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  • As Usual, Steelers Slammed by Brady and Patriots When Season on the Line in 36-17 AFC Title Game Defeat

    2001, 2004 and now you can add to the list 2016.

    Sunday’s AFC Title Game between the Steelers and Patriots played like a broken record to most of the matchups between these two AFC foes, with Tom Brady picking apart a Steelers zone defense, and as usual a player from the Patriots making the most of an opportunity.

    The end result is the end for the 2016 Steelers, a bitter 36-17 loss that really wasn’t even that close considering the black and gold allowed 19 second half points while scoring just eight after trailing 17-9 at halftime.

    The Steelers, as they usually do against the Patriots, made a ton of mistakes, from missing tackles and coverage on an afterthought of a wide receiver named Chris Hogan, to not being able to score a touchdown from the one-foot line in the second quarter trailing 17-6.

    Receivers dropped a number of passes, the team lost it’s biggest playoff playmaker on offense in Le’Veon Bell to an injured groin, and again the defense never had any answers for Brady despite allowing just 57 yards on the ground.

    In the end, the Steelers played like the Cowboys of the 1960’s trying to beat the Packers, it’s been a one-sided rivalry that always looks like the Steelers are a step behind in.

    Brady, per usual, was stellar against the black and gold, picking apart a zone defense that had issues all night in making sure players were covered, and even when they were they missed a number of tackles that allowed for yardage after the catch.

    The Pats future Hall of Fame QB was 32-for-42 for 384 yards with three touchdowns, and a QB rating of 127.5 Without Bell, the Steelers offense just seemed two steps behind, which is usually where they are Bell or no Bell against a Brady led Pats offense.

    Ben Roethlisberger,
    who is now 3-2 in five AFC Title games (both losses to the Pats) was 31-for-47 for 314 yards with a touchdown and a pick.

    Much will be talked about concerning the Steelers issues inside the red zone, but in the end no one is ever going to be Brady and the Pats after allowing 36 points, and it probably could have been worse if New England wanted it to be.

    The pass rush was null most of the night by the Steelers, and a secondary that had made plenty of strides during the teams’ long win streak after sitting at 4-5 looked more like it did the first nine games, allowing way too many yards and not making plays when they had the chance.

    Brady threw for 222 yards in the first half as the Pats built a 17-9 lead, but still the Steelers were in it as the offense played motivated, and it seemed despite not scoring the TD late in the first half they had a shot as they got the ball first in the second half.

    Instead they went 3-and-out, and New England got a Stephen Gostkowski 47-yard field goal to make it 20-9, and from that point on the game was basically over.

    The Steelers scored one meaningless TD late in the game to pull it to 36-17 after the extra point, but by then many Steelers supporters were already talking about next season or were looking for other Sunday night viewing options.

    Don’t kid yourself, the Steelers have plenty to be proud of in 2016, but at the end of the day, if they don’t figure out a way to at least challenge Tom Brady when titles are on the line, the results when the season is on the line will likely always be the same.

     
  • Steelers Gab 2016 AFC Championship Game Preview – Pittsburgh at New England

    Two years ago it was the wild card game, a loss to the Ravens. Last season a tough to swallow AFC Divisional loss to the Broncos after beating the Bengals in the wild card game.

    Today, it’s another step forward as the Steelers face the team that has dominated them over the years, stamping their way to the Super Bowl twice against them, the New England Patriots.

    The stories of the past failures have already been retold a number of times, but today the Steelers and for most of their roster can put those failures in the past with a win over Tom Brady to advance to their ninth Super Bowl.

    Here’s the keys to how the Steelers can do it, and if they will and we’ll still be talking about a Super Bowl bound Steelers team or another offseason of ‘what ifs’ and looking forward to the 2017 campaign.

    1. Be Super Careful with the Ball

    Last week the Steelers survived the Chiefs despite what could have been a game-changing end zone pick, but today those types of turnovers could easily be the reason the Steelers on the short end of the stick. Look at losses to the Pats in the past, more so the title game losses, and New England always owns the edge in the turnover battle. When the Steelers have beaten New England (and it’s not much), it’s usually the other way around, it would be nice to shorten the fields a little with a couple freebies thanks to some big plays on the Steelers defensive side of the ball.

    2. Pound the Line

    The Patriots were very good during the season allowing 88.6 yards per game on the ground, 3rd best in the NFL. Le’Veon Bell has been on a mission this postseason, shattering records and hopefully he can duplicated that again tonight. It will start up front with the line, something that the Pats will surely stack to stop Bell and force Ben to throw early and often. Look at how some of the better NFL backs have fared against New England this year – David Johnson (89 yards, 1 TD), Jay Ajayi (14 yards game one, 59 yards game two), Lamar Miller (80 yards), LeSean McCoy (70 yards), Bell (81 yards). It’s hard to think about Bell having the same yardage he did in the first two playoff games, but the Steelers O-line having a big night could help take the pressure off Ben and company.

    3. Pressure Tom

    If you give Pats QB Tom Brady time to throw, he’s going to pick you apart, and the Steelers have had to watch him do that over and over in the past. Brady through can be rattled, and the pressure up and middle and from the outside can help that. The Pats run a rhythm-based offense, and if you can disrupt that offense, that’s when things can swing the way of the Steelers. You saw last week when Alex Smith had time, he was often able to find guys, but when he was pressured, he was unable to make plays. Do that to Brady, and it by far gives the Steelers the best shot to win.

    Prediction: I felt the Steelers last week would have issues with the weather, and therefore the Chiefs would sneak by. The good news this week is the weather won’t be much of an issue, but the Patriots at home are very very tough to beat, and Brady’s past against the Steelers should give him a ton of confidence in this game. Look for Julian Edelman to have a big game, and I can see both backs LeGarrette Blount and James White making an impact. I like the swagger of the Steelers over their last nine games after the loss to Dallas, but unless this offense can find a way to score 35, I think New England again breaks the heart of Steeler fans everywhere and they move on to play the Packers in two weeks. New England 34 Pittsburgh 24

     
  • Fire Alarm Pulled in Steelers Hotel Overnight as Patriot Fans Resort to Desperate Measures

    The pranksters are clearly out in Boston as Patriots fans might just be a little more fearful of the Steelers than we thought.

    Overnight a fire alarm was pulled in the hotel that the Steelers and their officials were staying in, making the black and gold and team reps have to leave the hotel in a fuss around 3am.

    This is nothing new, as things like this were done to the Steelers over the years in places like Cleveland, where there was no hot water for the showers.

    It just seems like a desperate act for a team that knows their in trouble, that being the Patriots, and now it seems like their fans are well aware of it as well.

     
 
 
 
 

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