Just like that, the miracle play that wasn’t, nearly saved the season that never was. As Antonio Brown appeared to score on the now infamous hook and lateral play gone wrong, it seemed the Steelers season was still alive. Yet, moments later, it was ruled that Brown had stepped out of bounds and with that the game was over, along with the season.
The Steelers, now 5-8, have no reasonable shot at making the playoffs let alone seeing a winning record, which they never saw at any point this season. It’s so bad that it will take winning their final three games just to see .500, for the first time all year.
Many people were fooled after the Steelers won 5 of 7 following their 0-4 start, thinking this team had a true shot at the playoffs. But much like Brown’s run on Sunday, appearance is not always reality.
The reality of the season to this point is pretty simple. They aren’t very good. Their eight losses come to teams with a combined record of 51-51-1.
That record clearly indicates the Steelers can’t even beat teams in the middle of the pack, let alone hang with the big boys. The stat is even skewed when you take into account the Patriots own 10 of those wins and the Bengals another 9. The Steelers own losses to some incredibly horrific teams like the Raiders and Vikings. But, in the end, aren’t the Steelers just as horrific?
They have beaten teams with a combined record of 28-37. Is it a wonder the black and gold are currently 5-8 and at the brink of obtaining their first losing record since Big Ben joined the team in 2004?
There are many flaws with this team that will need to be addressed in the offseason but many were on display on Sunday against the Dolphins.
Time management was an issue that played a factor in the game, the offensive line couldn’t make the necessary plays down the stretch to allow Ben time, the defense, a major issue, couldn’t make a play in crucial situations, tackling was atrocious, the play calling was ill timed and questionable and the team just looks flat and overmatched at nearly every position on the field.
The game against the Dolphins didn’t dictate the Steelers ultimate fate this season, it was only a another example in the ever growing list of examples as to why this team never had a real shot at any success in 2013.
Big Ben surpassed Terry Bradshaw for the most TD passes in team history when he threw is 213th.
The Steelers are not mathematically eliminated from playoff contention but will need to win out and have multiple teams in front of them lose out, as if either of those could happen.
Next Game: Vs. Cincinnati on Sunday Night (not sure why this wasn’t flexed out)