Sure, we won, but losing Willie Parker for the season really hurts. Tons of love goes to Najeh for holding it down last night, but Willie broke his leg? I’m sick for the guy.
The D let up way too many points again, but held when they had to, allowing the O (and a timely interception) seal the win. It felt good to snap that thar little losing streak.
Tale of the tape: Offense is clicking. Underlying theme: Big ups to backups who stepped up (which is what we’ll need come playoff time).
P.S. Steven Jackson is a freak of nature. He’s bigger than our linebackers. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a guy with his combination of size and speed. Unreal. I thought he was going to go for 200+ on us. Completely honest.
Now…who did what?
Ben. Despite the past two losses, Ben played well in each game. He didn’t bring that losing mentality to St. Louis, though. With only a few days to prepare, Ben looked ridiculously sharp, connecting on 3 touchdown passes and 261 yards on 80% accuracy. Plus, it was his 2nd game this season with a perfect passer rating. I’m trying to find something to pick at, but Ben averaged over 13 yards per completion. That’s 5 of 5 motorcycle helmet territory.
Fast Wil…er…Najeh. Prayers go out to Willie. Its gotta suck to break your leg right after taking the outright league lead in rushing with only 2 games to play. If we make the playoffs, its going to be extremely hard without him. At least for one night, though, Najeh was looking solid. 24 carries? Over 5 yards per? A rushing touchdown? 123 yards? Wow. I don’t care who you are…you didn’t see that coming. When Najeh went to the sideline to tape up his ankle, I was nearly ready to throw the towel in for the season. Verron isn’t in Black and Gold. Gary Russell has 1 attempt for 1 yard this season…and wasn’t even on the sideline anyway. Najeh gets a perfect 5 of 5 motorcycle helmets. Oh…and Carey Davis, my preseason darkhorse, gets 4 of 5 motorcycle helmets.
WRs. Just in case you were wondering, the Steelers had 3 WRs average over 22 yards per catch against the Rams. San Antonio (4 catches/133 yards/dirty 83 yard catch early), Najeh (2 catches/44 yards/no WR routes to the endzone this game) and Nate Washington (2 catches/50 yards/both for scores). Oh…and Hines and Heath averaged a lowly 9.8 and 7 yards per catch respectively. Lowly. Willie was down, but Najeh’s workload (I said load) on the ground allowed Ben to find the open guy. The WR corps performed all game. That’s going to be critical in a few weeks. 5 of 5 motorcycle helmets.
Ike and Ike. Glad Eye-sac Bruce decided to show the world he stills plays in the NFL. In all honesty, Bruce has been one of my favorite non-Steeler receivers over the course of his career. Don’t know why, but he’s always been a player I’ve respected that doesn’t wear the Black and Gold. Even with superstud Tory Holt in the game, Marc Bulger was intent on getting the ball to Bruce. Dude had 87 yards receiving and was the go-to-guy. Our Ike, despite letting a few sure-fire ints through his hands early, sealed the win with the 51 yard pick-6. Eye-sac gets 3.75 out of 5 motorcycle helmets out of respect. Taylor gets 4.5 out of 5.
Baltimore to close out the season. Silverback is foaming at the mouth.