This week’s been frustrating for everybody involved with the Steelers. It looked like the Stees had no chance rolling into a night game at Baltimore with Dennis Dixon under the helm. But Dixon made some plays and all of a sudden it looked like the Steelers might pull one out, only to have the defense blow yet another late game lead.After people got done throwing everybody from Roethlisberger to Bruce Arians to Christ Himself under the bus, Steeler fans looked at the schedule and breathed a sigh of relief. Oakland was next. An easy win to get back on track, right? Not so fast.
On most days, the Pittsburgh Steelers will beat the lowly Oakland Raiders. Their whole franchise is a joke and pretty much a polar opposite from the well-oiled Steelers machine. But if the first 11 games have taught us anything, it’s that no game is easy for this Steelers team.
The Raiders have played best against stiff competition. The beat both Philadelphia and Cincinnati. They lost both games against San Diego, but only by a combined 12 points.
The Steelers, on the other hand, have consistently played down to the competition and struggled against weaker teams. They lost to Chicago and Kansas City, while only beating Detroit by 8 points. God only knows what Oakland will do against this team…
Hopefully Mike Tomlin has done what Bill Cowher did in 2005: wipe the schedule clean. There are no gimmes anymore. That ended with a dreadful loss against the Chiefs. Based on the last three weeks, the Steelers are an average team at best in the NFL right now.
Oakland will be ready. They have nothing to lose. Maybe Al Davis will order his team to throw the ball 100 times because you know the Polamalu-less DBs will give up their share of long completions.
It’s easy to look at the schedule and pencil in wins against Oakland and Cleveland. But don’t. If the Stees drop one of those games, it’s probably lights out on the playoffs.
Each and every week should be taken like a playoff game and it starts on Sunday against Oakland.