The Pittsburgh Steelers are finding themselves in a world of hurt both literally and figuratively. Rookie RB Rashard Mendenhall is out for the season. Pro Bowl RB Willie Parker’s knee injury makes him dicey as well. RB Carey Davis went out Monday night with an ankle injury. What this all means is that, unless another option presents itself quickly, Pittsburgh will likely be looking at starting their fourth string RB, Mewelde Moore, against a very tough Jacksonville team on the road this Sunday. To make matters worse, Moore will be running behind an offensive line that will be without starting RG Kendall Simmons, who, like Mendenhall, is done for the season.
The quarterback situation in Kansas City is familiar to us all. First string QB Brodie Croyle will miss about a third of the season due to injury. Due to his chronic unavailability, Brodie’s future as the Chiefs‘ franchise QB is on the verge of extinction. Current starter Damon Huard, though a smart and serviceable backup, is clearly not the future for this organization. Starting Tyler Thigpen is unthinkable.
Where I am going with all this, in case you were wondering, is that Pittsburgh and Kansas City could not be in better positions to assist each other with their respective predicaments. With four good RBs on the active roster and yet another on the practice squad, the Chiefs are blessed with both talent and depth at that position. And, as luck would have it, Pittsburgh possesses comparable depth and talent at QB with Big Ben, Leftwich, and Dixon. Batch, on IR, is yet another backburner option for them going forward next season. Enter the most important trade of the season; namely, Kolby Smith for Dennis Dixon – like yesterday man. And yes I would double over in hysterics if I ever heard the Voice of the Kingdom say “Dixon to Johnson with Mike Cox leading the way!”
Many Happy Returns
The Chiefs pretty much stole my thunder on this topic yesterday by ridding us of BJ Sams. Savage and Charles are clearly the way to go. If K-Throb performs decently after coming off PUP, we may be set for years in the return game.
Considering how thin we are with our backers, what an impressive showing by DJ and Williams last Sunday. I’m off my Gunther watch – this week anyway.
Smarty for GM
Full on. That the Smith – Dixon trade will likely not even be considered only adds fuel to the fire. Donations to the “Got Schott?” campaign are now being accepted.
Feeling a Draft?
Are you kidding me? Sorry, the Chase is not on. I have yet to see any QB draft prospect I consider worthy of a second round pick much less a first rounder. Chase Daniel looks to me like fifth rounder at best. Newsflash, the NFL will never, let me repeat that, NEVER, adopt the spread offense. Our focus for the first and second rounds next year should be MLB, OL, and/or OLB. WR (Murphy) and/or DE (Selvie?) might be plausible options as well.
Rebuilding Experiment Progress Report
How about that defense? Is it just me or does Bernard Pollard look like he’s assuming the mantel of leadership for that unit? He looks to me like a guy who’s ready to start controlling games and do we ever need that. And DJ, what a turn around game he just had! Things are looking up folks and call me crazy but I’ve got to say I honestly like how our guys match up against Delhomme and the Panthers offense.
As for the offensive side of the ball, even though we were mostly running the ball, I thought the pass protection against Denver was about the best I’ve seen it this year. Then again, it was the Denver defense. As far as our running game goes, it’s been on a roll since the second half of the Atlanta game. Let’s hope both elements continue to improve – considering the defense we’ll be facing this Sunday, we’ll need to bring everything we can muster to come away with a W.
On special teams, Savage and Charles finally showed us something we’ve been lacking since Dante Hall. Buh bye BJ. Our coverage, while not perfect, looked a smidgen better, didn’t you think? Novak’s kick offs were near spectacular compared to his prior outings. Field goal accuracy/consistency remains a big concern mostly because of Herm’s keep-it-close approach to winning.
What Beating Denver Ultimately Means
We are tied with the team that Al owns, one game behind the team that is next on Norv’s list of teams to ruin and head-to-head winner against a division leader that can only wish it had a defense as good as ours. Twelve games to go. Smoke on that.
Last but Not Least
Tony Gonzalez needs to recognize that his sour grapes comments about not getting to break the receiving record served no purpose other than to bring toxic rain on what should have been a pretty nice parade. Gonz has always been a class act and I understand where he is coming from on this. I am also pretty sure that all of Chiefs Nation would have loved to see him bask in the glory of record Valhalla, at home, against the Broncos. All of that is beside the point because his “what about me” turned into a huge, unnecessary distraction. Because Tony is such a class act, I have every confidence that he will eventually reflect on the wisdom of sharing his postgame sentiments and realize the unintended damage of his words. What should have been a great celebration for a great franchise was diminished a bit by none other than one of its all-time greatest players.