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A Few Thoughts about the Steelers Game, in no particular order


Virgil
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My apologies for the lateness of this, but work and a late night game really has taken it out of me lately.  However, it's been good to sit back and listen to the post games and media reactions.  The questions about what type of team we are seem to be answered and the optimism is contagious.  Welcome aboard the Bills bandwagon

 

1 - Pele - Playing soccer in high school, I had a coach who idolized the soccer great Pele.  He told me about people would go to a game and be incredibly disappointed with how he played up until halftime, but then he would absolutely take over and dominate the second half.  My coaches point was, Pele used the first half to keep the game close and study the opponents tendencies.  Once he figured them out, he would absolutely dismantle them.  I thought about this after the Steelers game a lot in addition to all of the naysayers about the Bills inability to make half time adjustments.  If ever there were a game where we did just that, it was this one.  The Bills offense was night and day different coming out of the tunnel and completely imposed their will against one of the top rated defenses in the league.  The pressure, the coverage, the gaps were all exposed and Daboll deserves a ton of credit.

 

2 - Momentum - The shifting of a games momentum is something you typically gradually feel.  For this game, if you weren't lulled asleep by the punt-fest yet as the thoughts of depression creeped in about another poor Prime Time showing, you could see the entire game turn on the pick six by Taron Johnson.  Of all the plays fans have been clamoring for, this was it.  The Steelers had established their offense all season on their short passing attack.  Our offense couldn't score.  Our defense had yet to score a defensive touchdown all season.  Johnson's anticipation, cut on the ball, and break away speed from JuJu was the most perfect moment that could happen for this game and defense.  Within a few moments, all of your doubts and questions about this game and contender talk went away.  There was no looking back.

 

3 - 7:11 - If there were one sticking point fans had beyond prime time games and defensive turnovers, it was the Bills inability to fully put teams away.  The Bills controlled the clock for over the last seven minutes of the game and did it mainly rushing the ball.  The Steelers knew what was coming and they still couldn't stop our rushing attack.  A top tier defense couldn't stop the Bills rushing game down the stretch.  Let that really sink in for a moment.  Moss showed great cuts and acceleration again.  Motor broke multiple arm tackles and Josh needs to learn to delay that slide another yard 🙂.  Of all the impressive things that occurred in this game, this might stand out as the biggest win to me.  Our ability to control the clock and open up the passing game with the run is something that will go a long way in our playoff run.

 

4 - Crazy cat peekin' through a lace bandanna,

Like a one-eyed Cheshire, like a diamond-eye jack.

A leaf of all colors plays a golden-string fiddle,

To a double-E waterfall over my back.

 

5 - Disrespect - Mentioned in the post game, was the Bills being aware of Juju making a video of him dancing on our logo before the game.  There were images of Ralph's statue with Steelers gear on him.  The broadcast even showed highlights of the *Patriots blowing us out on Sunday night a few years back.  These are all things that Bills fans might previously look for small victories within the game for, but know there wasn't much we could do about it.  Then, it was shown as Josh brought the team out of the tunnel, that he even mentioned how the Steelers could do the talking, but we'd be doing the dancing.  And dance we did.  There's just something to the fact that we can take the hits and back it up.  I love that the team is tracking on all of these things and save their responses for the field and after the game.  This team gets it, has a lot of pride, and is showing the world one game at a time. 

 

6 - Records - While not earth shattering, the fact that Diggs was the first to 100 catches and Allen broke the single season total touchdown record in this game, while we still have 3 left to play is outstanding to me.  Normally, I would give both of these guys their own spot, but they've been talked about so much at this point, that any doubters are comical at this point.  Diggs and Allen are arguably the top 3 at their positions and it was on full display for this game.  Diggs ability to get open and draw defensive attention while Allen calmly maneuvers within the pocket and not letting turnovers and pressure slow him down, is making for an epic combination.  It may have been taboo to mention Kelly and Reed compared to Diggs and Allen, but not anymore.

 

7 - Defensive Backs - Short passing game, weak armed Ben or not; our defensive backs played an amazing game tonight.  Yes, Wallace got turned around on his touchdown, but he made up for it on the last interception (I don't think anyone was more surprised by this pick than Levi.  He didn't know what to do after).  On multiple replays, you could see Tre and the other defenders eyes looking back to Ben while in coverage.  They were locked in on the Steelers offense and dominated the passing attack most of the game.  They also adjusted to playing more press after the first few series, which really paid off.  The only real big plays came on offensive pick plays were our guys ran into each other.  While it helps that Ben doesn't have the arm he used to, the confidence and swagger this gives our guys is immeasurable and you could see it on the sidelines.

 

8 - Pass Rush - The Steelers and Bills send pressure in very different ways.  The Steelers adjust their defensive lineman to bunch on a certain side, and then send half-second delayed blitzes from the box.  This makes it really hard for Josh to see where the pressure is coming from and where the coverage will be.  It was very well executed and I have to tip my cap to them.  The Bills typically put everyone in the box and either sent them all, or pulled some back.  While both quarterbacks were under duress, once the game was said and done, the Bills hit home more than the Steelers.  As said before, the Bills seemed to figure out that pressure at half time and Josh made them pay.  My favorite blitz of the night was when Milano came in and physically pushed the Steelers halfback off his feet and into Bed.  It wasn't a sack, but my god.

 

 

Sorry for the shortened thoughts this week, but a lot of this has already been said over the past few days.  It's great to be 10-3 and know this team has fully and finally arrived.  We should expect to win every game going forward and a deep run through the playoffs shouldn't shock anyone.  It's great to feel respected by the league and know that no game or time slot is above our head.  Great game and good luck to everyone.


Go Bills!!!

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44 minutes ago, Nanker said:

Great write up Virg. 
Not to knit pick, but Josh said, They can do the talking, and they can do the dancing but we’re going to do the work!

 

GO BILLS! 

As always @Virgil, a good summary.

 

Not to knit pick but the quote above is missing a word😀.  A work in front of work that rhymes with the Pitt QB Buffalo beat last year.

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53 minutes ago, Nanker said:

Great write up Virg. 
Not to knit pick, but Josh said, They can do the talking, and they can do the dancing but we’re going to do the work!

 

GO BILLS! 

 

I'll have to listen to it again.  I didn't look it up when I wrote it and thought I remembered it correctly.  Thanks for the heads up

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1 hour ago, Virgil said:

My apologies for the lateness of this, but work and a late night game really has taken it out of me lately.  However, it's been good to sit back and listen to the post games and media reactions.  The questions about what type of team we are seem to be answered and the optimism is contagious.  Welcome aboard the Bills bandwagon

 

1 - Pele - Playing soccer in high school, I had a coach who idolized the soccer great Pele.  He told me about people would go to a game and be incredibly disappointed with how he played up until halftime, but then he would absolutely take over and dominate the second half.  My coaches point was, Pele used the first half to keep the game close and study the opponents tendencies.  Once he figured them out, he would absolutely dismantle them.  I thought about this after the Steelers game a lot in addition to all of the naysayers about the Bills inability to make half time adjustments.  If ever there were a game where we did just that, it was this one.  The Bills offense was night and day different coming out of the tunnel and completely imposed their will against one of the top rated defenses in the league.  The pressure, the coverage, the gaps were all exposed and Daboll deserves a ton of credit.

 

2 - Momentum - The shifting of a games momentum is something you typically gradually feel.  For this game, if you weren't lulled asleep by the punt-fest yet as the thoughts of depression creeped in about another poor Prime Time showing, you could see the entire game turn on the pick six by Taron Johnson.  Of all the plays fans have been clamoring for, this was it.  The Steelers had established their offense all season on their short passing attack.  Our offense couldn't score.  Our defense had yet to score a defensive touchdown all season.  Johnson's anticipation, cut on the ball, and break away speed from JuJu was the most perfect moment that could happen for this game and defense.  Within a few moments, all of your doubts and questions about this game and contender talk went away.  There was no looking back.

 

3 - 7:11 - If there were one sticking point fans had beyond prime time games and defensive turnovers, it was the Bills inability to fully put teams away.  The Bills controlled the clock for over the last seven minutes of the game and did it mainly rushing the ball.  The Steelers knew what was coming and they still couldn't stop our rushing attack.  A top tier defense couldn't stop the Bills rushing game down the stretch.  Let that really sink in for a moment.  Moss showed great cuts and acceleration again.  Motor broke multiple arm tackles and Josh needs to learn to delay that slide another yard 🙂.  Of all the impressive things that occurred in this game, this might stand out as the biggest win to me.  Our ability to control the clock and open up the passing game with the run is something that will go a long way in our playoff run.

 

4 - Crazy cat peekin' through a lace bandanna,

Like a one-eyed Cheshire, like a diamond-eye jack.

A leaf of all colors plays a golden-string fiddle,

To a double-E waterfall over my back.

 

5 - Disrespect - Mentioned in the post game, was the Bills being aware of Juju making a video of him dancing on our logo before the game.  There were images of Ralph's statue with Steelers gear on him.  The broadcast even showed highlights of the **Patriots blowing us out on Sunday night a few years back.  These are all things that Bills fans might previously look for small victories within the game for, but know there wasn't much we could do about it.  Then, it was shown as Josh brought the team out of the tunnel, that he even mentioned how the Steelers could do the talking, but we'd be doing the dancing.  And dance we did.  There's just something to the fact that we can take the hits and back it up.  I love that the team is tracking on all of these things and save their responses for the field and after the game.  This team gets it, has a lot of pride, and is showing the world one game at a time. 

 

6 - Records - While not earth shattering, the fact that Diggs was the first to 100 catches and Allen broke the single season total touchdown record in this game, while we still have 3 left to play is outstanding to me.  Normally, I would give both of these guys their own spot, but they've been talked about so much at this point, that any doubters are comical at this point.  Diggs and Allen are arguably the top 3 at their positions and it was on full display for this game.  Diggs ability to get open and draw defensive attention while Allen calmly maneuvers within the pocket and not letting turnovers and pressure slow him down, is making for an epic combination.  It may have been taboo to mention Kelly and Reed compared to Diggs and Allen, but not anymore.

 

7 - Defensive Backs - Short passing game, weak armed Ben or not; our defensive backs played an amazing game tonight.  Yes, Wallace got turned around on his touchdown, but he made up for it on the last interception (I don't think anyone was more surprised by this pick than Levi.  He didn't know what to do after).  On multiple replays, you could see Tre and the other defenders eyes looking back to Ben while in coverage.  They were locked in on the Steelers offense and dominated the passing attack most of the game.  They also adjusted to playing more press after the first few series, which really paid off.  The only real big plays came on offensive pick plays were our guys ran into each other.  While it helps that Ben doesn't have the arm he used to, the confidence and swagger this gives our guys is immeasurable and you could see it on the sidelines.

 

8 - Pass Rush - The Steelers and Bills send pressure in very different ways.  The Steelers adjust their defensive lineman to bunch on a certain side, and then send half-second delayed blitzes from the box.  This makes it really hard for Josh to see where the pressure is coming from and where the coverage will be.  It was very well executed and I have to tip my cap to them.  The Bills typically put everyone in the box and either sent them all, or pulled some back.  While both quarterbacks were under duress, once the game was said and done, the Bills hit home more than the Steelers.  As said before, the Bills seemed to figure out that pressure at half time and Josh made them pay.  My favorite blitz of the night was when Milano came in and physically pushed the Steelers halfback off his feet and into Bed.  It wasn't a sack, but my god.

 

 

Sorry for the shortened thoughts this week, but a lot of this has already been said over the past few days.  It's great to be 10-3 and know this team has fully and finally arrived.  We should expect to win every game going forward and a deep run through the playoffs shouldn't shock anyone.  It's great to feel respected by the league and know that no game or time slot is above our head.  Great game and good luck to everyone.


Go Bills!!!


Terrific write-up, @Virgil

Yeah the first quarter was a snoozer, but the pick-6 really woke people up. There wasn't a better 3rd quarter this season. Er, that sounds like damning with faint praise (since the Bills have been so awful in the third), so let me just say the halftime adjustments were stellar.

 

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2 hours ago, Virgil said:

Johnson's anticipation, cut on the ball, and break away speed from JuJu was the most perfect moment that could happen for this game and defense. 

 

And I don't know if it was intentional or not, but I loved the way he carried the ball with two hands out in front of him rather than tucking it under his arm, basically eliminating any possibility of a tackle from behind (difficult to anticipate) punching the ball out.

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51 minutes ago, KD in CA said:

 

And I don't know if it was intentional or not, but I loved the way he carried the ball with two hands out in front of him rather than tucking it under his arm, basically eliminating any possibility of a tackle from behind (difficult to anticipate) punching the ball out.

 

I couldn't tell if he was trying to be safe or trying to imitate Deion Sanders.

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1 hour ago, IDBillzFan said:

 

I couldn't tell if he was trying to be safe or trying to imitate Deion Sanders.

 

I was being optimistic, but it was definitely one of those two!!   😄

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