Maximum Grilled Steelers Forum
Sep 03, 2014 at 00:13 *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
 
  Home   Forum   Help Calendar Media Login Register  
Pages: 1 ... 3 [4] 5  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Finny's 2010 playoff guide  (Read 3570 times)
scballersc
Member
***

Karma: 241
Offline Offline

Posts: 355


Saw Ben on Halloween (pre-Milledgeville)


« Reply #30 on: Jan 20, 2011 at 18:01 »

I am terribly superstitious, and considering the accuracy of your Steelers-Jets prediction in the regular season, I began thanking God when I saw this prediction.
« Last Edit: Jan 20, 2011 at 18:10 by scballersc » Logged
aj_law
Global Moderator
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 5532
Offline Offline

Posts: 15,015


« Reply #31 on: Jan 20, 2011 at 21:49 »

Great stuff, per usual.  More than earned your $37 daily stipend.

For the Pack @ Bears, I basically agree, but for some unknown reason, I see GB winning and not covering cuz of the dreaded hook.  It just looks so tempting the way GB has been playing to stick with the hot hand, but as you say, divisional games are usually nailbiters and I think Vegas is just teasing the public with that number.  23-20, 20-17...Cheeseheads.

For the Jets @ our beloved Black and Gold, I obviously agree (see my intricate and highly complex mathmatical formula that I included in the AFCC Gameday thread that would make an Asian graduating Suma Cum Laude from MIT scratch his head).  Seriously though, I think the clock strikes midnight on the Jets" Cinderella postseason on Sunday.  Rexy's gonna find out that you can only hide the QB for so long before it 'asplodes all over her fee...ah, face...yeah, yeah, her face...that's it.
Logged

We suck because our drafts have been THE SUCK.
Merman1983
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 5202
Offline Offline

Posts: 1,482


Master of the figure-four leglock


« Reply #32 on: Jan 22, 2011 at 07:04 »

Nice writeup as always. For some reason I like the Bears in a close one in the first game, 16-13 or something like that. Maybe it's because they have been largely ignored by the media or maybe it's because the thought of a Bears-Steelers Superbowl would ruin Goodell's life.
Logged
Finnegans Wake
Global Moderator
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 12189
Offline Offline

Posts: 22,244



« Reply #33 on: Feb 03, 2011 at 15:07 »

Finny's 2010 playoff guide, Super Bowl XLV edition

I’ve spent the better part of two weeks worrying my guts out over this game.  Not that I’m allowing the media hype to dig a spork into my abdomen with their love of the hot team (Packers), the newest object of QB adulation (Rodgers), and their general level of inane chatter (near-deafening).  No, I’ve been spewing up blood and bile all on my worrisome own.  It’s how I roll.  

For these big games, I even practice negative visualization to lessen the impact of unwanted outcomes.  For the AFCC, I pictured Santonio Holmes reeling in the dramatically ironic game-winner, recapitulating his snare from XLIII.  I saw him celebrating as the Lamar Hunt trophy was handed over to the meaty paws of Rex Ryan, and Ryan’s jubilant presser, with Greasy Sanchez all smiles as well.  So for the Super Bowl, it’s Aaron Rodgers as MVP, naturally, all the green and yellow confetti coming down and fans with those ridiculous polystyrene curd heads jumping up and down as the Steeler faithful file out of Jerruhworld in silence.

But enough of all that shit.  Steelers are going to win, and even though we all know it’s going to be close, closer than it should be, and the late part of the game is going to be another nail-biter, I’ve gone over enough statistics, trends, matchups, and intangibles to say with confidence that the Steelers will lay claim to their seventh Vince Lombardi trophy.

I think.

I’m pretty sure.

OK, let’s get the bad news out of the way.  It pretty much looks like the awesome comeback story of Aaron Smith isn’t going to materialize the way it did for Rod Woodson in the 1995 season.  And despite Pouncey being upgraded to probable, it still doesn’t seem likely that Maurkice Pouncey’s super duper healing powers will be able to overcome medical reality.  We’ve cobbled together an offensive line of backups and castoffs, and we’re pretty much hoping Ben can do his Ben magic to overcome that fact.

But the Packers did an amazing thing as well, overcoming a ridiculous 16 players going to IR, including some significant starters (LB Nick Barnett, RB Ryan Grant, TE Jermichael Finley, OT Mark Tauscher).  Mike McCarthy deserves significant COY consideration for that fact alone, despite his butchering of the backup plan in the loss to the Lions when Rodgers went out with a concussion.  

Both the Packers’ and the Steelers’ offensive lines have had injury issues and problems with protection, despite the Packers investing more in recent drafts to upgrade.  Both lines also seem to have improved of late, perhaps indicating that even a patchwork line benefits from consistency.

So what about the injuries?

For the Steelers, Aaron Smith, Troy Polamalu, and Maurkice Pouncey appear to be the biggest concerns.  Smith’s absence was more keenly felt in years past, but Ziggy Hood has stepped up and played like a man.  Check.  Polamalu has battled an Achilles injury, and hasn’t made the eye-popping impact of late that he did earlier in the season.  But the Wild Card bye and the extra week of rest for the Super Bowl can’t hurt, and Troy was no liability in the two playoff wins.  Check.

Pouncey.

As noted, Pouncey has somehow come back from the dreaded high ankle sprain (a.k.a., Kendrell’s Bane) AND a broken bone in his foot.  But consider me leery of him starting.  He may suit up as much-needed depth.
Pouncey was arguably our best offensive lineman, although I would note that Flozell Adams did a very nice job at RT, better than I’d anticipated when we signed him.  Clearly Mo has a very bright future here, but can Doug Legursky fill his shoes without fumbling a snap?  Legursky, 6’1” and 315# (although he looks shorter than that) has acquitted himself well in spot duty at both guard positions and the occasional FB call.  He’s very strong (set records at Marshall in weightlifting) and is surprisingly quick on his feet.  But he’s not as rangy as Pouncey, and he doesn’t have the long arms that Mo possesses.

The concern is that big NT B.J. Raji will feast on him, but my surmise is that if Legursky locks on, he may be able to hold his ground.  Getting to second level blocks the way Pouncey did seems less likely.  His success may ultimately be predicated on Sean Kugler’s blocking schemes versus the 3-4: if he gets good cooperation and that mind-meld understanding from Ramon Foster and Chris Kemoeatu, the center of the line may do well enough.  Having two weeks to work on these issues helps, but it could still be a concern.
In short, Legursky needs to bring his lunch pail and not fuck up the exchanges.  And if Pouncey does pull off a miracle, we have to hope he has the strength to set against B.J. Raji and the small family of wild boars he recently ate.

Incidentally, Craig Wolfley agrees .

For the Packers, a quick look at the stats for Desmond Bishop replacing Nick Barnett show no discernable dropoff.  I can’t say that Barnett is better on style points, but the numbers seem to show that the defense has done fine in replacing him.

Ryan Grant chipped in 1253 rushing yards last season, and while that was certainly felt during the regular season, when a largely ineffective Brandon Jackson was a disappointing fill-in, the post-season has seen the emergence of unheralded rookie James Starks.  I won’t bother with a comparison of the two, because while Starks has also been a rough equivalent of Grant in the playoffs, it won’t matter a pig’s tit against the Steelers.  In last year’s shootout, Grant and Mendenhall had 37 and 38 yards rushing, respectively.  I could see Starks doing marginally better, but if the Packers fall behind or if Starks gets no early traction, he’ll be tossed aside like a pair of wet socks.

Here’s the key injury for the Packers:  Jermichael Finley.  Finley was building a strong rappor with Rodgers before getting torn up, and of course tight ends have a way of exploiting the soft zones in the LeBeau defensive schemes.  In the 2009 shootout game, Jennings led the Packers with 118 receiving yards, but it was Finley who led in receptions, with 9 for 74 and a touchdown.  Rodgers has no similar safety valve amongst the replacements.  Andrew Quarless has 4 catches for 41 yards in the postseason, and Tom Crabtree has 1 for 7.  This is very, very good news for the Steelers.

Dick LeBeau likes to whittle down variables one by one.  Stop the run.  Take away the TE.  And all of a sudden all job of stopping the Packers offense starts to narrow.

One statistical oddity from the 2009 game

I doubt this will be reprised in the Super Bowl, and no, I’m not talking about Ben getting 503 yards passing.  Greg Jennings may have put up the most receiving yards for the Packers, but his 118 yards was still only second best to Hines Ward’s 126 yards on 7 snags.  Donald Driver had 3 catches for 76 yards.  The old salts were 33 and 35 at the time.  It’s hard to imagine them replicating that this time around.

What are they chanting?


One stat from that game that’s worth paying attention to is the performance of the TEs.  Jermichael Finley had 9 catches for 74 yards and a touchdown, but he too was only the second best TE on the field that day.  Miller had 7 snags for a whopping 118 yards.

Miller plays Sunday.  Finley will be watching the game.

By the way, they’re chanting “HEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAATTTTTTTTTTTHHHHHHHHH!”

OK, one last note on the 2009 game

The Steelers had five players with 50 or more yards receiving that game, including Rashard Mendenhall (!), with 6 catches for 73 yards.  Greg Jennings, Donald Driver, and Jermichael Finley all had good days, as did Jordy Nelson, who reeled in 4 catches for 71 yards.  (James Jones had only 2 catches for 36 yards.)

The Packers did that damage against defensive backs Ty Carter, playing in place of Troy Polamalu, and Deshea Townshend (retired), William Gay (demoted to nickel), and Joe Burnett (released).  No commentary needed.

Wet farts in a monsoon

Absent some juicy scandal or some slip into smack talk, what’s a reporter to do but whip up a tempest in a teapot?  This year’s non-factors to anything that will occur on the field include:  the Packers’ photo “scandal,” a Twitter crossfire between Aaron Rodgers and Nick Barnett, Peter King’s story on Goodell’s comments about how players don’t like Ben Roethlisberger (wah!) or how he’s not nice or some shit (double-wah!), the ensuing correction of the Peter King story, Roethlisberger being asked to wax philosophic on redemption, and Hines Ward possibly ogling some titties.

There will surely be a few more wet farts in the monsoon, and I’ve adjusted my prognostication accordingly, by adjusting both teams’ scores down one one-hundredth of an assbeard hair.

Been there, done that

One intangible that I think will have an effect early in the game is the experience factor.  These Packers are relatively, well, green in terms of postseason seasoning, and when you get to the Super Bowl, nerves are certain to be a factor.  The Rodgers-led Packers had never gotten out of the Wild Card round, and you’d have to go back to the 2007 season (Giants upset Patriots!) to find personnel who were along for the ride to the NFCC loss with Favre at the helm.

The only players I could find with any Super Bowl experience were Charles Woodson (Raiders lose to Bucs), and ex-Steelers John Kuhn and Anthony Smith, who got their rings by being on the practice squad and on IR, respectively.  And unless I missed it, Mike McCarthy never went to the big dance even as an assistant.
By contrast, this is HC Mike Tomlin’s third go, second as HC of the Steelers, and the majority of the players were here for one or both of the 2005 and 2008 season finales.  That could mean an early advantage for the Steelers.

The Packers have never trailed by more than 7

How often has this nugget been foisted on us by a media corps hungry for relevant data?  They’re as dead-eyed and ravenous as a legion of zombies.  Anyone want to bet that the Steelers get out to an early lead of more than 7?  This could be notable if the Packers are a bit jittery and they have to play catch-up against the Steelers defense.

Rashard Mendenhall will fuck you up

Mendenhall is one of my keys to this game.  If the Steelers can play an offensive stratagem of quick deep strikes to the young wide receivers, balanced with drive-sustaining middle throws to Ward and Miller, the last element of complete domination would be to have Mendenhall notch 100 yards rushing, taking the air out of the Packers’ tires and lessening the chance of a late shootout.

But the media will tell you that the Packers have been much improved in the playoffs against the rush.

And that’s just where they cannot understand context.  During the regular season, the Packers’ rush defense had a decent -1.8% DVOA, good for 16th best.  But in the playoffs, the Packers faced an Eagles team more fond of the pass than the run, and once those Eagles got behind the Pack the rushing game was an afterthought.  Similarly, the Falcons and Bears had to play catch-up in their tilts.

But why should we expect Mendenhall to run wild?  He’s been up and down all year, or rather, he’s had some breakout games when the line held and the OC remembered to feed him.

Well, I’m going to go out on a limb and give Bruce Arians a little credit for once.  The Packers had an abysmal defensive rushing YPA this season, 4.7 YPA, or nearly 114.88 YPG allowed.  As much as I respect this Packers defense and Dom Capers’s tune-up as DC, that’s not a particularly good set of stats.  True, they faced Adrian Peterson twice, but that ain’t all of it.  The only team that allowed a worse per-carry yardage average was Buffalo, with 4.8.  That’s really something to give pause.

So I went back and rounded up Mendenhall’s performances (this year only) against the YPA dogs.  

Against the Bills (4.8 YPA, 169.63 YPGA) he ran 36 times for151 yards and 1 score.

Against the Bucs( 4.7 YPA, 131.69 YPGA) he ran 19 times for 143 and 1 score.
 
Against the Falcons ( 4.6 YPA, 105.88 YPGA) he ran 22 times for 120 yards and 1 score (a game in which the defense keyed on him in Roethlisberger’s absence).

Against the Raiders (4.5 YPA, 133.63 YPGA) he ran 23 times for only 59 yards and 1 score.  

In two games against the Bengals (4.3 YPA, 115.19 YPGA), he ran 22 times for 99 yards and 1 score, and 18 times for 66 yards and no TDs.

That’s great work by Mendy, but it’s also a little too coincidental for Bruce Arians not to have noticed this defensive flaw and actually exploit it.

Logged

Out of my mind on Saturday night...
Finnegans Wake
Global Moderator
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 12189
Offline Offline

Posts: 22,244



« Reply #34 on: Feb 03, 2011 at 15:07 »

Steelers connection

This really has nothing to do with anything, but you’re also certainly aware of the fact that Mike McCarthy is originally from the Pittsburgh area.  Wow, that’s a fact we needed to know, thanks!

But the Packers have not only utilized the Steelers’ philosophy of drafting well and developing talent, instead of employing the Danny Snyder Free Agent Failure Model, and there are other Steelers connections as well.  Tom Clements was the QB coach just before Ben arrived, 2001-04.  Dom Capers was Cowher’s first DC, from 1992-94.  Kevin Greene was a productive linebacker for the black and gold from 1993-95, where he coaches up the outside linebackers for the Pack.  And Darren Perry was an excellent Steelers safety from 1992-98, then helped coach DBs there from 2003-06, but now he’s the safeties coach for the Pack. 

Whittling down the variables

OK, I’m not going to devote a ton of speculation as to who our defense matches up with in the passing game, or what the Packers plan on doing, because sometimes the receivers flip sides, sometimes you have a linebacker cover, and in general the DCs like to mix things up. 

But as noted, last year’s game featured three DBs who won’t be in the Steelers defensive mix on Sunday: Ty Carter, Deshea Townshend, and Joe Burnett.  And William Gay is now back at nickel.

While the WR depth of the Packers seems to be problematic for our defense, and another hackneyed trope of the media is the idea that any team can “spread out the Steelers and pass on them,” this idea starts to look less tenable when you consider that the two arguments used to bolster the case are the Steelers 2010 losses to New England (OK, they match up well with us, but this ain’t them) and the loss to the Saints.  Yes, the loss where Heath coughed up the ball with the Steelers down 13-10 and competitive throughout.  That’s all you got, Chief?  That it?  OK, now let’s consider personnel.

Earlier in the season, I posted stats regarding the Steelers’ success versus teams with various numbers of potent receivers.  (Where that post is, I have no idea.)  Teams with 5 and 6 receivers of note did fare better against our defense, but when teams fielded 4 or fewer such receivers the advantage tilted.

And you’ll recall that Andrew Quarless is no Jermichael Finley.

That leaves Greg Jennings as the big threat receiver, the guy Ike Taylor should draw.  And beyond that, there are Donald Driver, Jordy Nelson, and James Jones.  And that’s about it, folks.

Say what you will about Bryant McFadden and William Gay, but if you have them in the same backfield with Troy Polamalu, I can see LeBeau winning this chess match.  Put it another way: you can have Greg Jennings have a big day, or you can have one or two of the other guys having decent days, but not all four.  On four-wide sets, it will be interesting to see if LeBeau sticks with the nickel package and lets speedy LB Lawrence Timmons stay in or have marginal CB Anthony Madison in as the dime package back.  Frankly, I'm hoping for the former.

Flipping the matchups, my surmise is that Woodson would most often cover Ward, matching the wily vets, and that rookie speedster Sam Shields will likely shadow Mike Wallace.  That leaves Tramon Williams, who is very solid, and someone (SS Charlie Peprah?) on the rooks for four wides.  In the three wide sets, this looks to favor the Packers, except that Heath Miller is again matched on a LB.  Also, that crucial deep threat must be covered by a rookie (Shields). A very talented rookie, but a rookie, in the Super Bowl, no less.  He had two clutch picks against the Bears, but I would assert that Ben Roethlisberger is just a touch better than Caleb Hanie.  Not much, you know, just a wee bit.

I expect both quarterbacks to have decent stat sheets, with perhaps a yardage edge to Rodgers. 

One more thing about that passing game

Looking over the Packers playoff drive charts, what strikes me is that almost every TD drive is a long, methodical drive.  Very few explosive hitters, like the patented Ben-to-Wallace heart-stoppers we know and love.
Dick LeBeau’s offensive philosophy is fine with that.  We’ll keep the big plays off the table, and make you beat us with technical perfection.  Perhaps the only team that can do that consistently is the Patriots, who (as noted) have more than 4 viable targets. 

If the Packers can’t strike deep successfully, that makes their offense much more pass-fail.  You never know when the Steelers will hit the long play, but they hit it pretty often.  The Packers seem to be of the philosophy to go on long drives, and when touchdowns aren’t there they punt.  I don’t know if McCarthy has no faith in Mason Crosby, but the Packers are below the league median in FG attempts and completion percentage.
 
That could mean that the Packers find offensive success in fits and starts.

OK, all that DVOA shit

I do tend to rely more on Football Outsiders’ metrics over pure yardage stats, as there’s no compensation in the latter for level of competition, meaningfulness of down and distance, etc.  If you’re curious about how they arrive at these stats, check out their website: it’s far too complicated for me to boil down here.  Over the years, however, Football Outsiders’ best DVOA teams (and especially those teams with the best defensive DVOA) tend to go farther in the postseason.

Remember, offensive DVOA and special teams DVOA is better when positive; since the defense is in statistical opposition to moving the ball forward, negative defensive DVOA rules.
Are the Packers’ offensive stats inflated?

I arbitrarily checked the last 10 games for both the Packers and Steelers, including playoffs, to see what defensive DVOA both faced.  (Week 19 DVOA stats were utilized for this, meaning playoff performance through the Divisional Round games is included.)

The Packers’ opposition ranged from -4.5% (Chicago) to 6.5% (Detroit).  The average defensive DVOA was 2.35, comparable to the Patriots (ranked 12th, 2.1%) or the Vikings (ranked 13th, 2.8%).  Over that span the Packers were 7-3, winning by an average of 25.7 – 14.8 (+10.9 points).

The Steelers’ opposition ranged from -17.7% (Baltimore) to 8.2% (Cleveland).  The average defensive DVOA was -4.11%, comparable to the Raiders (ranked 6th, -4.3%) or the Dolphins (ranked 7th, -2.0%).  Over that span the Steelers were 8-2, winning by an average of 23.6 – 15.2 (+8.4). 

The bottom line is this.  The Steelers faced defenses like the Jets and Ravens, both of whom are better than the Bears, and that’s about the best the Packers faced.  They haven’t faced a defense as nasty as the Steelers all year long, and the playoffs haven’t prepared them for shit.  Meanwhile, the Packers defense is in the same league as the Steelers and Ravens, but the Steelers have at least faced comparable foes.

You only get so many shots

As I went over the drive charts from the Packers’ and Steelers’ playoff games, which may or may not be a good predictor of how these teams will fare in the Super Bowl, one thing that impressed itself on me is the idea that a handful of plays decide the game.

You get the ball for maybe 10 or 12 drives, and either you score or you hand it to the other guy and invite him to try.  It’s a rather simple game.  So one stalled drive can have big consequences.  One drive where a dominant RB or TE presence can be the difference between success and failure. 

And I’ll admit that I think there were some aberrations in these drive charts.

For one, the Falcons game completely fell apart in the second half.  Sure, the Packers had a hand in that, but the game looks like an outlier when compared to the Eagles and Bears games.  In those matchups, the Packers were much more consistent in the number of drives they scored touchdowns on and how many times they had to punt.
Similarly, the Steelers seemed to be plagued by many more turnovers than they suffered during the regular season.  The first half of that Ravens game was pure ass-pimple ugly, and it hardly seems to be a good predictor model for the Super Bowl.  Likewise, losing Pouncey and thrusting Legursky into the mix resulted in a bad snap and a resultant safety.  Is that something we can reasonably expect to continue?

Perhaps this is nothing more than cherry-picking, but I did cull out the Falcons game and from the results came up with a percentage of drives in the playoffs that each team got a TD, a FG, or turned the ball over.  And I even kept in the Steelers’ sloppy turnover percentage, despite my rationalizations that they seem unlikely to continue.
What resulted was that the Steelers scored TDs on a higher number of their drives, and the Packers seem almost pathologically afraid to trust their FG kicker.  The Steelers had an excessive turnover percentage, so I allowed that, given the Pack’s top-rated secondary and strong overall defensive DVOA.

How many drives ya got?

While there could be more or fewer drives in XLV, I ran the playoff drive percentages through 9, 10, 11, 12, and 13 drives for each team.  It shouldn’t matter who gets the ball first, except to describe the in-game dynamic. 
In a fast game, you’ll see one or both teams dominate the ground game.  Without incompletions to stop the clock, and a solid rushing attack keeping the number of drives lower, the odds favor the Steelers.  In a 9-drive apiece game, I project a 24-14 Steeler win.  That seems unlikely, since the Packers can’t hope to match the ground attack, but even a 10-drive game, where the Pack counters with passing to a successful rushing attack, I project the Steelers win 24-21.  That seems like a very possible scenario.

On the other end of the curve, if both teams are successful getting chunks via the pass attack, moving quickly and keeping possession going back and forth, a 13-drive game goes Steelers 31-21, and a 12-drive game goes Steelers the same score.  While I think the Steelers pass attack will surprise some folks (not those who’ve followed this team and understand the emerging hydra of young talent), I find the idea that Arians will abandon the ground game and short yardage attack entirely somewhat dubious.

In the 2008 Super Bowl (XLIII), the Steelers had 11 drives to the Cards’ 10.  Under that scenario, the Steelers win here 31-21.

The average of all scenarios comes out like this: Pack scores 3 TDs, no FGS, 21 points; Steelers score 3.66 TDs, 1 FG, so it depends on whether you think that 3.66 really rounds up to 4 TDs, or whether this means something else.  Would that be a situation that Tomlin kicks a FG instead?  Is 31-21 really 31-21, or is it 27-21?

The prediction

While I think projecting drive percentages has the look and feel of how this game might unfold, it’s by no means scientific.  I place much more faith in the secondary matchups we have this time that were absent in the 2009 shootout.  (We also have more WR targets this time around, with Miller and one extra rookie to choose from.)  I like the fact that we’ve faced tougher defenses, and that we’ve done well overall against them.  And I really like the YPA predictor that tells me Rashard Mendenhall could have a 100-yard game.

If I’m correct that the war of nerves plays to the Steelers early, and this game conforms to the blueprint whereby the Steelers get up early and then watch their opponent futilely hack away at that lead until time expires.  In that sense, I can see this game unfolding similarly to the AFCC game, barring unconscionable turnovers a la the Divisional Round game.  But while I think that most pundits underestimate the potency of the Steelers offense, its ability to hit the big play quickly, I also think the Steelers won’t clear 20 in the first half.  This Packers defense will do a better job than the Jets defense did.  Face it: the Jets just didn’t show up.  The Packers will, but we’ll draw some blood early.

And the Packers won’t wait an entire half to get going offensively either.  17-7 Steelers at the half sounds about right.  I can even see the Steelers getting up early in the second half by 24-7 and then the fun begins.  Packers hit a TD, Steelers go three and out; repeat.  Suddenly it’s a 24-21 game as the Packers offense begins to figure out how to win matchups the way the Cards did late in Super Bowl XL.

And then – call it a change of gut, but my worried gut has also produced a gut feeling that centers on one Mr. Troy Polamalu.  Human Highlight Reel.  Oddly quiet for a few games.  Due for a back-breaking play.  He notices tendencies during the Packers’ second half drives, bides his time, then goes for the kill.  With a comfortable Steelers lead down the drain, Troy catches Rodgers pressing and takes on to the house, 31-21, game over.

And I’m sticking with the over on this game because I think it will have a certain similarity to the aforementioned 2010 AFCC game with the Jets and Super Bowl XLIII with the Cards.  The Steelers have scored 20+ on defenses as good or better than the Packers in these playoffs.  Both teams relative productivity as a percentage of scoring on playoff drives leads me to believe that the Vegas over is the safe bet as well.
 
Not that I think either defense will play poorly:  both defenses will make stops.  Both will get sacks.  There will be picks.  But both offenses have playmakers that will eventually find paydirt. 

The Steelers will simply prove to be better on both sides of the ball, but not by a lot.
Logged

Out of my mind on Saturday night...
Big Virgil
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 3768
Offline Offline

Posts: 3,245



« Reply #35 on: Feb 03, 2011 at 16:25 »

Quote
Well, I’m going to go out on a limb and give Bruce Arians a little credit for once

FFS - Way to Fuck up the Super Bowl Karma.  This means Arians comes up with some trickery and sits Mendy the 1st half.

Nice Job!!!!!!!
Logged

Looks like you've been missing a lot of work lately.
I wouldn't say I've been *missing* it, Bob.
pensodyssey
Halfsharkalligator halfman.
Global Moderator
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 8119
Offline Offline

Posts: 9,699



« Reply #36 on: Feb 03, 2011 at 16:35 »

Great job.


Quote
Tom Clements was the QB coach just before Ben arrived, 2001-04.

Canevin Catholic in the house!
Logged

A shabby Charlie Brown.
Finnegans Wake
Global Moderator
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 12189
Offline Offline

Posts: 22,244



« Reply #37 on: Feb 03, 2011 at 17:29 »

Quote
Well, I’m going to go out on a limb and give Bruce Arians a little credit for once

FFS - Way to Fuck up the Super Bowl Karma.  This means Arians comes up with some trickery and sits Mendy the 1st half.

Nice Job!!!!!!!

Even a blind squirrel can scratch his nuts.

Arians will have a great half.  And a maddening half.  As usual.
Logged

Out of my mind on Saturday night...
aj_law
Global Moderator
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 5532
Offline Offline

Posts: 15,015


« Reply #38 on: Feb 04, 2011 at 11:38 »

Great job.

Plus infinity.

All the details and statistics aside, my gut is still telling me this one will be more of a defensive grudge match.

When you get to the Big One, offenses tend to play tight for the first quarter or so; feeling out the defense and not wanting to be the first to make a back breaking mistake.  As they settle in and start to get comfortable, they'll open up a bit before the half.  Halftime adjustments will be made with one team making a semi-late go ahead drive and then being forced to defend a possible game winning/tying drive.

24-20 or 23-20.

And, FWIW, this game has me very, very nervous.  In past years, that would be a good thing using the jinx angle.  However, this year (for the last 2-3 months, anyway) I've been pretty close to dead fucking on with my picks for this team, both ATS and straight up.  The only major gaffe was when I picked Carolina to cover.  Since the middle of November, I'm 7-1.  Called losses against Buffalo (shoulda been, but still covered ATS) and the Jets.

Anyway, if ever there was a time when I hope I'm wrong, this is it.  I'd happy take going back to being a pick jinx (for this one game).  Hell, they've proven my preseason prediction wrong, why stop now?

Bring home #7, #7.

Woot.
Logged

We suck because our drafts have been THE SUCK.
jonzr
Asst. VP, Jonzring
Global Moderator
Old School Member
*****

Karma: 11361
Offline Offline

Posts: 11,420


Have a cup o' joe.


WWW
« Reply #39 on: Feb 04, 2011 at 12:03 »

That awesome writeup inspired me to create this major new artwork.  I call it, "Visualize Success."

Logged

"I like David Bowie, he was always my favorite member of Tin Machine."
- Rodney Anonymous

It's a Steeler Nation
Pages: 1 ... 3 [4] 5  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  


Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.19 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines
SimplePortal 2.3.5 © 2008-2012, SimplePortal
| Sitemap
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!