play football,” Woodley said. “Because if you start letting penalties affect the way we play, we’re not going to be the aggressive team that we’ve always been.”

    Linebacker James Harrison disagreed with a roughing-the-passer call against him that negated a Steelers interception return for a touchdown by Ike Taylor. He said the defense cannot worry about penalties.

    “We are going to play together no matter what. And when there are a lot of penalties that are going against you, that’s going to bring you closer together and you are going to play harder.”

    NOTES, QUOTES

    Steelers linebacker James Harrison wants the league to suspend Raiders defensive tackle Richard Seymour for sucker-punching Ben Roethlisberger after a touchdown pass.

    “I don’t see why not. They’re trying to suspend guys for hits, when that’s within the whistles—some hits that guys can’t even stop from doing. It’s an adjustment that a receiver makes to what you are about to do to him, and you end up hitting helmet to helmet. You’re talking about suspending a guy for that? You tell me what the next step is for a guy who blatantly (hits the quarterback) outside the play. … It’s already thrown, and a guy is going to celebrate with his teammates and you punch him in the face.”

    • The Steelers will tear the grass off Heinz Field this Sunday and replace it with new sod. The surface has come under scrutiny after it was criticized by kicker Jeff Reed, the Patriots and Raiders, each team reportedly filing a complaint with the league. The field will first host the Pitt-West Virginia game Friday and then four high school championship games on Saturday before the new sod goes down.

    • Linebacker LaMarr Woodley was fined $12,500 for a hit to the head of Tom Brady, although no penalty was called on the play. Woodley did draw a 15-yard penalty for roughing the passer against Oakland.

    STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL

    Player Notes

    • WR Mike Wallace, with three catches for 116 yards Sunday, pumped his average to 23 yards per catch. His 33 receptions are tied with Hines Ward(notes) for the team lead, but he has 256 yards more than Ward with 759.

    • C Maurkice Pouncey left the game with a knee bruise, but he indicated strongly that he would be ready to play Sunday in Buffalo.

    [HIGH-LIGHT]• OG Trai Essex lost his starting job, held since the start of 2009, to Ramon Foster, an undrafted second-year player.[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    • [HIGH-LIGHT]WR Emmanuel Sanders, a rookie third-round pick, has moved past Antwaan Randle El into the No. 3 wideout spot. Sanders caught his second touchdown pass in two games.[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    • RB Rashard Mendenhall rushed for his eighth touchdown, a high for his brief pro career. The single-season team record is 14, held by Franco Harris.

    Report Card Vs . RAIDERS

    Passing Offense: B-plus—Ben Roethlisberger completed only 18 passes, but they resulted in three touchdowns, 275 yards and a 127.8 passer rating. He didn’t throw an interception, and he was sacked twice, once for holding the ball way too long. With 29 attempts, he produced nearly 10 yards per attempt. Like the rest of his team, Roethlisberger made a big comeback from the previous week.

    Rushing Offense: B—The Steelers piled up 162 yards and a 4.9-yard average per carry but did it in a very unconventional manner. Their horse, Rashard Mendenhall, ran for just 59 yards and a 2.6-yard average, although he did score on a five-yard run. But Roethlisberger ran for a career-high 55 yards on three carries, including a 16-yard TD, and wide receiver Mike Wallace added 19 yards on one end-around to boost the stats.

    Pass Defense: A—As poorly as they looked against the Patriots, the Steelers turned it around against Jason Campbell, who was 7-for-19 for 70 yards with four sacks before being yanked, and Bruce Gradkowski, who was 13-for-24 for 98 yards and two more sacks. The two had a combined passer rating of 37.7 with two interceptions and a pick-six that was called back by a penalty.

    Rush Defense: A—The No. 2 rush offense in the NFL succumbed to the No. 1 rush defense. The Raiders abandoned the run early because it was going nowhere. Their 61 yards on 16 tries included one 12-yard scramble by Gradkowski. The Steelers now have allowed one 100-yard rusher in the past 44 games.

    Special Teams: B—Nothing spectacular on either side, although a penalty canceled a good punt return by rookie Antonio Brown, who made his return from the inactive list by fielding seven punts for a 9.4-yard average. The Raiders averaged only 16.6 yards per kickoff return and 4.3 yards per punt return. The Steelers returned only two kickoffs, and the punting by both teams was around 40 yards net. New Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham did not have a field-goal try but was 5-for-5 on extra points.

    Coaching: A—Mike Tomlin and his staff did their jobs during the week after the New England debacle, and they kept their heads through all the penalties the crew seemed intent on doling out Sunday, including phantom helmet-to-helmet calls. Bruce Arians even threw in a few gadget plays on offense, one of them a nice 19-yard gainer by Wallace on an end-around.

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slu...s-2010-nfl-pit

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    Default Re: Steelers Team Report

    Pittsburgh is back on track after crushing the Raiders 35-3
    I really hate to say it, but "back on track" is not necessarily beating a team that may or may not have been playing above their potential the last few weeks regardless of the score... Don't get me wrong, I loved the win and what I saw with the effort/execution/performance... But "back on track" to me will be a multiple game winning streak. After Buffalo, the Ravens and Bengals wait... Winning these would go a long way to being "back on track" to me... But while we had some issues last week, I'm not sure we were really ever "off track"... I dunno.
    "You only have one life, and you will not get out alive. Make the most of your time and have no regrets." - Me.

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    Default Re: Steelers Team Report

    Quote Originally Posted by bleedBnG58 View Post
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    The Steelers set a team record with 163 yards on 14 penalties, and they’re starting to believe they are a target of the league and the officials.
    I told you all so.

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    Default Re: Steelers Team Report

    Quote Originally Posted by NKySteeler View Post
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    I really hate to say it, but "back on track" is not necessarily beating a team that may or may not have been playing above their potential the last few weeks regardless of the score... Don't get me wrong, I loved the win and what I saw with the effort/execution/performance... But "back on track" to me will be a multiple game winning streak. After Buffalo, the Ravens and Bengals wait... Winning these would go a long way to being "back on track" to me... But while we had some issues last week, I'm not sure we were really ever "off track"... I dunno.
    I would say yes we are back on track...meaning back to the way we somewhat looked in our first 8 games with the exception of a few....especially after the way we looked against the Pats...but we definately aren't...full speed ahead....or steam rollin.

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