Game Plan

Well, I've figured out how the Steelers can beat the Colts on Sunday......just take out Peyton Manning's left knee during his first pass attempt of the game.

Seriously, what happened to Carson Palmer is a damn shame. It cast a pall over what would probably have turned out to be an awesome game between two clubs that are pretty evenly matched. It sucks for Carson. It sucks for Kimo, who will forever be linked with the unfortunate play. I hope that Carson recovers quickly and is able to come back better than ever.

Can the Steelers beat the Colts? The honest answer is, probably not. This is the only playoff game that I can remember in which nearly everyone unequivocally expects the Steelers to lose, including myself. However, perhaps that is exactly what the team needs. There is definitely less pressure involved going into a game as heavy underdogs. Plus, I do think it will serve as extra motivation, even though many will say that you don't need any extra motivation for the playoffs, since you are already as motivated as possible. I am grateful that we don't have to spend the week listening to predictions of how the Steelers will blow another home playoff game. The "road through Pittsburgh" has obviously not worked out the past couple of years, and although I'd rather see Sunday's game played at Heinz Field, perhaps a different route is what the team needs.

All of that being said, the Steelers can indeed win the game. After all, that is why they play. Indeed, all of the stats and previous successes mean nothing when it comes to playing on Sunday. Manning could have a terrible game. The Chargers showed that he is not nearly as effective under pressure, if you can provide reasonable coverage. I think the Steelers have their best secondary in recent years, so this formula might work. Then, there is the Big Ben factor. This guy is a serious competitor and leader. Overshadowed by Palmer's injury, Ben turned in an outstanding quarterback rating of 148.7 on Sunday! Yes, it will be loud in the dome, but I think the team will be much better prepared for that than they were the first time around this year. After all, it was pretty loud in Cincinnati. Ben had probably the worst game of his career against the Colts earlier this season, but it was also his first game back from knee surgery, and he chipped a bone in his thumb during the game. Perhaps most importantly, his confidence just shines through. I was very impressed with how he handled himself and the offense when the Steelers twice trailed by ten points in Cincinnati. If this is not the year for the Steelers, I think they have a very bright future with Ben, who seems to have avoided any notion of a sophmore slump.

I think the game will be a lot more competitive than the game earlier this year. I hope so, anyway. The Steelers need to play physical, but smart. Note to Troy Polamalu: take your medication before the game, dude! I love your psychotic nature on the field, but please keep it within the rules, and DO NOT LATERAL UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES.

Anything can happen. The Steelers are playing their best football of the year. The Colts, on the other hand, have not had to win in over a month (even though they did beat Arizona), and do not have a very good record coming off of bye weeks. The Steelers are undefeated against the Colts in postseason. Of course, none of that matters on Sunday. Let's get the Bus rolling, Fast Willie motoring, Hines smiling and Ben pumping his fist in the air for touchdown after touchdown!!

Go Steelers!!


Sean said…
you missed part of the (mostly Patriot's) regular prescription for beating the Indy O: hit 'em. hit 'em hard and often. hit their receivers and hit Manning. the Chargers got to Manning enough to disrupt him enough to grab the victory. hope the Steelers give them more of that and make this a good game.

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