I wanted to get away from the James Harrison talks. It's depressing enough around here for being 4-1 and looking like we could be in for another Super Bowl year. I would like to talk about Bruce Arians. I haven't been a supporter of him since he has been here. But I believe he is starting to show he can adapt, albeit slowly, and become a really good OC. Although it was just one game, Bruce did call more running plays than passing plays. I don't think that will last but as long as it stays balanced this offense will be able to score in the Redzone and consume clock.
There are big questions about our defense in the last 5 mins of games this year. The Atlanta and Baltimore game shows us that at the end of games, for whatever reason, this defense allows QBs to maneuver down the field and score. I don't want to over-react just yet but we will surely be tested in the up-coming weeks by brees and brady. Sometimes the offense has to help out the defense. As well noted, if we pick up a first down in the Baltimore game after the goal line stand, we beat Baltimore. The offense ability to churn the clock during the game keeps the defense off the field, which would hide this flaw since it shortens the game. If we are ever down late in the fourth quarter would the defense be able to get 3 and outs so that the offense can come back? Remember the oakland game last year? If our offense could have used an extra minute to score then we could have won that game. With our defense, how fast you score can be as important as how often you score. The defense needs rest. The offense can help with that.
This is where I believe the four game suspension of Ben was beneficial. It forced BA to be a run- oriented OC and we won. It showed him that running the ball can be a weapon even if you only are gaining two yards in a run. It may have actually changed his philosophy on how to call a football game. If BA continues this trend, not necessarily calling more run plays, but leading a balanced attack then our offense will not only gain yards but score points. The line being better could have a lot to do with it also, I really don't know but I realize that Ben also has a great deal to do with this also. But I do believe that BA's mind has been changed to a degree. BA is in a do or die year. His future with the Steelers will be determined by his performed this year. So far it has been very good and I do support bringing him back if this continues. I can respect someone who tries to get better at their job. BA used to give off the impression that it was his way or the high way and he would not adjust. Lets hope that this has changed and BA had a wake up call like we think Ben did.