Monday, December 25, 2006

X'ed Out On Xmas Eve

Sometime midway through the second quarter, the defending Super Bowl-champion Steelers' sluggish offense had us daydreamin' 'bout the days when we'd turn the crank to activate the gears which would snap the STOP sign into tapping the shoe hanging from the lamp post, knocking over the bucket containing the metal ball which would roll down the rickety staircase and into the gutter, et cetera, et cetera ... and, dammit, how many times did the ball falling from the hole in the elevated bathtub land squarely on the diving board only to have the old man NOT do a backflip into the tub ... or, if he did, having NO guarantee that the old man landing inside said tub would trigger enough of a jiggling sensation to trigger a more-smooth, less-wobbly descent of the cage down the ridges of the post?

Yup ... that's how some of us spent our Xmas ... pondering a defending Super Bowl-champion Steeler offense which was more Mouse Trap (by Hasbro!) than mighty machine (by Whisenhunt!).
Cowher Power's final game at Heinz coulda/shoulda turned out so differently, but, it seems as though the Billickmore Ravens and God's Linebacker climbed inside the heads of the Black N' Gold.
Billick is sooooooo beatable ... or, at least, so ripe for putting into a position of beatability.
Cleveland stuck it to those bastages twice (but, failed to pull the trigger on either occasion).
The Titans absolutely micturated and defecated on that "frightening" D while building a 23-7, second-quarter lead before losing when a last-second FG was blocked.

Enough about the genius of Billick and his offensive schematics, vis-a-vis D and D.
Billick really does say sh*t like that ... "vis-a-vis" and "D and D" (to mean down and distance) just to make it seem as though he's really a football coach engaged in football-speak-ese, rather than a reformed PR director under Bill Walsh.

The defending Super Bowl-champion Steelers' "win-out-and-hope-for-a-miracle" campaign is now over. Now is the time to address concerns such as who will coach the Black N' Gold next season and what areas need further scrutiny before Draft Day in April.
The stress-level is relatively low here in the Steelers' satellite office known as the Haystack Shack.
There's really no way to quantify so much of what went wrong this season other than to point the finger at 75-year-old Marilyn Devine and attribute her early-March stickup (which involved a black n' gold, knit Steelers cap, an unloaded .9 mm handgun, a tan Ford Escort and a haul of $5,300) as the main jinx factor in a jinxed season.
OK, maybe B-Roth's front-fork-to-front-fender-to-front-windshield-to-asphalt tumble was a factor.
Or, what we saw yesterday when Polamalu TWICE got hisself all mixed up in one-on-one coverage situations.
And, by ooopsie, it's an "ooopsie" in the same vein as "ooopsie daisy, it's ANOTHER FUM/INT which looks inexcusable (and preventable) when you watch the replays of such turnovers.

Indeed ... getting beaten and beat up by the extremely beatable and beat-up-able Ravens really sucks -- but was it any worse than those insane losses to the Bengals, the Broncos, the Falcons and (gulp!) the Raiders?
Yet, despair isn't in the vocab 'round here 'cuz, jeez Louise ... how'd ya like to be a Chiefs fan or a Giants fan or a Jets fan?
Those teams ain't never gonna win it all again, no way no how.
And they're going to try to out-ugly their opponents while doing so.
That's because they are so full of dysfunction.

The defending Super Bowl-champion Steelers were very Jekyll & Hyde (we don't say "schizophrenic" because schizophrenia is a clinically-diagnosed illness, not a dismissive colloquialism for Sean Salisbury to fling around casually).
We never knew if Fast Willie was the two-times-200 RB -- or the guy who could barely eke out an inch against the Ravens.

There are many matters which Yet-To-Be-Announced-Head-Coach Ken Whisenhunt (unless it's Head Coach Russ Grimm, considering how his official title is "offensive line coach/asst. head coach") must put on his "to do" list.

It's fixable.
We can say that much ...

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