After watching today's debacle, I'm more convinced that our old friend Troy is close to finished, if not already. The gambling recklessness has always been what Polamalu is all about, and I for one have appreciated that previous to this season; his ways have seemingly led to more positive plays than negative. That said, I believe the beginning to his end may have began in Super Bowl XLV. I don't remember the play specifically, but he gambled near the goal line, IIRC, and because of his gamble, Rodgers was able to complete a touchdown pass. I began to wonder about his skillset eroding then, and now...well...this season has told the tale.
There is no more prime example of his diminishing abilities than the 93-yard TD run by Pryor last week. If you go back and watch the play, Troy was being blocked, and (to his credit) was the only one that sniffed out the Pryor run. That said, as Pryor rushed past our number 43, he left Troy in the dust. By midfield, the Oakland QB had 5 yards on Polamalu. Granted, Pryor had a running head start, but that to me told the tale of where Troy's career is currently.
Things were not much better today, either. He was all over the field, perhaps to cover up the inefficiencies of the rest of his defensive cohorts, but even then, he looked (for lack of a better term) slow. Sigh.
I have a potential band-aid solution, though, that just might prolong his career, and help the Steelers get through this season in a more positive manner. What about moving him to linebacker? In reality, none of the current line-backing crop is lighting up the stat sheet, and his gambling ways would not be exposed as much (and perhaps more effective) from a linebacker position. This means, of course, the secondary could (or would) get lit up, and Shamarko Thomas would have to take his lumps at safety, but I don't think that's any different than what's currently going on. Remember, Rod Woodson was eventually moved from CB to S for the very same reason.
What's everyone else's thoughts?