James Harrison and Pittsburgh Steelers Defense: Welcome Back

Gladys Louise TylerContributor INovember 25, 2010

Welcome Back Mr. Harrison
Welcome Back Mr. HarrisonJared Wickerham/Getty Images

Okay, I know the skeptics are saying that this feat was against the lowly Oakland Raiders…but the Raiders were in first place, Darren McFadden was averaging a league-leading 108 yards per game and the Raiders offense was averaging 458 yards and 38.6 points during its three-game win streak.

“It definitely was an old school, physical-type game from back in the day,” James Farrior said. 

And with that, my friends, we welcome back the Pittsburgh Steelers defense.  Hello, Sunday against the Oakland Raiders the Steelers defense forced three turnovers (two for touchdowns), had six sacks and limited Darren McFadden to 14 yards on 10 carries, which was 94 yards below his average.   

Yes, they had a season-high 163 yards in penalties—what?  I have this theory, it’s crazy, but my theory is that just because a flag is thrown, a major infraction has not been committed. 

I know it’s crazy, we have been taught that authority is pretty much the last word…the final say…THE WORD.  My theory—sometimes authority is fallible.  Ahh, but I digress. 

The much often maligned James Harrison had five tackles, two sacks, an interception and a forced fumble. Welcome back, Mr. Harrison.  Bruce Gradkowski replaced Jason Campbell late in the third quarter and was promptly intercepted by Troy Polamalu. Welcome back, Mr. Polamalu. 

And about second half disintegration, that fourth quarter meltdown, well, the Steelers defense did not allow a point the second half.  Welcome back, Steelers defense, I have missed you. 

Week 12 brings the 2-8 Buffalo Bills, who last week rallied from a 21-point second quarter deficit to pull out a 49-31 win at Cincinnati.  The Bills have discovered a way to win and are much better than their 2-8 record would indicate. 

But the Steelers defense is BACK.  The second half meltdown of against the Cincinnati Bengals is a distant memory.  The shredding of the defense with Drew Brees like precision is like letting the good times roll right away into distant memory.

The Steelers defense is back.  Welcome back, and if this brings visions of a monster win Week 12 at Orchard Park against the Buffalo Bills, we will take it because the Steelers defense is back.