At least for this game I won't be munching Tums like M&M's. Halftime and the game's already over. To paraphase what I wrote in my post about the Colts losing to the Pats, the Steelers are losing another AFC title game in the same old way. Turnovers, touchdowns on returns, giving up big play after big play. It's been a great season, four months between losses, but it was easy to see this coming. Whether Roethlisberger is hurt or not doesn't really matter, he's played like a rookie the past two weeks, and it's finally caught up to the Steelers. Oh well. They have a good foundation to build on, no one saw so much as a playoff berth this season, let alone a 15-game winning streak. The sad thing is that you only get so many chances to go to the Super Bowl, and the Steelers have blown three chances and are in the middle of losing another by horrible play. And that sucks large.
UPDATE: Well, at least they're showing some signs of life. No sooner do I ask if Randle El has even dressed for the last 2 games and he takes a screen down to the five, and The Bus does the rest. So, we'll see.
UPDATE UPDATE: Tough game. Tough way to end the season, losing the title game on our home field. Again. And losing the way we did. Patriots are the better team, but the Steelers played their 2 worst games of the year in the playoffs, and didn't deserve to go to the Super Bowl. The play of the game? In my opinion, it wasn't the TD on the interception return, it was the pass Roethlisberger threw to Burress in the end zone on 2nd and goal to start off the 4th quarter. The ball was well-thrown, Plax had his guy screened off, he goes up to catch it...and the ball clanks off his right hand. He didn't even get both hands on it. That one play should guarantee that this was the last game Plaxico Burress plays in a Steeler uniform. Can you imagine Randy Moss dropping that ball? Terrell Owens? Deion Branch? Burress has tons of talent, and he's produced about 1/10th of what capable of. The Steelers have a history of not paying a lot for wide recievers (Hines Ward will be an exception) and I think the Steelers would be mad to invest a lot of cash in a player who, time and time again, doesn't produce when he's most needed.
Should the Steelers have gone for it on 4th and goal? In retrospect the answer is yes, and I personally would have taken a shot. I understand Cowher's thinking, there's still 12 minutes to go, a ton of time, and your defense has risen to the occasion in the 2nd half. He didn't know the D would collapse the rest of the way, but a touchdown in that situation really puts the Pats under the screws and gets the crowd roaring. After all the horrible plays that come before, the Steelers needed some heroics to pull it out, and Cowher didn't give the offense a chance to perform a miracle.
Just a ghastly game, to cap off a ghastly weekend. Every day was a nightmare, I'm actually looking forward to going back to work tomorrow. Fortunately I sit in a fairly isolated area and won't have to deal with many people crying over the loss. The whole city will be in mourning, probably through the Super Bowl. No Penguins to take our collective mind off the loss, and the Pirates are of course a joke. It's gonna be a long, blue time here in Pittsburgh, let me tell you.
UPDATE UPDATE UPDATE: And to top off a truly horrible weekend, I just busted out on the bubble in an SNG up against three terrible players who seemed determined to give their chips away but wouldn't bust the low guy out. I finally had to go all-in with 5-9, the other guy turns over QQ, I hit my miracle 2 pair on the flop, but the board pairs another card and I'm out. The play before was unreal, but I couldn't get a hand. I still should've made the money, but the 2 chip leaders would re-raise preflop like T400 and then fold when the short guy bet T150 into the pot. Thanks, guys, just give him enough chips to get back on his feet.
I'm in a bad, bad mood. Think I'll go to sleep, where I get at least a few hours of relative peace and quiet.