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Keith Butler couldn't help but laugh.

Keith Butler couldn't help but laugh.

Berichtdoor douhua2233 » 11 feb 2019, 03:36

Keith Butler couldn't help but laugh.The Pittsburgh Steelers defensive coordinator knows his group is having a hard enough time stopping the most basic plays during its bumpy start C.J. Mosley Jersey , let alone the gimmick Baltimore threw out last week when Ravens tight end Maxx Williams lined up between the guard and center then caught a 22-yard pass from Joe Flacco."When have they ever been fair to the defense?" Butler said with a shrug on Thursday when asked if a play such as that should be legal."When are they ever going to be fair to the defense? That ain't happening. We've got to adjust."The quicker the better if Pittsburgh (1-2-1) wants to avoid falling further off the pace in the resurgent AFC North.All the SteelersAfbeeldinghave to do this week is slow down the Atlanta Falcons (1-3), who will come to Heinz Field with quarterback Matt Ryan, star wide receiver Julio Jones and budding rookie star Calvin Ridley."Seems like we're playing against the best quarterbacks in the league and the best daggum receivers in the league," Butler said."It's gonna help us in the long run. Right now, I wish we didn't have to play against them. But we're learning from it. I think we're getting better."Even if evidence at the moment is hard to come by. Pittsburgh is 30th in the league in yards allowed and 26th in points allowed.The previous time they finished in the bottom third of the league in either category came during Chuck Noll's final season in 1991.The problem is there isn't just one problem. Communication issues. Poor tackling. An influx of new faces that have yet to gel. The list of Pittsburgh's defensive shortcomings is growing by the week.The Ravens threw in a new wrinkle last Sunday night, effectively playing "keep away" by holding onto the ball for more than 23 minutes in the second half."We've got to get off the field," Butler said.Defensive tackle Cam Heyward caused a stir in the aftermath when he stressed the need for his teammates to "buy in" to what Butler is teaching.The Pro Bowler stressed he wasn't calling out anyone specifically, but believes a little accountability would go a long way."This team, this defense isn't about one guy making a play," Heyward said. "If I never get a sack again but all my guys get one-on-ones and they dominate, I don't give a damn (if I get a sack). I'm still doing my job. I'm buying into this team. Everybody has to sacrifice a little bit for us to be successful."Heyward has already made one sacrifice: trading his bushy hairdo for a buzz cut before facing Tampa Bay last month."I'm luck driven ... when I'm not winning I feel like I've got to come and switch things up," Heyward said. "I told my wife 'I've got to cut it. It's not bringing us luck.'"The Steelers responded by producing four first-half turnovers against the Buccaneers while picking up their first 鈥?and still only 鈥?win of the season. The momentum lasted all of six days. Who knows? Maybe Heyward will make a run at his beard before taking the field against the Falcons, though he's well aware a razor can't solve everything."You keep moving on," Heyward said. "Obviously we don't have the greatest record in the world, but it doesn't have to stay that way. We've got 12 games to prove we deserve more than that."And prove last year's franchise-record and NFL-high 57 sacks were not a fluke. While the Steelers have a respectable 13 sacks through four games, seven of them came against Cleveland in the opener. They only took down Flacco twice in 44 drop backs last week and Ryan isn't exactly one to flinch in the face of pressure."We played him four years ago, we blitzed the stew out of him back then," Butler said. "He's seen all the blitzes. He's not going to be fooled."Meaning the secondary will need to find a way to iron out the busted coverages and blown opportunities that have become a staple of film review.The return of nickelback Mike Hilton from an elbow injury that kept him out against Baltimore could help, though Morgan Burnett could miss his third straight game with a groin problem. Inside linebacker Vince Williams did not practice Thursday because of a hamstring issue, meaning someone else will likely be wearing the green dot that relays the call to the defense on Sunday against Atlanta.All that shuffling in and out hasn't exactly helped the Steelers develop a sense of continuity. Not that they're in the mood to make excuses."We've got to fix our mistakes on the go," said rookie safety Terrell Edmunds. "Sometimes it's a 50/50 ball we got to make. Sometimes we make them. Sometimes we don't. We've just got to get everything down."And do it in a hurry.NOTES: RT Marcus Gilbert (knee) and WR Darrius Heyward-Bey (ankle) were held out of practice. ... K Chris Boswell (left foot) was a full participant. In a game where not many analysts were picking the road team, the Baltimore Ravens shocked the masses with their stunning victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. After leading by as many as 14 points, the Ravens went into the half tied. All the momentum was leaning in favor of Pittsburgh Youth Brandon Carr Jersey , but like the previous three games, Baltimore’s defense tightened up in the second half. Below are six takeaways from the Ravens’ impressive 26-14 victory over the Steelers.1. Questionable coaching decisions did not haunt the RavensHead coach John Harbaugh has a reputation for being an overly aggressive coach, but that was not the case on Sunday night. After Pittsburgh had tied the game 14-14, Baltimore had a difficult decision to make. Fourth-and-inches on their 45-yard line, and uncharacteristically, Harbaugh punted the football. Given the way the momentum shifted, this may have been the incorrect decision. However, it was evident Baltimore wanted the second quarter to end as quick as possible, and this strategy worked well.The other questionable decision came late in the fourth quarter. The Ravens had a narrow six-point lead with the ball deep in Pittsburgh’s territory. There was a little under four minutes left, and Baltimore opted to throw the ball on second and third down, which led to only 11 seconds being taken off the clock. This gave the Steelers extra time to attempt a comeback as they were down by nine points with three minutes and 37 seconds left. Fortunately for Baltimore, Ben Roethlisberger threw an interception. 2. Pay that man his moneyMuch of the talk regarding impending free agents has been centered around inside linebacker C.J. Mosley, but John Brown is proving to be worth much more than his one-year deal. Brown has been a shining star through four games, and he could command a hefty price on the open market following this season. He was a huge factor in Sunday night’s victory as he stretched the field and made a couple of big-time receptions, including a 71-yard catch. 3. Let’s get trickyAfter Baltimore’s collapse in week two against the Bengals, Marty Mornhinweg has dialed up two ‘masterful’ game plans. Last week, he completely took away Von Miller. On Sunday night, Mornhinweg utilized a variety of unique play designs and aggressive concepts to allow his playmakers to get open. The play of the night was the trick play involving an unbalanced line, where Maxx Williams was lined up next to Matt Skura. Williams, because he was lined up off the line of scrimmage, was an eligible receiver, and he was wide open to pick up the first down. It was a great night for the offense as they totaled 26 points, but they also left points on the board. Alex Collins fumbled the ball in the red zone Youth Za'Darius Smith Jersey , while Flacco was unable to connect with Michael Crabtree on a play where he would have likely scored. 4. Bend, but don’t breakBaltimore’s defense was dominant for much of the game, specifically in the second half. Remarkably, they have not allowed a touchdown in the final two-quarters of any game in the 2018 regular season. Don Martindale’s ability to adjust and shut down opposing offenses has been remarkable. The pass rush was not as active as Wink would have hoped, but the secondary played well. The Steelers did not have a receiver break the 70-yard mark, while they totaled less than 20 total rushing yards. 5. Don’t forget about meBrandon Carr will likely lose his starting spot next week as Jimmy Smith will return from his four-game suspension. However, Carr was spectacular under the bright lights. He recorded two pass breakups, but his performance was much better than the stats may suggest. Carr is a savvy veteran, who displayed great patience on several plays, including a clutch end zone pass breakup on JuJu Smith-Schuster. Baltimore’s general manager Ozzie Newsome made it his mission in the offseason to improve the wide receiver room. He signed three veteran free agents, and John Brown has been the biggest difference maker. Due to his big-play ability, Brown has received a majority of the attention, but Willie Snead has made several clutch plays through the first four games of the season. Snead’s ability to work from the slot and beat man-coverage has been a key part of Baltimore’s success, specifically on third down. 6. This might be a different Joe FlaccoThroughout training camp and the preseason, Flacco has looked like a man on a mission. Whether it was the team selecting Lamar Jackson in the first round or not, he is a different quarterback this season. Although he struggled against the Bengals, Flacco has put together one of his best four-game stretches in recent memory. If he continues this pace, he will hit the 5,000 yard mark for the first time in his career and the 4,000 yard mark for only the second time. Flacco’s decision-making has dramatically improved, and he is spreading the ball around as a total of 11 different players caught passes on Sunday night.
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