Let The War For The Ring Begin, Part One

Ladies and Gentlemen … this is the main event. The greatest moment in Seahawk history is upon us. The eyes of the nation will be upon this great arena Sunday as two great armies meet on the field of battle. Will it be the Seahawks who emerge from Detroit's colosseum as the victors and masters of the Ring … or will it be they who get skewered by the onslaught of Cowher's crusaders?

Let The War For The Ring Begin …

2005 Super Bowl

Seattle Seahawks vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

Friends, Romans, Countryman … lend me your ears as we break down what will surely be an epic struggle for glory and football immortality. To war!!! …

Comparing the Offenses

 

Yards/Game

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

Seahawks

369.7(2nd)

153.6(3rd)

216.1(13th)

28.3(1st)

Steelers

321.8(15th)

138.9(5th)

182.9(24th)

24.3(9th)


 

Yards

Rush Yards

Pass Yards

Seattle

5915(2nd)

2457(3 rd)

3458(13th)

Pittsburgh

5149(15th)

2223(5th)

2926(24th)


Steeler Quarterback Statistics (Regular Season)

 

CMP

ATT

YDS

CMP%

TD

INT

SACK

YDS

QB RATING

Ben Roethlisberger

168

268

2385

62.7

17

9

23

129

98.6 (3 rd in NFL)


Seahawk Quarterback Statistics (Regular Season)

 

CMP

ATT

YDS

CMP%

TD

INT

SACK

YDS

QB RATING

Matt Hasselbeck

294

449

3459

65.5

24

9

24

154

98.2 (4 th in NFL)


Steeler Rushing Statistics (Regular Season)

 

ATT

YDS

AVG

LNG

TD

FUM

LOST

Willie Parker

255

1202

4.7

80

4

4

0

Jerome Bettis

110

368

3.3

39

9

0

0

Verron Haynes

74

274

3.7

20

3

2

1

Team Totals

549

2223

4.0

80

21

12

3


Seahawk Rushing Statistics (Regular Season)

 

ATT

YDS

AVG

LNG

TD

FUM

LOST

Shaun Alexander

370

1880

5.1

88

27

5

1

Maurice Morris

71

288

4.1

49

1

0

0

Team Totals

519

2457

4.7

88

29

7

1


Steeler Receiving Statistics

NAME

REC

YDS

AVG

LNG

TD

FUM

LOST

Hines Ward

69

975

14.1

85

11

0

0

Antwaan Randle El

35

558

15.9

63

1

2

1

Heath Miller

39

459

11.8

50

6

0

0

Cedrick Wilson

26

451

17.3

46

0

1

0

Willie Parker

18

218

12.1

48

1

0

0

Team Totals

228

3104

13.6

85

21

3

1


Seahawk Receiving Statistics

NAME

REC

YDS

AVG

LNG

TD

FUM

LOST

Bobby Engram

67

778

11.6

56

3

2

2

Joe Jurevicius

55

694

12.6

52

10

1

0

Jerramy Stevens

45

554

12.3

35

5

0

0

Darrell Jackson

38

482

12.7

48

3

0

0

D.J. Hackett

28

400

14.3

47

2

0

0

Team Totals

307

3632

11.8

56

25

3

2

On a Rampage …

In 218 B.C. the great Carthaginian general Hannibal surprised the Romans by crossing over the Alps with about 20,000 infantry, 6,000 cavalry, and about 20 elephants. From 216 B.C. to 203 B.C. Hannibal terrorized the Romans, marching his army up and down the Italian Peninsula, leaving a path of destruction in his wake. Like Hannibal, the Steelers have methodically marched across NFL gridirons this year, reeking havoc against teams they’ve faced. To gain a greater sense of these marauders from the Northeast and the major weapons of their warfare, here is a breakdown of the Steelers Offense …

Breakdown of the Steelers Offense …

(Regular Season Statistics)

Rushing Attempts 549 (59.15% of Offense Rushing)

Passing Attempts 79 (40.8% of Offense Passing)

Total Plays 28

Rushing Breakdown …

Total Carries 549

Willie Parker 46.4% of rushing offense

Jerome Bettis 20% of rushing offense

Verron Haynes 13.4% of rushing offense

Passing Breakdown …

Total Receptions 228

Hines Ward 30.2% of passing offense

Antwaan Randle-El 15.3% of passing offense

Heath Miller 17.1% of passing offense

Cedrick Wilson 11.4% of passing offense

Willie Parker 7.8% of passing offense

Verron Haynes 4.8% of passing offense

And as you can see, these figures haven’t changed all that much in the playoffs except for the fact that Roethlisberger has been much better at distributing the ball around …

Postseason breakdown of plays …

Rushing Attempts 109 (60.2% of offense)

Passing Attempts 72 (39.7% of offense)

Total Plays 181

Rushing Breakdown …

109 Total Carries

Jerome Bettis 38.5% of rushing offense

Willie Parker 43.1% of rushing offense

Passing Breakdown …

49 Total Passes

Hines Ward 20.4% of passing offense

Cedrick Wilson 16.3% of passing offense

Antwaan Randle-El 18.4% of passing offense

Heath Miller 14.2% of passing offense

Willie Parker 18.4% of passing offense

Nearly 60% of the Steeler attack this year has come via ground assault. Highlighted by elite infantryman Willie Parker (1202 Yards, 4 TD’s) and Jerome Bettis (368 Yards, 9 TD’s) and guided by General Roethlisberger (3 rd Best QB rating in NFL), this army has managed to trample some formidable foes. Here is how the Steelers have fared on the field of battle against some of the NFL’s elite forces this year …

Week 3 vs. New England … Brady completed 31 of 41 passes for 372 yards, 0 TD’s, and 1 INT. The Patriots rushed for 79 yards on 29 carries and 2 rushing TD’s. Corey Dillon ran for 61 yards on 22 carries and 2 TD’s. Steelers rushed for 79 yards on 20 carries. Willie Parker rushed for 55 yards on 17 carries and 0 TD’s. Ben Roethlisberger completed 12 of 28 passes for 216 yards, 2 TD’s, 0 INT’s. Hines Ward had 110 yards of those and both TD’s. Despite 3 turnovers by the Patriots, the Steelers lost 23-20.

Defensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

New England

98.8 (8th in NFL)

231.4 (31st in NFL)

21.1 (17th in NFL)

Offensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

New England

94.5 (24th in NFL)

257.5 (2nd in NFL)

23.7 (10th in NFL)

Week 5 vs. San DiegoDrew Brees completed 20 of 35 passes for 219 yards, 1 TD, and 1 INT. The Chargers rushed for just 66 yards, with LaDainian Tomlinson rushing for 62 of those yards on 18 carries (3.4 yards/carry avg.) and 1 TD. The Steelers meanwhile, rushed for 104 yards and 1 TD. Jerome Bettis finished with 54 yards on 17 carries and 1 TD. Willie Parker ran for just 26 yards on 10 carries and 0 TD’s. Roethlisberger completed 17 of 26 passes for 225 yards, 1 TD, and 0 INT’s. The Steelers won 24-22 on a field goal with only 6 seconds remaining.

Defensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

San Diego

84.3 (1st in NFL)

224.9 (28th in NFL)

19.5 (13th in NFL)

Offensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

San Diego

129.5(9th in NFL)

218.4(12th in NFL)

26.1(5th in NFL)

Week 7 vs. Cincinnati…. Palmer completed 21 of 36 passes for 227 yards, 0 TD’s, and 2 INT’s. Rudi Johnson rushed for 65 yards on 12 carries (5.4 yards/carry avg.) and 0 TD. Overall, the Bengals managed only 91 yards on the ground. The Steelers ran over the Bengals however, racking up 221 yards rushing. Willie Parker had 131 yards on 18 carries and 1 TD. Jerome Bettis added 56 yards on 13 carries. Ben Roethlisberger completed only 9 of 14 passes for 93 yards, but had 2 TD’s and 1 INT. Though the Steelers offense committed 2 turnovers, they won handily 27-13.

Week 13 vs. Cincinnati … The Bengals struck back against the Steelers, as Palmer completed 22 of 38 passes for 227 yards and 3 TD. Rudi Johnson ran for 98 of the team’s 102 rushing yards and 2TD. Roethlisberger meanwhile, completed just 29 of 41 and passes for 386 yards, 3 TD, and 3 INT’s. The Bengal defense stepped up by forcing 4 turnovers and holding the Steelers to just 95 yards rushing. The Steelers lost 38-31.

Wild Card Playoff vs. Cincinnati … After Palmer went down with career threatening injury, a deflated Bengal team allowed the Steelers to rush for 144 yards. Roethlisberger was 14 of 19 for 208 yards, 3 TD, and 0 INT’s. In relief, former Hawk John Kitna completed 24 of 40 passes for 197 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT’s. The Bengals were held to just 84 yards rushing as the Steelers won 31-17.

Defensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

Cincinnati

115.6 (20th)

223.1 (26th in NFL)

21.9 (22nd in NFL)

Offensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

Cincinnati

119.4 (11th in NFL)

238.8 (5th in NFL)

26.3 (4th in NFL)

Week 12 vs. Indianapolis. Peyton Manning completed 15 of 25 passes for 245 yards, 2 TD’s, and 1 INT. Edgerrin James rushed for 124 yards on 29 carries. Conversely, Roethlisberger completed 17 of 26 passes for 133 yards, 1 TD, and 2 INT’s. The Steelers were held to 86 yards rushing, with Willie Parker leading the way with 43 yards on 12 carries and 0 TD’s. The Steelers fell to the Colts 26-7.

Playoff Division Matchup vs. Indianapolis. Peyton Manning completed 22 of 38 passes for 290 yards, 1 TD, and 0 INT’s. Edgerrin James, though, was held to only 56 yards rushing and 1 TD (only 14 rushing attempts overall for the team.) The Colts offense was stymied all day long, as they converted only 3 of 13 third down opportunities. Pittsburgh rushed for 112 yards and 1 rushing TD on 42 rushing attempts and Roethlisberger completed 14 of 24 passes for 197 yards, 2 TD, and 1 INT. The Steelers knocked off the Colts 21-18.

Defensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

Indianapolis

110.1 (16th in NFL)

196.9 (15th in NFL)

15.4 (2nd in NFL)

Offensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

Indianapolis

106.4(16th in NFL)

256.0(3rd in NFL)

27.4(2nd in NFL)

AFC Championship vs. Denver. Jake Plummer completed 18 of 30 passes for 223 yards, 1 TD, but also threw 2 INT’s. The high powered Broncos rushing attack managed just 97 yards and 1 rushing TD. Mike Anderson and Tatum Bell had only 14 carries between them, with Anderson rushing for 36 yards on 9 carries (4.0 yards/carry avg.) and Bell rushing for 31 yards (6.2 yards/rush avg.) on 5 carries. On the other side, the Steelers rushed for 90 yards on 33 carries. Bettis led the way with just 39 yards (2.6 yds/carry avg.) on 15 carries and 1 TD. Willie Parker added 35 yards on 14 carries (2.5 yds/carry avg.) and 0 TD’s. Roethlisberger though, was on fire, completing 21 of 29 passes for 275 yards, 2 TD, and 0 INT’s. The Steelers advanced to the Super Bowl with a 34-17 victory.

Defensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

Denver

85.2 (2nd in NFL)

227.7 (29th in NFL)

16.1 (T3rd in NFL)

Offensive Rankings (NFL Ranking)

 

Rush Yards/Game

Pass Yards/Game

Pts/Game

Denver

158.7 (2nd)

201.7 (18th in NFL)

24.7 (8th in NFL)

Notice any trends on offense? Here are some statistics that highlight the Seahawk plan of defense …

Steelers Rushing Lows of 2005 …

 

Steelers Rushing Yards

Opp Yds/Rush Allowed

Result

Week 3 New England

79 yards

98.8 (8th in NFL)

Steelers Lost 20-23

Week 5 San Diego

104 yards

84.3 (1st in NFL)

Steelers Won 24-22

Week 6 Jacksonville*

73 yards

106.8 (14th in NFL)

Steelers Lost 23-17

Week 8 Baltimore

101 yards

99.4 (9th in NFL)

Steelers Won 20-19

Week 11 Baltimore*

70 yards

99.4 (9th in NFL)

Steelers Lost 16-13

Week 12 Indianapolis

86 yards

110.1 (16th in NFL)

Steelers Lost 26-7

Week 13 Cincinnati

95 yards

115.6 (20th in NFL)

Steelers Lost 38-31

AFC Championship (Denver)

90 yards

85.2 (2nd in NFL)

Steelers Won 34-17

*(It should be noted that in both the Jacksonville game and Week 11’s Baltimore game that Ben Roethlisberger didn’t play due to injury.)


Todd Webb writes for Seahawks.NET whenever he can be torn away from his beloved Seattle Mariners. Feel free to send any comments, questions or Carl Everett dinosaur jokes to apologetic_thinker@yahoo.com.


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