Steelers-Vikings Week 7 postgame: Drinking Brett Favre’s milkshake
Steelers 27, Vikings 17
▪ For the two people out there who actually care, sorry for the 24-hour delay, but I spent Sunday afternoon lounging on the beach with the in-laws and diligently avoiding the score of the Steelers game so I could watch it later on tape delay. Back when I was living in Pittsburgh, trying to avoid game spoilers was impossible unless you physically barricaded yourself alone in a dark room. For a good three or four hours after the game, Pittsburghers typically walk down the street shouting the outcome for little or no reason at all. And in situations where shouting isn’t appropriate, they find ways to work it into the conversation. “Would you like paper or plastic, sir, to celebrate the Steelers 27-17 victory over the Vikings this afternoon?”
▪ Before we get to the good stuff, let’s get my weekly RTFF rant out of the way (aka “Run The F***ing Football”). On the first play of the Steelers first possession, Rashard Mendenhall carried the ball for 14 yards. He got just three more carries the rest of the half. He got 10 carries the entire game despite averaging nearly 7 yards per carry, and none after his fumble with 14 minutes left. Okay, I’ll be the first to admit that Mendenhall jumping over the pile at the 5 yard line on 1st and goal was incredibly boneheaded to the point of being hilarious. But guess what, Coach. Running backs fumble the football, just like quarterbacks throw interceptions. That doesn’t mean you take the ball away from your best players. And there’s simply no reason why a guy who is routinely ripping off double-digit runs should only touch the ball 10 times.
▪ Speaking of RTFF, when the Vikings had 1st and goal from the 1, can somebody please explain to me why Adrian Peterson only got one carry? So you’re telling me you don’t think the best running back in the league can get one yard on three carries? Is that what you’re saying to me, Brad Childress? I understand Brett Favre has the hot hand right now, but come on. The Vikings didn’t deserve the three points they got out of that sequence.
▪ Ben Roethlisberger didn’t play well and only threw for 175 yards (all the more reason why giving Mendenhall 10 carries is ridiculous), Hines Ward— the NFL’s leading receiver going into Sunday– only caught one pass for 3 yards, and the Steelers still beat the Vikings by 10 points. At the risk of sounding like a hack commentator, this is a team that can beat you in a lot of different ways.
▪ It’s amazing how dominant LaMarr Woodley is when he’s not being blocked. He only had one tackle, but he ran a fumble recovery back for a touchdown and he was drinking Brett Favre’s milkshake all day. I for one think more teams should deploy the strategy of having their right tackle completely ignore the Steelers outside pass rush.
▪ I don’t think I’ve mentioned James Harrison more than a time or two in these postgame posts. So, yeah, he’s quietly on pace for 18 sacks this season.
▪ I think it’s pretty clear at this point that Troy Polamalu is more valuable to the Steelers defense than Aaron Smith, in case anyone was debating that. Which I doubt anyone was.
▪ The Steelers defense outscored the Vikings offense. Let that one marinate.
▪ I’m as big a Jeff Reed apologist as there is. I really don’t care in the least how many drunk college girls he splits the uprights with, as long as he makes the kicks on Sunday. With that said, he probably punched his ticket out of Pittsburgh by getting arrested last weekend. And then got that ticket validated by the half-hearted love tap he gave Percy Harvin on Mr. Harvin’s way to the end zone. It’s not a kicker’s job to make tackles, but it is their job not to get shaken off like a drunk college girl.
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