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Thread: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

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    Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Playoff season. It's an event like none other. The stakes are higher, the victories are sweeter, the losses are more devastating, and there are fans across the nation refusing to change their socks until their team is knocked out of the playoffs. I can only assume this is the best news Rex Ryan has heard all week.

    For the third time this season and the eighth in the past three years, the Steelers will take on the Ravens. These games are always close and always fun to watch. Here are the key factors that will decide the winner.

    1. Baltimore's offensive philosophy: In last week's first half against the Kansas City Chiefs, the Ravens threw over ten times more than they passed. Throughout the game, the Ravens' passing attack consisted of underneath crossing routes to Anquan Boldin and Todd Heap. Flacco finished the day with 265 yards passing and two touchdowns, the best playoff game of his career. This type of offense is the Steelers defense's kryptonite as the New England Patriots showed. If Baltimore employs such a strategy again, Dick LeBeau will have to make the proper adjustments to counter it.

    2. Terrell Suggs vs Jonathan Scott: With the comments and actions Suggs has had against Pittsburgh, you can be sure no fan sent him a Christmas card over the holiday. However, he backs up his game when it comes to playing the Black 'N Gold. He dominated the Steelers' offensive line Week 13, namely against left tackle Jonathan "Cross Your Fingers" Scott. To Scott's credit, he has played better the past few weeks. But he and the rest of the line haven't faced a pass rusher of Suggs' caliber since. When a team has a front four that can get pressure, it allows them to drop seven into coverage and clog up throwing lanes. Suggs cannot be allowed to create havoc again.

    3. Billy Cundiff: A kicker sighting. Cundiff is the best kickoff specialist in the league, tying the record for touchbacks in a single season with 40. He has the ability to change the field position game and force offenses to go a long way for points. In a game that is expected to be close, the team that doesn't have to go as far against the other's top-flight defense has a huge advantage.

    4. Redzone performance: Another aspect that is magnified when playing an evenly-matched team. The Steelers' offense have had their fair share of struggles once the ketchup bottles start pouring. On the other hand, the team's defense is the poster-child for "bend but don't break" and forces opposing offenses to earn every yard in the red area. The one time a team can break through could prove to be the difference.

    Prediction: Pittsburgh wins. No homer here; I would (and have) pick against Pittsburgh if I didn't think they would win. With Ben Roethlisberger's emergence in reading defenses and getting the ball out of his hand quickly, he can carry this team offensively in the likelihood the running game struggles.

    The score? It doesn't matter. When it's the playoffs, when it's Baltimore vs Pittsburgh, it's only about getting the "W."


    © 2011 Steelers Universe




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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Fantastic read Chidi! I am absolutely amazed at your extensive and outstanding Steelers and general football knowledge for such a youngin!






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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    When a team has a front four that can get pressure, it allows them to drop seven into coverage and clog up throwing lanes. Suggs cannot be allowed to create havoc again.
    This will be the biggest part of the game that the Steelers need to control.

    Good writeup, Chidi!!

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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Quote Originally Posted by fansince'76 View Post
    Prediction: Pittsburgh wins. No homer here; I would (and have) pick against Pittsburgh if I didn't think they would win.

    With Ben Roethlisberger's emergence in reading defenses and getting the ball out of his hand quickly, he can carry this team offensively in the likelihood the running game struggles.

    The score? It doesn't matter. When it's the playoffs, when it's Baltimore vs Pittsburgh, it's only about getting the "W."


    © 2011 Steelers Universe
    Great read Chidi.

    Ben is the X-factor in this game and I think he is ready.

    Our offense needs to get the Ratbirds on their heels early or it will be a long day.


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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Thanks for writing that Chidi. Roethlisberger is embracing his role as the leader on this team and that means trouble for the NFL.

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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Thanks guys.

    Blount,

    While Ben will definitely be a huge key to the game, I didn't want to consider him as an "X Factor" because we all know how well he must play in order for us to win.

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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    One other thing to consider.

    Watch how much pre-snap movement the Ravens do. It can cause confusion on our side because of how complex the defense can get. One screwed up assignment and we're vulnerable.

    That's what happened on both of their big plays in our last meeting. The Anquan and Donte catches.

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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Terrell Suggs vs Jonathan Scott: With the comments and actions Suggs has had against Pittsburgh, you can be sure no fan sent him a Christmas card over the holiday. However, he backs up his game when it comes to playing the Black 'N Gold. He dominated the Steelers' offensive line Week 13, namely against left tackle Jonathan "Cross Your Fingers" Scott. To Scott's credit, he has played better the past few weeks. But he and the rest of the line haven't faced a pass rusher of Suggs' caliber since. When a team has a front four that can get pressure, it allows them to drop seven into coverage and clog up throwing lanes. Suggs cannot be allowed to create havoc again.
    Great Read Chidi....I am going to keep an eye on this matchup. After the way Suggs played him last time, I have to think that we have game planned around getting some help on the left side....either by pulling a lineman or with the RB.

    Hopefully Arians has hedged his bets with the addition of a series of quick passes.
    "I believe the game is designed to reward the ones who hit the hardest. If you can't take it, you shouldn't play"

    -- Jack Lambert --

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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Quote Originally Posted by LLT View Post
    Great Read Chidi....I am going to keep an eye on this matchup. After the way Suggs played him last time, I have to think that we have game planned around getting some help on the left side....either by pulling a lineman or with the RB.

    Hopefully Arians has hedged his bets with the addition of a series of quick passes.
    Like Tomlin has said though, they will move Suggs around. He can line up on either side and I'm sure they'll use him on stunts or drop him into coverage once or twice. It's hard to chip if you don't know where he's coming from. That's part of what makes him so dangerous.

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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Quote Originally Posted by Chidi29 View Post
    Like Tomlin has said though, they will move Suggs around. He can line up on either side and I'm sure they'll use him on stunts or drop him into coverage once or twice. It's hard to chip if you don't know where he's coming from. That's part of what makes him so dangerous.
    True...but if he comes from the right side we really dont need to chip him because he will be in Ben's line of vision. It's only off the left side that I get nervous.
    "I believe the game is designed to reward the ones who hit the hardest. If you can't take it, you shouldn't play"

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    Re: Playoff Bound (by Chidi29 - January 13, 2011)

    Quote Originally Posted by LLT View Post
    True...but if he comes from the right side we really dont need to chip him because he will be in Ben's line of vision. It's only off the left side that I get nervous.
    Good point. Just hope we can contain him.

    I think I'd rather face a team that didn't have great pass rushers. A team like the Jets that have a lot of exotic schemes. At least with that, you can pick it up and get bodiev on blitzers or counter by a QB who can read it and get the ball out of his hand (Which Ben finally is). When you have a great pass rusher, there isn't a lot you can do aside from execution. And that hasn't been our strong point from the line, especially LT.

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