Was I just watching baseball? Byron Leftwich seemed to pitch a shutout, he even has a pitcher’s motion with his throw.
The Steelers add another entry to an illustrious record. Only two teams have been shut out the year after defending their Super Bowl title: the Steelers were in 1980, and again tonight, and the Raiders were in 1981 – not once, or twice, but three times. In a row.
One of the things I appreciated about the Monday Night Football crew is that they really made an effort to make sure they talked about the game, and didn’t distract too much from it (Ben Roethlisberger Anatomy 101 aside). In fact, Mike Tirico had his team quiet down for a play for us to hear the noise the Jacksonville fans were making. Few announcing teams will do that.
As far as the game, I was right. The Pittsburgh defense gave first, and allowed Jacksonville to score, and gave them all the momentum they needed. Our defense didn’t really break, but it did bend. Under normal circumstances, that would have been enough to overcome. However, since Jacksonville was playing such a great game, and their defense did NOT bend because our offense was unable to bend them, it proved insurmountable. We have got to do better with the time of possession battle than we did tonight. A good team is going to be able to exploit us there every time if this isn’t an aberration.
Let’s hope that Willie Parker isn’t Amos Zereoue Jr. Zereoue, for those who aren’t Steeler fans, was the last fast back we tried. When we discovered him, the excitement was astronomical. We finally had an atheletic back, not the slow power back (who’s name escapes me) we had been using. He did great when we had that power back, but when the power back left, he wasn’t ever to get anything going. Parker looked too much like Zereoue tonight for my liking, and I hope that isn’t permanent.
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