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| Mar 21, 2013 - 12:18 AM
I ask this question now, because I couldn't ask it years ago since time was needed and results needed to be seen. Six seasons have passed since Bill Cowher retired, there's now been enough time and evidence to take a look at the job that Kevin Colbert has done and really evaluate him and draw some conclusions.
The biggest conclusion I've come to is that Kevin Colbert isn't just overrated but his job security has been the byproduct of being hired as Bill Cowher's "yes-man" and some interference by Dan Rooney.
Old vs. Youth Preference
This Offseason has literally drove me mad as a Pittsburgh Steelers fan. This was the Offseason that the Steelers had a chance to really get younger. They needed to. Kevin Colbert even said "Again, if we don’t change 8-8, and we don’t change the roster that produced 8-8, we’d be silly to expect a better result if we have the same group of guys.” They were over the cap by double digits heading into the Offseason and had a large number of Vet players making more money than their production is going to be worth now and tomorrow. It was a chance for Kevin Colbert to step in, make difficult and unpopular decisions for the future of this Franchise, without losing much in the present.
220px-Keenan_Lewis.JPGThe vibe I've gotten around Twitter, Facebook, here in The Steelers Forum is that the Steelers aren't good enough to compete in 2013. Perhaps the Steelers are good enough to make the playoffs and win the Division because the AFC North is weak (especially after the Raven's fire sale), however the belief is that they aren't good enough to make noise in the Playoffs. That's fine, arguments that are debatable but not at all unrealistic. If this is the general belief and a strong consideration, then start stripping the team of veteran players who have viable replacement options now. I've already written a Blog Post about the Pittsburgh Steelers needing to cut Ike Taylor and resign, Keenan Lewis which obviously didn't happen. Cortez Allen and Keenan Lewis were a more than adequate CB tandem heading into the future, but the Steelers chose Age and... [Read More]
A Look Through the Rearview Mirror…Statistically Speaking
A simple glance at any sports website will show you that the Penguins are 31 games into their 48 game shortened campaign. The Penguins boast a record of 23-8-0 for a total of 46pts, tops in the Eastern Conference, and tied with Anaheim for second in the league. While on the surface, one can say, “Wow! That’s really good!”, a more detailed look into the Penguins record shows that it is actually not just “good” but more so “fantastic”. Let’s break down some statistics of the Penguins’ season thus far:
- Games Remaining: 17 (48 Total)
- Penguins Home Record: 11-4-0 22pts.
- Penguins Away Record: 12-4-0 24pts.
- *ROW (Regulation/OT Wins): 21
- *SOW (Shootout Wins): 2
- Current Win Streak: 10G, 2 Mar 13 - Current, (prev. best 5G, 31 Jan – 7 Feb 13)
- Current Home Win Streak: 8G (Started the year 3-4 @ Home)
- Breakdown of Wins/Losses in 10G intervals:
- W,W,L,L,W,L,W,W,W,W (6-4)
- W,L,L,W,W,W,L,W,W,L (6-4)
- L,W,W,W,W,W,W,W,W,W (9-1)
- W (31 Total Games)
- Record Scoring 3 Goals or Less: 10-3 (9 ROW, 1 SOW)
- Record Scoring 3 Goals or More: 13-5 (12 ROW, 1 SOW)
- Wins vs. Division 8-4-0, 16 of total 46pts (~35%) from Atlantic Foes
- Closest Division Opponent: New York Rangers: 32pts, 14pts/7 Games behind
The list could go on and on, but I have highlighted what I feel are the three “Big Takeaways” from my list of blasé statistics.
First up is, ROW v. SOW (Regulation/OT Wins v. Shootout Wins).
“So why is this stat important?” one might ask. Good question. There are a couple of reasons why it is important, methinks.
... [Read More]
- First is, ROW is used as a discriminator in the tiebreaking process if two (or more) teams are tied in points. More simply put, 2pts from an ROW > 2pts from an SOW. The fact that the Penguins have won ALL but 2 games in ROW fashion makes their 46pts look much better in the grand scheme of seeding, should they happen to tie a particular team in total points. This will most certainly become a player as MTL and BOS are jockeying for the #2 seed (MTL has 43pts and
The season is winding down. It’s about that time. That time when teams on the outside start looking in, and teams on the inside start looking farther. This is the point of the season when you start looking at the talent you have, or the talent you are stuck with. You start to analyze how you can utilize that talent to help your team go farther than any other team. It’s that time to start thinking about bringing home one of the hardest trophies to win in all of sports. Lord Stanley’s Cup.
The Penguins have 11 games remaining this shortened season, and they are playing their best hockey. Can they keep it up, and finally transfer that regular season greatness into post season greatness? When we started back in January, and the Penguins hit some bumps early, people were going nuts. What these fans didn’t realize is that we WANT the Pens to play their worst hockey at the beginning of the year, and progress, and continue to get better as the season goes along. Right now we’ve got some key injuries with Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang, but they should be back before too long.
The past two seasons the Penguins have made early exits from the playoffs. Two seasons ago, the Penguins were swept out of the first round by Tampa Bay. The Penguins had home ice. They were also playing without Sidney Crosby. Last season, the Penguins went down 3-0 in the first round to Philadelphia, and went on to lose in 6. What was the excuse last year? They had home ice. They had Sid. The Penguins have so much talent, and losing that early for a third consecutive year would be unacceptable.
As we sit, with 11 games remaining, the Penguins are 1st in the Eastern Conference, and tied for 2nd in the League in points. Let’s look at a few other statistics.
Face off percentage 51.6% 6th
Home Winning Percentage .733
Away Winning Percentage .750
Goals Per Game 3.48 1st
Goals Against Per Game 2.61 13th
Power Play Percentage 24.4% 2nd
Penalty Kill Percentage 79.6% 20th
As you can see, you can pretty much... [Read More]
Wanted to get this up last night, but I couldn't.
Tonight the Capitals came into Pittsburgh to face the streaking Penguins. The Penguins had won 9 games straight coming into tonight. Marc-Andre Fleury started in net for the Penguins, while Braden Coltby started for the Capitals. Here’s what I saw
In the first period, the Penguins came out hot. They dominated the first 6 minutes of the game, and then the game seemed to even out. The Penguins were better in the offensive zone than the Capitals were, holding the puck in the zone longer, and getting more scoring opportunities. The Penguins had MANY scoring opportunities in the first period. The Capitals had a few, but they were quickly shut down by Marc-Andre Fleury who has looked very sharp through 1 period. The Penguins had 1 power play during the period, from an early interference penalty, but nothing good came of it. I would say the power-play still needs some work. It has been getting better in the last few games though. It has been much more aggressive. The Penguins put good pressure on the Capitals when the Caps were in the offensive zone. The Penguins did not allow the Capitals to get too many good shots off, and they forced them out of the zone very quickly in this first period. Something the Penguins have been struggling with recently is the penalty kill, and the Penguins had to kill one at the very end of the first period. Beau Bennett was called for tripping with 20 seconds remaining, but nothing came of the first 20 seconds. The Penguins also showed great puck movement throughout the first, more and more as the period progressed.
First Period Stats
· 11 Shots for Pittsburgh, 10 for Washington
· 14 Hits for Pittsburgh, 8 for Washington
· 6 Face-offs for Pittsburgh, 9 for Washington
Jack Hillen (WAS) 2 minutes for interference at 1:35
Beau Bennett (PIT) 2 minutes for tripping at 19:40
In the 2nd Period, the Penguins started off on the penalty kill. The came through and stopped the Capitals to start out the 2nd period on a good note. The Capitals seemed to move the puck better on the power play in the 2nd than they did in the first, and the Penguins didn’t apply the same level of... [Read More]
The Steelers have lost alot of talent so far in Free Agency...that has been well documented. Its disturbing, but its also life in the "New Age" NFL. The Salary Cap makes it near impossible to have "dynasties" like the Steelers of the 70s. This isn't an article that is talking about what the Steelers have lost...thats like beating a dead horse. Instead, I have been bothered by the Steelers in Free Agency. Not because of their lack of movement (if you've followed the Steelers for any period of time you know that NEVER happens), but more so because of there new "interest" in high priced free agents.
This is something the Steelers have NOT done in the past. Sure, fans always talk about how nice it would be to land someone like Stephen Jackson or a Jake Long. However, its never reality...just day dreaming. The Steelers have always done business a certain way. Don't go after high priced Free Agents, sign some players that can fit into the system, and draft quality players that will be the future of the organization. However, when checking my usual daily websites, I was shocked to see the Steelers made a play at Free Agent Tackle Jake Long (Former Miami Dolphin) and have shown interest in Denver Broncos Elvis Dumervil. At a time when players are leaving the Steelers at an alarming rate, and more might be leaving in the near future (I'm looking at you Emmanuel Sanders), the Steelers' actions as an organization are not matching the Steelers words.
Mike Tomlin, Art Rooney, and Kevin Colbert have all said the same thing. The core of this team is still strong. We have great leadership. We have a team that contend. We realize we lost players, but the players who are behind them are players that can step in and make an impact. We need to get better in alot of different areas, and the draft is where we plan to fill alot of those holes.
Those last two comments are what is being contradicted. The Steelers showing interest in these high priced Free Agents makes it clear that they don't believe what they are saying. If they felt they trusted players like Jason Worilds to get the job done in place of James Harrison, would they even be showing interest in Elvis Dumervil? If they thought Mike Adams and Marcus Gilbert could lock down the two Tackle positions, would they even be flirting with Jake Long? The answer to both of these questions are NO. Sure, they might be able to find Rookies that can play, but how... [Read More]