|If You Can't Stand The Heat, Get Out Of Miami...|
|Written by Cotter|
|October 26, 2010 13:37|
In hindsight, it's amazing how appropriate my Dolphins' preview headline was.
Not that the Dolphins themselves are really giving their tear ducts a workout over the Steelers win on Sunday.
But we know Dolphins fans, and pretty much every hater on teh interwebz have really brought Justin Timberlake's classic to life over the last 48 hours or so...
I don't really want to spend this whole recap focusing on one call, though, so let's just say this...
Everyone gets hosed by a call at some point or another over the course of a season, hell, even over the course of a game. Just like in life, in football, sometimes you get shit on. But your true test is how you respond to this adversity. Do you curl up into a ball and whine about how you got screwed, or do you come out and take the ball the 36 yards or so you need in two and a half minutes in order to put your kicker in range for a game-winning field goal?
The Dolphins obviously chose the former.
So much meme today. No idea what that's about.
But, about the Steelers...
Which puts us tied atop the AFC, along with the Jets and Patriots, who both have better conference records than us.
And as you can see, the Steelers defense has still allowed the fewest points in the NFL...
Which is really the only defensive statistic that matters.
But what those numbers don't tell you, of course, is that the defense also has like, the 3rd most turnovers in the league (8 INTs, 8 fumble recoveries).
Or that it has only allowed two TDs all season in the first three quarters of six games (and only six TDs total in six games).
But while that's encouraging, the question is - how long is it sustainable?
First of all, let's pour a little out for Aaron Smith. The guy has been battling for the last three or four seasons. He doesn't WANT to be injured. But it has just happened. His body ain't what it used to be, and unfortunately, that puts the Steelers d-line in an interesting and potentially precarious position, not unlike the backseat of a Volkswagen.
That position being that they're an injury away from playing Steve McLendon.
But let's not get into the negatives right now.
After all, it's recap time.
So, let's just move right to the "Things That Were Awesome," "Things That Were NOT Awesome," and "Things That Made Me Throw Up In My Mouth."
Knock it up, knock it in, let me begin...
Things That Were Awesome:
1. Mewelde Moore.
That 29 yard check down was a work of art.
Nice of MeMo to finally show up, just in time for November.
They went to him twice on 3rd down, and twice he delivered 1st downs, the 2nd time gaining 29 yards and putting the Steelers in prime position to score points.
2. Jason Worilds.
This man is proof positive that you can't live your life by statistics.
He may not have actually registered any kind of tackle, but he definitely got a couple of licks on Chad Henne, including one which ended the game once and for all inside of two minutes left in the 4th quarter.
The guy wasn't LaMarr Woodley, but who else is?
He was in the backfield more than enough to get noticed, and that, to me, is encouraging, considering it's oh, Week 7 of his rookie season and suddenly he's being pushed out onto the field to assume the role of pass rusher in Dick Lebeau's defense.
Now, if we could only come up with a better nickname for him...
3. Hines Ward.
What else am I supposed to say about Hines Ward?
7 catches, 131 yards, and one hell of an earned TD.
It's amazing that even with the 28th ranked passing offense, the Steelers have two WRs in the top 35 in terms of receiving yards.
Imagine where Hines would be if Ben hadn't missed four games.
4. The Defense.
I'm sure there are plenty of haters out there who wanna job the defense on this one for letting the Dolphins gain 313 yards and score 22 points, but 22 points could've easily been 42 points if not for the defense.
They held the Dolphins to just six points on two straight turnovers that gave them the ball at our 22 and our 13 respectively.
One of the mantra's of Dick Lebeau's defense is bend but don't break.
Despite at some point being down Brett Keisel, Aaron Smith and LaMarr Woodley, the d held the Dolphins to FIVE field goals, giving them only one TD at the end of the 1st half.
Last season, if you give the Dolphins (hell, anyone for that matter) the ball at their own 29, with two and a half minutes left in the 4th quarter, down by only one, the Steelers lose.
Oh what a difference a year makes.
New season, new rules.
5. Big Ben's Arm.
If Ben didn't go 19/27 for 302 yards and two TDs, and the Steelers hadn't pulled this one out, I think he might've come home to the Tommy Maddox special on his lawn.
How about one throw, one 53 yard TD to Mike Wallace in only 16 seconds, early in the 2nd Quarter?
By the way, if there's anyone who can cover Mike Wallace deep, neither he nor I have seen them.
Quoth Wallace - "I don't feel like nobody can stop us from catching bombs, because that's what I do. I can get behind anybody at any time, whenever my coaches want me to. All you got to do is throw it up."
Don't worry haters, we'll get to the flipside right about, now.
Things That Were NOT Awesome:
1. Big Ben's Fumbles.
The rest of this part of the recap wanted to be here, but Big Ben fumbled it.
The last one on the Dolphins goal line was somewhat excusable, but the first one, stuck in what looked like a gangbang at Richard Simmons' house and you decide to try and get rid of the ball?
And yes, I am going for maximum YouTubes today.
2. Chad Henne and his 12 straight completions.
In case you didn't catch it, at one point in the 3rd Quarter, Chad Henne had completed 12 straight passes (between the end of the 2nd Quarter and the end of the 3rd).
Realistically, for all the nonsense I spew about everyone being a joke, this guy has been solid in his 2nd year, and he showed why he's the Dolphins starter on Sunday.
But damn, dude.
3. Manny Sanders' Kick Return Debut (on Sunday, that is).
Unfortunately, Sanders' first kick return attempt on Sunday didn't go as well as Antonio Brown's did on September 19.
But hey, he recovered to have a solid day returning overall, and his last return (of 48 yards, from the goal line) gave the Steelers the ball at just about mid-field, setting up the fateful field goal drive that ultimately won the Steelers the game.
Plus, his only catch was an 18 yard gain on 3rd and 11 that kept the drive alive, which eventually led to three more points.
So, all in all, you can't be mad at the guy.
4. Rashard Mendenhall.
What can I say about Rashard's day that hasn't already been said about Carson Palmer?
It was disappointing and had a brother who develops iPhone apps...?
15 carries, 37 yards.
Everyone has a bad day once in a while.
Rashard's just saving himself for next Sunday when he's going to nickname the Saints d, "The Big Easy."
Ain't no trick about what Mendenhall's going to do on Sunday night, but it sure as hell will be a treat for Steeler fans.
Mark it, dude.
All this negativity's really bringin' me down, man.
Things That Made Me Throw Up In My Mouth:
Realistically, we couldn't really expect to make it through the season unscathed.
But damn, Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, LaMarr Woodley, Trai Essex, and Flozell Adams?
And let's not forget Nick Eason and Ziggy Hood are also banged up (Eason worse than Hood), and they'll be the two to rotate in and try and maintain a healthy run defense while Aaron Smith is out.
I'm about to light the injury report on fire.
2. Get a New Trick Play.
The only reverse I ever want to see from the Steelers is their opponent's offense going in that direction.
Someone call me when the offense successfully runs one of these.
I'll be waiting by the phone...
3. The Saints.
When was the last time Drew Brees threw four picks in one game?
I'd like to thank the Browns for [more or less] embarrassing the defending champs just in time for a Sunday night matchup against the Steelers, in which it sounds like both Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas will play.
I hope you all catch Staph.
Trick or treat, you jags.
A+ for creativity.
F- for execution.
This is why I love the internet.
5. I don't want to hear shit from Ravens fans about the refs ever again.
Between the game they played against us, and now this, blow it out your ass, Baltimore.
I've never wanted the Ravens to lose so badly as I did on Sunday.
What a shame.
At least we have Cincinnati's implosion to enjoy.
And finally, Yinz Luv Da Stillers...
So, thoughts on any of this? How would YOU characterize the way things played out? And most importantly, how do YOU feel about the unchecked use of poor Carson Palmer jokes?
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