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Bettis gets blunt about the Steelers

Jerome Bettis, whose NBC gig ended after the 2008 season, is now writing for SI.com.

And his debut column will raise some eyebrows in the ‘Burgh.

Bettis explains — accurately, we might add — that the biggest flaw with the Steelers is their offensive line.

“This problem isn’t anything new,” Bettis says, “and I blame the coaching staff for not
addressing the line in the offseason.  How did they rationalize not
doing anything about it?  Well, they won a Super Bowl.  They won’t be so
lucky twice in a row.  If Ben [Roethlisberger] continues to get hit the way he did
Thursday — the same way he did last year, then this will come back to
haunt the Steelers.  Ben will get hurt.  Ben will miss games.  And they
don’t have a line to run behind without Ben.  Pittsburgh can’t repeat
with the line playing like this.”

Bettis also echoes our recent item regarding the possibility that Mewelde Moore will leapfrog Willie Parker and Rashard Mendenhall on the depth chart.

Though the league source who pointed Bettis’ column out to us thinks that Bettis will be required to tone it down soon, that directive surely won’t come from SI.com.  Instead, Bettis will have to decide whether he wants to continue to be a beloved alumnus of the Steelers organization, or whether he wants to be objective.

Then again, Bettis made waves three years ago by accurately exposing the fact that coach Bill Cowher would be packing it in after the 2006 season, a belief that was an open secret among the folks who cover the team, but it was treated by the beat writers with the discretion that once was afforded to politicians who engaged in periodic peccadillos.

Meanwhile, we agree whole-heartedly with Jerome’s five other takes in the wake of Week One.

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51 Responses to “Bettis gets blunt about the Steelers”
  1. EdgarSnyder says: Sep 14, 2009 11:25 PM

    bettis a chump, a tiki-wanna-be sellout chump who is wearing out his welcome in the `burgh.

  2. tmj says: Sep 14, 2009 11:31 PM

    Perhaps you are right and Bettis is a sour-grapes chump.
    But my money is on Bettis being the kid in the crowd that pointed out the fact that the emperor had no clothes on.

  3. Ravens Macg says: Sep 14, 2009 11:35 PM

    This is gonna be great! All the squeeler fans are gonna turn on someone they used to idolize. When his observations turn to reality they’ll hate him even more instead of being rational and agreeing he called it as it is. Don’t blame Bettis for the 8-8 season, blame the Ruuneys.

  4. cmich06 says: Sep 14, 2009 11:38 PM

    he isn’t saying anything Steeler nation doesn’t already know

  5. CanadianVikingFan says: Sep 14, 2009 11:38 PM

    Mewelde Moore should be the number one back. He can run inbetween the tackles, he can catch passes, he can pass block. He is a complete back. Hes not the best obviously but he outperforms the other two on a constant basis.

  6. 2brauneyz says: Sep 14, 2009 11:41 PM

    The Bus nailed it! Great guest column. Hope he gets to do some more.

  7. redsquare says: Sep 14, 2009 11:41 PM

    Hey Edgar, how many Super Bowl rings are on your hand at this moment? How much direct experience with the Steelers organization do you have?
    Disagree with the man, fine, but a chump? Better post your CV before taking that angle.

  8. mnmaverick says: Sep 14, 2009 11:48 PM

    The Vikings are in the same boat there. They rave about the names like McKinnie, Hutchinson, etc. But the pass blocking has been down-right horrible. There are skeptics about Favre dinking and dunking with short passes, but that’s all he’s had time to do. He has no time to wait for deep routes to develop. The receiving corps is below average outside of Berrian who hasn’t played and Harvin. Sidney Rice is way over-hyped. He’s not much better than Troy Williamson. They should keep an eye open for veteran receivers on waivers or through trades if Marshall or Boldin want a landing spot.

  9. leatherneck says: Sep 14, 2009 11:56 PM

    Why would Bettis be ostracized from Steeler nation?
    He just tells the truth. The O-line is not very good. In fact, it’s bad.
    Don’t shoot the messenger.

  10. copes cabana says: Sep 14, 2009 11:59 PM

    I think I have to respectfully disagree with Edgar (who will get money for you!). Bettis is right, and all the Steeler fans know it. The line is our weakness and it only takes one bad hit to take any player out and Ben is taking a lot of them. As far as Mewelde possibly passing Willie (still don’t think it will happen) that is solely the fault of Bruce Arians offense. Willie behind Dan Kreider was a beast. Open a hole through the line, give him room to make a cut past the line and he is gone. Make Willie have to decide where to hit the line, and make a cut behind the line and he is not effective. It is just not his style and not suited to his strengths. Mewelde gets way more involved in the passing game. Bruce would marry the passing game if Ben didn’t already have his dirty way with it (don’t kid yourself, you know the passing game loved it.)
    GIVE WILLIE A POWER BLOCKING FULLBACK!!!!! IT WILL SOLVE SO MANY PROBLEMS!!!!

  11. Clark says: Sep 15, 2009 12:01 AM

    Is he wrong? Way to do your job Bus.

  12. Plax's Right Thigh says: Sep 15, 2009 12:09 AM

    Edgar Snyder: I played with Jerome Bettis, I knew Jerome Bettis, Jerome Bettis was a friend of mine..and Tiki Barber is no Jerome Bettis….
    /Lloyd Bentsen’d

  13. SteelCurtnDee says: Sep 15, 2009 12:19 AM

    I’m interested to hear from other Steelers fans… I read the article and I don’t see why Bettis would have to tone it down to still be “beloved” by Steelers fans…
    I mean I really don’t think there’s anything there that isn’t true. If any Steelers fans think that our O-line isn’t terrible they’re blind.

  14. Dawn says: Sep 15, 2009 12:26 AM

    This coming from a man who admitted to faking an injury worse than it actually was because he feared getting cut.

  15. Bruce says: Sep 15, 2009 12:29 AM

    Time to call your own 800 number for advice Mr. Snyder. Everyone in town already knows what Bettis is saying is true. It’s no secret that the running game is in the tank with pretty good talent and the passing game is only surviving because Ben is a monster who will make something out of nothing more often than not. The O-line does a good job with the talent that’s in there, but we all know that a significant upgrade is in order.

  16. geofar1957 says: Sep 15, 2009 12:58 AM

    i’ve been a steelers fan for 30 yrs and an nfl fan for 35.bettis is right.these guys playing offensive line are a joke not only to the steelers organization but to the entire steeler nation.they’re worse than pathetic.they wouldn’t be able to play for college powerhouses like florida gators or texas, or usc.they should be playing arena ftball cos they don’t belong in an nfl camp.big ben is going to be hurt bad before the seasons over with and arians needs to get lost and bring in an offesive coach who knows how to teach run blocking like russ grimm did when he was a line coach here.but 1st they need to draft a few “O” lineman with some skill and ability to block for more than.09 seconds!.

  17. FumbleNuts says: Sep 15, 2009 1:16 AM

    The Bus speak truth…. he know Steelers.

  18. BennyBoy says: Sep 15, 2009 1:16 AM

    The fact that the O line has sucked for the last two years isn’t new. You could say that Jerome is aspiring toward being the Master of the Obvious here. They weren’t much better in 2006 even with Faneca still on the line.
    What I’d like to read is someone pointing out that the O line has slid dramatically since the Steelers hired Zierlein to coach the it. It’s painfully obvious that he sucks. We have guys back peddling and letting a rusher go by because they are unsure of their assignment every week. That is blocking scheme and that comes down to coaching. Tomlin should have fired that guy when he emailed porn to everyone in the league before the first post-Cowher season. He had an excuse and this guy is terrible. Max Starks was never a dominant tackle even when Russ Grim was there, but at least he was respectable. Now, he gets beaten on a regular basis. Ditto for Colon, who is gawd awful. (Incidentally, Faneca didn’t get along well with Zierlein because he thought his scheme was a joke and Zierlein thought Faneca undermined him.)
    If the Steelers had Jim Brown in his prime to carry the ball right now, it wouldn’t matter. If a back gets hit before he even gets to the line of scrimmage he doesn’t have a chance.
    And no one (except for Snyder apparently) is going to turn on Bettis for saying what we all scream at the TV every week as we watch our quarterback run for his life.
    Fire Larry Zierlein!

  19. this class sucks says: Sep 15, 2009 1:30 AM

    Bettis was my personal favoriot player when he was in the league, and still is an idle. His comments are perfectly justified. I do disagree that the O-Line is failing to protect Ben, there were only 4 sacks in the game and 2 of them were all on Ben (he could have thrown the ball away). I am not saying I want Ben to keep doing what he is doing. The O-line is suffering on the run game as are the backs but I again disagree that Moore will take over. When the Steelers went to that all passing attack they used Moore because he has the best hands of all the backs. I think you will see Logan starting in the back field before Moore.
    Bettis did nothing wrong and no true Steeler fan would dislike Bettis for any of this.
    The guy who said blame the ownership. Really? The ownership that is the only group to bring 6 Super Bowls home? Ok. The Steelers don’t go after big money free agents, they drafted some line men. Iam not worried about the Steelers they will win any where from 9-12 games and probably split the series with Baltimore.

  20. sullijo says: Sep 15, 2009 1:57 AM

    The O-line won’t matter this week….just wait for Cutler to throw an INT and return it for a TD (or 4).
    Simple as that.

  21. praveen says: Sep 15, 2009 2:11 AM

    SteelersNation is not just a bunch of yes men. I am a huge Steelers fan and I agree with what Bettis said in this column. After all, I have been saying the same stuff over the last year on this site and on the Post Gazette chats. Mewelde is not used enough by Arians when Parker and Mendenhall are healthy. Mewelde rarely makes mistakes. When he runs, you can tell when the OL is not doing its job. When Parker runs, some of the mistakes are his. And yes, it’s time someone took Steelers management to task for thinking their OL was good enough to win a SB just because they won one. That kind of logic is as idiotic as someone Mitch Berger should return because he “won” the SB.
    Steelers have done a great job with most of the roster. Tomlin has succeeded in improving the special teams in such a short time. Colbert has hit on most of his first round picks. But they have fumbled badly in the OL issue starting with their OL coach.
    Let’s not forget Arians idiocy in using Spaeth primarily as a blocker. THis is a guy who has only one NFL level skill – catching passes.
    Drafting Mendenhall may not have been idiotic but it was absolutely needless. Steelers should know that a good offensive line is more important than a star RB for the running game.
    Hartwig and Essex were absolutely awful in the TN game. Kemoeatu actually played OK . Imagine when Kemo reverts to his usual sucky self.

  22. ShugMercer says: Sep 15, 2009 2:23 AM

    I love the Steel, but Bettis is RIGHT!!!
    We should have paid Faneca, and/or built more stability into the line. The only good thing about losing a starter for US is that no one is so good that we’d miss them very much!
    No need to be upset with Bussy, HE’S JUST TRYING TO BE HONEST AND MAKE SOME MONEY FOR IT!
    Wish we could all do the same!
    SM

  23. mborz says: Sep 15, 2009 4:27 AM

    I can’t imagine any Steelers fan having a hard time with what Bettis is saying. Everyone one I’ve talked to since last Thursday has already been saying the same thing. It’s a concern, and an obvious one.

  24. ncoolong says: Sep 15, 2009 6:04 AM

    As you can see on here, there are few Steelers fans who will hate Bettis for what he said, because what he said is correct.
    The line played very poorly Thursday night, and while they won a Super Bowl with four of the five starters they had in Week 1, they played a lot better last year.
    It’s weird, because the sum of their parts is more than the sum of their whole right now. I think they can be coached, they’ve just got some work to do.
    To be fair though, they did draft a guard (Kraig Urbik) who was supposed to compete for Darnell Stapleton’s RG job. Doesn’t look like he’s ready quite yet. Max Starks and Willie Colon are their starters at tackle

  25. Ravenmaniac says: Sep 15, 2009 6:12 AM

    This OL always gets the blame, but what about the fact (and Tomlin pointed this out not that long ago) that ben doesnt read defenses very well? It is easy to blame the OL, but when your QB is ruinning around like he is playing sand lot football any OL would have problems.
    Make your QB spend some time watching film!!
    I agree, ben scrambles his way out of some problems, but you can bet there will come a time when the illusiveness and agility is not there any more and his inability to diagnose a defense will be glaring!

  26. steeler-hater says: Sep 15, 2009 6:55 AM

    I love how ”some” Steeler fans are hating on their former hero Bettis just because he says the same thing that a lot of respected football people are already saying about Pittsburgh’s OL.
    Bettis speaks the ugly truth about the team’s suspect OL and ”some” Steeler fans can’t handle it. Those fans want Bettis to lie to them and tell them that everything is fine and dandy with the OL and it just is not. The truth is that their starting 5 is shaky and their backup depth isn’t very good. But instead of dealing with it, the fans want to “kill the messenger” instead.
    That great Pittsburgh defense can only cover up so much for the OL’s weaknesses. If they don’t start opening up better holes for the RBs and also start protecting old Toothlessberger better, it won’t matter much how well the defense plays. The Steelers will find it nearly impossible to repeat unless that OL of theirs starts playing better…

  27. steelframe says: Sep 15, 2009 7:03 AM

    Straight talk from the Bus. Why are Steeler fans supposed to be upset about this again? He didn’t say anything in that article that I didn’t say on Friday morning.
    It was shocking to see that they won the Super Bowl last year without an effective running attack, with an O-line that can’t run or pass block, and the worst punter and KR’s in the league. At least we improved on that last aspect.
    Still, they were 12-4 last year with the league’s toughest schedule, they will cruise to 12-4 at worst this year with one of the easiest schedules.

  28. DonTerrelli says: Sep 15, 2009 7:24 AM

    Why wouldn’t it happen? This is Parker’s contract year, and if he doesn’t step it up, they can demote him by default in the offseason if he wants to stay in Pittsburgh.

  29. i'm president charlie! says: Sep 15, 2009 7:30 AM

    I will always love the Bus.
    Everyone knows the offensive line sucks, which just shows what everybody already knows….that BIG Ben is awesome!
    Name another quarterback in the NFL that could stand behind the Steelers offensive line and be as productive, especially without a running game.
    Who cares who the #1 back is in Pittsburgh? Having Parker, Moore, and Mendenhall rotating in and out of the game allows fresh legs in the 4th quarter, improves the chance that each will stay healthy, and is just another example of the TEAM concept that has allowed the Steelers to be so successful.

  30. DerekLutz says: Sep 15, 2009 7:47 AM

    Bettis comments about the running game and offensive line are right on the money. It was almost as if Big Ben wrote those comments. They’re friends aren’t they?
    As for the Polamalu point, I think the Steelers’ D is a bit better than he claims. Troy makes them great, but they’re not too shabby without him.

  31. superfan99 says: Sep 15, 2009 8:02 AM

    Season opener vs. Baltimore, 2000. Jerome Bettis 9 carries, 8 yards. He went on to run for 1,333 yards in the remaining 15 games.
    No pun intended, but I can’t believe that Bettis is throwing Parker under the bus after one poor outing. Bettis had his fair share of bad games against good defenses.
    One game is not a trend. Look at last season. Parker struggled against Tennessee in week 16, but bounced back to run for over 100 yards in each of the next two games – including a 150 yards perfomance against SD in the playoffs.
    The Steelers aren’t going to lead the league in rushing, but they’re not close to being as bad as they looked on Thursday. Thanks to the new “Who can type the loudest” syndrome every writer/analyst feels the need to extrememly overreact to everything.
    Let me guess, Drew Brees is going to throw for 96 touchdowns this year? He threw for six on Sunday, so it must be true.

  32. Florios'Lawyer says: Sep 15, 2009 8:29 AM

    “…# Ravens Macg says: September 14, 2009 11:35 PM
    This is gonna be great! All the squeeler fans are gonna turn on someone they used to idolize. When his observations turn to reality they’ll hate him even more instead of being rational and agreeing he called it as it is. Don’t blame Bettis for the 8-8 season, blame the Ruuneys….”
    From the sound of it, seems the Steelers fans posting here agree with Bettis. Sorry to ruin your wet dream.
    Oh and uh, Ray Lewis is still a murderer.

  33. xteam says: Sep 15, 2009 8:36 AM

    As a lifelong Steelers and Bettis Fan (Watched him run OVER everyone in Notre Dame), Bettis is 100% right on! I watched the Oakland Raiders run aggressively over the Chargers last night, and watched their O-line run with attitude. The Steelers line has no attitude. While I was pleased with their pass blocking on Thursday night in the 2nd half, they are missing that smash-mouth, gonna-mess-you-up bravado that an effective run-blocking line needs. Faneca isn’t the answer-he’s an overpaid washout. We need an injection of young guys with seriously bad attitudes when it comes to running over guys! I know these guys are a work in progress. I too agree, that perhaps a change in the OL coach would help. They’re just not creating holes for the runners. Parker’s on borrowed time. He’s highly ineffective as a receiver, and both Mendenhall and Moore can catch and block. But I want some very nasty young guys to come in and push these mediocre guys to the curb and soon!!
    Go STEELERS!!
    XTeam

  34. Deadguy says: Sep 15, 2009 8:57 AM

    The o-line will be fine…. minus injuries. Ben’s style makes them look a little worse at times, just like Parker has, but they’ll all get better as the season progresses.
    There are teams that will shut down the run. The Steelers being one of them… you can’t judge your running game against them by stats.
    Not sure about Bettis, but I saw the same team as last year. A team that forced the Titans to play their game and was in total control in the fourth. It’s not always pretty, and the talking heads will predict a collapse, but if you know this team… things are still looking pretty good.
    If Bettis wants to get “real” and make an accurate critique, then maybe he should talk about Willie Parkers lack of vision and his propensity to go down on first contact.
    That is all, you fantasy footballers can go back to your stats. We’ll see you in the playoffs.

  35. Deadguy says: Sep 15, 2009 8:59 AM

    The o-line will be fine…. minus injuries. Ben’s style makes them look a little worse at times, just like Parker has, but they’ll all get better as the season progresses.
    There are teams that will shut down the run. The Steelers being one of them… you can’t judge your running game against them by stats.
    Not sure about Bettis, but I saw the same team as last year. A team that forced the Titans to play their game and was in total control in the fourth. It’s not always pretty, and the talking heads will predict a collapse, but if you know this team… things are still looking pretty good.
    If Bettis wants to get “real” and make an accurate critique, then maybe he should talk about Willie Parkers lack of vision and his propensity to go down on first contact.
    That is all, you fantasy footballers can go back to your stats. We’ll see you in the playoffs.

  36. Holeinone09 says: Sep 15, 2009 9:21 AM

    As a Steeler fan, I agree with just about all the other Steeler fans here when I say that the O-line has problems and has had problems for a number of years. Is there any team that is 100% perfect in all areas? Of course not. And why would anyone be upset about a former superstar who knows the sport and the team giving his opinion? Bettis is entitled to speak his piece.
    Yes, the O-line has it’s good moments and I think they did a better job of protecting Ben in the second half against the Titans when they were going no-huddle. It is true that some of the sacks are due to Ben holding the ball, but I would not want that to change since I will trade a couple sacks for 8-10 great plays that change the game by Ben holding the ball longer during a game. I also think that for some reason Parker is just not blasting into the line hard and quick right now either, which hurts the running game.
    But by and large, the line is just not as strong as it was years ago. I don’t think they have done that much to augment the line with very high draft choices or big free agents. They let Faneca go which was almost as bad as Philly letting Dawkins go.
    BTW to Ravensmania, exactly when did Tomlin say that Ben can’t read defenses? LOL you wish you had Ben instead of Flake-o!

  37. mike says: Sep 15, 2009 9:32 AM

    Hey now, we can’t come down on the mighty Steelers! Don’t ya’ll know they have a black coach! And, I might add, he’s GREAT!
    Not to mention the fact that the Steelers have the best towels in the business. They use only the best to polish their holy bums.

  38. urworstnitemare says: Sep 15, 2009 9:34 AM

    Ravens Macg, I’m not sure where you get the Squeelers, but thats better than being a Raven which is nothing more than flying rat.
    The Bus Speaks the truth and I’ve been saying all along that Parker should have been cut and Redman signed.

  39. The Jimmy says: Sep 15, 2009 9:45 AM

    Ravenmaniac says:
    September 15, 2009 6:12 AM
    This OL always gets the blame, but what about the fact (and Tomlin pointed this out not that long ago) that ben doesnt read defenses very well? It is easy to blame the OL, but when your QB is ruinning around like he is playing sand lot football any OL would have problems.
    Make your QB spend some time watching film!!
    I agree, ben scrambles his way out of some problems, but you can bet there will come a time when the illusiveness and agility is not there any more and his inability to diagnose a defense will be glaring!
    __________________
    I’m sorry, but what the hell does any of that have to do with missed assignments, confusion, jailbreaks, AND THEIR COMPLETE INABILITY TO RUN BLOCK? It’s not like Roethlisberger is standing back there for 5 seconds clean unable to find a receiver before he’s running for his life. The O line is a problem. They don’t pass block and they don’t run block. Otherwise they’re pretty good.

  40. cfuska says: Sep 15, 2009 10:11 AM

    I’ve been reading a lot of these comments and i haven’t read all of them, so if i repeat someone i’m sorry. But what I’m seeing is a lot of people saying that this is nothing new what Bettis is saying. And they’re 100 percent correct. I don’t think anyone has posted on here recently that the Steelers have a great OL. It was a problem last year, and it looks like it will continue to be a problem. To Ravensmcg, i don’t see too many people being down on Bettis for what he said. All it is for you is that you saw a story about the steelers and you saw that as an opportunity to rip on steeler fans. I don’t think there’s a player in that steelers organization who would say their line is in top form. Nobody is crucifying the bus for what he said. He was 100 percent correct. And I am as big a Steeler fan as there is out there, but I know just as well as anybody if they don’t get their line together, they won’t repeat or worse. I’m sick of seeing people downing on Steeler fans and the team, just because the opportunity arises and because they’re jealous that our city has six lombardi’s. Get over it. We are the best franchis in NFL history. Deal with it. And that goes for you Hayward, Vox, Steeler-Hater and Ravenmcg. Go cry somewhere else.

  41. Steeler4life says: Sep 15, 2009 10:21 AM

    The offensive line is not great, our RBs are having problems, and Troy Polamalu will be out several weeks. It doesn’t matter with Steelers. They will still win many games this year.
    We had the same exact issues last year plus the hardest schedule in the league. We beat the Ravens 3 times, Cowboys, Patriots, Chargers twice and won the Superbowl.
    All haters can kiss my grits.
    Go Steelers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  42. Ravenmaniac says: Sep 15, 2009 10:33 AM

    Hole..it was probably 2 years ago….I read an excerpt from a pressor that he did in which he eluded to the fact that ben was not watching film /doing his homework which in turn was not making his reading of defenses any better.
    Jimmy..I am not going to argue I know you guys are sensitive and it is human nature to start getting defensive when there are doubts about your team…what I was saying was not about the run OL but passing situations.
    Seriously, the Titans are a tough defense to run against. I do not know why everyone is panicking…

  43. Mr Walker says: Sep 15, 2009 10:47 AM

    Steelers are 6-2 when Troy has been out with injury… just sayin’

  44. praveen says: Sep 15, 2009 10:51 AM

    yes ben was accused of not preparing for games in the past. I think he has gotten better at it. As far as the fact that Ben holds on to the ball too long, dont forget that Ben saves some sacks too with his elusiveness. The sack where Ben foolishly lost a lot of yards when they were in FG territory, don’t forget that the defense had two shots at him in that sequence and most QBs would have gone down on the first one. Ben made the mistake of not throwing the ball away once he escaped the first shot.
    My grades for the running game:
    Kemoeatu: B
    Hartwig, Essex: F
    Starks, Colon: C-
    Parker: D-
    Mewelde: C+
    Mendenhall: C-

  45. Steelers4Life says: Sep 15, 2009 10:55 AM

    Ravenmaniac says: September 15, 2009 6:12 AM
    This OL always gets the blame, but what about the fact (and Tomlin pointed this out not that long ago) that ben doesnt read defenses very well? It is easy to blame the OL, but when your QB is ruinning around like he is playing sand lot football any OL would have problems.
    Make your QB spend some time watching film!!
    I agree, ben scrambles his way out of some problems, but you can bet there will come a time when the illusiveness and agility is not there any more and his inability to diagnose a defense will be glaring!
    —————————————————–
    I’m not saying that Ben doesn’t hold on to the ball to long, but IMO he did pretty well spreading out the Titans defense on Thursday. In fact, despite having 2 INT…Ben still was able to pass for 321 yds.
    This also has absolutely nothing to do with the run game, which is what the article is about, and I’m just not seeing how Ben can be responsible for the run game being complete crap. And seriously, it shouldn’t be too hard to make the correlation that if an offense can’t run block to save their lives, they aren’t going to be very good at pass blocking either.
    To address the article, very few people who are Steelers fans and/or live in Pittsburgh are going to hold anything against Bettis for just expounding on what we already know. All we can hope is that by him saying something publicly, it lights a fire under Tomlins ass to do something about it already.

  46. msteelers says: Sep 15, 2009 10:57 AM

    Bettis is just repeating what everybody else in Steeler Nation is worried about. Everyone knows the o-line is awful. If he was blasting Ben or somebody that the city actually liked it would be a different story.

  47. Holeinone09 says: Sep 15, 2009 11:39 AM

    Raven, IF Tomlin said that about Ben a few years ago, he certainly isn’t saying that about him now. Ben is arguably the best pressure QB in the league right now. If you watch Brady, he is awesome when he can just stand there and throw the ball, but nobody beats Ben when it comes to making something happen on a scramble. Brady’s ability drops dramatically when he has to move out of the pocket. The key to beating the Pats is to put pressure on Brady. The more pressure you put on Ben, the more likely he is to come up with a big play.

  48. Katmanduu says: Sep 15, 2009 12:15 PM

    The Bus speaks the truth. It is what it is. He’s a columnist for SI now. He gets paid to tell it like it is. If he was a player, he would quietly support the troops, cuz that’s what players do.
    The O-Line is shaky….but it’s still good enough to beat the Ravens. Because that’s what the Steelers do. They win football games. Their QB, receivers, D-Line, LBs, secondary, special teams and coaching staff are superior.
    It is what it is.

  49. Ravenmaniac says: Sep 15, 2009 3:09 PM

    Hole, I am not disagreeing with you. In fact I even said that he can make things happen when he scrambles..It is like you said, Brady is great when he stands there….he is the opposite of Ben.
    Does Ben stand in the pocket and deliver the ball when being pressured (when he knows he is going to be hit hard)? That is what Brady does.
    What I am saying is that what happens when Ben gets a tweaked ankle or starts losing his scrambling ability, can he check down or stand in the pocket and deliver?
    To be honest something that I have never looked for with Ben, does he check down/work through his progression alot?
    I know I will get blasted for this, but one thing I was impressed with Flacco the other day was his check downs and using them. Granted alot of credit goes to RB’s for being there when they should. I even saw Flacco scramble on Sunday and throw a TD when I was at the game and the first thing out of everyones mouth was “he looked like Ben on that play”.

  50. i'm president charlie! says: Sep 15, 2009 5:23 PM

    @Ravenmaniac – I wish the Steelers had an offensive line as good as the Ravens. They can run block effectively, which sets up the play action pass and they allow Flacco plenty of time to make all of his reads. Ben had that luxury for the first few years w/ Faneca, a healthy Marvel Smith, and Hartwig. With this offensive line Ben has to improvise and play more of a sandlot style (which seems to be the strength of the Steelers offense). A lot of defenders get to Ben but cannot successfully bring him down (they slide off him like he has butter on his pads). Ben will never be a pure pocket passer….even if he had an awesome offensive line he would wait til things broke down then improvise.
    Ben does go through his progressions when he has time. He checks down fairly often to Moore and Heath Miller, but having Santonio and Hines allows him to take more chances down the field. Flacco has to check down more often because the Ravens do not have the same caliber of receiver that Ben does (not meant as an insult..just a fact). Flacco also has better running backs more capable of catching the ball out of the backfield imo.

  51. Ben Roetlisbunger says: Sep 18, 2009 9:24 AM

    Bettis is probably my favorite player of all time. Just because he has eyes and can see the obvious problems in P-burgh doesn’t make mean he’s some kind of traitor. I love the Steelers, and I can see that our o-line needs work and the coaches didn’t do anything to fix it in the offseason.
    Bettis wants the team to do well, and offered his candid assessment of what might hold us back. There is nothing wrong with that.

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