September 27, 2009

Steelers' Poor Run Offense Extending Games

Two straight weeks the Steelers have gotten a decent lead and then lost it late. Most people will point to the absence of Troy Polamalu, which I agree is definitely a factor, but I think another age-old rule of winning football is in play.

If you cannot run the ball, the game is never over.

The Bengals enjoyed three full possession in the last 18 minutes of the game, ending in a missed field goal and two touchdowns. Down 11 with 14:51 to go, the Steelers could end the game with a sustainable running game and any defense. Instead they managed to burn off only 6:20 of the final 18:00, and Cincinnati stole the win.

The Steelers' rushing offense nearly doubled its yards-per-carry average coming into this game, with a mediocre 3.6 against the Bengals. Still, in those late drives where we're accustomed to seeing six, seven, even eight minutes consumed by the Steelers' rushing attack, ballcarriers were being hit in the backfield.

4 Responses:

Brien said...

I've never really bought Willie Parker as an every down back. He's great for a change of pace, but not 20 carries a game. And the O-Line has never been all that great.

J-Red said...

But this is pretty much the same crew that could kill a quarter in the past, right?

Didn't Cowher have some amazing streak of wins when entering the 4th quarter with a 10-point lead?

Miss Hallie said...

Cowher had an incredible winning percentage when the Steelers ended the first half with *any* lead.

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