08 January 2006

Two Words: O'Dell Thurman

I figure the decisive factor in today's game will be the Bengals defense. The Bengals turnover stats are so impressive that it's covered up what is essentially a subpar pass defense, as was painfully revealed a couple of weeks ago when the Bills relentlessly penetrated the zone.

The Bengals can't let that happen today. If Buffalo could do it, Pittsburgh can do it better (two of Pittsburgh's offensive coaches are in the pool for some of the open head coaching positions, so they know what they're doing. Check out this remarkable story about one of them).

And then there's Willie Parker. He's not Bettis, but he's fast and he's good. The Bengals have to hold the Pittsburgh running game or they have no chance. And that means our linebackers, especially rookie ILB O'Dell Thurman, have to step it up on coverage of Parker and TE Heath Miller, whom Roethlisberger uses very effectively for pass yardage.

It's possible that Bengals special teams could make some big plays that make the difference, but I think that could go the other way, too. So I think the Bengals fortunes basically rest on the quality of their defense.

I haven't heard one person pick the Bengals to win, but I'll go for it:

Bengals, 38-34.

(i.e. I'm basically contradicting myself and saying the offense will overcome the defense's weakness. It's wishful thinking, but it's not that unimaginable. And it let's me avoid saying "Steelers win.")


TravisG said...

That story about Ken Whisenhunt is amazing.

Turnovers will be the key to this game. Lucky for us, Roethlisberger and the Steelers have a history of doing that in the playoffs. But, then again, we have no recent playoff history at all. So there you go.

roastedcoyote said...

The Bengals chances rest in thier ability to protect Palmer. Look for Pittsburg to put nine men in the box and disguise thier coverage. The real key will be for the Bengals to pick up the blitz.
If the Bengals can score, this will be a close game and an advantage to Cincinnati. If Blitzburg is able to get to Plamer on a regular basis this game will be a wipe-out.
On an unrealated note. Chabot is in the news, it seems he was again busy taking care of business that has nothing to do with Ohio's first congressional district.

roastedcoyote said...

Darn HTML, here is the link to the chabot story.


WestEnder said...

The real key will be for the Bengals to pick up the blitz.

I have a feeling Pittsburgh will try to give Palmer a headache with that from start to finish.

KatieG said...

enjoy the game... i know what its like to see a team struggle in mediocrity for so many, many years... and i remember vividly attending the victory parade for the 97 Wings downtown Detroit. probably the most exciting moment in the city in my lifetime.

anyway, hope the bengals live to play another week...

Jim Parker for Congress (OH 02 - 2006) said...

First Reform Ohio. Then the Bengals. The only thing left is the upcoming primary. Who is it going to be???

I have been working my heart out to be your next Congressman since September 2005. I am honored to have been the first person to declare his candidacy against Jean Schmidt. And that was before she suffered her meltdown on the floor of the House of Representatives.

If elected, it will be an honor to be the person who tries to turn this country around (beginning with the US House.)

Thank you Southern Ohio. You are some of the best people that anyone will ever meet. My heart is with you.

Jim Parker, MBA/MHA
Democratic Candidate for Congress
Southern Ohio - 2nd District - 2006


WestEnder said...

As I have mentioned several times before on this and other blogs, ALL candidates would be wise to read this before using the internet. Rule no.1 in particular, Mr. Parker.

I have never known a candidate who has more stubbornly refused advice that is plentiful, good and free. Jim Parker's commitment to running a bad campaign makes me seriously wonder if he's actually a Republican.

TravisG said...

Sheesh. No kidding, man. I feel like someone was trying to sell me Cialis or something.

JenJen said...

There's really nothing left to say about that game than fuckity-fuck-fuck-fuck.