Departure of Michael Oher from Ravens will hurt Steelers pass rush

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

The departure of Michael Oher from the Ravens is a stinging blow to the Steelers. Oher has been a key factor in many Steelers triumphs against the Ravens over the past five years.

No one can deny the Pittsburgh Steelers front Office has rightfully earned their terrible reputation. Throughout the years, again and again they have proven to us all that they are among the most useless and inept in the NFL. But it has been around this time in particular, during the weeks of Free Agency, where they are at the most Cleveland Browns like.

In April 2010 they traded Super Bowl XLIII legend Santonio Holmes for a 5th round pick, A 5TH ROUND PICK! Holmes would go on to prove Mike Tomlin and Kevin Colbert oh so wrong, and in his four years with the Jets he would forever change the way New York, the NFL and the World would view the Wide Receiver position, such has been his impact.

In 2013, they allowed a sure-fire superstar in Mike Wallace to join the Miami Dolphins for pocket change. After his record setting debut season for the Dolphins, we are left wondering whether Wallace will only end up in Canton, or if he will finish amongst the very greatest to ever play the game.

These are but two examples, forever skirting around the edges of salary cap oblivion and consistently mediocre 8-8 seasons are two more. It appears there is no end to the errors this team can commit.

And this off-season has only served to solidify their status as one of the worst in the NFL.

Despite aggressively pursuing Richard Sherman (via a trade for two 1st round pick, a 4th and Dick LeBau's playbook), Demarcus Ware, Julius Peppers and JJ Watt (straight swap offered for Big Ben) the Steelers have come up utterly short, and a bleak Free Agency period seemed set to stretch on.

However, news broke Friday night that essentially hammered the final nail in the Steelers 2014 coffin, and all but ended their hopes of winning the AFC North Division. The Steelers front office, for reasons surely only they know, have allowed tackle Michael Oher to leave the Baltimore Ravens for the Tennesse Titans.

Yes the unsung hero, who is so unsung most Pittsburgh fans boo his name, is being allowed to leave the AFC North. This should be a time of great mourning for true Steelers fans around the world.

When the Steelers and Ravens have squared off over these past 5 years, one man has consistently risen above the fray, put his heart on the line and delivered glory to the black and gold, and his name is Michael Oher.  As the gatekeeper to the Ravens offensive line, Oher has been decisive in huge plays which have helped decide the outcome of many Steelers-Ravens tilts.

There are too many to list, but perhaps his finest season came in 2010, a year in which Oher did as much as any Steeler to will them toward the Super Bowl.

Down by 4 with precious few minutes remaining, Oher pretended he couldn't see Polamalu line up just off his shoulder, and the subsequent play resulted in a strip sack  , and ultimately the Steelers earning a bye in the first round of the play-offs.

Later in the season, before the Steelers and Ravens squared off in the play-offs, Oher and Harrison agreed that Harrison should completely and utterly dominate Oher all game long. It was this kind of selfless sacrificing that will make Oher go down as one of the most humble greats to play the game.

It would not be too bold to say that, on that day, an everlasting bond was formed between Harrison and Oher. This was evident during the Steelers and Ravens 2012 matchup in Baltimore. Just when the Steelers needed it most Oher allowed his old friend through for the strip sack, a game changing play that allowed Charlie Batch to be the hero we all knew he could be. In a stroke of poetic justice, this just happened to be Harrison's last ever strip sack in the black and gold, and in the company of friends he has said there was no other left tackle he would rather have shared it with.

All members of the Steelers Front Office have declined to comment on this egregious mistake, but a source has told BTSC that privately they believe it may be the worst decision the Franchise has ever made, worse even than passing up Dan Marino.

One active player on the Steelers roster has took the news particularly bad. Jason Worilds knows that everything he is about to receive, in terms of a long term lucrative contract, he owes to Michael Oher.

On a cold, frosty Thanksgiving night Oher looked across the line of scrimmage, and perhaps in a fleeting moment of nostalgia for the days of James Harrison, allowed Worilds to blow by him for a sack. However Oher, forever the team player, insisted that Worilds second sack, where he beautifully chopped his hands away and flew right by him for a strip sack, was simply Worilds showing his ability.

It is this kind of graciousness that has typified Oher's career, always allowing Steelers players to shine bright, just happy to bask in the warm glow of their success.

Rumours have been floating around that Worilds was refusing to sign a long term deal until Oher received his first, but for whatever reason the Front Office could not make Oher staying at the Ravens a reality. What will become of Worilds now, we can only guess.

So, wherever you are this Saturday night, take some time to give thanks to one of the all-time Steelers legends Michael Oher, I promise you no one deserves it more.

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