Monday, October 4, 2010

Shankopotomus: Steelers Lose


For starters, can't say we didn't predict this. We've been saying all week that the game would come down to the last possession and the team that got the ball last would probably win. You can't blame the defense for what happened. If you spot any team in the league at the 40 yard line and a minute to play, chances are they're going to score or be the Buffalo Bills.

Baltimore won the toss and deferred.

Offensive genius Bruce Arians comes out with the motif offense. Batch holds onto the ball longer than Ben and gets sacked. Superman booms a 52-yarder.

McGahee and Mason were apparently the only two Ravens that came to play in the first quarter. They carry the team down the field into Steelers territory, but the defense dodges a bullet when Cundiff shanks a field goal wide right.

The Steelers go to the air early on the next drive and lo and behold they start moving the ball. A pass interference penalty helps move the troops into Ravens territory. Throwing early pays nice dividends, getting the Steelers into positive down and distance. On 3rd and 3 on the edge of field goal range, Charlie goes downtown and hits El Yeah who makes a leaping grab at the 1. Two plays later, out of a great formation that featured Doug Legursky as a blocking back and running right at Ray Lewis, Raise Some pounds it in.


Lucious Malfoy and the Ravens come back and start picking on Ryan Clark, hitting passes to Todd Heap-of-shit and Boldin deep over the middle.

Second Quarter

The Ravens start things off on the fringes of the Red Zone and are able to keep the drive alive thanks to an illegal hands to the face penalty on Ike. After sneaking inside the 10, McGahee takes a handoff and dances between defenders getting some help when two Steelers run into each other, going untouched into the end zone.


The Steelers are able to pick up a first down in the face of trouble when Wallace reels one in on a slant, but the drive stalls out around midfield.

Baltimore looks poised to move back down the field again after a pass interference call, but Big Snack takes things into his own hands and demolishes Flacco, forcing a fumble that the Ravens recover. 

A holding penalty on Pouncey back the Steelers up, putting their heels on the goal line. Batch plays to the tune of Molly Hatchet, rolling out on 3rd down at the 3 yard line and getting the ball knocked out.
After offsetting penalties wipe that play out, Batch tries to scramble but only manages a few yards as the Death Eaters swarm around him. Superman kills one for 57 yards.

With 5:20 to go in the half, the Ravens come out on the attack. They move down the field with stark efficiency, not facing a 3rd down until they are all the way down to the Steelers 7. They pick it up, but a holding call on The Blind Side sets things back. The defense clamps down and the Ravens settle for 3.



I mention to my dad that I'd like to see more A-gap blitzes. Also, the Steelers were dropping 7 and 8 for most of the first half, only rushing 3 or 4. You're not going to get pressure on Flacco only bringing 3 or 4 guys.

Third Quarter

Baltimore got the ball to start things off, but James Harrison was on the case. McGahee gets a crease and almost gets to the second level before getting absolutely walloped by Harrison. For the third consecutive game at Heinz Field, McGahee was laying nearly unconscious on the field while the Steelers ran the other way with the ball. Timmons scooped up the fumble and ran it back inside the 30. Huge turnover.

Arians was apparently sniffing glue at halftime, because he somehow convinced himself that an end-around would work. Um...nope. Motif offense city. Batch is sacked on 3rd down, turning a 41-yard field goal into a 49-yard attempt. Clang. Off the post.

Baltimore takes over with good field position, but are less effective on offense than autotune is at making Ke$ha a better singer.

Batch starts wheeling and dealing, picking up a few first downs on nice passes, but the drive stalls out after Wallace can't come up with a deep ball and Arnaz Battle can't pull one in on the sidelines at the sitcks. Superman booms another 50+ yard punt, his 3rd of the game.

With McGahee out, the Ravens turned to Le'Ron McClain to shoulder the load. Two short runs bring up 3rd and long. Flacco tries to go down the sideline to Mason, but Ike jumps the route and comes up with a great interception.

After playing for 3 off the last turnover, the Steelers went for it off the bat. Batch looks for Heath, but some linebacker makes a leaping play to get a hand up and bat the ball away. Mendenhall goes nowhere on second down, then Wallace can't reel one in in the end zone on 3rd down. Field goal time again.
Wide left, shankopotomus

Two missed field goals from 49 and 44, both off of turnovers. 

Gotta convert the opportunities the defense gives you.

Fourth Quarter

The Ravens went 3-and-out and the Steelers took over with a fire lit under them, determined to put points on the board. Mendenhall got things rolling with a few good runs to move out of the shadow of our goalposts. 

On 2nd and 7 Batch hit Miller for 19 yards, moving out to the 40. Then after Ngata, who was everywhere all game, stuffs Mendenhall twice, Batch goes back to Heath for 12 more and another first down. 

The Steelers work themselves into another 3rd and long, but El Yeah bails things out, snagging a throw from Batch on 3rd and 10 to move the chains again. Mendenhall moves it down into the Red Zone. A few plays later, they come out with both receivers to the left and 2 TEs to the right. I tell my dad, "They're going to run Mendenhall to the right pylon here."

Rashard takes the handoff, breaks it off tackle, picks up blocks from Miller and Johnson, gets the corner...
...and beats the safety to the pylon.



Baltimore takes over with 7:14 to go, and hit two quick passes to Douche and Boldin to move into Steelers territory. Before you can blink an eye, Heap-of-Shit is running down the seam and the Ravens have the ball inside the 10. On first and goal, Flacco tries a fade to Boldin that fails. Ray Rice makes his only noise of the game, taking the ball down to the 2 on an inside draw. On 3rd and 2, Willie Gay makes a huge play, jumping a pass to Mason and knocking the ball away. The Ravens used a timeout with 2:44 left to set up a 4th down play. They throw a fade to the corner, but Willie Gay is just tall enough for the ball to doink off his helmet, giving the Steelers the ball back on their own 2.

The Steelers did their best to pull a Plaxico, running the ball 3 times and taking just as many false start penalites. Backed up against their own goal line, it's a tough punt but Danny does a decent job, getting off a 47-yarder. However, a holding call on Keyaron Fox gives the Ravens extra help, allowing them to start on the Steelers 40.

As we said at the outset, any team that can't go 40 yards in 55 seconds shouldn't be in this league, or resides in Buffalo or Cleveland. Two quick passes, one getting out of bounds sets up the Ravens at the 18. Flacco fakes to the outside, drawing the safety out, and Douchemandzadeh cuts inside, wide open in the end zone for Unibrow to laser one in to him.


There was still an outside shot for the Steelers with 28 seconds and 1 timeout left. What hope we had quickly evaporated when Charlie tried to force one in to Hines and Ray Lewis made a diving interception to end it.


Players of the Game:
Offensive Game Ball: Rashard Mendenhall
Defensive Game Ball: Lawrence Timmons

Honorable Mentions:
Daniel Sepulveda
Willie Gay
Ike Taylor
Casey Hampton
James Harrison

Mr. Yuck Sticker of the Game

Michael Oher

Apparently, having a book and movie written about your life entitles you to not only hold on every play, but also false start on 90% of snaps. Go back and watch the highlights on SportsCenter. This isn't just us bitching about the game. Oher was out of his down stance and into his pass-blocking stance on almost all of Baltimore's passing plays, including the final touchdown pass. Not sure why none of those were called. He's a big dude, you would think someone would have seen him moving before the snap. I guess wrapping your arm around James Harrison's neck isn't holding either, but we've known that for years. If we were employed by the Steelers, we would make it our job to every week send DVDs of every play Harrison gets held on to the NFL and ask for explanations on each play why holding wasn't called.

Final Thoughts
  • If you had told us at the beginning of the year that we would have been 4-0 without Ben, we would have taken it hands down.
  • Ben is back, bitches.
  • Losing is bad, but losing to Baltimore is respectable. Not anywhere near as embarrassing as losing to Jacksonville. Yeah, we're looking at you Indianapolis.
  • Cincinnati lost to Cleveland. Hahahahahaha
  • 79 yards and 2 TDs is a great game for Mendenhall against the Ravens.
  • Timmons led the team again with 15 tackles. He's been a monster this year. Timmons is now the leading tackler in the league.
  • This loss isn't on the defense. They played lights out. If you want to blame anyone, blame Jeff Reed for missing 2 field goals.
  • Two turnovers get us the ball in field goal range and we don't get points out of either of them. That's the gamechanger right there.
  • We made a bet with @iHateJJRedick on Twitter that if the Steelers won, he would make LaMarr Woodley his avatar. If the Ravens won, we had to make ours Ray Rice for a week. We'll be sporting a Ray Rice avatar on Twitter for the bye week, it was worth it for the bet.
  • No complaints about being 3-1 going into the bye week.
  • Get pumped for Ben coming back after the bye. Dude is going to be ready to ball.
  • 007

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