Stillers 20, Aints 10...... Nov 13, 2022 ………Game # 9
Stillers-Aints Postgame Analysis and Grades
The 2-6 Stillers hosted the equally-lowly 3-6 Aints in the battle of NFL doormats, amid bone chilling weather in The Burgh. (Mill was there; it was pretty doggone cold.) Tied at the half, the Stillers eked out some rare points, while the vaunted defense staved off the Aints’ offense.
QB: KP got the start. Had a fairly pedestrian game, going 18 of 30 for 199. And he was scattershot throughout the 1H. To his credit, he led some nice scoring drives; he scrambled deftly with the ball; and committed no turnovers, although he nearly had a hideous INT in the 1H. C
Harris – for perhaps the first time all season, Big Najee actually resembled a fairly competent NFL RB, hitting the hole with authority, and using a good blend of power and shiftiness. Had his longest run of the season, for 36 yards. Had 0 grabs, including a near TD grab on his lone target that was catchable. He also coughed up the ball in the 2H, and had Okorafor not recovered, who knows if N.O. is able to capitalize and turns the whole tide of the game. B
Warren – had a mediocre 1H, but poured it on in the 2H with several really solid, sound plays. The 21 yard catch & run play late in the 4Q was a beaute, as it could have easily been stopped well shy of the sticks. Dude needs to be THIS involved, rather than the token 4 touches that Mike Stoogelin was stingily doling out. A
Snell – Didn’t play on O.
FB: Watt played here and there. Converted two clutch 3d & short plunges, which was huge. A
Dionte – Had 4 grabs for 63, including a deepish 36 yarder in the 4Q that helped seal the deal. Fully enraged me in the 1H when he grabbed a 13 yard curl, then ran backwards, and then, worse, FELL DOWN without being touched, all for a 9 yard gain when he should have moved the sticks. This ain’t the first time I’ve seen this foolishness out of Dionte, but it’d better be the last. B
Pickens – Had 3 grabs on only 4 targets, good for 32 yards. B
Sims – had a nice 15 yard gainer on a screen, 1H.
Gunner O – grabbed a short pass for 4 yards. Yawwwn.
Pat FryBoy – Targeted 7 times, and had 4 grabs for 36. B
Gentry – Thankfully, was targeted only once all day, after seemingly becoming Canada’s new focal point the past 3-4 games.
OL: Overall, the line (Moore, Dotson, Cole, Daniels, Okorafor) did a nice job in the ground game, which produced 217 yards (albeit, probably 45 or so from KP scrambles). The pass pro was full of warts, however. Dan Moore continues to regress, with a fairly dreadful game, getting KP nearly killed on one blindside hit. Dotson wasn’t all the much better. Overall grade, C+
Heyward – Big Scam Heyward had (hold your laughter, please) 2 solos and 1 assist, and nothing else (QB pressures, QB hits, passes batted). This is all ya get from an overyhyped “Pro Bowler” who eats over $14M in cap space. For weeks, now, we’ve heard this bullshoit babble about “Ever since Watt got injured, (wahhh) Heyward is being triple teamed on EVERY play….” So what’s the excuse today after Watt played well over 30 snaps ?? D-
Ogunjobi – Chipped in adequately.
Adams – Like Ogun, chipped in okay.
Wormley – Chipped in here and there. For these 3 (Ogun, Adams, and Worm), at least N.O. wasn’t given gaping holes to saunter thru like last season’s DL was allowing.
Bush – Had just 2 solos in far too quiet of a game. D
Jack – Dressed, but held out of game as a precaution for a knee.
Watt – First game back for Sitter Watt since the opener. Was fairly disruptive, in somewhat limited snaps. B
Highsmith – Finally looked like a baller instead of aimlessly breast-jousting as he’d done so often these past 6 games or so. B+
Spillane – Helped clean up Dalton on the 4th down sneak that was stopped short. But late in the 1H, he was mercilessly picked on in coverage by N.O., which marched down the field for a crushing TD in the past minute of the 1H. We have no idea why the Aints didn’t go back to this cake-walk in the 2H. C
Wallace – Finally looked like a competent NFL CB with his best game of the season. Had tight coverage on the pass that was INT’d by Kazee, and out-jousted a WR on a deep ball for a huge INT in the 4Q. A
Cam Sutton - solid game. B
Norwood – played sparingly.
Edmunds – Did little, but at least wasn’t abused and tooled.
Minkah - sat out, due to an appendectomy 2 days ago.
Kazee – The Great Savior got his first PT and start of the season. Got a Dong INT off a ball that clanged off the WR’s hands. Unfairly flagged for a pers foul on a hit to the WR as the ball arrived; it seemed to me the initial contact was shoulder to shoulder, and it was a good football play. B+
‘Spoon – Sat out with a ham.
Maulet – Made a couple acceptable plays. B
Harvin – Had a so-so game. No hideous gaffes, but room for improvement. B-
Boswell – on IR
Matt Wright – made 2 of 4 FGs, which isn’t good enough. C+
Olzewski – no work on ST
Sims – had only 1 KO and 1 punt return.
OC: Matt Canada oversaw a rare, productive ground game. The passing game still is subpar, as is the red zone offense. Case in point: On 3d & goal from the 21 in the 2H, this jackmule actually called a WR screen play, rather than taking a stab down the field where a playmaker (FryBoy, Dionte, Pickens) might be able to grab a pass in the EZ or at the 6 and take it in. The sooner this simpleton is fired, the happier I’ll be. D
Austin had an okay day at the office, aided by Andy Dalton’s usual ineptitude any time he visits Pittsburgh. I despised giving up the long TD drive late in the 1H. B-
HC: Mike Asslin will be all proud over this win, facing an injury-decimated team that had to play on Monday nite and then travel to Pittsburgh for a road game. To make matters worse for N.O., they probably haven’t played in weather this cold in a coupla years. B
Synopsis: A so-so win over a downtrodden foe. I’m not going to get all giddy, and start making travel plans for the Sup Bowl, based on one home win over a struggling, injury depleted 3-6 ballclub. Let’s see how Big Mike’s squad does in the rematch vs Cinci next week.
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