Maybe it was nerves, but Dalton was terrible to start the game. Green, Gresham and Eifert are 6’4”, 6’5” and 6’6” respectively and in the first few possessions Dalton overthrew each by at least 2-3 feet. The first series Daltons’ inaccuracies caused a 3 and out and led directly to the Steelers first 3 points. While he got better, Dalton cannot afford to come out this poor against GB or the Bengals will be down 21 before he rights himself.
Adam Jones in General
The Steelers saw something with Jones and they were picking on him. It seemed as if every completion (at least every significant completion) was coming to a guy being followed (3 yards back) by Adam Jones. Usually I like Jones’ coverage skills. Not Monday night.
I don’t like to complain about the refs, but they were terrible. Most of the bad calls (and most of the calls in general) went against the Bengals (except for the terrible phantom trip), but the refs were bad. They missed an obvious hold that sprung Brown’s big punt return (just like last year), they missed numerous other blatant holds by the Steelers OL on plays when Ben was running around, and most egregious was the blowing the play dead on the fumble.
Refs are encouraged on close calls to let the play go and then review if necessary, meaning that ref must have believed it was crystal clear the player was down. Though it ended up being a moot point because the Bengals scored on the drive, Jones had a chance at returning that for a TD.