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Stillers-Colts Postgame Analysis and Grades

November 09, 2008 by Still Mill

Colts 24, Stillers 20 ���Game # 9
Colts 24, Stillers 20 ���. Nov 9, 2008 ����Game # 9


Stillers-Colts Postgame Analysis and Grades


The Stillers jumped out on top of Indy with a TD on their 1st drive, but lazily lost focus and did so throughout the game, literally snatching defeatfrom victory by handing the Dolts a cheesy 24-20 victory in embarrassingly lethargic fashion.I�ll put as much effort into this report as the team collectively did.




QB:Ben followed up last week�s stinker with another yet another one, throwing 2 assaholic, miserable INTs to help lead the march to defeat.Both were tentative, weak-kneed passes more befitting a college freshman seeing his 1st varsity action.The 1st pick was on a 3d & 2 on his own 16, on a medium in to Holmes that was short, weak, and off target.This killer INT, with 90 ticks left in the half, gave Indy a freebie TD to close the half down by 3 rather than 10.The 2nd pick occurred in the 4Q, on a 3d & 4 with the Stillers up by 3.Again, a weak, timid pass was jumped on and picked, although Holmes was also weak on this play.Indy scored the winning TD 4 plays later.�� Ben also had a host of other misfired and timid sack-takes, and he failed miserably to get the offense mobilized and up to the LOS in a timely manner on the late 4Q drive.I realize Roth has the ailing shoulder, but it may very well be time, NOW, to give the man 1-2 weeks of rest and recuperation and then get healed for the playoff stretch, because efforts like today�s won�t get it done.D+


RB:Moore started and had a solid game.He rush numbers weren�t gaudy, but he ran the ball with authority and was huge in the passing game with good RAC work.He did drop 1 pass in the 3Q.He had 2 good TD plunges, but then ran far too upright on the fateful 2d & 3d down plunges in the 4Q that were stopped stone cold.�� B


FB: Davis played a little bit at FB.He had a good block on Moore�s longest run of the game, a 9-yard run in the 4Q.��� Inc


WR:Ward had a big game, snaring 9 balls for 116 yards.He made a great adjustment on the underthrown flea-flicker and had a good RAC, good for 41 yards.He also had several other good grabs on low passes in traffic.


Nate had a great pluck along the s-lines for a 16-yard gain, and had a good block on Moore�s 9-yard run.He was not thrown a deep ball all game.


Baker looked lost and clueless on a pass in the 4Q, allowing the ball to go right thru his hands on a short crosser.Sweed played some, but was non-existent in the passing game.




TE:Miller did not dress.Spaeth had a career day, grabbing 6 passes for 53 yards, and showing decent hands.Of course, once Miller returns, Spaeth will resume his role as the neglected leper.Spaeth failed to sustain his block on Tonio�s end around, causing a 1-yard loss.He dropped a low pass on the 2nd series.McHugh had a poor block on a Moore 1-yard loss in the 1Q.���� B


OL: The line played okay when examined overall.Ben wasn�t harassed like he was in the Philly loss; not even close.�� Freeney had his way with Starks, who was flagged for holding once and probably had a couple others that were overlooked.�� Colon was ok against Mathis.The run blocking was marginal. It started off superbly, but then quickly went downhill, especially when the Colts were emboldened by the lack of a downfield passing game.The big play, of course, as the 3d & G plunge from the 1, in which Starks and Kemo lazily let up on a DOUBLE team and allowed their man to stack and rack Moore for no gainThis was more so Kemo�s fault, as Starks was moved on to the ILB on this play and Kemo essentially whiffed with his dick in the dirt.Hartwig was also stood up rather badly on this play.B-


DL:Hampton started and gave way to some injury.Hoke and Eason got a lot of PT and played solidly.Eason had a strong stuff of Adai on 3d & 2 in the 3Q that somehow was marked as a 1st down.Aaron Smith had another very strong game.Keisel had good coverage and a tackle on a 6-yard crosser to Gonzales while dropped in coverage.Kirschke had good hustle on a WR screen in the 4Q and stopped the WR for 4-yards.They played a weak-running football team with a weak O-line, but they played solid football.B+


LB:Leading the way, as a man among boys, was James Harrison, one of the few Stillers who played tenacious football from beginning to end.Harrison was all over the field, blowing up running plays, harassing Manning, and stopping receivers in their RAC.His only mistake was the poor play-recognition on the Rhodes draw play late in the 2Q, which gained 7 yards and set up the short TD pass on the next play.


Timmons started for the injured Woodley and did ok.Lacking Woodley�s brawn and power, Timmons was not able to collapse the pocket.He did have superb, super-tight coverage on Clark in the 1Q on an inc pass.


After about 13 articles in other publications -- certainly not here at -- fawned all over James Farrior, he went out and had an utterly awful ballgame, doing extremely little despite being on the field for EVERY play.He finished with a piss-ant total of 3 solos.He did put a nice lick on Addai on a toss sweep that was strung wide, but that�s about it.Supposedly �THE Winged God of LB Coverage�, he put on a clinic of exactly how NOT to cover a TD on a 3d & goal from the 2-yard line.At the snap, Farrior, like a complete pansy, actually BACKS OFF, despite there being no room in the end zone to �go deep� anyways.Clark did a 2-step route and then curled, and was wide open while Farrior was feverishly backpedaling as though he were trying to keep up with Usain Bolt.What a turd.In the 3Q, on a 2d & 11, Farrior was totally tooled by Addai for an easy 12 yard gain and a 1st down.Tom Moore must have been laughing his ass off as he exploited this blatant mismatch.Not satisfied with assaholic coverage efforts, Farrior put forth a simply wretched effort on the key 3d & short-2 plunge late in the 4Q.�� For no reason whatsoever, Farrior over-ran this play like a rabid drunkard, going waaaay to his left on a ROUTINE, BASIC dive play up the gut that Rhodes gained 6 yards on.The next play, Manning hit Rhodes for the game-winning TD pass on BOTCHED coverage by THE Winged God of LB Coverage himself, James Farrior.�� Not a bad day�s work from the �team captain� -- 2 TOUCHDOWNS given away, plus a host of weak-assed plays.


Larry Foote did almost nothing the entire game.


Harrison:A+���� Timmons:B-��� ��Foote:C������ Farrior:D-


DB:lke Taylor had a solid overall game.However, his batting of the ball UP into the air, as though he were trying to make the US Volleyball squad, helped cost his team a win.On the deep ball in the 1Q, after the Stillers had just taken the 7-0 lead, Taylor should have had an EASY INTERCEPTION.�� Worst case, he slaps the ball into the group.Instead, he mis-times his leap, and thenslaps the ball UPWARD, and Wayne hauled in the pass and ran in for the TD. This happened again on a 1-handed stab by Ike in the 3Q, which Wayne then grabbed for 16 yards.(That drive stalled, so this wasn�t too costly.)�� It�s a shame, though, because otherwise Ike was busting up passes left and right.Ike was beaten deep by Wayne midway thru the 4Q but the pass was too long.


Pola had an okay game, making a couple bustups and helping to blow up a couple running plays.2 poor gaffes were extremely costly, though.Late in the 2Q, Pola had an INT right in his gut, and dropped it.This would have been a sure 6-points and would have stuck a severe dagger into the Colts with the Stillers going to the locker room up by 24-7 rather than 17-14.(Of course, with the way Indy receivers were roaming free and wild, no lead was safe.)�� Pola also mis-read the wheel route and the lob pass on the winning TD.It appeared to be a botched coverage, but Pola was in a decent position and simply mis-timed his leap.Very poor.�����


Ryan Clark -- then supposed God of Free Safety -- returned to the lineup and did little.He had a free, clean, EASY shot at Wayne after Wayne hauled in the deflected bomb that Ike botched, but instead, as is his nature, Clark whiffed in pathetic fashion.Very, very sophomoric and piss poor.��


Townsend had some struggles, committing 2 holds, including 1 on a throw-away late in the 2Q that was very costly.He also did little on the Clark TD.He was also badly abused by Harrison on a post in the 2Q, in which Harrison was WIDE open for an easy TD, but the QB was unable to get the ball there.


Ty Carter saw a lot of PT.�� He had a good hit on Gonzo, who was WIDE open on a 3d & 11 in the 3Q, and the ball was jarred loose. Gay was beaten for a TD by Harrison but Marv dropped the ball.




Spec teams:A decent game from the spec teams.�� No disasters, which was a relief.Enrster punted ok in his 1st outing.Holmes had a good 23-yard PR late in the 3Q.Russell had a nice 39-yard KO return in the #Q, and would have had more had he not slipped on the shitty turf of Heinz Field.Reed booted a chippie FG.�� Bailey and Taylor each had a good solo stop in KO cover, and Harrison a good solo in punt coverage.Not sure what happened, but the Stillers had to waste a TO in the 2Q when a player was late coming off the field.B+


OC:Arians had a nice initial drive, mixing runs and passes and exploiting weaknesses that are prevalent ALL OVER the Indy defense.After that, Arians did little, allowing the Colts to dictate the game when they brought 8 men into the box and Arians HELPED them out with a plethora of piss-ant little crossers and dumpers.Aside from the flea-flicker, the entire passing game was within 15 yards of the LOS.Then there was the fiasco on the 1st & goal at the 5 in the 4Q.First, the offense had to WASTE a TO due to apparent indecision and slowness in getting the play called.I could live with the run on 1st down, which netted about 4 yards.Neanderthal playcalling on the 2nd and 3rd down plays was reprehensible.Moore isn�t the biggest guy, PLUS Indy had already been scored upon by 2 Moore plunges.On 2nd down, the time was RIPE for a play-action fake, and then a pop-pass to Spaeth, who was largely6 involved all evening, or Ward, who was tooling any D-back the Colts threw at him.Instead, Arians, with a mind as nimble and clever as a pre-school toddler, called for 2 vanilla plunges, both of which were stone walled, and the team has to settle for a pussyfied FG and a 3-point lead.�� ��


Overall, Arians faced a weak-assed defense that had been exposed by numerous opponents thus far this season, yet after the initial drive, all Arians could score was a piddly 13 points.�� The lumbering, slow-as-whaleshit offense on the game�s final drive was a chapter from a circus act.On play after play, when any average NFL offense could snap off the next play within 15 seconds, Arian�s glacial offense was taking an eternity to jog down the field, stumble about in a stipor, take forever to get lined up, and then finally get the snap off.��


All of the Arians lovers out there, please step forward.����F


DC:Dick has feasted ALL season long, in 8 straight game, against either weak offenses or decent offenses that were crippled by injuries to key skill players.The glowing adulation this guy has received in the mainstream media is enough to make Elvis jealous.Tonight, Dick finally faced a decent, healthy offense, and he was grossly tooled and outcoached by Tom Moore.Don�t let the final score and final stats deceive you.Only a plethora of misfires to WIDE OPEN receivers (see the DB grade, above) prevented the Colts from tacking on another 200 yards passing and 2-3 more touchdowns.Wild cheetahs in the open prairie have more to contend with than the Indy receivers did tonite, as they roamed free as a bird all game long.


Dick also re-introduced a popular oldie of his, the Velcro Blitz, in which every rusher attaches himself to a blocker and plays pom-pom pull-away while the QB stands back in the pocket, totally unfettered.Indy�s O-line has been reduced to a pile of shit, yet Dick was only RARELY able to get quick pressure and harassment on Manning, and much of that was due to the singular efforts of James Harrison.All of the supposedly �exotic blitzes� didn�t do jack shit against Manning and the Colts.

The Rhodes TD appeared to be a botched coverage by Farrior.A forced FG there obviously means the game could have gone into OT.Let�s face facts, though.�� By that point of the game, after Indy WRs had roamed freely all game long and Manning was getting EONS of time and space in the pocket, there wasn�t a single rational person, anywhere, who felt strongly that the Stillers would stop the Colts from scoring the winning TD.�� The height of Dick�s Follies was on the 3d & 11 late in the 3Q, when Manning, under some rare pressure, threw a lollipop lob to Gonzales, who was so WIDE OPEN that, had he detonated a hand grenade, it would have injured no one.It�s always easy to feast on the crippled and incompetent, but the real test is scheming against a capable, competent, relatively healthy offense, and Dick failed miserably. D


HC:After the initial Stiller TD, the entire team went into a funk, and lost their focus and attention to detail.�� The team ate big and drank big after the win over the Skins last week, and reviled in their press clippings all week long.And then they allowed a vastly inferior team to visit their house and pull off a win they had no business of getting.Very, very poor.�� The overall intensity from the club was sparse and marginal the entire game.Tomlin deserves the appropriate blame for failing to maintain focus during the week and for failing to get the team in-focus as they slathered around during the game in a stupor.��� D


Synopsis:Not much more needs be said.The Stillers wallowed around in a haughty funk, and paid the price for it by allowing an inferior but dangerous club to hang around and then squeak by late in the 4Q.Very, very disappointing.All the glow and pride after the win over the Skins has now been flushed down the commode.A loss in the conference is never good for tiebreakers and the Stillers pissed away what should have been a win.�� This is a team that faltered badly down the stretch last season, and it�ll be interesting to see if the team sputters down the stretch again or rises to the occasion.


(Still Mill and -- when it comes to the analysis of the Pittsburgh Stillers, no one else comes close�.)



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