Steelers comeback and then hold on!

November 9th, 2020
by admin

It was almost the familiar Steelers scenario, the “Tomlin Special”, coming off a big win and then losing to a lousy team on the road, but in the end the Steelers rallied from 13 points down and beat the Dallas Cowboys, remaining undefeated and going to 8-0 for the first time in franchise history.

The Steelers started slow, had a terrible game plan and made several key mistakes on offense, defense and special teams. They also made several timely plays and were able to rally and hold off not one but two furious Cowboys’ comeback attempts.

Ben Roethlisberger playing with a banged-up knee, led the offensive comeback, using an empty backfield and five receiver set. Roethlisberger put up 300+ yards (with 195 yards coming in the second half) and threw three touchdowns. He saved the game and it is painfully apparent how important he is to the offense. Mason Rudolph made a scary appearance late in the first half and had little success.

Despite playing the worst run defense in the league, the Steelers threw the ball 46 times and found very little room for the running game. They only mustered 46 yards and failed to convert on third-and-1 and two fourth-and-1s, one of which was to close out the game. The running game has all but evaporated over the course of the last few weeks. James Conner finished with only 22 yards.

The run defense playing with rookie Carlos Davis as the Nose Tackle also has evaporated. After getting battered last week by the Ravens, the Cowboys churned out 144 yards with a mediocre offensive line and an injured Zeke Elliot. They controlled the clock and the defense which looked unstoppable three very short weeks ago, now struggles against the run and teams have figured out the zone defense on passing plays.

Cowboys’ quarterback, Garret Gilbert making his first start in the NFL, was able to find success and dictated the pace of the game. He found early success and kept the Steelers on their heels most of the day.

What has saved the Steelers has been big plays by big playmakers. On defense, Minkah Fitzpatrick had a key fourth quarter red zone interception and the game ending play. T.J. Watt and Cam “Steelhead” Heyward had a huge sack on fourth down to end a Cowboys comeback drive. On offense, Ben Roethlisberger made several key plays engineering the game winning drive. JuJu Smith-Schuster, had six catches for 93 very tough yards and Eric Ebron made a big catch and run play to finally take the lead late in the fourth quarter. On special teams, Chris Boswell hit the longest field goal in Steelers history.

After having a very solid season, the Special Teams issues that have plagued the Steelers since the days of Chuck Noll, reared its’ head, the Steelers missed two extra points, and were torched in the return game. Falling for a trick play and blowing coverage on a short field kickoff. The Steelers could have gone up by eight with 59 seconds left in the game but chose to go for it instead of relying on the special teams.

It wasn’t pretty and there were several mistakes in all facets of the game, but the Steelers now sit with the best start in franchise history and are in control of the division at the halfway mark.


My “GAME BEER” goes to: Minkah Fitzpatrick, who had a key turnover and knocked away Garrett Gilbert’s last ditch pass to preserve the Steelers’ victory. That’s two weeks in a row that Minkah made the game ending play. Also Considered: Chris “Little Bos” Boswell who nailed the longest field goal in franchise history. Ben Roethlisberger, who was banged up and led the comeback. JuJu Smith-Schuster who was the go-to player during the comeback.

Where I watched the game: So this was a sore subject, we were supposed to be in Dallas for the game with our travel group and KGB’s sister and brother-in-law(Both Cowboys fans) were supposed to join us. Because of the damn virus, we had to cancel the trip back in August.  We made the best of it though! The “Steel the other team’s snacks”, was Texas Style Beef Brisket with Texas Toast and Beans. Because of the time, it was our dinner too and it was phenomenal including a crisp caramelized top. The Steelers rally started right after dinner, again proving the power of the snacks! We had a Blue Point Brewing Company day for Beers, I had 16oz pounders of “Drink the Bay Clean” Lager. For KGB it was “Mother Pumpkin Ale” with a cinnamon sugar rim for Dante White-Rock Root Beer!

My Stat of the week: There are several to choose from but have to go with Chris Boswell hitting a 59-yard Field Goal the longest in franchise history. “Little Bos” had a tough day missing two extra points. However, drilling a 59-yarder was legendary and he continued to show how important he is to the Steelers success.

My Thoughts on next week: The Bengals are coming off their bye week and Joe Burrow looks like the best QB prospect in football. The Steelers should run all kinds of blitz packages and most importantly STOP the run!

This week’s Jersey: Two actually – David Decastro, #66 Away Jersey and Alejandro Villanueva #78 Salute to Service, in honor of Veterans Day!

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