The journey toward Super Bowl LII ended far too prematurely for the Pittsburgh Steelers, sending them into offseason mode before we were ready for it. But we are in it now, and are ready to move on, through the Combine, through free agency, through the draft, into OTAs, and beyond.
We have asked and answered a lot of questions over the years and will continue to do so, and at the moment, there seem to be a ton of questions that need answering. A surprise early exit in the postseason will do that to you though, especially when it happens in the way it did.
You can rest assured that we have the questions, and we will be monitoring developments all throughout the offseason process, all the way down to Latrobe. Pending free agents, possible veteran roster cuts, contract extensions, pre-draft visits, pro days, all of it will have its place when the time arises.
Question: What one lesson above all would you like the Steelers to take away from the Philadelphia Eagles’ Super Bowl victory?
It was a matter of time, I suppose, before the Eagles would win a Super Bowl and bring on back to Pennsylvania. The Steelers had already won six of them for the state, while Philadelphia had now owned a championship since Vince Lombardi was in his second season as a head coach, long before his name would be attached to the trophy of the championship game, and before he had won any championships.
They did it with a second-year head coach and a backup quarterback, and a backup left tackle as well. They did it despite allowing 38 points, and over 600 offensive yards, including over 500 through the air. They did it against the greatest ever to do it.
There is no one clear reason that the Eagles won and the Patriots did not, beyond the obvious fact that they scored one more point than their opponent did. They ran the ball well. They passed the ball well. They played clean football, outside of one unfortunately-redirected deep target.
But they also played aggressively, until the end. They went for two-point conversions in the first half, even though they failed. They went for it on fourth down at the goal line, which was a huge moment in the game. They went for it on fourth down later in the game as well.
Neither team was particularly successful in rushing the passer, with just one sack between the two teams, but that was a big one, as it produced a fumble and a turnover, which led to a field goal that made it an eight-point game and took some more time—and timeouts—off the board.
Looking at the Eagles’ victory, and determining what could be applied to the Steelers, what most of all would you like Pittsburgh to do next season that they failed to do a year ago? I would prefer serious and productive answers, rather than the usual veiled (or not-so-veiled) complaint-rants about how everybody needs to be fired.