Their cooldowns are good, but thats the only thing keeping them in the raid.
...saving people's lives is the only thing keeping a healer in the raid? What a shock (no pun intended).
It's almost as if there is more to healing than meter whoring and Blizzard knows it. But that could never happen, right?
Our cooldowns are highly overrated. For our Heroic Megaera attempts on Thursday, I was alternating Ascendance and Healing Tide on every rampage, and rampage is the ideal situation where you would think Resto Shaman strengths would come into play, because the entire raid is stacked and taking heavy damage.
My output during the rampage bursts was below the sustained output of our priests, paladins and mistweavers, and about on par with that of our druids. It's partially because of Spirit stacking, using double Spirit trinkets and running at lower INT levels than other healers, but if our strength is our CDs, our CDs should be giving us higher burst output than the sustained output of other healers in a stacked AoE situation. That is not happening, and that is a problem if that is the only situation where we have strong throughput.
On top of that, when you dig into where Resto Shaman are being benched, we already know they are being sat on about 50% of top 5 World guilds' progression kills. No Resto Shaman has been used on H Dark Animus, and this Heroic seems to be the most difficult in the first 11, and a heroic that many guilds will probably be on for weeks. On top of that, no one has killed it yet, but I would be shocked if Resto Shaman are being used on H Lei Shen given how poorly that fight plays out to our mechanics on NM. That's another fight that is probably going to take weeks of progression time.
So, if we can't be in for H Dark Animus and can't be in for H Lei Shen, guess what? We are useless and on the bench for probably over 50% of actual progression this tier. How is there not an issue, and how is this anything but a complete failure of the people who design and balance the classes and encounters?