Yell all you want to Mike, your team's 2012 season is done. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Tomlin, Recidivist Late-Game Decision Making, and Thoughts on the Steelers Loss


First of all, I must issue kudos to the Steelers’ Defense after their gritty showing yesterday.  It is a downright shame that you guys only gave up 6 points and lost after arguably your best collective performance of the year.  3 Turnovers, 6 Sacks, and 6 Points Allowed should have been more than enough for a victory.  Sadly, just like the Baltimore game in Week 11, you guys had your awesome effort crapped on by the Offense.  Also, if next Week is indeed the last go-around for guys like Casey “Big Snack” Hampton, Larry Foote, and even James Harrison, it was a honor to watch you guys over the course of your careers’.

Second, for the love of all that is holy Todd Haley, PLEASE STOP CALLING what I refer to as “THE SHOTGUN FAT BACK DRAW/DIVE” more than once or twice per game, if at all.  Giving “slow as molasses” 240 lb. Running Backs, who should be wearing sports-bras for support during games for their doughy frames, handoffs in the Shotgun formation without any head of steam (i.e. I-Formation variations) or a Fullback in front of them behind a shoddy Offensive Line accomplishes NOTHING.

Regrettably, “TUBBY TO THE LEFT/RIGHT/MIDDLE” was was put on full display during yesterday’s game (it was called at least 7 times by my count and netted basically ZERO Yards).  You would think that after that strategy/plays failed miserably against Kansas City that those plays would be scrapped from the playbook.  But oh no, Boss Todd kept those meaningless runs coming all afternoon long as the Steelers’ moronically continued to try to establish an ineffective ground attack.

Haley’s perplexing love with the ineffective and personnel-weak running game aside, the real “Goat ‘o the Game” was Head Coach Mike Tomlin.  To me at least, it was Tomlin’s hubris and lack of reference to past decisions which played an enormous role in Pittsburgh’s Loss yesterday at the end of the game.

I’ll be honest readers, the second that Kicker Shaun Suisham actually trotted out on the field to attempt that 53 Yard Field Goal, I turned the game off and walked away.  The exact same thing I did when he was forced to attempt that 54 Yarder against Tennessee 10 Weeks ago.  I knew what would happen, because I saw the same “bleepin” thing no more than 3 months ago, and I had no intentions of watching a poor guy fail because his Offense could not move the ball, and his Head Coach hung him out to dry (Although tip of the cap again to the Defense for their stop after the miss, but Big Ben should probably stop doing his best Joe Flacco impressions at the end of games if the team seeks to win).  Oddly enough, that 54 Yard attempt in Tennessee was a much more favorable situation for Suisham than the one he encountered today:

 

  • The weather was warmer that night (64 degrees as opposed to 39 degrees), and thus the ball was not as rock hard.
  • LP Field’s turf was not the joke surface Heinz Field’s has ben.
  •  Suisham was kicking into the open end of one of the hardest the stadiums to make a Field Goal over 40 Yards.

 

Of course, I am sure that none of these types of logical thoughts likely crossed Tomlin’s mind, because if they had, Suisham (career long of 52 Yards) never would have trotted out on the field to attempt to make the kick.  Had Tomlin really wanted to show some “stones” in that situation, or had any confidence in his Defense at all, he would have enlisted the Offense to pick up the 4th & 4, or at the very least pooch punted the Bengals to at the very least their own 20 after a possession in which they made the same idiot decision Tomlin did.

Had this been the first Long-Field Goal gamble of the season for Tomlin, I would honestly be less upset about the decision.  But after the same situation which happened in Tennessee happened yesterday, and the Steelers & Suisham were faced with even smaller odds for success than they were then, I found myself completely dumbfounded by the decision.  Tomlin can take all the blame he wants to from this, but his admission does not mean that I and many Steelers’ fans will forgive and forget how he handled this decision and his undisciplined team throughout the year.

This team snatched defeat from the jaws of victory so many times this season, and to see the team’s postseason hopes thwarted in part due to the same enormous mistake which was made earlier in the year is nothing short of ridiculous.

Granted, Tomlin will not be fired at the end of the season, and nor should he be.  He has earned chances to redeem himself over his career due to past successes, and should be patrolling Pittsburgh’s sideline for the foreseeable future.  Nevertheless, I certainly hope that this type or recidivist behavior and bone-headed late-game decision making do not go unnoticed or punished by Management.  While Tomlin’s job is not likely to be in doubt, I sure hope the seat gets progressively “warmer” if undisciplined play and zero accountability reign supreme in Pittsburgh under his watch.

So please Mike, for future reference, know where the heck your Kicker is on the field.  And most importantly, know which stadium you are playing in at the moment.

 

 

Stats & Weather Information Courtesy of: Pro Football Reference.com and The Weather Channel.com

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Tags: Mike Tomlin Pittsburgh Steelers Todd Haley

  • disqus_wdLdx4W76r

    I can’t understand those run plays to Dwyer up the middle. They had some success outside with Mendy & Dwyer but bone head Haley is too stuck in his ways..and that swing pass to Rainey NEVER works..it always gets blown up in the backfield, but they try it every game and teams know its commin. They clearly haven’t found out hot to use this guys speed yet. I bet if he was in New England he’d have over 20 rec and a few TDs. And why not stick to the No Huddle for more then a serries? Even Phil Sims askd that question and we all know he’s anti-Steeler..that’s when our Offense gets rolling! True Ben made bad throws but I think he does that when he’s “shackled” the route combos are terrible No motions No takeing advantage of linebackers or Safety’s like other teams with less talent do..its always the same shit same formations same personnel! You sign a 6’6 Plaxico and he dresssd 2 games and gets 2 passes thrown to him? he’s 6’6 with hands and you can’t find anyone else to deactivate?? Haley needs to go! don’t care if his dad was with the front office back in the day. What has he done? Stunk in KC and he stinks in the Burgh..if coach Wiz gets axed in Arizona the Steelers should be bangin his door down

    • Dom DiTolla

      As usual, you seem to be on the same-wave length as me Rick, and I’m glad someone else was as frustrated as I was with those “Fat Back Draws/Dives.” The fact that they didn’t go “No-Huddle” more yesterday (let alone more times during the regular season) incensed me, and why Rainey was not used more in the Slot in 5 Wide combos could be considered gross negligence. And Plax not being used more than essentially twice made zero sense as well.

      As much as I would love to see Wiz back, I’m sure he’s still pissed that he wasn’t given the job back in ’07. What is worse is that the team needs a new O-Line coach and Grimm could be axed too. But like Wiz, I’m sure he’s not too happy with the organization for passing him up either.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ron.kurimsky.3 Ron Kurimsky

    I’m persoally ndrwelmed with both Tomlin & Haley. The Steelers should most likely will cut Tomlin some slack for this 2012 wasted season. However Haley absoluley must go Thta man i totally void of any game ay instinct at all. cn guarantee that decision wuld yield atanig ovation from Players & a huge majority of fans alike,

  • http://www.facebook.com/gino.capato Gino Capato

    Tony Dungy siad it best on Sunday Night Football; and I quote; ” Poor coaching and quartbacking led to the loss.”