Rapid Reaction: Steelers 24, Seahawks 0
September, 18, 2011
By Jamison Hensley | ESPN.com
PITTSBURGH -- Thoughts on the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 24-0 victory over the Seattle Seahawks at Heinz Field:
What it means: The Steelers aren’t as bad as they looked in that dismal season opener at Baltimore. Like most predicted, Pittsburgh took out its frustration early and often. Still, it’s tough to gauge the improvement in the Steelers because they played the rebuilding Seahawks, who had lapses in tackling and coverage. This was a confidence boost, nonetheless.
Roethlisberger hurt: The biggest scare in this laugher came late in the first half, when Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger took a shot to the knee from Seattle's Raheem Brock with 3:08 left in the second quarter. The diving Brock delivered the blow to the side of Roethlisberger's right knee. Roethlisberger only missed two plays before returning and got back up every time he took another hard shot in the game.
Thumbs up: The Steelers' offense dominated the game, controlling the clock and scoring at will in the first three quarters. Pittsburgh had the ball for 30 of the game's first 45 minutes (through three quarters) by converting on seven of its first 10 third downs. No one on the Seahawks, especially cornerback Brandon Browner, could cover Mike Wallace (eight catches for 126 yards and one touchdown). Rashard Mendenhall was most effective bouncing to the outside.
Thumbs down: To be fair, there was really nothing to complain about for Pittsburgh. The Steelers' pass rush didn't show up until the fourth quarter when Pittsburgh teed off on Tarvaris Jackson. Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham was wide right on a 41-yard field goal into the open end of Heinz Field. But this is just being nitpicky.
New-look offensive line: The Steelers had two new starters in rookie right tackle Marcus Gilbert (replacing injured Willie Colon) and left guard Ramon Foster (filling in for banged-up Chris Kemoeatu). Pittsburgh's offensive line showed improvement in pass protection from last week, but that's not saying much. The Steelers didn't have much success opening holes inside or getting much of a push close to the goal line.
What’s next: The Steelers go back on the road at Indianapolis where they will face the Peyton Manning-less Colts.