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Stillers-Bears Postgame Analysis and Grades

September 23, 2013 by Still Mill

Bears 40, Stillers 23  ……. Sep 22, 2013 …………Game #3
Stillers-Bears Postgame Analysis and Grades

The 0-2 Stillers hosted Da Bears with hopes of somewhat righting the ship.  Instead, they quickly fell behind 17-0 before the 1Q had ended.   The Stillers clawed their way back, and were down by only 4 with over 10 minutes left in the game.  But the vaunted defense allowed a 74-yard TD march, and yet another Stiller fumble led to another TD return, and the game was soon over. 



Ben - careless as shit, 3d play of game, and gets the ball poked out of his hand while carrying it like a loaf of bread, giving the Bears the ball on the PIT 17.  Overthrew a wide open Sanders on a deep route, 2nd series.  Should have been 6 points. 

Good deep lob to Brown for 45 yards on 3d & 14, 1st play of 2Q.  Threw an utterly hideous pick-6i n the 2Q to make it a 24-3ballgame.  The INT was caused by Ben being gun-shy from what was a very smallish rush, and then throwing gimpily  off his back foot.   Ben fumbled the ball on a scramble early in the 4Q, but luckily he recovered it to avoid disaster.  Being careless as a drunken sailor, Ben coughed up the ball in the pocket at 4:00 4Q, which was returned by Chico for a game-sealing TD.   Lots of gaudy stats -- which mean little, except for FFL geeks -- and far too much carelessness and sloppy turnovers.    D-



Redman - provided a good push to Ben to shove Ben to the 1st down yardage on a 3d & ½ yard sneak in the 3Q.   Totally inept, weak-assed blitz pickup that allowed the strip of Ben and the return for a TD at 4:00 4Q.   Quick -- get Redman back into the starting lineup !   (sic)      D   

Jones - Started and showed good explosion and quickness.  Got drilled and coughed up the ball on the 2nd play of the 3Q.  Never saw the field again.     C

Dwyer - good blitz pickup on the deep TD ball to Brown, 2Q.  Rare burst of speed by Dwyer to dash 25 yards late in the 2Q.  Remarkably, he didn’t beg to come out of the ballgame.  Busted 2 tackles on a nice 10-yard run in the 3Q.  Made a crushing, tooth-rattling block in blitz pickup on the TD lob to Brown late in the 3Q.  Had a good, crisp blitz pickup of the rugged Briggs in the 4Q.  Had his best game in ages.    A-

Bell - The China Doll once again did not dress. 


FB: Will Johnson made a fingertip grab off a deflected swing pass, late 1Q.   Didn’t do much else.   Inc.



Brownie - grabbed deep lob, 1st play of 2Q, good for 45 yards.  A few plays later, lazily just stuck a paw out at the ball on a short crosser on 3d & 4 deep in Chico territory.  Not a great pass, but an NFL WR has got to lay out and do whatever it takes to move the chains in that situation.  Superb pluck of a TD grab in the back of the EZ, mid 2Q.  Made an outstanding 1-handed grab in the back of the EZ for a spectacular TD late in the 3Q.    A-

Sandy -  wide open and laid out for a deep ball, 2nd series, but unable to corral it.   Had 4 grabs for 39, some of which was in garbage time.    C- 

Cotch -  good block on the Sanders WR screen, 3Q.   Wide open after a pump and grabbed a lob for 26 yards late in the 3Q.  Superb 2nd and 3d effort on a 3d & 2 slant in the 4Q.    B- 

Wheat -  failed to corral a short crosser on 3d & 9 late in the 2Q.  Not a good pass, but it was right in his hands.    9 other Stillers caught passes while he was shut out. 

Moye:   As a reward for his TD grab last week, he was, of course, deactivated. 


Miller:  started, and grabbed a short pass for 6yards, 2nd play of game.  Meekly whiffed on his down block of Briggs, and got Dwyer killed on a 3-yard loss on 2d & 1  in the 2Q.    Had 3 grabs for 35.    B-

Paulson - grabbed 1 pass for 6, and remarkably, did not fumble.     Inc

David Johnson - the slowest TE in the NFL caught a seamer in the 3Q for 32 yards.  He finished the 3Q by grabbing a pass for 19 yards.    B


OL: The O-line at times looked okay, yet at other times allowed far too much leakage and pressure.   Overall, a C-

Adams - Puffer Adams got totally abused by Peppers for a 2-yard loss on a Dwyer run, late 2Q.   Was just flat-footed and oafish as Peppers swam around him as though he were a traffic barrel.    D

Gilbert -  Did little.   Every now and then, he held his own on the pass rush. 

Foster - flagged for a hold, late 4Q.  Had some struggles in pass pro. 

Velasco -   played okay.   Actually, probably on par with the now over-rated Pouncey. 

DeCastro - Twice in the 2H, Castro hustled and shoved a Steeler to the distance needed to convert a 1st down.   He allowed leakage at times, and often shows lousy football instincts. 

Beacham - got inserted late in the 1Q for Fat Marcus Gilbert.  In the 2Q, he also spelled Puffer Adams.  This became a bizarre 2-man rotation. 


Keisel -  run stop, 2nd play of game.  Got a rare Earned sack, 2Q.   Had 4 solos but, as usual, no bats.    B

McLendon -  good run stuff, 2nd series.  At times, not sturdy enough at the POA.    B-

Hood  - totally unblocked, he made a rare solo stop of Forte, 9:46 4Q.    Had a whopping 2 solos and little impact.     C-

Heyward - applied a good hit to stop the Chico RB just short of the GL, late 1Q.  At NT, got blown off the ball on a nice run by Chico.      C+


Timmons - busted up a TD pass in the back of the EZ, late 1Q.  Good chase and stuff of Forte on wide run, late 2Q.  Then stuffed Forte on a gut plunge on the next play.   Led the way with 7 solos and 2 As.      B

K. Wilson - Did very, very little.   Finished with 1 solo.   Quick -- get this guy a green-dot speaker helmet for the next game...!    C

Williams - hit Bush on the 4th & G plunge, which enabled Bush to roll away from the Timmons stick and get into the EZ.   Thanks, Vinnie.    Had 3 quiet solos.    C

Worilds - briefly inserted at the start of the 2H in place of Big LaMarr.   Also played some ROLB.    Finished with 1 solo in an uninspiring effort.  

Jones - good stop on 3d & 1 early in the 3Q.   Finished with 4 solos, with was more than any other LB besides Timmons.     B

Big LaMarr -  Faced a rookie RT, Mills, all game long.  2d & 1 , 1st series - Chico was in a POWER running formation, and after the snap, LaMarr started to fade BACK in pass coverage, even though it was an obvious, immediate handoff to the RB as soon as Cutler got the snap.   Forte ran up RT for an easy 2 yards.  Big LaMarr just STOOD there and titty-jousted as Forte rambled by on the 55-yard romp.   If he READS the play and tries, just a wee lil’ bit, he nabs Forte, who rumbled by just 18 inches away, for a routine 3-yard gain.  A few plays later, Chico punched it in on 4th & G for a 17-0 lead.  Forte ran a dive up RT, 13:30 2Q, and LaMarr just jousted, never once trying to dis-engage from the blocker.   Got a sack at 3:58 3Q, when he looped around the RT and nabbed the QB on a confused, clustered play by Chicago in which they were flagged for an illegal shift.  Applied pressure that forced a hasty dumpoff, mid 4Q.   Finished with a whopping 1 solo and 1 assist.   Quick -- sign this guy to a $61M extension !!       D- 


Ike -  Flagged for a PI in the EZ, late 1Q.  played pretty well most of the game, but then allowed the 41-yarder on 3d & 13 in the 4Q.   B

Pola - flashed in on a bubble screen, 1st series, and dropped Marshall for a 4 yards loss.   Chipped in some, but not a single impact play from a guy who is supposed to be an impact player.    B

Clark - feebly flailed and WHIFFED on Forte, which allowed a 6-yard gain to turn into a 55-yard romp.  Also failed to make the stop on the Forte TD run.  For a FS who should be a ballhawk, he’s the complete antithesis of ballhawk.    C-

Gay -   Tried to chop and poke the ball from Forte on the long run, instead of simply bringing the guy down for what could have been limited to a 15-yard gain.  Almost forced a fumble, 5:20 3Q.  Had some okay stops after short receptions.  Committed a foolish illegal contact penalty on an incomplete 3d down pass at 4:47 3Q, which allowed the drive to continue.  Dropped Forte for a 3-yard loss in the 4Q.      B

Golden - got trucked by Gay Buttler at the end of a QB scramble, 4Q.    Looked soft, like most of Dick’s defense.     

Thomas -  blitzed and forced Buttler to throw the ball away on 3d down, 2Q.   Had good coverage but allowed the late TD pass to Burnett on a superb grab.     B-

C. Allen - did not dress again, due to his ankle injury.   He’s like Gayveon Bell -- a softie who requires 6 weeks to recover from a lil’ piss-ant injury. 


Spec teams: 

Zoltan -  late in the 2Q, boomed a 21-yard punt to the Chico 31.   Superb !       C- 

Suisham -  nailed 3 FGs.   His KOs were mostly good.     A

Curt Brown had a good stop of Hester at the 7 on a KO.   Tonio Brown committed a jack-assed facemasking penalty on his own punt return, when he reached out -- just inches from the sideline chalk -- and wrenched the mask of the defender.   Just stupid.   Pis Carter was flagged for a hold on a punt return. 


There were some small signs of improvement, as the offense looked crisper, the ground game clicked much better, and the passing game produced a ton of yards and 2 TDs.   

Still, there’s a long, long way to go.   Simply too much rampant grab-bagging.   Case in point.   Dwyer was outstanding in blitz pickup, making 3 key blocks that allowed Ben to complete the two TDs and another pass.   So, in the 4Q, with the team down by 11, who’s in the backfield on blitz protection?   Why, it’s Isaac Redman, a man who hasn’t shown merit to get PT in a CFL exhibition game.  Sure enough, Redman gets whipped on his blitz pickup, Ben gets stripped, and the fumble is returned for a TD to ice the game.  What, praytell, was the reason for Redman’s insertion ?   What, his brilliant 1-yard per carry average??

Furthermore, despite the continual pass pressure applied by Chico, there was Haley, going with an empty backfield here and there in the 4Q.  

Hey, Felix Jones gains 11 yards on the 1st play of the game .   Gee, it’s a great thing he’s been rotting the bench the 1st 2 games.    

It’s clear that Haley has simply reached the Peter Principle in which he has been promoted to a job above his ability and competence.    D+


The Sillers won the coin toss, but elected to defer and kick off.  When a team does this, they are anticipating their defense will SET THE TONE with some in-your-face intimidation and hard-nosed football.   Instead, Dick plays a Softee Defense, and allows the Bears to casually march…and march…and allowed a 47-yard FG on a 51-yard drive that chewed 8 minutes of time

After Ben’s turnover, the Bears took over at the PIT 17.   Despite all the bawling and crying and caterwauling, HERE was the chance to MAKE A STAND, and force a Chico FG.   Dick gets the 3d & 9 that he loves, but then goes SOFT, and allows Gay Buttler alllllll day long back in the pocket, and Buttler ends up casually dumping it off to a WIDE OPEN Forte, who ambles for 10 yards and the 1st down.   A play later, Chico scores a TD,    Instead of a 6-0 game, its TEN to nothing, in large part thanks to The Great Fraud, Dick LeBeau. 

Chico took over at the PIT 29 after the Jones fumble early in the 3Q.  HERE was a chance to make a stand and force the Bears into a long FG, or perhaps even (gasp) force a turnover themselves.  Nope, not Dick.   He allows Chico to gain about 19 yards, and then boot a chipshot FG to make it 27-10. 

After the PIT FG made it a 4-point game at 10:43 4Q, The Great LeBeau had a chance to show his worth and prove his mettle.   The Stiller crowd was roaring, and all the momentum seemed to be in favor of the home team.   What does Dick do ?    Why, he stands by, ossified and clueless, as Chico took the ball from its own 26 and marched and marched.   3d & 10 ?  Easy conversion for Chico on a QB scramble for  13 yards.   3d & 12 ?   Easy conversion on a 41-yard deep ball.   Before ya know it, Chico has moved from punting the ball from deep in their own territory, to knocking on the door for more points.  Sure enough, on a 3d & 5, Buttler lobs a 17-yard TD to Bennett to make it an ELEVEN point game.  Brilliant defensive scheming by The Supreme Lord of Defensive Coaching, Richard Dick LeBeau !!

Chico had 2 rookie starters on the Bear O-line, but as is usual, Dick was unable to take advantage of this.  After THREE games, this vaunted defense still has ZERO  turnovers.   Only 7 teams in the Super Bowl era have started a season’s first 3 games without generating a single turnover .  EVERY OTHER NFL team this season has MULTIPLE turnovers by now.  And this is not a 3-game aberration.   It's been going on for THREE SOLID SEASONS, and counting.   And the 1 constant is none other than Dick "The Dullard" LeBeau.     D-  


Unlike the first 2 games, this game showed some urgency, but of course it wasn’t nearly enough.  Momlin deferred after winning the coin toss, then gets pushed back onto his heels when his Softee Defense gets carved up for a long, clock-chewing FG drive.  Brilliant method to begin a must-win game.  I wasn’t pleased with kicking the FG on 4th & 2 at the Chico 18, with 5:43 left in the 3Q and the score 27-10.   Yes, I know, it’s points on the board.   The problem is, it assumes the defense will stiffen and limit Chico, which of course it failed to do on that 74-yard TD march in the 4Q. 

What’s rampant on this team now is s slop, inattention to detail, soft play on both sides of the ball, and a failure to come up big in the 4Q, where games are won & lost in the NFL.   The only thing that can help is a total cleaning of house of this ENTIRE sorry-assed coaching staff.     This is 2006, all over again.....with rampant under-achieving and a total absence of legit, professional coaching.  Time for Momin to move on to his life’s work, whatever that might be.   F

Synopsis:  A shitty day for Pgh sports mercifully comes to an end.  The Pahrts got shellacked by the Reds earlier in the day, next door at PNC Park.   Then this colossal implosion at Heinz Field.   Both sides of the ball are faltering badly.   The offense is too careless with the ball while the defense treats the ball like a live hand grenade, trembling in mortal fear at the very sight of a football.  And with such a timid, dense, dim-bulbed coaching staff, I can’t see this Titanic being turned around.  I just don’t see that occurring.  

Now Adolf Godell and the NFL are kicking themselves, with two winless teams playing the marquee game in London next week.   Good for Adolf, I say.  A loss to the lowly Vikes will put the Stillers at an impossible 0-4 position and should add more warmth to Momlin’s already hot seat.   I’m sure our good friends in Great Britain will find something better to do next Sunday than watch a hapless pair of winless teams fight it out in front of 30K fans.  With any luck, perhaps the Stillers will have passport issues trying to get back into the USA, or perhaps US Customs can prohibit their entry, and they’ll be forced to stay in London for several weeks or even the remainder of the season.  The city of Pittsburgh could use a break from the rancid stench..


(Still Mill and -- when it comes to the analysis of the Pittsburgh Stillers, no one else comes close….)

Follow Mill on Twitter, at StillMill1


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