Ah, the bye week. It gives you the chance to sit back, relax, and watch other teams play without any of the emotional turmoil one feels while watching our beloved Pittsburgh Steelers.
This weekend, I was (un)fortunate enough to view two of the Black and Gold’s three AFC North rivals. Of course the one I didn’t watch, the Baltimore Ravens, scored an impressive win over the Denver Broncos. As much as it pains me to admit, the Ratbirds look like the real deal. Especially when they have a healthy Ray Rice at their disposal. The rest of our division, however, leaves a lot to be desired.
The Steelers’ next opponent, the Cleveland Browns, fell at home to Atlanta. The Brownies may only be 1-4 but have played pretty well as of late. They led the Ravens 17-14 in the fourth quarter before ultimately falling to defeat in week 3 and then upset the Bengals the following weekend. That’s the good news. The bad news is the reason for their sudden resurgence was the steady play of QB Seneca Wallace. I say bad news because Wallace sprained his ankle against the Falcons paving the way for washed up Jake Delhomme to put the kibosh on any chance they had of winning. Rivalry games are always a crapshoot but without Wallace, I’d put the Browns chances this Sunday somewhere between little and none.
Meanwhile, the team they upset last week, the Bengals, were busy self-destructing against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The defense Charlie Batch toasted like a tasty Quiznos sub somehow perplexed the overrated Carson Palmer into a meltdown of epic proportions. Up 21-14 with a bit over 2 minutes left, the Bungles proceeded to call a pass on 3rd and 13 which was intercepted. After surrendering the tying touchdown on five plays taking all of 52 seconds, Palmer’s comical attempt at a game-winning drive ended in a third interception (he was Pick-Sixed earlier by Russ Grimm‘s son, Cody). Two plays later and the Bucs were kicking the go-ahead field goal.
I’m honestly confused as to how any of the so-called “experts” could have picked the Bengals to finish ahead of the Steelers this season. Palmer is terrible. It’s easy to point to idiots like Ocho and T.O. and say, “They must be the problem.” But the bottom line is Palmer has been an abomination. I wonder how Bungle fans will spin it so it’s all Kemo Von Ohlhoffen‘s fault.
SWEEP THE LEG!
Anyway, this weekend has left me confident of two things. First, Arby’s curly fries will never be topped. And second, the AFC North is a two horse race between the Ravens and the Steelers.
Topics: 2009 Nfl Playoffs, Baltimore Ravens, Ben Roethlisberger, Big Ben, Black And Gold, Black And Gold Blog, Carson Palmer, Charlie Batch, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Dennis Dixon, Fast Willie Parker, Fwp, Hines Ward, Joe Flacco, Kemo Von Ohlhoffen, Lamarr Woodley, Mike Tomlin, Nfl Playoffs, Ochocinco, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Steelers, Pittsburgh Steelers Blog, Rashard Mendenhall, Ratbirds, Ravens-Steelers, Ray Rice, Roethlisberger, Roethlisberger Concussion, Santonio Holmes, Steeler Nation, Steelers, Steelers Blog, Steelers Nation, Stillers, Super Bowl Champions, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Terrell Owens