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Steelers Post Game Quotes after the Loss to New England

Coach Mike Tomlin: Good evening. You got to give credit to New England. They beat us soundly tonight in all phases of the game, quite honestly. Our guys fought to try to make it close there in the end, but it was a good game played by those guys. They made more consistent plays, more significant plays. We got to get better. We weren’t as good tonight to compete with these guys, and we acknowledge that. We need to look at it in great detail tomorrow and make the necessary corrections and hopefully learn from this experience, and be better for it when given the opportunity if we can fight and put ourselves in the position to play in this kind of game again. It was a big game tonight. Of course we didn’t come through. You got to acknowledge that those guys did and tip your hat to them, and hopefully we’ll learn from this. From an injury standpoint Hines Ward sustained a concussion. He will go through his normal battery of tests after sustaining a concussion. We’ll see where we are in terms of next week. Crezdon Butler had a quad strain. He was unable to return. Lawrence Timmons had a hip pointer. We’ll see where he is tomorrow. Arnaz Battle had a shoulder injury of some kind. Other than that we’re fine. We’ll lick our wounds and move forward.

Was the first half a period of adjustment to playing without Hines?

Yeah, but that’s always going to be the case when a guy like Hines goes down. That’s no excuse for our performance. We are capable of better than we displayed.

Re: Defense looking flat:

No, they [Their Offense] were very efficient. They made quick decisions, made accurate throws and good catches. We weren’t able to get consistent pressure. We weren’t close enough to some of the underneath throws to tackle and make insignificant gains. They ran after a few of them. They got some out in the flat. It’s just not good enough football when playing against a team as well as they played tonight.

Re: Offensive success in the fourth quarter:

Offenses that are behind are capable of moving the ball. So I’m not going to read too much into that. They beat us soundly tonight.

Re: Offensive line play:

We all lost tonight. We all did, including myself.


CB Ike Taylor

General comment

“It’s plain and simple. We just got our butt whooped. That’s what it all boils down to. Nobody is making excuses. Tonight we got our butt whooped.”

How did that happen?

“It happened. Just like life, things happen. It’s all in how we respond. But tonight we didn’t play like we wanted to play. They came in here and they handed it to us.”

It seemed pretty emotional. Tom Brady had that spike after he scored and they kind of kept coming.

“We can’t worry about what they do. We can only control what we do. Tonight wasn’t good enough at all.”

Does this take a hit for you guys? Don’t you want to be the best in the conference?

“You’re right. We did take a hit. No excuses. We have to come back tomorrow and do what we need to do, feed off of this and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

WR Emmanuel Sanders

General comment

“I was happy to see them starting to come to me. It was definitely a couple of steps forward. I’m looking forward to next Sunday.”

S Ryan Clark

Ike [Taylor] said you got your butt whipped. Is there any other way to describe it?

“No. They beat us. They were a better team. They executed better and were more physical. They did what they wanted to do basically. You know that coming in – [that] they are going to play well, they are going to play smart. They are going to be patient. When you play a defense like ours, you take a four yard pass or a five yard pass and try to turn it into more. That’s kind of their game. Tom [Brady] executed extremely well. [He] made very good throws and was smart with the ball. We just have to get better. It’s just one game. But it’s a game we can learn a lot from.”

How does that happen? How is he able to execute as well as they did?

“You’d have to ask him. He did the job. We didn’t make the plays that we needed to make, but he didn’t really give us many opportunities. It’s not the first time you’ve seen Tom Brady operate at that high level. You don’t get called the best, or always in the argument for the best quarterback in the NFL if this is the first time that you’ve done that. But you know how it is when somebody does something against us. The sky is falling and we anoint that guy Baby Jesus. But Tom went out and did what Tom is supposed to do. And we didn’t come to play. We didn’t make the plays.”

It doesn’t worry you at all?

“I can’t be worried. You can’t start dredging up things from the past. This is one night and this is one night we need to get better from. It sucks to lose any time. If we’d have lost 3-2, or losing like this. Obviously, for our defense, it hurts more because we’re not used to playing this way. We’re not used to giving up yardage the way we did or giving up the scores in that manner. But you have to come back and continue to play. Yeah, we’re [angry]. We’re upset. But we just have to come back to work tomorrow the same that we did when we were winning.”

Matt Loede has been in the sports media for over 16 years, with experience covering the MLB, NBA, and NFL. On Sunday’s during football season, you can hear Matt on national networks like Fox Sports Radio, Associated Press, and others. Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Matt studies and talks football inside and out, and is anxious to share his thoughts and comments with readers on a daily basis.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. DrGeorge

    November 15, 2010 at 11:34 am

    The media is going gaga over Tom Brady’s 350 yards passing, but the emphasis is mistaken. The Steelers lost this game in Cincinnati. And I’m not speaking only of the injuries, but the fatigue. The Steelers were playing on a short week; six days rest wasn’t enough. The team simply had no energy when they took the field. They couldn’t run or pass when needed (those meaningless passing yards at the end of the game don’t count — New England was playing deep prevent and giving up short passes to kill the clock). Losing to the Pats is part of the price of beating the Bengals. (Physically, the Steelers could really use a bye week, and they aren’t going to get one. They face an improved Oakland team next, and the Steelers are only a shadow of their former selves. Even with a full week, it won’t be easy to win.)

    Given the decimated and make-shift O-line, running the ball should have been our primary object against any time, but especially against the Pats who proved so susceptible to Cleveland’s running game. That should have been our stratgegic focus. Instead, Arians went away from the run at the first opportunity. On balance, it probably made no difference: the team couldn’t run or pass effectively, proving once again how dependent Arians’ offense is on Ben’s arm, and how dependent Ben is on his security blanket, Hines Ward (out early with a neck injury). But New England is susceptible to a good rushing attack, and rushing gave us our best shot to win. We simply couldn’t mount a consistent running attack. Even so, our rushing attack was more consistent than the passing attack Arians opted for instead and not only because of the O-line. Ben was his own worst enemy last night, throwing poorly and taking way too many sacks. Compare Brady’s quick release to Ben’s posing in the pocket.

    As discussed here before the game, our defense, without Smith and Keisel, remains very susceptible to a decent ground attack. (The team leads in rushing yards allowed only because it is so much easier to pass against the Steelers secondary; teams run against us only to keep the defense honest.) The Steelers secondary is susceptible to a decent passing attack, and Brady and his receivers are more than decent. Like the Saints, the Pats passed over 70% of the time. Our inability to play anyone man on man forces LeBeau into a zone defense that leaves huge holes over the middle and in the flat. Brady took advantage of both. (Any defene that repeatedly mismatches Wm Gay against Gronkowski is doomed anyway. The height differential is too great. Even Deshea Townsend was unable to play tall receivers effectively and for the same reason.) Our defensive scheme no longer matches the limitations of our defensive talent. Since we can’t find better players until after the season, the defense must be adjusted to the extent possible to compensate for the realities of the pass-happy NFL. Which means we need more speed on D.

    Even given all of our woes, we were only 10 points down with 7 minutes to play, when some genius called for an obvious on-side kick that gave New England excellent field position against a fading defense. The TD that followed was practically a gift. The right strategy was to kick deep and try to force a punt or turnover. In other words, the coaching staff panicked and failed to give the team its best chance to win.

    After the game, Tomlin accepted his share of the blame. Ben accepted responsibility for his interceptions and erratic throws. Essex acknowledged that the team stunk it up. No one talked about the hapless defense or Jeff Reed’s missed kicks. But blame is irrelevant. Finding solutions is what matters. And with all the injuries the team has suffered, there are very few options available that will make a difference.

    For the Steelers to win with their talent this depleted, they must go back to basics and try to control time of possession, as they did when Ben was a rookie. On offense, use a simplified game plan: focus on the running game and short passes, with only an occasional deep pass to keep defense’s honest. On defense, blitz to get more pressure on the QB, insert faster LBs to take away the short routes and force opponents to throw deep (deep routes take longer). It isn’t a perfect solution, and the team still may lose, given all of the injuries and the available talent. But it would at least give the guys a better chance to win than the approach we used last night.

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