By Josh Katzowitz
After Denver’s upset win of the Steelers on Sunday was complete, Pittsburgh cornerback Ike Taylor -- who got smoked by Demaryius Thomas on the game-winning 80-yard touchdown pass and had a bad day in general -- didn’t talk to reporters.
Instead, he sat in front of the locker he apparently destroyed and stared at the ground.
"On defense, we felt like we let the team down," Steelers linebacker James Farrior said after the game, via ESPN. "We felt like we had a good grasp of what they were going to do to us or try to do us. They came out and made way more plays that we thought they were capable of making."
Either way, Taylor felt bad about his role in making Tim Tebow and Thomas, who gave a hellacious stiff-arm to Taylor as he ran to the end zone, the heroes of the game. So, he apologized on Twitter today.
“First off congrats too (sic) tebow and the Broncos … Second I apologize for playing the worst game at the wrong time apologize to my teammates steelernation and family. Luv y'all to def.”
Of course, Taylor shouldn’t bear the brunt of the blame. He wasn’t the only man who allowed Tebow to throw for 316 yards and two touchdowns and to allow Thomas to catch 204 yards worth of receptions. Also, as ESPN’s Jamison Hensley notes, “The Steelers put him in a precarious position by putting him on an island against Thomas, because they were more committed to stopping the run than the pass.”
In fact, as Tebow snapped the ball on that final play, all Pittsburgh defenders were within five yards of the line of scrimmage, because safety Ryan Mundy moved up to defend a possible rush attempt. In effect, the Steelers sold out for the run, and when Thomas made his move, Taylor -- who was on the outside of him -- had no help from his safety.
But yeah, Taylor was the face of the inept Steelers defense on that final play as we saw replay after replay of the game-ender. And while he shouldn’t have to apologize, it’s not hard to recognize how badly Taylor must feel about the whole scenario. That must hurt much worse than the stiff-arm.
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