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Blog Entry

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

Posted on: December 14, 2008 9:39 pm
 
It would be clinched in a game that lived up to it’s promise, a defensive battle fighting for the reigns of the AFC North.  For both Ravens and Steelers fans, it would lead to ulcers and, as usual, for me, my perfectly manicured nails, now jagged and bitten off.  It would be a game that ended in a controversial call and my husband telling me to relax, the tip of the ball passed the goal line before Holmes fell forward.  Of course, the win will be controversial and amongst fans and analyst will be discussed for a week or two longer.  

In the end, the Steelers offense would drive from behind to set up the score that would potentially tie the game, unlike last week though, they chose to go for the win.  Perhaps that call was controversial.  Fans would only have the replays to go off of.  Of course, there was no guarantee that they would have or wouldn’t have gotten the win without the call.  Regardless of the controversy, the division was sealed with the Steelers touchdown and an interception by William Gay that kept the Ravens from scoring at the end.  

I could go into what was bad in this game.  It could have been the referee’s calls and non-calls.  Ravens fans could argue about two calls that were overturned as being bad calls.  Steelers fans could argue about the non-calls, especially on a punt return that led to a tackle by punter Mitch Berger, which eventually led to Ravens touchdown.  I could mention the choke hold on James Harrison, but I won’t.  I prefer to gripe on things that players have control over.  Ike Taylor thinking that he was a Raven and allowing Raven’s quarterback Joe Flacco to run for a first down, when he was the one in perfect position to tackle him.  Not sure why Ike decided to block a Ravens wide receiver.  Speaking of wide receivers, the failure of the Steelers wide receivers to catch balls thrown to them have been hurting this offense during the season more then Ben Roethlisberger turning over the ball.  

I could discuss what I liked in this game, the catches by Hines Ward, Ben Roethlisberger getting the ball down the field, once again driving from behind to keep the Steelers in the game.  The team playing for a full 60 minutes.  The Ryan Clark and William Gay interceptions.  The defense keeping the Ravens to under 300 yards.  No interceptions by Ben Roethlisberger, and his keeping faith with his receivers and the change up in Bruce Arians play calling.  The best thing though, is the win and the division title.  Oh yes, no injuries.  

It was a road in which the Steelers were given no chance when they came into the season.  Touted as having the hardest schedule in the NFL at the beginning, the experts and non-experts had the Steelers sitting at home for the playoffs.  Some even had them having at best, an 8-8 season.  But the season played out and what was predicted, it never panned out.  The Steelers offense would come out as lackluster and their defense would prove to be stifling, seeking a spot in history.  Somehow, they came out though as a team, and now, control their own destiny going into the playoffs.  

Perhaps controlling that destiny isn’t a good thing, because, they seem to step up and give of themselves just a little more when their backs against the wall.  But for now, for tonight, it’s the division title.  Tomorrow, hopefully, they’ll see themselves as having their backs against the wall again for next Sunday, and the Sunday after, and so on, and so on.
Comments

Since: Sep 9, 2006
Posted on: December 15, 2008 8:24 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

JSB,

Not defensive at all, didn't mean for it to come off that way.  Regardless of the call, if a team puts itself in the position where it's fate lies in the hands of a ref, then it's going to be a long and disappointing game.  I'll let others argue over the call.  I refuse to let this controversy lessen the sweetness of the win or the division championship.  The 92 yd drive down the field was a thing of beauty because it came against a tough defense. 

I knew your concern from the start on the offense and the ability to stay healthy.  Despite them not being healthy, they've managed to get it done. 

As far as the Titans game, I don't think they're looking past them or becoming overconfident, at least it doesn't sound that way from the snippets we've heard from the press conferences. 



Since: Sep 9, 2006
Posted on: December 15, 2008 8:11 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

Neilp,

I know that Patriots fans were pulling for the Steelers in this game to pull the win and are probably pulling for the Cowboys next week too. 

I'll hold my thoughts about the Titans game, it's going to go one of two ways.  Both teams actually come out and play for homefield advantage, or both teams just come out to have fun due to the possibility of meeting up again in the AFCC. 

I'm not too sure I want the Steelers having HFA throughout the playoffs.  Given their record at home and seeing the heart of a 2005 team where the offense got better at the right time to make their way into the playoffs, maybe being on the road could have it's advantages. 

Given that Anthony Smith will be playing with the Special Teams and more then likely not where Tom Brady can jack him up all half, I'd be a little more comfortable with this defense meeting up with Tom Brady and the Patriots in the playoffs.



Since: Sep 13, 2006
Posted on: December 15, 2008 4:04 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

      
; You're pretty defensive at the opening of this blog, mum.  Unnecessarily so,
I think.  No one can actually tell, on television, whether the call was correct or
not correct.  The optics for something that razor thin don't yet exist, even in
the best HiDef sets.  This is probably a greater weakness of instant re-play
than the argument that it slows the game and destroys momentum.  The
looking down the line is the only guy who had a genuinely properly clear
look at the event.  And he was seeing it in real time, not slow motion.
      
;  I'll chip in an the argument of boring -- games that are That closely
contested can not be considered boring.

      
;  I was one of those doubters, given the schedule, that your boys had
any real chance of getting all the way through in one piece.  With some
fortune (e.g. no Brady for NEng), they have done so, and with flying colors.
      
;  I think that your guys think they can beat the Titans any time anywhere,
so it will be interesting to see if they play seriously next week.  They
might well have a let-down after the torturous road they have traveled.
They might also start resting some guys, playing them the last week,
and then having the bye, so that some of the bone bruises they must
have begin to heal.  Your boys deserve congratulations this year, mum.



Since: Sep 7, 2006
Posted on: December 15, 2008 2:44 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

What really blew my mind after this game was Harbaugh's comments about asking the officials if the ball had to break the plain... now that is totally crazy I mean he is one of thirty two in the world and he is not sure about the rules!!!!!

Admittedly, I'm not one of the 32, but I was a bit confused myself.  It was a unique situation.  How many times has a receiver ever had both feet down IN THE ENDZONE with the ball NOT crossing the plane of the goal line? lol.  While I believe the ball did cross the plane, I could see where the confusion came from.  The ref, after the review, claimed that the "Receiver had possession with two feet on the ground in the endzone."
That explanation makes it sound like the position of the ball in relation to the goal line was irrelevant.  I can see why Harbaugh would want a further explanation.



Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: December 15, 2008 1:12 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

neilp, I always speak in parables, and at times even plagiarize Frank Zappa's lyrics.

I am the lizard king. I can do anything.



Since: Jan 12, 2007
Posted on: December 15, 2008 12:56 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

Personally I can appreciate most types of game, lets be honest neither the Steelers or the Ravens are really built for a shoot em out kind of affair but are very well built for what we saw.

The Steelers on their day are more than capable of lighting up the scoreboard but it is not their preferred Modus Operandi!

F@ L I am shocked that a man with the culinary background that you have would like EITHER muffins or cupcakes, I am quite stunned by that revelation! I had you down for Profiteroles or Battenburg!!!




Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: December 15, 2008 12:39 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

iamyo, you are more than welcome to hold your opinion. I hope that all the football games you see in your future are just like last nights' Steelers versus Ravens game.

I, on the other hand, love the kind of football that the new fangled American Football League gave birth to, such as the Chargers with "Air Coryell" and the Raiders with the mad bomber, Daryl Lamonica. I want to see Leodis McKelvin bring a kick off back 100 yards. I want to see Ed Reed return an interception for a 108 yard touch down. I want to see Tony Dorsett take off on a 99 yard run from scrimmage aginst the Vikings. 

I also prefer muffins to cupcakes. I am the muffin man!



Since: Jan 12, 2007
Posted on: December 15, 2008 12:12 pm
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

Well Mom I watched most of the fourth quarter and it was hard nosed football at its best. I was on the edge of my seat willing the Steelers forward (as a Patriots fan we needed the Ravens to drop 2/3 in my opinion for us to have any chance of making the post season... even if it probably will be one and done).

A great win, one which will make Steeler fans very happy I am sure.  I think the TD call was correct in that I am fairly sure it was a TD, but to overturn the call on the field with that evidence was somewhat hard on the Ravens.

What really blew my mind after this game was Harbaugh's comments about asking the officials if the ball had to break the plain... now that is totally crazy I mean he is one of thirty two in the world and he is not sure about the rules!!!!! Unbelieveable, not sure this has caught any press but that to me is a worse admission than McNabbs three weeks ago concerning overtime games.

I think you are very capable of beating the Titans, I am both impressed and unimpressed with them... makes sense doesn't it?

Homefield throughout is looking good and beating the Steelers on their home field will be truly close to impossible especially in a AFC Championship game... oh wait I know somebody who has done that... but not this year methinks!!!

 




Since: Sep 9, 2006
Posted on: December 15, 2008 11:36 am
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

Pitt,

I don't think Ngata would ever go unnoticed.  He will become like Casey Hampton, one of the best and one of the least acknowledged, the man is a beast in every sense of the word. 

No doubt Farrior and Foote are an essential element of the defense, they were making sure they wrapped up the "bowling ball" of the Ravens running back because with each run, he was pulling a "Bus" and carrying defenders with him and breaking holes.  The members of the oline for the most part played stellar for what they had to face yesterday, cannot give them enough credit for what they did, despite giving up the sacks. 

That's what makes the Ravens and Steelers games so good though, you have two teams playing as a team getting what they need done and not just a group of individual players out there.



Since: Sep 9, 2006
Posted on: December 15, 2008 11:30 am
 

One Goal Realized, Others to Achieve

rottie,

Thank you.  Yeah, the media bandwagon gets me too.  I don't mind the Steelers getting little respect year after year.  Year after year they continue to do what they need to do and very few years do you see them having losing seasons.  There's always a darling and with the exception of when Ben was 13-0 as a rookie quarterback, he was never the darling. 

I cringed when I read Peter Kings MMQB because there was a shifting of the guard and he ranked Steelers as #1.  Ever notice when they get the #1 bill from the experts, the Steelers come up poorly the next week?  LOL.

Not even calling the Titans game this week, let's just say it will be another close defensive battle.


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