Steelers Might Blitz Their Way Out Of Super Bowl XLIII
Total Pro Sports – Anyone who has ever read Tuesday Morning Quarterback on ESPN, is well aware of the mantra “stop me before I blitz again.”
TMQ’s theory being that teams blitz too much, and, logically, when you blitz you have less players in your defensive backfield, therefore it is easier for the other team to complete a pass, and extend the drive with a first down.
The ideal offense against a blitz is a pass-first offense, with big wide receivers that can break tackles and get yards after the catch, and running backs with good hands to catch the ball out of the backfield. Essentially a west-coast offense, with a ton of receiving options and a quarterback who knows who to dump the ball off to.
Sound familiar? It should. Anyone who watched the Arizona Cardinals beat the Eagles in the NFC championship saw Kurt Warner in action. Warner may be a statue in the pocket, but with Fitzgerald, Boldin, Breaston and Edgerrin James, to name a few, the Cardinals have numerous great options for him to throw to. Against Carolina as well, Warner torched the defense almost every time they blitzed.
Larry Fitzgerald romping through a secondary depleted by blitzing might be fun to watch (for must of us) but you would think that at some point the other team would figure it out. Neither Carolina nor Philadelphia got it. They kept blitzing and Warner kept completing passes, and lo – the Cardinals are in the Super Bowl!
Thanks to astute analysts employed by ESPN and every other news outlet in the nation, we are all well aware that the Pittsburgh Steelers have a great defense – best in the NFL during the regular season and crucial in their playoff wins so far.
We also have been told why Pittsburgh is so good.
They use a zone-blitzing defensive scheme that allegedly keeps the quarterback on his heels and out of rhythm because he never knows where the blitz is coming from. Well, I’m pretty sure Carolina and Philadelphia didn’t blitz over and over from the same position, so I don’t see how that’s going to help them.
If the Steelers have been paying attention, they will have seen Kurt Warner putting on a clinic in how to beat the blitz, and they’ll back their defense down.
So far in these playoffs, the Steelers have beat the Chargers and the Ravens, quarterbacked by Phillp Rivers and Joe Flacco, respectively. Well, no disrespect to them but neither of them has the experience of Kurt Warner, and while they succumbed to the Steeler blitz, Warner tore apart every blitz the NFC’s best could bring. Not only that, but neither of those teams has a receiving corps quite like the Cardinals.
Let’s be honest, nobody does. How many other third-string wide receivers broke 1,000 yards this season?
The Steelers may have a great defense but they will have to be careful before they blitz their way out of the Super Bowl.
Via guest reporter Brian at Illegal Use Of Hands