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Steelers 33, Giants 30

steelershelmet.jpgEli Manning, thanks to what amounted to a crappy day for the Pittsburgh defense, didn't look like a rookie today. His 0.0 passer rating last week was replaced by a 16/23 effort for 182 yards, two TDs, and one INT. Big Ben managed to hit 18/28 for 316, one TD, and two horrible, despicable INTs. Antwaan Randle El had the best day at QB: 1/1, 10 yards, 1 TD on a tricky little shuffle pass.

The Steelers have, for the fifth week in a row now, squeaked out a win against an opponent they should have blasted. Granted, the Steelers have a lot of injuries, and Duce, Plaxico, Haggans, and others were out, figuring on an easy victory over the hapless Giants.

Bettis contributed with 140 yards, and El and Ward each had 149 and 134 yards receiving respectively. The offense sparked today, but sputtered in the red zone, going two for six. Ben's INTs were horrible, horrible throws - one near the red zone and another that gave the ball to the Giants on our 30.

But the big story for me today is the lackadaisical play of the secondary and line. We put very little pressure on Eli Manning and gave up a number of big plays. The line didn't play particularly well, giving up 76 yards on 18 attempts to the Tiki Doll.

The Steelers had a short week, and may have been tired. They're going to need to win out to get home field advantage, and they're going to have to quickly figure out how to stop five-wide sets. They've been beaten by them by all manner of incapable quarterbacks (and some capable ones too).

This was a trap game, and the Steelers escaped and are now 13-1. They've earned a first-round bye, but need to keep their eyes on the prize: beating Baltimore at home and then Buffalo in New York to retain home-field advantage. With so many good quarterbacks and offenses in the AFC, getting through the playoffs will be a challenge to say the least.

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