. The Steelers will revert to a see-how-tough-we-are mentality and attempt 13 first-down runs, even after opening the game with six consecutive pass calls on a touchdown drive, and even though their center, Sean Mahan, will be ground into sawdust by the middle of the second quarter.
They will net 24 yards on those 13 runs.
And I think about 11 of those yards were on the one carry in the first drive, so after that it was 12 carries for roughly 13 yards.
And no, this is not an "abandon the run, pass every down" hindsight call. The article conveniently doesn't mention how often we passed on first down and the success of those plays. I imagine we had more than our share of incompletions/sacks/INTs on first down. The numbers would also be somewhat skewed by the fact that we were behind most of the game.
What it does indicate to me, however, is a confirmation of my biggest concern with the playcalling - not just one late game drive or whether or not to go for two. It was the fact that we had a gameplan that apparently worked quite well for us on the first drive - and all of the 2005 playoffs for that matter - and we mothballed it. If we had continued to pass first, using it to set up the run, our running game would have been much more effective. It was apparent on that day, against that team, that the run would not set up the pass; however, we continued to try it.
I know, I know, Cowheresque. We've complained about it for years. But at least under Cowher, once we decided to change the plan on those few rare occasions, we didn't change back in mid-game; at least not until the victory was well in hand.
Why did we stop what was working?