Steelers Put on a Show but Come Up Short

By Prisuta, Mike | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, January 6, 2008 | Go to article overview

Steelers Put on a Show but Come Up Short


Prisuta, Mike, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


What the Steelers were and what they've become were on display for all to see Saturday night at Heinz Field.

The trip down memory lane was all too brief.

And what followed was all too familiar.

They'll have the offseason to sort out what went wrong and why it happened in the wake of a 31-29 playoff loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

It was a night that had started out with such promise.

Coach Mike Tomlin preceded his players onto the field and gestured repeatedly to the crowd for noise, a departure for Tomlin from his normal stoic, we've-got-this-covered persona and a reminder of how Bill Cowher used to foam at the mouth on such occasions.

Guard Alan Faneca, emerging from the home tunnel for what was probably the final time, stuck a finger in the air as he sprinted through the gauntlet of teammates on either side.

Hines Ward appeared waving a Terrible Towel.

Upon the conclusion of the introductions, the Steelers sprinted to the opposite end of the field to salute the faithful.

Brett Keisel and Clark Haggans danced to the music on the sideline prior to kickoff.

And then the offense went to work.

The Steelers came out throwing and kept throwing until it was time to power the ball into the end zone, and then they did that.

There were no fade patterns from the 1-yard line this time, no wide receiver sweeps.

Just running back Najeh Davenport running behind fullback Carey Davis out of a formation that included tight ends Heath Miller and Matt Spaeth and guard-turned-tight end Chris Kemoeatu.

At 7-0, they had the momentum, the fast start they had craved and the crowd insanely into the game. …

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