- Game 1: 1 carry for 0yds, 0 YPC / 0 rec for 0 yds
- Game 2: 0 carry for 0yds, 0 YPC / 0 rec for 0 yds (out)
- Game 3: 1 carry for 2yds, 2 YPC / 3 rec for 43 yds
- Game 1: 19 carries for 88 yds, 4.6 YPC / 5 rec for 67 yds
- Game 2: 30 carries for 141 yds, 4.7 YPC / 1 rec for 14 yds
- Game 1: 8 carries for 20 yds, 2.5 YPC / 1 rec for 9 yds
- Game 2: 9 carries for 32 yds, 3.6 YPC / 2 rec for 18 yds
- Game 3: 12 carries for 32 yds, 2.7 YPC / 7 rec for 32 yds
- Game 1: 19 carries for 107 yds, 5.6 YPC / 4 rec for 42 yds
- Game 2: 18 carries for 43 yds, 2.4 YPC / 5 rec for 43 yds
- Game 1: 20 carries for 40 yds, 2.0 YPC / 5 rec for 43 yds
Perhaps not every game, but in 8 of the 11 games he's not been effective, albeit playing second or third fiddle in 2008. Then the argument comes up that the Steelers have a great rush defense which, while true, brings me to these numbers:
Steelers R YDS/G: 62.8
Steelers YPC: 3.0
Rice R YDS/G: 28
Rice R YPC: 2.9
Steelers R YDS/G: 99.8
Steelers YPC: 4.0
Rice R YDS/G: 75
Rice R YPC: 4.0
Steelers R YDS/G: 94.6
Steelers YPC: 3.8
Rice R YDS/G: 40
Rice YPC: 2.0
So for the past three years Rice has rushed for less than the average back does against the Steelers (and I didn't bother to pull the Ravens games out of the defense average). I'm not just making up fairytales.
For one thing 2008 is not even worth looking at considering we are looking at 2 carries in 3 games. Labeling those 3 games as "not effective" is just wrong, imo.
So from 2009 on we are talking about 5 of 8 "not effective," but even here one of them can be debated. You are comparing Rice's game totals against the Steelers average rushing yards allowed by the entire opposition, not just their main back. It is a false comparison. You also are not accounting for games where Rice simply got less chances to run it.
To make the comparison more worthwhile you should just compare YPC averages. The Steelers allowed 3.9 YPC in 2009, 3.0 in 2010, and 4.0 in 2011. So far in 2012 they are allowing 3.8 YPC. Using these metrics, Rice has "underperformed" the average in 4 of 8 games. One can quibble about whether a game where you total 32 yards rushing can be labeled "effective" regardless of the defense, but the YPC was above what the Steelers allowed that year (i.e. limited attempts explain the low total yards more than below-average effectiveness).
I don't disagree with the premise that Rice struggles vs. the Steelers, but I don't think it is to the extent you made it sound.
Went back and added the YPC. You could also say he got less carries chances to run it because he wasn't effective. It sounds like we agree for the most part. My only point is that Rice is a Top 3 back who suffers a tremendous drop off against the Steelers MORE than the amount incurred by any other running back would by playing that defense. My solution would be to spread the ball to Leach (just a couple times) and Pierce more and/or call different styles of plays.
Ray just needs that little bit of space when he runs up the middle and then he's at his best because he can out-maneuver and out run most defenders once he gets going. Pitt was just closing the holes too fast for him to get any steam.
It's because the Steelers literally plan their whole game plan around stopping Rice and penetrating our Oline, the Texans and the Patriots did this in the play offs too. There is a blue print for beating the Ravens, but it doesn't always quite come to light because Flacco has stepped up when these teams schemed against Rice, plus the defense more times than not turns up for the big teams.
To say Ray Rice is overrated and overpaid is also very foolish. I'm not going to provide the over whelming stats that go in his favor, already done that plenty of times.
KC Joyner who was on a livechat during yesterdays game was talking about how Rice's production has been dropping the last few games.
Our O-line is what it is, and of course that is a big part of it, but he highlighted a metric he uses for his columns which measures effectiveness while having good blocking and it had dropped from 8+ yards on average during the first six games this year to around 6 the last few games. Joyner thought it had to do with a toe troubling Rice, but I haven't really heard anything about a toe injury this year.
It's not a official stat, good blocking in this case is also subjective, but I thought I'd mention it.