Sunday Night Football saw two AFC giants battle it out in an offensive showdown between the Los Angeles Chargers and Pittsburgh Steelers. LA came out victorious in the monumental game concerning conference playoff seeding and there have - predictably - been many fans across the league putting Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin's schemes into question. It turns out, those criticisms are pretty warranted.
In fact, Warren Sharp put out a thread of tweets detailing just how bad the Steelers
The Steelers get owned by the Patriots using these idiotic defensive concepts. They really thought they could cover Keenan Allen with a LB most of the game, and especially on the game's biggest play. https://t.co/XLGKahCvfy— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
Agreed. A linebacker on Keenan Allen? Might as well stick a nose tackle on him!
Here’s another one on the drive to put them up 30 to 23 that went for a first down. Keenan Allen vs a LB, let’s be real pic.twitter.com/6N1k3G1D5U— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
Einstein once said insanity is the act of doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. It may be time to ask Tomlin some questions...
This one was fun. Big #98 vs Keenan Allen. Easy work. pic.twitter.com/CcW2skR7Rg— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
Okay, does Keith Butler know who Allen is? At this point covering him like that was not only incredibly dumb but also disrespectful.
To follow up on this, the Steelers 1st down play calls in the 1st half vs 2nd half (until they blew the lead):— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
1st half 1st downs:
(outside the 1-yd line)
2nd half 1st downs:
(runs avg'd 3.4 YPC)
Going after your own players before your obviously lackluster game-plan? That's just plain wrong.
This is absolutely ridiculous, pathetic & embarrassing. Who came up with this game plan? They cannot be serious right here. Remember, someone thought this was a good plan & Tomlin signed off on it. https://t.co/mUWjoFdUFE— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
In case those linebacker coverage calls on Allen weren't enough, here are two more!
3rd Keenan Allen target of the game, 3rd time covered by a LB. FYI, Fort is an undrafted LB out of Northern Iowa who has been cut by 6 teams since 2012, including the Steelers. Yet they thought he could COVER KEENAN ALLEN! pic.twitter.com/10ZZkV3zUL— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
Because using a linebacker to cover one of the best wideouts in the league isn't a bad enough idea, let's go ahead and give the guy who's been cut six times that task. Genius.
Look at these 2 back-to-back plays. Completely free releases, no one close to Keenan Allen, wide open completions. This was the plan to stop the Chargers who were without their starting RB? To leave WR1 uncovered or use a LB? Pure insanity pic.twitter.com/DGnSNXoJLt— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
Yeah, I'm waiting for the incredible amount of ineptitude to end too.
First play of the game?— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) December 3, 2018
- LB on WR1 Keenan Allen, 1st down
Last key play of the game?
- LB on WR1 Keenan Allen, 1st down
In between, PIT used the most LB coverage on a targeted WR since @NextGenStats charting existed.
Terrible game plan, zero in-game adjustments. Pathetic. pic.twitter.com/IEEiYzqVjE
To summarize, Tomlin and Butler sucked last night. How do you continuously keep a linebacker on one of the best wide receivers in the game? It's not like the Steelers lost by much, either. At 33-30, stopping just one of the completions to Allen
As Sharp said, if Pittsburgh ever wants to get past a team like the New England Patriots, this isn't going to get it done.