I usually like to start off the WTF column each week by mentioning other things that have happened in the NFL before getting into the WTF moments from the Steelers game.
I just can’t do that this week.
Like most, I am still stinging from the 30-9 loss at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars. I waited my self-imposed 24 hours before losing my mind, but there will be some ranting here and maybe more Pittsburgh-inspired WTFs than you have seen in awhile!
First, let’s just call it what it is: Ben had the worst game of his career.
And I do mean the worst.
I don’t care about quarterback ratings, or even if the Steelers win an ugly all-field goal game. I am talking five interceptions; two were pick sixes and occurred in a matter of three minutes.
Not only did Ben not protect the ball, but his comments after the game of “Maybe I just don’t have it anymore” have taken the media by storm.
Now, we know Ben. He loves to say stuff to the media when he feels they are asking the same questions, almost taunting them. That makes him look very chippy, or as one NFL Network analyst put it, a bit “condescending”.
I agree, he can get abrupt with his responses, but when you just played a game like that, an embarrassing loss at home, why would any media person ask Ben if he’s losing his confidence?
Come on people WTF?! Give him some time before you ask stupid questions or that is what you get: a stupid answer.
Luckily, after he got a good night’s sleep, he woke up realizing he is still one of the best in the business and he and the rest of the team have a job to do in Kansas City this weekend. They will try and beat an undefeated Chiefs team at their loud home stadium.
I can see that upset. (Or we’ll just get more upset!)
Next, is where I get very angry at former players that do not have their organizations back. When former Steelers safety turned ESPN mouthpiece Ryan Clark starts the week calling Antonio Brow selfish for his Gatorade bucket outburst, and then this week comments that Ben doesn’t have it anymore and Bell not being back with the team completely, you just want to say, WTF Ryan?
You are not in that locker room. These players aren’t speaking to you personally, and both AB and Bell have said they don’t listen to people who not part of the team anymore. Maybe you could be more like former Steelers CB Ike Taylor that not only interned as a coach and front office person this offseason but brings positive input to the TV as an NFL Network analyst.
He has his former team’s back.
As far as some other WTF’s this past week, how about the three missed field goals by Tampa Bay kicker Nick Folk to hand over a win to the New England Patriots.
And he hasn’t been cut yet!
It is time to really say WTF to all of the injuries out there. The most notable would be Texans DE J.J. Watt and Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. Both suffered tibia (lower leg/ankle) fractures and are out the season.
I think they have him on speed dial right? (Then again, maybe not.)
The Green Bay/Dallas game was interesting. Who thought Davante Adams would be playing after a huge hit he took from Danny Trevathan the week before? Not only did Adams play, but had two touchdowns; one was the game winner.
Apparently, concussion protocol is only a suggestion? (It’s hard to believe some players can pop right up and others are gone for almost the entire season.)
One of the most interesting misses in that same game by the referees was the yardage they gave for a first down to Dallas. It was 4th-and-2 when RB Ezekiel Elliott reaches over, in an Antonio Brown Christmas Day arm stretch, for the first down. A defender pulls Elliott’s arm back, to negate the yardage.
It was NOT in the end zone. It was NOT for a TD. It should NOT have counted for a first down.
I tweeted this out to a few of the former referees now working for the sports media outlets and I got a response from one: “Yes technically you are correct.”
I know I am… “technically”.
WTF? Yes, I am a female, but we do our research. We know the game. A lesson I think Cam Newton is learning the hard way. WTF on that? But I will leave that there. He was BBQ’d for his comments.
As for the referees, maybe it’s a fraternity which protects it’s own, and he was unwilling to throw a former colleague under the bus? (Still looking at you Ryan Clark.)
I think I will end this week’s column with the biggest WTF of the week. That would be a video which went viral of a Miami Dolphin’s offensive line coach snorting, what ESPN keeps calling a “white powder” (we know what it is) while using some vulgarities to describe his pre-meeting routine with players.
He resigned soon after.
Until next week! Let me know if I missed any other WTF moments.