Ravens Post-Game Comment
Forgive me, I have been stewing the past several days and been trying to pull myself out a drunken stupor. At last, I have calmed down enough to put my rage to good use. The Ravens are clearly a better football team than we are - this is not in dispute. But, Bill Cowher, according to popular belief, is one of the best coaches in football - this is laughable. As I pointed out in my Steelers Outlook article, Cowher might be just itching to get Kordell into the game at a key point in time. However, I also foolishly thought that Cowher was slowly sending Stewart the message that he was no longer the starting QB and in fact, his career with the Steelers was teetering in the balance.
I was wrong.
Of course, I am calling to attention the three vomit-laden, meat-eating plays that Kordell Stewart was involved in during the fourth quarter of this Sunday's game. What Stewart was doing in there -I haven't a clue, but let's take a closer look at why this whole Cowher/Kordell song and dance has got to go.
- Stewart, a 38.6 passer in the preseason, comes into the game cold to try to get the Steelers in the endzone. He hands the ball off the first play. What?? No rollout - No naked boot-leg - No Option. What is the point of bringing in a cold QB to hand the ball off to Bettis who couldn't run the ball all day anyway?
- The Steelers had just marched the ball downfield - with Kent Graham at QB - and were experiencing some success against a very good defense. Why, in the first game of the year, would you want to thwart the confidence of your Number 1 QB when he is on the brink of leading his team to their first TD of the season at home?
- On the second play, Stewart, a terrible passer with little confidence, goes with a half-assed attempt at play action on the goal-line. What was the coaching staff hoping to do� freeze the linebackers and hit the TE - Stewart doesn't through to the TE. Instead, he rushed his throw and it fell incomplete. Again, No rollout - No naked boot-leg - No Option - instead a pass from a 38.6 cold passer.
- On the last play - Stewart was all but a lost child - you could see it in his eyes. He fumbled the snap. Maybe a cold QB shouldn't be brought into the game at such a crucial time! I'm not sure what the play was going to be, but Stewart was ready to sit down before the play started - do the coached not know how fragile this man's psyche is?
- Graham comes in on 4th down and throws a worthless lob pass to Burress. I can't fault Graham or Burres for this. The reason? Well, the above mentioned plays were practiced by Stewart and planned for the prior week!!!! Are you kidding! This incredible gaff and meet-headed series was premeditated!!!! Cowher planned on using Stewart in such a situation!!! Unbelievable! Maybe, just maybe, it would be a good idea to let Graham get more practice time with the starting offense - they could even practice a simple lob pass to Burress in the corner of the end-zone. This should have been done over and over and over again. Instead, Cowher and Gilbride want to use a 38.6, cold passer - right of the bench in the red-zone instead of your 6'5", skilled, number 1 draft pick!!!
How does this thought process ever evolve. I just don't understand it. Cowher just won't admit it to himself - he and Stewart have failed to rewrite the football history books. I'm not going to entertain the thoughts of some by saying they are "butt-buddies" or something, but they do have some sort of relationship that has ruined this football and both of their careers with the Steelers. 15 games to go.