Last week I mocked Tony Siragusa by filling my first paragraph with nonstop references to his faulty unsmooth criticisms of the Steelers offense. This week I came pretty close to filling this opening paragraph with just Peyton Manning's name over and over. I mean his name was brought up as much if not more often than anyone else who actually played in the game. It was Kerry Collins and Curtis Painter not getting it done...give them their due.
I don't care how much the Steelers were supposed to win by relative to the actual final score. The Steelers moved to 2-1 and overcame injuries and mistakes to win a game on the road.
Ben: Man he looked sharp in that first quarter. And then all hell broke loose in the second. I won't fault him for the severe lack of O Line in front of him, so the strip sacks are just as much on the 2 Tackles as they are on Ben. He paced the Steelers to an early lead and got them in to field goal range when needed late. 25 of 37 for 364 yards, a TD and that nasty INT. 3.75 of 5 helmets. I had both 3.5 and 4 here but didn't feel confident in either.
Running Game: Bruce Arians gets his first blame of the season for repeatedly going back to the running game. Ben would complete a nice long pass to Heath, Mike Wallace, anyone, then go right back to 2 straight runs into a rapidly-crumpling line. It wasn't working and everyone with eyes could see it and even blind people probably had a good-enough idea of its failure. 1 of 5 motorcycle helmets.
Defense: Kerry Collins didn't do anything. And Curtis Painter had 1 nice drive. Despite that, the D only got to the QB once. They made it count with the James Harrison strip-sack and Troy Polamalu fumble return TD. The only real concerning thing to me was the time of the game when they allowed the one nice TD drive by Painter and the Colts. 3 of 5 motorcycle helmets. Big challenge next week with Andre Johnson.
Mike Wallace: Running out of positive adjectives. Otherworldly, have I used that one yet? Al Michaels called Mike an emerging star in the first quarter when Mike was an emerging star 2 season ago in his rookie year. 5 catches for 144 yards and that sick 81 yard score. I'm glad he's on our side. 5 of 5 helmets.
Back on the road in Houston to take on the Texans next week. Should be fun. Go Steelers.
(thanks to Doug for the banner pic)