Steelers better, Seahawks baffled after 24-0 rompBy WILL GRAVES, AP Sports Writer Monday, Sep 19, 2011
PITTSBURGH (AP)—Moments after watching his team finish off 60 minutes of dominance in a 24-0 pounding of punchless Seattle, coach Mike Tomlin was hardly in the mood to say the Pittsburgh Steelers are back.
“I am still chewing on last week,” Tomlin said Sunday. “I am sure we all are. That’s just the nature of this thing. It’s not going to take one performance to take that stench off of us.”
Getting over a 28-point beatdown at the hands of your rival takes time. The whipping the defending AFC champions received in Baltimore last Sunday will linger.
Particularly if it continues to provide the Steelers (1-1) with motivation. The defense limited the Seahawks (0-2) to 164 total yards, the offense held the ball for nearly 39 minutes and Pittsburgh left Seattle searching for answers.
So is coach Pete Carroll. He expected his team to have issues trying to move on without former quarterback Matt Hasselbeck(notes). He didn’t expect it to get shut out for the second straight visit to the Steel City.
“We’re not getting any continuity and we’re not getting the rhythm,” Carroll said. “We couldn’t get it going.”
The Seahawks don’t have a lot of time to waste. Arizona comes to town next week and Carroll is well aware his team’s confidence is in a fragile state after getting manhandled by the Steelers.
“The Cardinals are coming in, it is really an important week for us to make some progress,” Carroll said. “We will be there to get the season started and it doesn’t sound like it started yet for us.”
The Steelers were saying the same thing a week ago in their 35-7 loss, when the offense couldn’t hold onto the ball and the defense went from “veteran” to “old” overnight.
Funny, Pittsburgh didn’t exactly look ancient while sacking Jackson five times and keeping the Seahawks on their side of the field until the fourth quarter.
For a brief moment in the second quarter, it appeared quarterback Ben Roethlisberger(notes) was headed out the window, too. He laid motionless on the Heinz Field turf for several minutes after taking a shot to the knees from Seattle’s Raheem Brock(notes) shortly after completing a pass to Heath Miller(notes).
“It was pretty scary,” Roethlisberger said. “You just feel guys roll up on your legs, and when he rolled up on me it was a scary feeling. I didn’t feel anything pop, so that was good about it. Then it was just a matter of playing through the pain.”
Roethlisberger slowly pulled himself to his feet and gingerly made his way to the sideline. He stretched while backup Charlie Batch(notes) took a couple of snaps before re-entering. And he didn’t waste any time checking out the knee, lining up in the shotgun and throwing an incompletion that forced the Steelers to settle for a field goal and a 17-0 lead.
“If I’m out there, I’m going to play,” Roethlisberger said.
He played the entire second half and expects to be just fine for next Sunday night’s game at Indianapolis. Though he completed 22 of 30 passes for 298 yards and a score, it wasn’t his knee he was concerned about afterward but the touchdowns he felt the Steelers left on the field.
“I felt like we could have scored a lot more points than we did, but we won the game and that’s what’s most important right now,” Roethlisberger said.
The Seahawks were never in it, but some points would have been nice.
“We didn’t score a point, period, and that is just embarrassing,” Jackson said.
It’s a feeling the Steelers were all too familiar with a week ago. They took one step forward on Sunday. But they know it’s just one step.
“The season is still early,” said wide receiver Hines Ward(notes). “(The media) hit the panic button more than we did. Did we play well against Baltimore? No. We know that. Today I think our defense set the tempo and we got something going in the run game. … Overall it was a good team win.”