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Enemy Reaction 2019: Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images

You could say that the Seattle Seahawks made life hard for themselves at times against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but it’s not often that we get to celebrate a September road win in these parts. After two trips to Heinz Field (in 2007 and 2011) yielded zero points, Russell Wilson and company torched the Steeler defense for more than 400 yards of offense and 28 points to improve to 2-0 to start the 2019 NFL season.

Of course, if you’ve been here long enough you know that a Seahawks win also means it’s Enemy Reaction time! This week, Steelers game thread comments coming courtesy of Behind the Steel Curtain.

Chris Carson fumbles, return for a touchdown is wiped out by penalty (0-0)

After Mychal Kendricks DPI, James Conner gets Pittsburgh’s first touchdown of the season (7-0 PIT)

Seahawks make field goal, Steelers extend drive with roughing the snapper penalty (7-0 PIT)

Russell Wilson finds Will Dissly for Seahawks’ first ever points at Heinz Field (7-7)

Jason Myers misses 58-yard field goal after mess of a two-minute drill (10-7 PIT)

Bradley McDougald takes advantage of Donte Moncrief’s awful hands (10-7 PIT)

Seahawks take the lead on Will Dissly’s second touchdown (14-10 SEA)

JuJu Smith-Schuster comes down with 45-yard pass on flea flicker, Steelers kick FG (14-13 SEA)

Rashaad Penny turns 3rd and short into a 37-yard touchdown (21-13 SEA)

Mason Rudolph throws first career NFL touchdown pass to Vance McDonald, miss on the two-point try (21-19 SEA)

Pass interference? No way————yes way! Pete Carroll’s challenge works! (21-19 SEA)

DK Metcalf’s first NFL touchdown puts Seattle up by two possessions (28-19 SEA)

Botched handoff results in Steelers recovery (28-19 SEA)

Vance McDonald gets his second touchdown (28-26 SEA)

Chris Carson ices the game with a 4th and 1 conversion (28-26 SEA Final)

Post-Game: Loss to Seahawks makes Week 1 loss hurt even more (Tina Rivers, Steel City Underground)

The team looked better in several situations, but there is evidence once again that this team is not powerful enough on offense to threaten opposing defenses and make them alter their plans. The defense is having to be on the field too long as a result, despite the altered personnel packages that came in and out of both games.

Allowing Wilson to run the ball play-after-play in the fourth quarter, utilizing his own legs to move the chains, was nearly inexcusable. Especially since the coverage by the defensive backs, for the most part, was solid on deeper routes. Especially because everyone in the league knows that Wilson can run and gun. Especially because this has been an issue that is not new to the Steelers. And above all that, because Butler isn’t a rookie coach.

The close loss to Seattle at home made the loss to New England more painful because it showed that this Steelers team can enter a game fresh, fast, and nasty, but does not appear to have the endurance for the long game. That is more than being unprepared for prime time. That is having injuries and being unable to put guys into the game that are ready to step up. That is not keeping the “standard.”

Post-Game: This offense is objectively not good right now (Jacob Klinger, Penn Live)

Mason Rudolph outproduced Roethlisberger in his one half of play. But who did either of them have to work with?

The Steelers are grasping at functional combinations of wide receivers and struggling to find any. The Seahawks dared Pittsburgh to beat them with three linebackers often matching upon three receivers, and the Steelers wideouts couldn’t get it done.

Vance McDonald was the most consistent threat as, for a second straight week, an opponent had no problem minimizing JuJu Smith-Schuster’s impact on the game. Who else should opposing defensive backs have their game plan built around?

And while Pittsburgh’s defense has enough to account for itself in singular moments, the lack of sustained possession for the Steelers showed badly Sunday. Most notably, when the unit could only hold the ball for 43 seconds on its first drive of the half, the defense had to all but immediately shuffle back out, and got torn up for 60 yards on 6 plays on a drive that gave Seattle the lead for good and set the tone for the rest of the game.

Post-Game Video Rant: Everybody’s allowed to slap Donte Moncrief (Chiseled Adonis)

Side note, I swear this dude sounds like he’s related to Stephen A. Smith, only somehow not as loud but also way funnier.

Enemy Preaction: New Orleans Saints

Up next are the New Orleans Saints, who will be without quarterback Drew Brees for potentially into November, which presents a golden opportunity for the Seahawks to start 3-0. Seattle has never lost a September home game under Pete Carroll, and this turn of events means the Seahawks will be favored significantly to win again. The Saints roster has plenty of talented players, particularly on the defensive side of the ball, so even a Brees-less New Orleans team won’t necessarily be a walkover.

Thanks for reading and go ‘Hawks!