Photo via Steelers.com
Although I’m sure you are all busily engaged in planning your play-off watching menus and such, don’t forget that there is still work to be done before we even get to that point. [Cue Mike Ditka…] Part of that is answering these 5 Smoldering Questions:
1. The end-around is a staple of the Todd Haley playbook that many of us anticipate with great dread. Yet in the last few weeks we have seen the Steelers have some success with this, including a touchdown by Darrius Heyward-Bey, although said success came at the expense of teams who have already cleaned out their lockers. To what do you attribute this success—better placement in the game plan, better execution, or just incompetence on the part of the opposing teams?
2. Last Sunday’s match against the woeful Browns was, as many have stated, their Super Bowl, as no team wishes to share in the infamy of the 2008 Lions. But the chances didn’t look good for the Browns. The average number of points the Browns’ offense have managed to muster during the season is 14.6.
And yet they had their best game of the season against the Steelers last Sunday, and even looked like they were going to pull out the upset, it not for Corey Coleman dropping a beautifully-placed pass. And yet, despite the large number of yards the Steelers gave up, and the 24 points, they also had six sacks, an interception, and a forced fumble recovered by the Steelers. Is that a reasonable tradeoff to you, or would you have preferred a more workman-like and less exciting game?
3. And speaking of the Browns, the owner has stated he is keeping Hue Jackson as head coach despite the fact he has won one game in the past two seasons—a new low for the beleaguered franchise. Do you think the owner is right to do so, and do you think it will pay dividends next season?
4. Which team would you most like to see of the possible teams the Steelers could play in the Divisional Round? Or you can answer which team you would least like to see, according to taste. Please explain in either case.
5. Last but definitely not least—Mike Munchak has been given permission by the Steelers to interview for more than one head coaching job—the first name out there is the Cardinals. Do you think that losing Munchak would be an unmitigated disaster should he be hired away, or do you think he has created a solid foundation that will continue in the coming year(s)? And does anybody have any suggestions for things that might keep him in Pittsburgh? Weekly deliveries of Primanti’s, free Incline rides for life, etc.? Because I’ll contribute…