photo Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Save the soundbites – Tomlin torpedoed the Steelers’ playoff chances.
I actually don’t care for a second what Mike Tomlin has to say about the brain dead decision to run a fake punt with the ball on his side of the 50 and DREW FREAKING BREES on the other sideline licking his chops, it is a horrible coaching decision.
Cost the Steelers the game.
That, and another terrible coaching decision – the thought to give the most important carry of the day to an ice cold, fumble prone Steven Ridley – torpedoed the Steelers in New Orleans and most like sunk the Steelers’ playoff hopes.
I heard pundits all week long on the radio machine yapping about how they are tired of hearing the recent criticism hurled Tomlin’s way. That his track record is impeccable and that players love playing for him.
The Steelers have consistently underachieved and been outcoached since their last Super Bowl in 2010. To say anything less is to ignore the truth.
So I don’t care what Mike Tomlin has to say – the fake punt was a ridiculous call. Don’t want to hear the, “We thought we saw something we could exploit,” crap, or the, “We don’t live in our fears,” rhetoric, or the, “I wanted to give our offense a chance to win the game,” stupidity.
I get Tomlin’s lack of confidence in his defense. What I don’t get is why he never does anything about it. Why the Steelers are bystanders in free agency. Why the Steelers’ defensive draft picks are so underwhelming, and why the Steelers’ D almost never makes plays when plays must be made to win games.
And I get that none of that mattered with 4:11 to play and the ball on the Pittsburgh 42. None of it mattered because the Steelers had a chance to pin New Orleans inside it’s own 30 with about four minutes to play, but they chose to run a fake punt and give the most dangerous offensive team in the NFL 46 yards to paydirt.
The only thing more indefensible than Brees and the Saints’ offense is the call made by Tomlin.
But nothing will be done. Nothing. The Steelers have become very complacent, and in the world of professional sports, complacency is the most dangerous of all feelings.
- Back to the Steven Ridley thing. How is he still in the NFL? He fumbled his way out of New England and has done nothing to distinguish himself as anything but below average with the Steelers. Complain as loud as you wish about the stupid play call on 3rd and 2 from the New Orleans 34 with 10:24 to play, but how does Ridley get that call? He had carried the ball twice for 5 yards before the 3rd and 2 play, and his last carry was with 1:08 to play in the 2nd quarter. How does Ridley earn that carry? Absolutely ridiculous, Coach Mike.
- Vintage AB in New Orleans on Sunday, that much cannot be denied. Eventually 14-catch, 185-yard, two-touchdown games will be a thing of the past for AB, and maybe this game was a swan song, but it was fun to watch a player who established himself as an all-time great almost save the Steelers’ bacon.
- Don’t let the Steelers ruin the holiday season. For those of you who celebrate, enjoy Christmas and remember that nothing that happens on any football field anywhere is more important than the love and gratitude we can only share with those we love the most, and those who love us the most. Buon Natale.