Happy Friday to yinz and welcome to the first NFL playoff weekend of the 2018 season. Happy New Year as well and I hope your 2019 is off to a great start.
Unfortunately, the Pittsburgh Steelers 2019 New Year isn’t off to a great start as they aren’t in the playoffs this year and that’s really disappointing considering there weren’t many who thought they wouldn’t make it into the tournament several months ago.
The Steelers 2019 offseason is already off to a crazy start as well thanks to the continuing saga of wide receiver Antonio Brown. The Steelers also essentially fired outside linebackers coach Joey Porter on Friday as they told him they weren’t going to renew his contract. One must believe that more coaching staff changes will be announced in the coming days or weeks based on what head coach Mike Tomlin said on Wednesday.
Life goes on for us on the site and we will soon begin our draft profiles in addition to covering the Senior Bowl first-hand. At least we have a full weekend and more of football upcoming with the college national championship game following the weekend’s Wild Card games.
As usual, I have five questions for yinz to answer during this quiet Friday night and I look forward to reading all of them.
Have a safe and happy weekend and enjoy all the games. Thank you for visiting the site as well.
Peace and love, peace and love!
1 – Will the Steelers fire defensive coordinator Keith Butler before next week’s Friday five question post is live?
2 – Will the Steelers trade Brown prior to paying him his $2.5 million roster bonus due to him in the middle of March?
3 – Of these three Steelers voted first-team All-Pros last year, Brown, guard David DeCastro and defensive lineman Cameron Heyward, which one had the biggest drop off in overall skill and performance during the 2018 season?
4 – Name the team that will go on to win this year’s Super Bowl.
5 – Name the winners of the four NFL Wild Card games that will take place this weekend. (Must get all four correct to receive credit)
Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans
Seattle Seahawks at Dallas Cowboys
Los Angeles Chargers at Baltimore Ravens
Philadelphia Eagles at Chicago Bears
Question 1: So close, if Baker Mayfield throws the ball to the other side of Jarvis Landry on the left sideline they have close to a first down and within field goal range to win the game and the Steelers are in the playoffs. It was not to be. 58.8% correctly predicted that the Steelers would not make the playoffs. Most believed that the Steelers would win but the Browns would not pull it out in Baltimore.
Question 2: Matt McCrane hit 2 of 3 kicks from 50 yards out during pregame warm-ups. They were fading, and the miss was well short, but he seemed consistent from 47-48 yards out. He ended up 3 for 3 on field attempts including a long one of 47 yards. He might not be the long-term answer and Chris Boswell’s story is not fully written yet but nice production to help the Steelers win. Predictions ranged from 1-3 successful field goals by McCrane. 54% said it would be 2 and 34% predicted only 1. Just 12% got it right at 3.
Question 3: Joshua Dobbs season climax was his single pass that converted a 3rd down against the Baltimore Ravens. After his horrid performance against the Raiders he was kept on the shelf even for the two victory snap formations in a game that was much closer than most anticipated. 64.7% got this correct.
Question 4: 76.5% of respondents said the Ravens would score at least 20 points against the Browns. But on further review, video evidence show that the referees blew the touchdown awarded to Lamar Jackson for diving at the goal line. The ball was punched out and was a likely touchdown going the other way if the referees weren’t whistle happy. Take away that score and all things stay equal and the Ravens would only have scored 19 points and the Steelers would be preparing to play Houston. Roger Goodell could not resist hosing the Steelers one more time through his puppet Al Riveron.
Question 5: Cameron Heyward sacked Jeff Driskel twice in the second half. He was the only Steeler player to register more than one sack against the Bengals but that was all that was needed to get this question correct by answering in the affirmative. A whopping 80.4% got this correct.
Bonus Question: Most folks played along and got a freebie point for saying Tyler Eifert would have no catches against the Steelers. Now the question is whether Keith Butler will be having to analyze Antonio Brown’s strengths against the Steelers next season.
Correction to Week 16 question 4. The Steelers did deploy 5 wide receivers on the field for 15 plays. However, one was nullified by penalty. So, the correct answer is 14. Sorry Chris92021, your point is erased for this question. AndrewWoo got it correct.
Two folks got the weekly bonus by getting questions 1-5 correct. Just Dave answered the Friday Night Questions for the first time since week 1. Chris92021 climbed 12 places from 35th into a tie for 23rd. Kudos.
Week 14: 48 respondents predicted that the Steelers would beat the Bengals and picked up a point. 17 folks also picked up a point for correctly predicting the Steelers record for the last four games at 2-2 which with one exception gave them 2 more points for that week.
Folks, the Steelers season ended prematurely but the 2018 Friday Night 5 Questions will continue for 4 more Fridays until February 1, 2019. It will be hard to stay enthused, but this is when the tough get going. Finish strong and see if how close you can get to a top 3 finish or an appearance on the leaderboard.
Leaderboard after week 17:
|Matt Manzo||77||3rd (tie)||+1|
|Beaver Falls Hosiery||71||6th|
|IC in Cincy||69||8th (tie)||+3|
|Phil Brenneman II||67||12th||-1|
|Marcel Chris Chauvet||66||13th||+5|
|6 ring circus||65||14th (tie)||+4|
|Greg Payne||64||17th (tie)||-4|
|Andi B||63||20th (tie)||-2|
|Ted Webb||62||23rd (tie)||-5|
*new to leaderboard