Around the NFL  

 

Pittsburgh Steelers' lost season continues in London

Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers' disastrous season found a new low in London. The Minnesota Vikings might have found a new starting quarterback in Matt Cassel. And a sellout crowd at Wembley Stadium finally found out what a thrilling NFL game looks like in person.

The Vikings picked up their first win this season in a 34-27 barnburner that included a little bit of everything. Adrian Peterson, Greg Jennings and Roethlisberger took turns making huge plays. A frenetic Steelers comeback fell 6 yards short when Roethlisberger lost a fumble in the red zone with under 20 seconds left.

It was a fitting ending. Minnesota's pass rush rag-dolled Pittsburgh's pathetic pass protection all day long, and Big Ben couldn't hold up. But this isn't all on the offensive line. The Steelers are 0-4 for the first time since 1968, and they look all but finished before the start of October.

Here's what else we learned:

1. The Vikings have a tough decision to make at quarterback after this game. Cassel wasn't as good as his numbers indicated in this game (25 throws for 248 yards and two touchdowns), but you can't argue with the results. He's never going to be the most accurate quarterback, but at least Cassel was aggressive trying to throw the ball down the field. We'd guess that he'll keep the starting job over Christian Ponder. It never hurts when your teammates make huge plays for you.

2. Greg Jennings looked like himself for the first time all season for the Vikings on a 70-yard touchdown. Perhaps he still has some juice after all. Pittsburgh's tackling and coverage was miserable all day, though. Jerome Simpson was wide open a few times. Adrian Peterson made the Steelers look awfully slow on an incredible 60-yard touchdown play. The Steelers' defense is becoming as big a problem as their offense.

3. Mike Adams was an embarrassment at left tackle for Pittsburgh. Or Jared Allen had a turn-back-the-clock game. No matter how you analyze it, the Steelers seem to have no solution on their offensive line.

4. Rookie Le'Veon Bell added a dose of no-frills competence to Pittsburgh's running game. (Although he struggled in pass protection.) Bell and Heath Miller make the Steelers' offense much better.

5. It's a very bad sign when the Steelers get a good performance from Roethlisberger and still lose to a previously winless team.

The "Around The League Podcast" is now available on iTunes! Click here to listen and subscribe.

Fan Discussion

NFL News
CONTENT
15