Steelers Versus Browns – Second Half Notes And Observations – Week 17

By Matthew Marczi

  • Those plays where Ben Roethlisberger makes eye-catching moves to evade a tackler never seem as impressive when he doesn’t follow it up with a big completion.
  • While he may have lost his spot on defense, Shamarko Thomas has remained consistent as a gunner on special teams this season. He forced two fair catches against the Browns.
  • The lack of much of a pass-rushing threat from the outside linebackers bought Jason Campbell some extra time on a number of occasions in this game, and the coverage only held up for so long.
  • Great effort by the Pro Bowler, Troy Polamalu, bringing the receiver down on third down short of the first down.
  • I liked the decision for a quick slant pass on second and one near midfield by the Steelers. Antonio Brown exceeds on the quick hits. On this occasion it led to a chunk of yards after the catch.
  • Unfortunately Roethlisberger couldn’t connect with Jerricho Cotchery in the end zone on an ad lib effort. It would have been a nice play regardless. Cotchery was even injured in the process of trying to bring that one in.
  • Jarvis Jones continued his active day by batting down a ball in front of Josh Gordon. He certainly seems like he doesn’t have to spend as much time thinking.
  • Of course, he helped vacate an alley for Edwin Baker on the next play for a first down run and more.
  • Will Allen made basically his one contribution to the game on the next play, tackling Baker for no gain.
  • Campbell really helped the Steelers out on a number of occasions with his inaccuracy, but he made handful of throws that hurt as well, such as a nice floater over Cortez Allen to Jordan Cameron on third and 10.
  • They didn’t end up scoring, though. The defense stuffed Baker on third and one and then the Browns were flagged for a delay of game. The eventual pass to Gordon in the end zone was well defended by Ike Taylor.
  • Roethlisberger’s second pick was partially due to the fact that he had no time to try to move the safety over.
  • Lawrence Timmons continuing his big game, ripping Campbell down to the ground for a sack of 12 yards.
  • Despite starting nearly in the red zone as it was, the Steelers essentially went three and out with two short runs and then a short pass and were forced to settle for a field goal, though it was a three-possession game.
  • Allen with a nice pass break up on third down on the Browns’ next drive, forcing another punt.
  • As was an all too common theme down the stretch, however, the offense started to peter out in the fourth quarter, either with too many conservative runs or too many attempts to force an explosive play. The Steelers once again went three and out and the Browns came back to score.
  • That wasn’t before Cameron Heyward got in a sack though.
  • Timmons did have one big mistake late in the game. On third and one, he lost track of Fozzy Whittaker coming out of the backfield. That was all it took for the back to get a step on him as he won the footrace to the end zone for a 35-yard touchdown pass.
  • After recovering the onside kick, the Steelers yet again when three and out with three runs for six yards.
  • Timmons sealed the game with an interception off a pass that bounced off Whittaker.
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