Pittsburgh Steelers: Week Four Report Card


It’s been nearly a week since the Pittsburgh Steelers shot themselves in the foot losing to the Baltimore Ravens at home 23-20. It’s never too late to turn in a report card for that Thursday night nationally televised game that ended the brief Steelers career of kicker Josh Scobee.

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In my post-game wrap-up, all things that went wrong were brought to the forefront. From questionable coaching calls to missed field goals, the play of Michael Vick and a dropped touchdown by Antonio Brown, it just wasn’t Pittsburgh’s night.

The defense could have played better and the bottom line is that the Steelers let one slip away. But not nearly as much as Detroit who could have and should have won their game in Seattle.

Quarterback: It begins with the man behind center and for the first time in 2015, the starter was not Ben Roethlisberger. Michael Vick got the call and as a starter brought with him an awful won/loss record over his last nearly 20 starts. Just three wins to be exact. Vick had his moments but did not do enough to get the Steelers the victory. For his part, Vick could have performed better. Grade: C.

Running backs: A solid game for Le’Veon Bell. A 5.9 yards-per-carry mark produced with 129 yards rushing. Bell scored once and caught seven passes for 21 yards. DeAngelo Willams got just two touches, so he gets an incomplete grade. Grade: B+.

Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers /

Pittsburgh Steelers

 Wide receivers: Considering the source of the aerial attack, this group faired rather well. Antonio would love to have that end zone pass back but he failed also to get another 50-yard game. Todd Haley’s game plan only called for 26 Vick passing attempts, so the numbers here were lower than usual. Grade: C+.

Tight Ends: When was the last time you can recall Heath Miller getting no more than one reception in a game? It happened last Thursday and it was for just one yard. Ugh. Miller’s fault? Definitely not. However, it’s not possible to grade high without production. Grade: C-.

Offensive line: This Steelers unit allowed four sacks of Michael Vick, part of which is on the quarterback as he failed to get out of the pocket or throw the ball alway. Still, letting the defenders in the backfield is on the line. Grade: C-.

Kicker: Here’s where it gets really sticky. How about a big fat F-? Scobee was awful and is gone. Thank you Mike Tomlin. He had to go. But signing an unproven kid to replace? Questionable…we’ll see how this pans out Monday night.

 Defensive line: Five sacks of Joe Flacco is a solid number. On passing downs, the Steelers did well. Two sacks came from up front and three from the linebackers. Cam Heyward and Stephen Tuitt played outstanding. Grade: A-.

Linebackers: Good job behind the front line defending pass plays but gave up way too many big runs. Grade: C+.

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  • Safeties: Some good hard-hitting and solid coverage. Did not surrender any big pass plays. Grade: A-.

    Cornerbacks: Perhaps because Joe Flacco was being pressured and his running was working well did the Ravens not test the Steelers’ corners too often. When they were thrown at, coverage was good. Grade A-.

    Punter: Not Jordan Berry’s best game yet but still it’s already known what he can do. Once the kid warms up to the league and continues to learn more, he’ll be one of the NFL’s best. You heard it here first.Grade C.

    Coaching: Based on the two fourth down calls, no way can Mike Tomlin and his staff come away with a passing grade. Grade: D-.

    Intangibles: With a chance to send Baltimore packing without a victory, Pittsburgh did not execute in prime moments. Players play, coaches coach. Both elements failed when it counted most. All this in front of their own fans. Grade: F.

    Overall grade: Steelers Nation is hoping one game won’t make a difference at the end of the season. If it comes to that, many eyes will be looking back on this one that got away. Grade: C-.

    Next: Steelers: Your First Quarter Review

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