Steelers Win. Eagles lose. 27-13. The Steagles were back in the limelight, at least for a night.
For my birthday, my brother bought me a book about the Steagles. I've just started reading it, so I get to keep the Steagles emotion going.
Back to last night. Ben looked awful immediately out the gate. That "I don't wanna be sacked" interception showed promise, but was ill-timed. I like that he's trying to make a play, but he needed to put a lot more on it if he's trying to complete a pass with Eagles hanging onto his body.
Fast Bill returned to form. His fumble was costly, and made the game appear closer than it actually was. However, he recovered in time to score a touchdown before halftime.
The D, I was no so impressed with. A couple of guys made plays, but overall, the effort was shabby.
Let's look a little deeper, now.
Ben Roethlisberger. The interception...horrible. The 13 completions for 247 yards and a 9.9 yards per completion average...better. Ben made some throws that made me scratch my head, but he countered with some awesome throws at critical times. He needs to do better than the hair above 50% completion rate he posted last night (13/25), and a passing touchdown would've offset the int. I'll give the MMCNY inspiration 4 of 5 motorcycle helmets for his effort last night. The careless interception brought me back to 2006, but the 247 yards in one half is really encouraging.
Fast Bill. This critique is probably going to sound an awful lot like Ben's. The fumble...horrible. The touchdown and direction changes...better. Bill only rushed for a 3.2 yards per carry average, but showed the doubters that he is recovered from the knee injury that kept him out of the first two preseason games. He was electric with the short receptions, posting 13.3 yards per reception. Fast Bill said he wants to be better than LT. I think Fast Bill is the only RB in the league who could rise to an LT-like level. He was stopping on dimes (there were obviously a lot of dimes on the Heinz Field turf), and gave guys like Reggie Bush and LT a run for their money. 4 of 5 motorcycle helmets for the now-healthy Bill.
D. Needs to get better. A lot better. I don't want them to get hurt, but I think they need more reps in the final preseason game. If not, the early part of the regular season might be a bit of a downer. As the offense was hitting its stride, the defense was losing theirs. They need to perform better while the offense is in motion as well. 3 of 5 helmets.
Heath Miller. We really don't need the 400 big white TE's that Bruce Arians loves so much. If we would just throw 5 or 6 more balls to Miller each game, the Steelers would be in a position to compete...every game. His size is ridiculous, and he doesn't go down with the first tackler. Its impossible for tiny DBs to manhandle him, and LBs in pass coverage are hardly a match for his skill. 5 of 5 motorcycle helmets, because he rules.
Steelers. Since this was likely our last major look at the first team before the regular season, the Steelers get their own section in MMCNY. Overall, I'm positive the team can contend for the Super Bowl. This is not an 8-8 team, and last year was a product of unfortunate circumstances. With a healthy Ben, a new (and awesome) coach and a 3-1 (so far) preseason, the Steelers should be in a position to win more games than last year. As long as Ben minimizes mistakes, and doesn't throw 23 interceptions again, the offense looks well-oiled and capable of putting up some numbers. Fast Bill will be an elite RB, and the defense will need to step up. Once the D comes around, the team will be well-rounded and a threat to take the competitive AFC
I'd nitpick more, but I have some stuff to go do. See you in a bit...