Monday, November 24, 2008

Miller Time: Steelers Win


Thursday night games are like amateur hour at the stadium.

Intros: it's all about the defense.

Some joke from NStink sang the national anthem.

Bungles won the toss and deferred so that they got to face our offense first.

Ben hit Holmes to get things going, but a drop by Washington on 3rd down forced a punt. For as bad as Mitch Berger was, Paul Ernster is worse.

The Bungles come out and run the Steelers motif offense. Willie Gay makes a huge stop of Housh on 3rd down to force a punt.

Parker gets 1, then Washington picks up a few on an end-around, but Holmes drops a 3rd down pass, forcing another punt.

The Bungles incredibly Irish quarterback, who we have dubbed "Erin" for his Irishness, orchestrated a nice drive and converted two 3rd downs. Cincy pulled out all the stops in the red zone, setting up in a "Wildcat" formation and having Benson run a direct snap. On 3rd down, Erin fired a good pass across the middle and Glen Holt made an unreal catch in traffic to come up with the touchdown.


After a great return by Russell, Ben hooks up with Washington to get the ball into Cincy territory. Parker nets nothing on 2 carries and another 3rd down incompletion forces a punt. Ernster gets booed off the field after a 23 yard punt.

Benson runs twice to close out the quarter.

Second Quarter

Erin goes deep for Holt on 3rd and short, but Clark is there and the pass falls to the turf. Punt.

Heath gets called for holding on 1st down, but makes up for it with a 14-yard snag. Ben hooks up with Hines for a huge 37 yard gain as Hines takes it down the sidelines to the Cincy 13. Ben hits SWEEEEEEEED on 3rd down, but he comes up just short of the sticks on a diving effort. Tomlin elects to go for it, and Gary "The Bulldozer" Russell converts. On 2nd and goal...

Heath Miller takes over the world.

Erin comes out firing and hits Holt for 11 yards on 2nd down. After some success passing, the Bungles go to the ground, where the defense holds 3 times, forcing a punt.

Parker ground out 9 yards on 2 carries before Arians shocked the world by handing off to the fullback on 3rd and 1. Ben and Holmes hooked up deep to get the ball across midfield. On 3rd and long, Ben hits Holmes on a slant for big yardage and another first down. Ben hits Heath again on 2nd down to get to 3rd and 3 as the clock two minute warning rolls around. Ben and Holmes can't hook up and Reed is more reliable than the economy.


Cincy comes out and craps all over themselves. The Steelers take a timeout on 2nd down to try to get the ball back if they can get a stop on 3rd down...

Teddy Roosevelt and the Big Stick policy lay the hammer down on Erin, forcing a punt.

On a stroke of misfortune, the punt takes a bad bounce and hits Limas Sweed, who was covering the punt. The Bungles recover with good field position and a full slate of timeouts. If this was any other team, this would have been bad news.

But this is the Bungles. Aaron Smith bats down a pass, Harrison ruins Housh's life, then Taylor and Clark team up to hold Housh to nothing on a quick pass. With the ball on the 34, the Bungles elect to go for it, but Willie Gay is all over it, and makes a great play on the ball, almost coming up with an interception.

The Steelers, who are without a doubt the worst screen team in the league, try to run a screen to Moore, but it gets stopped in the backfield, and the Steelers let the clock run out.

Third Quarter

Willie Gay was everywhere on the first series off the break. He came up with a tackle on 2nd down and forced a bad pass with heat on Erin on 3rd.

Parker and Moore pick up 5 and 1 respectively, then Ben avoids pressure and scrambles, for the first time this year, for a first time. Ben responds to his newfound legs by thowing two incompletions, but comes back on 3rd down with a big completion to Holmes for 19 yards. Santonio got wacked on a head-to-head hit on the play, and was out the rest of the game with a concussion. Parker picks up 3 on first down, then dashes around the corner for 15 and skips out of bounds at the 28. Parker left the game, apparently with a sprained knee, and didn't return. With Parker out, the drive stalls and Reed comes in to extend the lead.


Erin thinks the Steelers are offsides so he takes the snap and takes a knee, costing the Bungles a down. The defense holds and forces another punt.

After an incompletion, Moore picks up 3 on 2nd down, but the drive gets set back on 3rd down when an offensive interference on Washington negates a Ward first down. The Steelers can't convert on 3rd and 17, forcing a punt.

The Bungles respond by throwing 3 times, all to Housh, all incomplete. Punt. Snore city.

Mewelde Moore comes out and runs the show for 3 carries, then hauls in a screen pass that he takes for 22 yards to get the ball down to the Cincy 24. After another Moore run, you know a pass is coming. Ben looks for Spaeth to the right, but he is covered so Ben comes back across to Heath running down the seam for 19 yards to get the ball down to the 2.

Gary Russell goes off right tackle and walks into the end zone for his first NFL touchdown.

Erin completes a pass as the quarter winds to a close.

Fourth Quarter

Stat of the game: The Steelers had the ball for 22:30 in the 2nd and 3rd quarter. Wow.

Benson picks up 4 on 2nd down, but gets rocked by Farrior and Keisel on 3rd and 1. Another punt forced by great defensive play.

The Steelers come out with the motif offense and guess what? They punt.

Erin scrambles away from pressure, and the Diesel goes down.

JD says it's a sprained knee ligament, and that he'd like an appletini for his services.

Benson carries and Erin connects on a pass to get to 2nd and 5. After an incompletion, the Bungles conversion is negated by a penalty, but Erin converts with a pass to Caldwell. The drive keeps rolling as Erin hits his tight end to get the ball down to the 10. But the defense holds once again, forcing a field goal.

You knew the Steelers could use a long drive to close out the last 6 1/2 minutes of the game. But things were looking grim when they stuck themselves with a 3rd and long. However, Ben flings one over the middle and Limas SWEEEEEED comes up with a tremendous catch to pick up the first down. The Mewelde Moore show was on full tilt now. Moore picked up 11 and 7 before Cincy took their first timeout with 4:13 to play. Moore picked up 4 yards and a first down as the clock winds under 4 minutes. The Bungles used their second timeout after they stopped Moore on 1st down. Air It Out Arians shows his stupidity and guts as he calls a screen pass on 2nd down, which Moore turns upfield for 18 yards and another first down. Arians calls a run to the outside as the clock winds under 2:40. Moore gets run out of bounds to stop the clock with 2:30 left. Arians wisened up and called a run up the middle on 2nd down. Moore picks up 3 and the Bungles use their last timeout with 2:22 to play.

The Steelers really needed to get out of this game with no more injuries. A first down would end the game. Your heart stopped when Ben didn't hand off and scanned the field to throw. The pocket collapsed, but Ben remembered he had legs. Ben passes the first down sticks at the 5 with no defenders around. The 6'5" franchise QB dives....

After review...

On a meaningless drive, Erin drives the Bungles all the way down the field, but Troy Polamalu snags his 5th pick of the year at the goal line with 20-some seconds to play.

Victory formation. Game.

Players of the Game:
Offensive Game Ball: Heath Miller
Defensive Game Ball: Aaron Smith

Mr. Yuck Sticker of the Game
Stores having Christmas sales before Thanksgiving. Macy's downtown had a full window display for Christmas, and it was a week before Thanksgiving. Absurd.

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