The 18th Annual Steelers March to the Super Bowl Thread

What a weird year this has been. The NFL kicked off on Thursday to the sounds of piped-in crowd noise and yet more controversy over the anthem and kneeling. The very first game demonstrated how truly weird it is. In the loudest stadium in football they had a bare minimum of fans, they put “END RACISM” in the end line, and the crowd booed the Moment of Unity and then went right into the Tomahawk Chop. Talk about mixed messages.

But I digress. This thread is about how my Steelers will win the Super Bowl this year. And yet, unlike other years I don’t know where or how to start, with last year’s 8-8 performance only proving that the defense is beast. The offense was in shambles the moment Ben went down for the year and it only got worse from there. Salvaging 8-8 out of that while starting a third-string QB for 6 games and trotting out no less than 6 running backs was miraculous.

Obviously it all starts with Ben. If his reconstructed arm holds up and he plays at even 90% of the level he played at 2 years ago they’ll give the Ratbirds a run for the division. Lamar Jackson is surprisingly legit, usually running QBs get figured out quickly, but he tore the league up last year. They are loaded with an excess of riches. They’ll be tough to beat, but it’s not like the Steelers are a bunch of bums. It really is amazing the difference a quarterback can make, isn’t it? JuJu and James Conner are the happiest players in football right now, because now they actually have a chance at performing. You can’t run when they stack 8 in the box, and you can’t catch when a noddle-armed QB can’t hit you with the ball. Ben changes things. With the addition of Chase Claypool they have that Bryant-type deep threat without the baggage, and All-Pro Minkah Fitzpatrick was this year’s number-one pick, gifted a year early.

As for the rest of the division, the Browns looked terrible yesterday and the Bengals have Joe Burrow, which won’t be enough to challenge for the playoffs. The Ohio teams are bound for mediocrity, as usual.

So the big obstacles are the Chiefs and the Rats. The Patsies aren’t exactly dead, but they’re a shadow of what they were with the COVID sit-outs and a rebuilt Cam Newton under center throwing to Edelman and a cast of nobodies. The Titans still have Tannehill under center, which means Henry carries another monster load, and that sort of load kills running backs so Tannehill has to do more. I’m not sure he can. He had a career year last year, can he repeat? Time will tell.

My prediction for Pittsburgh: 13-3, division title, and then they get the Saints in the Super Bowl.

And that’s it. No real trash talking, no overhyping, just a certainty that my beloved Steelers can do it this year. Whether or not they will remains to be seen. It starts tonight against the G-Men.

As an aside, I have been doing since my son was born. He is now a senior and is old enough to vote. If that makes you feel old, imagine how it makes me feel. In any case, enjoy the season. If we’re lucky they may even get to finish it.

True this :arrow_up:.

Other than that, eat your heart out. There’s a reason Patrick Mahomes just got a 503 million dollar contract. Go Chiefs! :football::football::football:

Is it true that the Super Bowl is being down-graded this year to the Pretty Good, Considering Bowl?

Hey, I’m a Chiefs hater by my very nature, but that doesn’t mean I can’t give credit where credit is due. Mahomes is the real deal. But I’m not unhappy with Ben Roethlisberger’s performance over the years, so you’re not exactly rubbing salt in an open wound.

Well ok then, we can still be friends.

I can be convinced to cheer for the Steelers, as long as they beat the enemies of da Chiefs (my team sure needs a new name and mascot. Why can’t they be the KC BBQ and we shout “GO Ribs?”). Goes good with :beer::beers:.

They’ve decided on the “You’re Damn Lucky We Can Have It At All Bowl”.

The consolation bowl is the “Can You Believe You’re Still Alive To Watch This Bowl”.

We’ll be right back after this commercial message.

Well, the Steelers could use a better punt returner.

Ben started off slow, but he appears to be back. That last drive was nice.

16-10 Steelers at the half.

And there we have it. They started off sloppy, but the offense warmed up and the defense asserted itself.

26-16. The Steelers are back!

I was a little worried when they seemed to go into run-out-the-clock mode in the drive that started the second half with a 6 point lead, but they really got a nice groove going after that. It was as if you could watch Ben literally shake the rust off in real time. Another young QB next week, hopefully the defense can keep it going.

Well, what can you say about today? Pittsburgh had many opportunities to run away with it, they were facing the immortal Jeff Driskel most of the game, and every time they let the Donkeys back in. Yet another heart attack game that took a big defensive play to close out.

Pittsburgh tries to kill me every year. Maybe one day they’ll take tomato cans like Denver and crush them like they should. But not this year, apparently.

Next week: Watt on Watt crime. If Pittsburgh wins it ought to be the end for Bill O’Brien. It’s his team now, exactly the way he wants it, and they suck. 0-3 after all he’s given away should signal coda for his time in Houston. If it doesn’t I can’t imagine what would.

I was ready agree with you on Bill O’Brien, but then I went to Wikipedia to see how bad he’s been, and I was shocked to see that Houston has actually won the division title 4 of his 6 years with only one losing season. The beauty of playing in the post-Peyton Manning AFC south i guess…

I didn’t get to see the Steelers (not on locally for me this week) but good to see Ben pass Eli for all time TDs & Yards. He’s also now just behind Dan Marino & John Elway for all time QB wins.

The Steelers typically seem to have a little trouble shaking off the rust during the first game or 2, so I’m just glad they are 2-0, and hope they become better coordinated now and have less inconsistency in their games.

Also, what do you guys think of the helmet name controversy? Personally, I don’t have a problem with some of the Steelers choosing to put different names on their helmets, you can barely get a clear glimpse of it during games. However, the Post-Gazette and Tribune-Review online sites are full of comments criticizing the helmet name tributes. “Just play football” and “I don’t watch this game for political views” are very common in the comments sections. Numerous comments about people being tired of non-football discussions involving football.
Dopers thoughts on this? Pittsburgh media made the situation much more controversial than it needed to be IMO. If there weren’t a lot of stories about Pouncey and Villanueva changing the names on their helmets, I don’t think many would have noticed or cared whose names were on the helmets. I do think they could have honored a less controversial name for the helmet

3-0, baby. And Houston, despite being 0-3, is a good team hindered by a lousy coach, so it wasn’t exactly beating the Jets.

I couldn’t be happier with the way this season has started. What a difference a quarterback makes.

The next game is the Battle of Pennsylvania. The last time they played the damn Eagles won, and I’ve had to hear about it for the last 4 years. This Eagles team isn’t good. Not only couldn’t they take down the Bengals, but Pederson went full coward and punted for the tie in overtime.

Of course, that means that they’ll completely wreck the Steelers, because that’s how these things go. But we’ll see. In any case, Pittsburgh is right on track. It’s nice being able to smile on Mondays.

Huh. So I jumped the gun with the Iggs. Pittsburgh gets the Titans next week. I suspect this will be a repeat of the Giants game: load up the run defense and make Tannehill win the game with his arm. The Titans are a pretty tough test, they gave KC everything they could handle last year in the playoffs, but the Steelers still ought to have this one handled.