In the life of every addict and every person who goes through serious issues, there is a breaking point where nothing could get any worse. It is also possible that a professional football team (and I am using that term very loosely) also can reach this point. This is often referred to as "rock bottom". Once a subject reaches the nadir of its journey, there is nowhere to go but up. The 2013 Pittsburgh Steelers have reached that point. Today, the New England Patriots worked out all of their previous frustrations on offense on the hapless Steelers’ defense. However, the part that should be looked at most would be the Patriots scored 28 points in the fourth quarter. It seemed to me (and the CBS broadcast crew) that the defense quit and did not put forth much effort. If that indeed is the case, then wholesale changes must be made.
These Pittsburgh Steelers are a bunch of teases. They look good for short stretches on offense (see the 3rd quarter of the Patriots game when they came back from 14 down to tie it) but the defense is just terrible. They have not been good for a while and today they reached the nadir of their downward spiral. Yes, the team lacks talent on defense but the lack of effort in the fourth quarter is inexcusable. Something has to be done very quickly.
Tom Brady is a great quarterback who will be a Hall of Famer exactly five years after he retires. Rob Gronkowski is one of the best tight ends I’ve ever seen. However, how the defense gave up over 600 yards of total offense and 55 points is beyond me. The Steelers’ defense wasn’t just terrible. They lacked fortitude and professional pride.
I personally don’t have any resolutions to "save" the season. Given the lack of talent and experience on both sides of the ball (especially on the offensive line), this team has zero margin for error. It is no fluke that the both of the team’s wins came when the offense did not turn the ball over. In the six games that the offense turned the ball over, the team lost every game.
I, as a proud member of Steeler Nation, have always defended Coach Mike Tomlin with gusto. I’ve defended offensive coordinator Todd Haley in the past. And defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau is a demi-god as far as I am concerned. Kevin Colbert has a great track record as well, being the architect for two Super Bowl winners. However, all of these men need to be accountable for the lack of preparation, the listlessness that the team exhibited at times, and the lack of effort by the men who they put on the field.
For the one of the few times in my life, I am embarrassed to be a member of Steeler Nation. I can handle the team being not as talented as in previous years. I can handle losses (although they still hurt and sting). However, I cannot and will not handle travesties like I witnessed today. There needs to be some serious changes at 3400 South Water Street. Mr. Rooney, all eyes of Steeler Nation is upon you. I am not advocating the firing of Mike Tomlin by any stretch. For one, I can’t think of a single person who would be good enough to take his place and two, he has earned enough equity as far as I am concerned with two trips to the Super Bowl in his first 6.5 years as head coach. However, there needs to be a change in culture. This is the Steelers, for Pete’s sake. Bring the pride and toughness back. Stop living on past glory and antiquated reputation. Please, make us happy to be Steelers fans once again.