— It's funny how much changes in just seven days.
The Pittsburgh Steelers looked absolutely horrible against Houston, but rebounded to look like the S.O.S. (Same old Steelers) against Tennessee.
Why was that?
For the most part, they followed my advice!
Last week, I advocated the Steelers recommit to the run, use someone other than Rashard Mendenhall, start Max Starks, sit Aaron Smith and tackle better.
Look what happened when the Steelers decide they want to run the ball on a consistent basis: Ben Roethlisberger throws five touchdowns and is only sacked once; Hines Ward and the rest of the receivers are constantly open; and a Steeler running back (Jonathan Dwyer) rushes for over 100 yards.
I truly believe all that happened because Mendenhall wasn’t playing and losing yardage. I liked how Isaac Redman and Dwyer ran the ball. They hit the holes hard and weren’t jitterbugging in the hole like Mendenhall.
I’d rather see Redman and Dwyer get a second shot at being the featured back this week to see if last week was just an aberration rather than have Mendenhall start as is being reported. Honestly, if Mendenhall is healthy enough to start this week, what’s the big deal of letting Redman and Dwyer have a crack at running the ball over the first half?
Speaking at getting another crack at playing a lot, I think Cameron Heyward earned increased playing time last week when he had a sack and almost had another when Matt Hasselbeck was whistled for intentional grounding. He had a much better showing than Smith has had all year.
Enough of the back patting, the one thing I didn’t mention last week but worked wonders was having Roethlisberger take 3- and 5-step drops.
I had always wondered if Big Ben was capable of taking short drops, but his performance Sunday showed he can.
But from what I’ve heard, the whole 3-step drop - and in essence the short routes - game plan will be short-lived, because offensive coordinator Bruce Arians isn’t in favor of it, so I wouldn‘t be surprised to seeSt Big Ben running for his life this weekend or next.
For the record, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writer Ed Bouchette isn’t either, but the Steelers need to keep Roethlisberger upright and short drops will do that.
I’m sure most of you know what the definition of insanity is. For those that don’t know, it’s ‘doing the same thing, but expecting different results.’
In other words, having Roethlisberger take 7-step drops and throwing deep with a sub-par offensive line and expecting him to not to be under constant pressure is insane.
Yet, that’s what Arians wants to get back as soon as possible. I’ve heard reports that Arians intends to call more 7-step drops this week.
If they are true, it’s going to be a long day for the Steelers and Roethlisberger!
Maybe the Steelers should pay attention to another popular saying - ‘Those who don’t pay attention to history are doomed to repeat it’ - and do what I say in this column!
Agree, Disagree or just want to comment contact Corey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sailors make 1st PIAA playoff start
While Saturday will serve as his Sailors’ first foray into the PIAA playoffs, Lakeview High head football coach Dan York is going along for the ride, taking it all in stride.
Stopping shy of stifling a yawn, York calmly said, “We consider the playoffs the playoffs. When you make the playoffs out of our region (1-A), you’ve already gone up against some of the better teams in the state. So whether it’s the districts or state, it’s still the playoffs.”
Lakeview wins 1st ever D-10 football title
NEW WILMINGTON — Lakeview may have a long way to go to equal Sharpsville’s success in the sport of football, but the Sailors jump-started the process Friday night.
With Blake Reddick roaring into the record book, the Sailors shut out Sharpsville, 27-0, in the District 10 Class A championship game at Greyhounds Stadium.
While Sharpsville’s program has the pedigree — 8 championships and 14 title tilt appearances, plus the 1997 PIAA plateau — Lakeview launched its 1st crown since the district football playoffs’ 1985 inception.
EXTRA INNINGS: St. Louis shuffles the Cards, stacks the deck?
WHILE THE rest of the National League Central Division sits back and watches, St. Louis has shuffled the Cards with two trades, stacking the deck to become the favorite to repeat in 2014.
Although St. Louis won both its division and league pennant in 2013, outfield defense and shortstop offense worried the Cardinals throughout the season.
Last Thursday, the Cards shipped third baseman David Freese to the Angels for center fielder Peter Bourjos, considered by more than a few experts to be the best defensive centerfielder in baseball.
NCAA Football: Rock 6-1 after 17-3 win over Cal U
Slippery Rock University rode a length-of-the-field scoring drive by its offense and a goal-line stand by its No. 1-ranked defense late in the first half of action Saturday to a 17-3 win over 14th-ranked visiting California (Pa.).
NFL: Steelers top Jags as Mendenhall makes return
Mike Tomlin isn’t ready to say the Pittsburgh Steelers are back. Not after watching his team sleepwalk through the second half against Jacksonville on Sunday.
IndyCar Racing: Crash takes Wheldon’s life
Every race car driver heads onto the track understanding this race could be the last and hoping it won’t be. On Sunday, IndyCar drivers got a harsh reminder when the worst happened to one of their own.
NHL: Sabres beat Penguins 3-2
The Buffalo Sabres have had trouble with the Pittsburgh Penguins whether Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin play or not.
NHL Quick glance: Montreal at Pittsburgh
A breakdown of the National Hockey League game Thursday night between the Pittsburgh Penguins and visiting Montreal Canadiens.
High School Highlights: Oct. 19, 2011
A look at the last few days in local high school fall sports action.
Leading Off: Oct. 19, 2011
News and notes from the local, regional and national sports scene.
- More Sports Headlines
- Sailors make 1st PIAA playoff start