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Steelers Battle With Eagles Did Not Go As Planned

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The Pittsburgh Steelers were not very impressive, to say the least, against the Philadelphia Eagles in their third NFL preseason game. The offense and defense had multiple struggles during the 21-31 loss. Despite that, there were a few bright spots.

Coaching:

A lot of bad plays were called. There were issues stopping the Philadelphia Eagles’ fast-paced offense. The running plays look slightly undeveloped and there were timing issues between the quarterback and wide receivers. Todd Haley must call more efficient and creative plays. Defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau must figure out his blitz and coverage schemes.  Head coach Mike Tomlin must motivate his players more.

Team Grade: D-

Offense:

The first team offense looked out of rhythm the entire first half. The only positive note for the first team offense was scoring a touchdown in the 3rd quarter. The running combination between Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount was ok, but not great.  The starting receivers, Antonio Brown and Markus Wheaton, offered very little.  The second and 3rd team offense did mange to move the ball more efficiently. Bruce Gradkowski passed for two touchdowns. Backup receivers Darius Heyward Bey and Martavis Bryant scored. Overall much improvement is needed.

Grade: D

Defense:

The first team defense struggled. The lone bright spot was an interception by Troy Polamalu. The run defense could not contain running back LeSean McCoy. Philadelphia Eagles quarterbacks were able to able throw off the defense early with short passes and a fast pace. The second and 3rd team defense struggled as well, allowing two touchdowns in the second half. Not much of a pass rush was ever generated. Overall there was no one players that stood out and made a huge difference.

Grade: F

Special Teams:

Nothing flashy,but not horrible either. The special teams defense did not allow a touchdown to be returned on kickoff or punt return. Kicker Shaun Suisham missed a field goal yet again this preseason. The punting position remains unsettled. No big returns for the Pittsburgh Steelers return team.

Grade: C-

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Mario

    August 22, 2014 at 6:56 pm

    Lets grade the head coach: “F”

  2. DrGeorge

    August 23, 2014 at 5:34 pm

    For once, the fans and the media are in agreement: the Steelers looked awful against the Eagles in their third preseason game. No deep analysis is required to explain it. The Eagles are simply better right now: richer in talent, more familiar with their schemes, and more settled in their roster. The Steelers are still a work in progress.

    Usually, after a defeat like this, the coach looks for the things that went right and builds on those. In this game, Gradkowski did get the ball in the end zone. The O-line did have some success at run blocking before the game got out of hand, although Bell’s 2.5 yards per carry average was forgettable. On D, Troy got an interception, and the defensive lapses were largely due to being over-aggressive and players taking themselves out of position. This is a young defense in the midst of rebuilding, and it will take more experience and greater discipline to make this D consistent. That will happen in time, although it may take all of the 2014 season to get there.

    When a team gets blown out so badly, it is difficult to make meaningful assessments of individuals. But it does appear that this year’s offense is not going to be good enough to carry the team until the D gets its act together, as some had hoped. Whether we have adequate talent on D to get the job done remains an open question, because the players are still learning to play together. Kiesel’s return is welcome, but at this point in his career, he seems more of a resource than an answer. Which means the young guys simply must come through. There is no alternative. And nobody knows how long that will take.

  3. Gary Weis

    August 25, 2014 at 9:41 am

    I was excited for this year but after the last pre-season game it seems like the same stuff from the coaching staff. No improvement on Dline, subpar draft picks (aka Jarvis Jones) and now totally opposite Steelers football with no running game, cannot stop the run and no improvement in the D-backfield. Ugh!

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