Pittsburgh Steelers 27 New York Jets 10
It took a little time, but the Pittsburgh Steelers finally decided to show up for the 2012 season. Things got off to a not-so-hot start when the Steelers settled into old patterns of scoring field goals instead of touchdowns. Meanwhile the Jets marched down the field on their first possession and scored a touchdown.
The Steelers finally worked out the kinks on offense and got in the end zone with a nice little touchdown pass to Heath Miller. After that the Steelers got into a rhythm on offense and defense.
I’m just going to assume the Steelers read my preview midway through the second quarter. Throwing the ball to Heath? Scoring touchdowns? I totally called it.
The Steelers didn’t shy away from the run after their slow start. Jonathan Dwyer and Isaac Redman had 12 carries each for 28 and 25 yards respectively. This enabled to Steelers to dominate time of possession over the Jets 36:36 – 23:24.
Mike Wallace showed the Steelers that, yes, maybe they should shell out the big bucks to keep him with some nifty footwork on a touchdown. On the other end of the play, Ben Roethlisberger slipped out of the grasp of Jets defenders and extended the play. In other words, Ben was being Ben.
The Steelers may have been without Troy Polamalu and James Harrison, but they welcomed back Ryan Clark. Clark was all over the field and lead the team in tackles. LaMarr Woodley backed up his tough talk and provided plenty of pressure in the backfield and a sack on Mark Sanchez.
While the offense did their part in controlling the ball and the game clock, the defense did their part to get off the field. The Jets were only 4 for 12 on third downs.
The only fumbleception of the game occurred on special teams, but Ryan Mundy showed great hustle on recovering the flubbed punt recovery by the Jets.
My biggest pet peeve is blaming the officials for the outcome of this game. Luckily this game wasn’t even close so I don’t have to deal with whining by either team (it’s an equal opportunity pet peeve). That being said, the officials were in over their head. I don’t want to blame the replacement refs, as the regular refs can be just as horrible, but I have never seen so many non-calls, phantom calls, and “what the hell” calls all in one game.
Ike Taylor was flagged for a mysterious pass interference call on an invisible Jets receiver. Emmanuel Sanders was given a first down when a ref mistook the top of Manny’s helmet with the nose of the ball. Rex Ryan challenged the spot of the ball and won, forcing the Steelers to punt. Fortunately for the Steelers, the Jets muffed the punt and the Steelers recovered. The ref failed to see Isaac Redman’s knee down on a challenged play, but at that point the game was pretty much over for all intents and purposes.
Hopefully next week we’ll have the regular refs to complain about.