The wisdom is first to be found in Ecclesiastes 3:1, although I will admit I didn’t discover the words until the Byrds sang them in the 60’s. To everything there is a season, turn, turn, turn.
You almost can’t read the verse without having the tune dance in your head. A time to kill, a time to heal, A time to laugh, a time to weep.
With those words, and that tune, I humbly offer you the 2019 Pittsburgh Steelers. A proud organization that has as many Super Bowl victories as any team in history, six, a total matched only by Tom Brady and his New England Patriots. There are corridors seemingly totally dedicated to the Steelers in the Hall of Fame. Names that live among the best to ever play at their position including defensive lineman Joe Greene, who teamed with a group known as the Steel Curtain that was backed up by perhaps the best trio of linebackers in NFL history, Andy Russell, Jack Ham and Jack Lambert.
In those days, the Steelers also had a punishing offense guided by quarterback Terry Bradshaw and triggered by Franco Harris and a pair of Hall of Fame receivers, Lynn Swann and John Stallworth. Real Steelers fans will bring to mind the great players I have not mentioned, suffice it to say Chuck Noll’s Steelers of the 1980’s were one of the true dynasties in league history.
But, after the greatness faded with age and retirements, the Steelers struggled.
A time to every purpose … a time to build up, a time to break down.
The current Steelers run has added another Vince Lombardi Trophy and two more Super Bowl appearances, but, to everything there is a season.
Two years ago, the Steelers earned a playoff spot and were eliminated on their home field in the first round while the coaching staff fought more than the Hatfields and McCoys.
At season end, head coach Mike Tomlin blamed the discourse on his staff, and fired one of his top assistants, offensive coordinator Todd Haley.
When a coach thinks the problem is on his staff, he is missing the root cause of the problem … himself. It is not that Tomlin isn’t a top flight coach, but rather his time in Pittsburgh has run its course and the organization is now running on fumes. Gone are two of the stars that last led the Steelers to the playoffs, Le’veon Bell and Antonio Brown. The quarterback that ran one of the most explosive offenses in football, Ben Roethlisberger, is nearing the end of his Hall of Fame career.
The quarterback’s injuries and lack of talent on his side of the football are two of the reasons Pittsburgh missed the playoffs last year, and a probable factor why they will not be playing in January this season.
Tonight, the 2019 Steelers host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a team with more problems than a naked beekeeper.
With pressure on the Steelers do you think they will be out for a win tonight, or just go through the drills as a good team would in preparation for games that count?
I don’t know, and when I don’t know, I don’t risk money.
But, for those of you that must, I suggest you skip backing the Steelers tonight … and this year.
With a tune still ringing in my head, a time to gain, a time to lose.