Steelers-Patriots: New England Embarrassed, but It's Not the End of the World

Alex PotterCorrespondent IDecember 1, 2008

The Sunday loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers was just plain embarrassing. The turnover ratio of 5-1 was the worst in almost seven years. The offense never clicked on all cylinders, and the defense could not make a tackle to save their lives.

Matt Cassel is now only the second quarterback to come off of back-to-back 400+ yard performances to follow it up will a loss. Could this be the footsteps of Brian Volek?

Preceding this game, Cassel threw for 815 yards and six touchdowns, leaving yestarday's game, his quarterback rating was a abysmal 39.4, which included two interceptions, two fumbles lost, and did not score once.

Right when I want to commend the offensive line for doing such a great job (last week versus Miami), they always find a way to surprise me.

Is it just me, or did James Harrison have the offensive line in his control? The O-line allowed five sacks and they are just as responsible for the two forced fumbles as Cassel is. I wish Matt would read this article because he needs to seriously learn what I am about to teach him:

           Pocket Presence=Ball Protection=No Fumble=Patriots Success!


Another thing that really grinds my gears about yestarday's loss was the poor performance on special teams. Given Ellis Hobbs is sick, Matt Slater should never have been out there in the conditions given.

Another given was the shocking hit delivered to Wes Welker that I felt through my television. What about Kevin Faulk to return, the coach certainly put him back in a hurry once Slater fumbled that ball.

On top of that, Stephen Gostkowski, who has been automatic, finally decides to be the college football kicker he used to be and miss short field goals but hit the long ones.

Finally, I want to express the concern of a failed Randy Moss in yestarday's performance. This is not the Randy Moss that caught 23 touchdowns from Tom Brady last season, nor is he the Randy Moss that caught three touchdowns just two weeks ago.

This should be the only real worry that we take into the final four games. Wins versus Seattle, Oakland, and Buffalo are a given, but the contest against Arizona is a toss-up. The only thing that looks on the favor of New England versus Arizona is that by time they reach us, they will no doubt have their division wrapped up.

So will that mean they have nothing to fight for and possibly start more rookies and bench players to rest older starters?

The playoffs are not out of reach, in fact the possibility of a three way tie or even a Miami berth is not out of the question at this time. Fans, this is the point of the season where our team needs us most, and not for us to bail out on young Matt Cassel.

Bailouts are for corporate asses who need them, we, on the other hand should be believing in chance.

Flashback: January 2001, the Patriots' record is 11-5, we win the Super Bowl on the arm of an upstart backup quarterback named Tom Brady, whose name will eventually be enshrined in the Hall of Fame.

Matt Cassel may not have had the best start yesterday but not one of us complained when he threw for 400 yards versus Miami. We take the stand here and now, this is what makes us a solid football team, and that is what will help us fight for a chance of playoff berth, thus, we are Patriots Nation!