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Morning Java: 55 points, 610 yards, countless issues

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Morning, Lunatics …

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>> The Sunday column eviscerates pretty much everyone.

Here’s some of what Ben Roethlisberger had to say afterward …

And one seriously down Troy Polamalu

Random randomness from the event: As stated in the column, I have a hard time breaking down a game like this, but I’ll still isolate on here on the horrendous secondary. You really had to be here to appreciate the scope of the room New England’s receivers had on some plays. It was unlike anything you’d expect to see even at the lowest classification of high school ball. It was unconscionable. … Why was Roethlisberger on the field to the end, even with the Steelers down 24? I ask him that in the video above, and I respect his answer. At the same time, it’s insane. Really is. For all else that went wrong yesterday, can you just imagine if Andre Carter slamming him to the ground with 1:54 left had resulted in injury? … Mike Tomlin’s response when I asked why Ben was out there: “Because we need to get better.” … Um, anyone else notice Kevin Colbert on the sideline in the second half? What was that all about? … If I could pinpoint one member of the defense as having played legitimately well, it’s Cam Heyward. Making strides each week. … One guy on offense? That’s easy: Jerricho Cotchery, only the team’s most consistent performer on that side of the ball. Good for him for a three-TD day. Let’s see more of him, fewer blocking fullbacks. … Does Marcus Gilbert ever finish a game? … When it was 24-24, Emmanuel Sanders had a chance to make a big catch. He didn’t. Wasn’t the first time. … Willie Gay, who was horrendous: “The big plays are what killed us, so we’ve got to be a step faster, especially myself.” Where are all the 30-year-olds going to find an extra step? … What does Felix Jones have that Jonathan Dwyer doesn’t? … LaMarr Woodley had eight tackles a week after making zero. I don’t even care what that means. … Jarvis Jones wasn’t out there much, got beat on Rob Gronkowski’s TD and had one tackle. I’d still rather see him on the field than Jason Worilds, who had two sacks. Those do nothing for the Steelers beyond this meaningless winter. … Le’Veon Bell has a long way to go. That’s all. Not being mean. Just saying. … Really, really nice stadium. First time here. Maybe nicest in the NFL. If it wasn’t a million miles away from anything, it’d be even nicer. … Brett Keisel, on next Sunday vs. Buffalo: “I think we will respond accordingly. This is a disgusting test and nobody likes it. The only thing you can do is dust yourself off.”

>> The game story focuses on 55 points, 610 yards, by beat writer Alan Robinson.

The suffering secondary, by Ralph Paulk.

The Gronkowski effect, by Bruce Lerch.

Here’s our full Steelers coverage., including game balls, injuries, turning points.

Here’s Patriots news from the Boston Globe.

Here are official game highlights from NFL.com. And I’d call special attention to this sensational run by the always sensational Adrian Peterson. Couldn’t believe it when I saw, still can’t.

And here’s our Steelers photo gallery by Chaz Palla, including this shot of Gronkowski beating Jones …

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>> Where are the right wingers? The Penguins aren’t getting much there. Beat writer Rob Rossi has it.

Dan Bylsma’s value goes beyond the bench, by Rossi.

If you missed the special Saturday column, I made many new friends at NHL headquarters.

Here’s our full Penguins coverage.

Here’s Rangers news from the New York Post.

Here are official game highlights from NHL.com.

>> The Pirates don’t plan to change their free-agent strategy, by Travis Sawchik.

>> Reeling Pitt must rev it back up for Notre Dame, by Jerry DiPaola.

>> Penn State could use a tight end or five, by Chris Adamski.

>> I’ll check in with TribLIVE Radio today at 11:30 a.m, about an hour after my plane lands back home.

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.

 
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