This was just not the Steelers day. A cliché, yes, but what else can you say when you turn the ball over four times; clearly recover a fumble from Vick that isn’t called on the field, and isn’t overturned on replay; and your kicker kicks the longest field goal of his career, then misses a 20-yarder.
In a win, you can give credit to everyone. In a loss, everyone shoulders some of the blame.
The main story of this game was the turnovers the Steelers committed. You can’t turn the ball over four times and expect to win. Martavis Bryant, who has been spectacular thus far, made a rookie mistake at the goal line which led to Ben’s first interception in weeks. Ben followed that up with a soul-crushing INT on the first drive of the second half, when the Steelers offense finally seemed to be clicking. Antonio Brown, the best receiver in the league, fumbled twice, once on a reception and once on a muffed punt.
The defense kept the team in the game, but they didn’t force turnovers. They gave up the biggest play they’ve allowed all year on a Michael Vick 67-yard touchdown pass. They couldn’t get off the field on third downs at crucial moments.
But turnovers killed the Steelers. Not going to win many games being -4 on turnovers. The Jets didn’t get many points off of those turnovers, but they turned the ball over in the red zone and in Jets territory. Those mistakes are killer.
The Steelers were playing catch up the whole game, and as good as he is in come-from-behind games, Ben just didn’t have it today. After the interception on the opening drive of the first half, the defense came up with a stop. The Steelers got the ball back, Ben threw three consecutive long passes, all incomplete. It looked like he was trying to force it, and when he does that, the results are never good.
Though you have to give major props to the Jets, the Steelers beat themselves. The Jets did a good job of not making many mistakes. If they had been playing a better team, the Steelers would’ve probably lost 50-0.
And let me just say, that Jason Babin can get fucked for that cheap shot he took on Ben after the whistle had blown in the first half. He went after Ben’s knees and he should (and better) get some mail from the Commissioner’s office this week.
Full recap to come tomorrow.