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Props Slaps
 10-18-2006, 09:14 PM         #261
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Wednesday, October 18, 2006
STEELERS S TROY POLAMALU, CHARGERS QB PHILIP RIVERS,

& TITANS TE CRAMER NAMED AFC PLAYERS OF WEEK 6



Quarterback PHILIP RIVERS of the San Diego Chargers, safety TROY POLAMALU of the Pittsburgh Steelers and tight end CASEY CRAMER of the Tennessee Titans are the AFC Offensive, Defensive and Special Teams Players of the Week for games played the sixth week of the 2006 season (October 15-16), the NFL announced today.





DEFENSE: S TROY POLAMALU, PITTSBURGH STEELERS

Pittsburgh's Polamalu produced a standout performance in the Steelers' 45-7 home win against Kansas City. Polamalu was in the middle of a Steelers defense that limited the Chiefs to 213 total yards, including 38 yards rushing. Among the league's top safeties, Polamalu led Pittsburgh with 10 tackles and defended three passes, including an interception which he returned 49 yards. Polamalu's outstanding run support helped limit Chiefs' All-Star running back LARRY JOHNSON to 1.7 yards-per-carry on 15 rushes. During one second-quarter possession, Polamalu was responsible for three consecutive tackles on Johnson – including one behind the line of scrimmage – to force a Kansas City punt.


In his fourth year from USC, this is Polamalu's second Player of the Week Award (Week 10, 2004).





OFFENSE: QB PHILIP RIVERS, SAN DIEGO CHARGERS

Making his fifth career NFL start, Rivers notched his first 300-yard passing game with 334 yards and a pair of touchdowns without an interception in a 48-19 win at San Francisco. The 6-5, 228-pound quarterback completed 29 of 39 pass attempts for a glittering 116.8 passer rating and posted a streak of 13 consecutive first half completions, equaling the third-longest stretch in team history. During his completion streak, Rivers racked up 195 yards through the air and completed his two TD strikes – a 57-yard catch-and-run by ANTONIO GATES and a 33-yard pass to the end zone to VINCENT JACKSON. The Chargers recorded four scoring drives (three TDs, one FG) in which Rivers did not throw a single incompletion. The first-year starter was nine of 10 on third down passing for 142 yards and a touchdown and also had two short runs for first downs on third-and-one plays. Rivers owns the NFL's second-highest passer rating (100.6), second-highest completion percentage (68.8), second-highest third-down passer rating (114.8) and third-highest fourth-quarter passer rating (114.7).


In his third year from North Carolina State, this is Rivers' first Player of the Week Award.





SPECIAL TEAMS: TE CASEY CRAMER, TENNESSEE TITANS

Contributing mightily toward Tennessee's first win of the season, tight end and special teams ace Cramer blocked a punt through the end zone in the third quarter for a safety in a 25-22 win at Washington. Cramer also recorded three special teams tackles and recovered a Titans' fumble on a punt return on the day. Cramer's safety gave the Titans a 22-14 lead midway through the third quarter to earn the visitors a significant eight-point cushion. Later in the game he recovered a fumble on a Titans' punt return. Tennessee's offense proceeded to drive into field goal range where kicker ROB BIRONAS split the uprights from 30 yards for a 25-22 lead and eventual victory. Cramer was claimed by the Titans off waivers from Carolina on September 3. He was originally selected by the Buccaneers in the seventh round (228th overall) of the 2004 NFL Draft.


In his third year from Dartmouth, this is Cramer's first Player of the Week Award.









2006 AFC PLAYERS OF THE WEEK



Offense
Defense
Special Teams

Wk 1
QB Chad Pennington, New York
LB Ray Lewis, Baltimore
K Adam Vinatieri, Indianapolis

Wk 2
QB Peyton Manning, Indianapolis
CB Rashean Mathis, Jacksonville
S Coy Wire, Buffalo

Wk 3
WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Cin.
S Kerry Rhodes, New York
PR-WR Terrence Wilkins, Ind.

Wk 4
WR Andre Johnson, Houston
DE Jarvis Green, New England
KR-WR Joshua Cribbs, Cleveland

Wk 5
QB Damon Huard, Kansas City
DT Jamal Williams, San Diego
K Lawrence Tynes, Kansas City

Wk 6
QB Philip Rivers, San Diego
S Troy Polamalu, Pittsburgh
TE Casey Cramer, Tennessee






Other nominees for AFC Offensive Player of Week 6 were:

· New York wide receiver LAVERANUES COLES, who caught five passes for 106 yards (21.2-yard average) and scored both of the Jets' touchdowns in a 20-17 home win against Miami.

· Tennessee running back TRAVIS HENRY, who ran for a career-high 178 rushing yards on 32 carries for a 5.6-yard average per carry. He also rushed for one touchdown. It marked the highest rushing total for the Titans since EDDIE GEORGE chalked up 181 yards against Cincinnati in 2000.

· Kansas City wide receiver SAMIE PARKER, who caught five passes for 72 yards.

· Pittsburgh running back WILLIE PARKER, who rushed for more than 100 yards for the third time in five games this season when he gained 109 on 21 carries (5.2-yard average) with two touchdowns.

· Pittsburgh quarterback BEN ROETHLISBERGER, who led the Steelers to a season-high 457 total yards while completing 16 of 19 passes for 238 yards, two TDs and a near-perfect 153.8 passer rating.

· San Diego running back LA DAINIAN TOMLINSON, who rushed for a career-high four touchdowns with 71 yards on 21 carries. The four rushing scores tied a team record, last achieved by CHUCK MUNCIE in 1981. In addition, Tomlinson's first touchdown of the game was the 84th of his career, making him the team's all-time touchdown leader, surpassing Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver LANCE ALWORTH.



Other nominees for AFC Defensive Player of Week 6 were:

· Kansas City rookie defensive end TAMBA HALI, who recorded nine tackles and forced two fumbles.

· New York linebacker VICTOR HOBSON, who posted an interception and a fumble recovery along with three tackles.

· San Diego linebacker SHAUN PHILLIPS, who notched 2.0 sacks and tipped a pass that was intercepted by a teammate.



Other nominees for AFC Special Teams Player of Week 6 were:

· Kansas City punter DUSTIN COLQUITT, who punted seven times for a 40.9 net average, including two punts inside the 20 and a long of 59 yards.

· Pittsburgh rookie wide receiver-kick returner-punt returner SANTONIO HOLMES, who had his best day as a pro, accounting for 109 yards on kick returns against the Chiefs. Holmes returned five punts for 55 yards (11.0 avg.) and two kickoffs for 54 (27.0 avg.).

· San Diego kicker NATE KAEDING, who made both of his field goal attempts of 24 and 44 yards in a win against San Francisco. Kaeding also was six for six in point-after tries, tying ROLF BENIRSCHKE's club record for consecutive successful PATs at 87.
 10-18-2006, 09:16 PM         #262
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Wednesday, October 18, 2006
By BOB LABRIOLA

Steelers.com



Think the Steelers run the football? The Atlanta Falcons RUN the football.



Through the first five games of the 2006 season, Willie Parker has posted three 100-yard games for the Steelers, who are averaging a respectable 125.8 rushing yards per game and 4.2 yards per carry. Remember, this is the NFL, and there are professionals who play defense, too.



But the Falcons are on another planet. They're averaging, averaging, mind you, 232 yards rushing per game, and 6.4 yards per carry.



They have two guys – Warrick Dunn and Michael Vick – ranked in the top 10 in the NFC in rushing, and Dunn's backup – rookie Jerious Norwood – ranks 16th. Also, Dunn has ripped off a 90-yard touchdown run, and Norwood has a 78-yard touchdown run – both this season.



And Vick, the quarterback, is the hub of it all. Instead of trying to make Vick into somebody he wasn't, the current Falcons coaching staff decided during the last offseason to try instead to make their starting quarterback the best Michael Vick he could be.



So when you watch the Falcons, it's like watching a college game featuring the West Virginia Mountaineers or the Florida Gators. The quarterback is in the shotgun, a running back is right next to him, and either one of those guys could end up running the football a long, long way on any snap.



"They have the option draw that you see in college all the time," said Coach Bill Cowher. "I'm going to have to start calling some college coaches about defending that thing. You are talking about the team that is No. 1, clearly ahead of everybody and setting records, rushing the football, and (Vick) is a part of that.



"And it's not like (Vick) is the only one, either. Warrick Dunn looks like he hit the fountain of youth or whatever, but he is running hard and fast, and then they bring in kids like (Jerious) Norwood who has unbelievable speed. When you talk about three guys who can run -- Norwood, Dunn and Vick -- they do a good job of presenting some different challenges to a defense in terms of testing the perimeter and reading some things with Michael, so we will have to be very disciplined to say the least."



Under the best of circumstances, it's a difficult job to try to deal with an offense like Atlanta's with just one week to prepare, and the Steelers will face the Falcons with a situation on defense that's far from the best of circumstances.



James Harrison, the team's top backup linebacker, is out with his high ankle sprain, and Cowher listed Joey Porter as doubtful with the hamstring he injured in practice before the game against the Kansas City Chiefs.



If Porter does not play, it will be the second game the Steelers will go without Porter and Harrison, and that means they will be back to using the combination of Arnold Harrison and Chad Brown at right outside linebacker.



Harrison/Brown did fine against the Chiefs, with a combined six tackles, one sack, one pressure, one pass defensed and zero obvious goofs, but the degree of difficulty now increases exponentially with Vick and the Falcons.



Neither one of those linebackers was around here in 2002 when the Steelers had their only other experience with Vick and the Falcons, and that game ended in a 34-34 tie. The Steelers held a 17-7 halftime lead and a 31-17 lead after three quarters that they built to 34-17 with 12 minutes left, but Vick was magic from then until the end of regulation.



That game posed the question, To blitz or not to blitz?



"You want to mix up your approach," said Cowher. "We played against them a few years ago at Heinz Field. He is a guy that you are not going to make a living doing it, but you certainly don't want to sit back because you are going to need some people to be able to fill some lanes. I think you have to be able to pick and choose and just try to keep him off balance as much as possible."



Off balance is Vick's specialty, but usually he's making the defenders feel that way. It's going to take all 11 defenders doing the right thing on every play to contain Michael Vick.



"In the secondary you have to be careful that you don't come out of coverage too quickly, because he still has an unbelievably strong arm, and we talk about his scrambling," said Cowher. "This is a guy who will scramble to run, but at the same time you cannot drop coverage.



"Up front you are going to have to come under control. A lot of times you talk about quarterbacks where you don't worry about containing him because you don't care if he is out of the pocket; this is a guy that the pressure lanes will be very important and at the same time, I think the biggest thing as defensive players, you can't get frustrated. You may have the most perfectly designed defense and everybody does their job, but he is going to make some plays.



"The biggest thing is to minimize the big plays that he makes, stay patient and hopefully somewhere along the line we will make a play."
 10-18-2006, 09:19 PM         #263
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Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, and his mother Brenda, and offensive tackle Max Starks, along with his mother Eleanor, weighed in to help f!ght hunger.



Both players took part in the Chunky Soup Spoon Weigh-in in the Steelers locker room at Heinz Field.


Each player took a turn to sit on a scale, which was a giant spoon, along with their mom while cases of Campbell's Chunky Soup were placed on the other side until the two sides balanced out.



The number of cans of soup that were placed on the one side were donated to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Starks and his mom weighed in at 504 cans, while Roethlisberger and his mom added 348 cans, for a total of 852 cans donated.


This is the second year that Roethlisberger has served as a spokesperson for Chunky Soup. He will appear in a print ad for the company for their Chunky Soup's "Hungry Boys." Starks is featured in the television ad for Chunky Soup this year, with his mom serving as the "team mom."



The weigh in helped to kickoff Chunky's annual Click for Cans online competition, which encourages fans to click on their team's helmet to donate cans of soup to their local food bank.
 10-21-2006, 12:13 PM         #264
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PITTSBURGH STEELERS WR SANTONIO HOLMES
VOTED WEEK 6 DIET PEPSI NFL ROOKIE OF THE WEEK



Winner Selected By Fan Vote on NFL.com and Via Sprint Wireless Service



Voters on NFL.com and via Sprint wireless service have made their choice. Wide receiver SANTONIO HOLMES of the Pittsburgh Steelers is the DIET PEPSI NFL ROOKIE OF THE WEEK for games played on October 15-16 the NFL announced today.



Holmes accounted for 180 total yards in the Steelers' 45-7 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs. He returned five punts for 55 yards and two kickoffs for 54 yards in the game. Holmes also caught two passes for 58 yards – including a career-long 50-yard catch – and had one carry for 13 yards.



More than 39,600 fans voted this week on NFL.com and via Sprint wireless service. Holmes was selected from among five finalists. The other finalists were quarterback BRUCE GRADKOWSKI of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, defensive back DEVIN HESTER of the Chicago Bears, quarterback MATT LEINART of the Arizona Cardinals and quarterback VINCE YOUNG of the Tennessee Titans.



After the regular season, five players will be nominated for Diet Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Year honors. Fans can vote for the winner on NFL.com and via Sprint wireless service throughout the month of January. The winner will be announced at a press conference at Super Bowl XLI in South Florida.



This is Pepsi's fifth year as the official soft drink sponsor of the NFL and the second year that Diet Pepsi will present the NFL Rookie of the Week and NFL Rookie of the Year awards.





2006 DIET PEPSI NFL ROOKIE OF THE WEEK



Wk 1
RB Reggie Bush (Southern California)

Wk 2
LB Manny Lawson (North Carolina State)

Wk 3
WR Greg Jennings (Western Michigan)

Wk 4
RB Laurence Maroney (Minnesota)

Wk 5
WR Hank Baskett (New Mexico)

Wk 6
WR Santonio Holmes (Ohio St.)
 10-21-2006, 12:17 PM         #265
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Former running back Jerome Bettis will be honored at the 2006 Taste of the Steelers on Friday, November 10 in the East Club Lounge at Heinz Field.


Current and former Steelers players will be on hand to honor Bettis, who retired after the Steelers victory in Super Bowl XL in his hometown ofDetroit, Michigan.



The event will feature a live and silent auction, which will include some one of a kind prizes, including a first-class trip for four to Super Bowl XLI in Miami, Florida; a trip for two to a 2007 Steelers away game on the team charter; golf extravaganza packages and autographed memorabilia.



The annual event also will feature game day food and beverage provided by ARAMARK.


Proceeds from the event benefit the Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. For ticket information, please call 412-647-4285.
 10-21-2006, 12:19 PM         #266
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Offensive tackle Max Starks and his mother Eleanor served as co-hosts for Hot Pink Pittsburgh at the Byham Theater. Hot Pink Pittsburgh raises funds to provide brea$t and cervical cancer screening for uninsured women in Western Pennsylvania.

The event was special to Starks because his mother is a brea$t cancer survivor.

"Since my mother has dealt with cancer, overcame it and survived it, it's something that is personal to me," said Starks. "Anytime I have the opportunity to help raise money or anything that helps brea$t cancer awareness and research I try to help a much as I can."

His mother was diagnosed when he was in third grade and she fought a tough battle, but won her battle.

"When you thought of cancer back then you thought it was terminal and she was going to die," said Starks. "I thought I was going to lose my mom. I cried and was upset about it. My older brother tried to comfort me, even though he was distraught himself.

"I remember going to the hospital with my mom. She had to go through chemo and radiation therapy. I remember how tired she looked. She would have to catch a bus to go have the chemo. You could see as it wore on her. All the worst things went through my mind. It was a scary feeling thinking I was going to lose my mom.

"It was just a painful process, but she fought hard."

Starks encourages all women to be properly screened and checked for cancer and is happy to be able to help provide those in need with the opportunity to do so.

"It's important," said Starks. "We all have mothers. Some have sisters, or daughters or grandparents. It's important because there has definitely been a woman that has had an impact on your life. For me it was my mother. For her to be personally touched by it, I feel it's your duty to do something like that. My mother has been an inspiration for me.

"The more money you raise for it, the closer you get to a cure. It's very important to get to that cure, not just for brea$t cancer but for all cancers."

Starks, who himself donates to the American Cancer Society for brea$t cancer research, took great pride in participating in the event with his mom by his side.

"I am thankful every day that my mother is on this planet," said Starks. "If she hadn't fought and worked hard enough and tried to have a positive impact, she wouldn't be here right now. I don't know how I would be if I didn't have my mom here right now. I am always blessed and thankful for every single day. To be able to go and do this event with her was really special for me."

* * *


October is brea$t cancer awareness month. During the month the Steelers will be selling a specially designed t-shirt in their Sideline Stores and Online Store. The net proceeds from the sale of the shirt will be donated to the Susan G. Komen brea$t Cancer Foundation. In addition, the Steelers took park in Lee Denim Day on Friday, Oct. 6, which benefits Women's Cancer Programs of EIF. Max Starks and his mother, Eleanor, a brea$t cancer survivor, hosted Hot Pink Pittsburgh on Tuesday, Oct. 10 at the Byham Theater. Hot Pink Pittsburgh raises funds to provide brea$t and cervical cancer screening for uninsured women in Western Pennsylvania. On Sunday, Oct. 15, prior to the Steelers-Chiefs game, members of Zeta Tau Alpha were at Heinz Field to distributing information on brea$t cancer and tips for early detection. One Communications, a Steelers sponsor, also made a donation to the Pittsburgh Race for the Cure before the game. Alan and Julie Faneca hosted Bid for Hope V on Oct. 16, which benefits A Glimmer of Hope, a foundation set up to find a cure for brea$t cancer
 10-21-2006, 12:35 PM         #267
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Friday, October 20, 2006
By BOB LABRIOLA

Steelers.com



The following are some of the interesting match-ups to watch when the Steelers face the Atlanta Falcons at 1 p.m. on Sunday:



STEELERS KR SANTONIO HOLMES VS. FALCONS KR ALLEN ROSSUM: With Willie Reid out for the second straight week with a mid-foot sprain, Holmes has become the team's primary punt returner, and he also is back deep for kickoffs alongside Najeh Davenport. Against the Chiefs, Holmes averaged 11 yards on his five punt returns, including a 24-yard effort, and he also had a 26-yard kickoff return. On the flip side, Holmes also fumbled two punts, and the fact the Steelers recovered both is only a slight consolation. Rossum comes into the game ranked No. 2 in the NFC in punt returns with an 11.9 yard average and he's No. 4 in the conference in kickoff returns as well. In his eight previous season, Rossum has six career touchdowns on returns, three on both punts and kickoffs. The Steelers need solid return work to help their offense, but Holmes cannot afford to be careless with the football; the Falcons have had trouble scoring touchdowns, and so they'll be looking to Rossum for some help there.



STEELERS C JEFF HARTINGS VS. FALCONS NT GRADY JACKSON: There are several players who have made a career of becoming run-stuffers-for-hire, with Ted Washington and Sam Adams immediately coming to mind. Jackson fits that category as well. The Falcons signed Jackson on Aug. 22 to help with their run defense, and things were going well for the team there until the New York Giants pounded out over 200 yards on the ground last week. Keeping the ball away from Michael Vick is only one of the reasons why the Steelers want to be able to run the football against the Falcons, but it's a significant one. The Steelers offensive line played well against the Chiefs, just as it played well against the Bengals, but mixed in were some sub-par games against Jacksonville and San Diego. Running the ball will make the play-action pass game more effective, and it also will slow down the rush of DEs John Abraham and Patrick Kerney, which will do a lot for Ben Roethlisberger's comfort in the pocket. The Falcons depend upon DT Rod Coleman for help against the run, and he's questionable with a toe injury, but Hartings vs. Jackson will say a lot about what kind of afternoon it is for Willie Parker.



STEELERS LOLB CLARK HAGGANS VS. FALCONS RT TODD WEINER: In all probability, it will be Arnold Harrison starting at ROLB for Joey Porter, with Chad Brown also helping out at that position. On the Falcons' read-option play, what Vick is reading is the outside man on the defensive line, and at times that'll be the outside linebacker. Haggans is solid against the run, and he's also a sound player when it comes to being in the proper position and taking the proper angles. Weiner is no All-Pro, but Haggans is going to have to combine winning his one-on-one matchup with playing under control and filling the proper lane. It might be OK to forget about lanes and just come after a guy like Damon Huard, but Vick can turn that situation into a big play. In a perfect world, pressuring a guy like Vick is best done up the middle so the rush is right in his face, and then if he retreats to the outside guys will be right there to meet him. Haggans has to be the guy who's always in the proper spot.



STEELERS QB BEN ROETHLISBERGER VS. FALCONS CB DeANGELO HALL: The Falcons upgraded themselves at safety with the additions of Lawyer Milloy and Chris Crocker, but Hall is the star of this secondary and one of the stars in the whole league. There are a select few cornerbacks in the NFL who truly are dynamic players, and Hall is one of them. Already, he has four interceptions, and once he gets the football in his hands he's dangerous with it. Hall is averaging 32.8 yards on his interception returns this season, and he has brought one back 60 yards for a touchdown. The Steelers want their offense to get back to looking like it did during last year's playoffs, and if that happens Roethlisberger will be supremely accurate and productive early in games, as he was against Kansas City for the first time this season. Interceptions were a problem for Roethlisberger during the three-game losing streak, and Hall not only has the ability to pick one off, but he might return it for a touchdown as well.



STEELERS ILB JAMES FARRIOR AND SS TROY POLAMALU VS. FALCONS TE ALGE CRUMPLER: The Falcons are very good at running the football, but they are not very good at converting third downs, and they are last in the league when it comes to scoring touchdowns in the red zone. Conversely, the Steelers defense has had problems with third down conversions, and with allowing touchdowns instead of field goals when opponents get into the red zone. Third-down conversions and touchdowns in the red zone usually can be tied directly to a team's ability to throw the ball efficiently, and that's where the Falcons offense has been lacking so far this season. Vick is completing barely 50 percent of his passes, and Crumpler leads the team with just 16 catches. But Crumpler always has been one of Vick's go-to guys, and with Brian Finneran out for the season, he has become even more of a security blanket. The outcome of a particular game can be determined by a strength vs. strength matchup, but this game might come down to which team does a better job with its own weaknesses.
 10-24-2006, 01:55 AM         #268
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By Teresa Varley
Steelers.com


It was a game where you knew the last team to have the ball would walk away a winner, and it was the Falcons who won the overtime toss and turned it into a 41-38 victory over the Steelers. The loss drops the Steelers to 2-4 on the season.



The game, which turned into a shootout, saw the lead change seven times. The Steelers were hurt by turnovers as they fumbled three times, leading directly to three Falcons touchdowns.



"It's a tough loss, but we left everything on that football field," said head coach Bill Cowher. "I am very proud of that group of guys in there. We dug a hole for ourselves, no question. I know the character of this football team and we will be back.

"There are some things we have to get rectified. I don't have all of the answers right now."



Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who completed 16 of 22 passes for 238 yards and three touchdowns, left the game with 7:45 to play in the third quarter when he suffered a blow to the head.



"Ben is sore. I don't have an initial diagnosis and I don't want to speculate. He was on the sideline at the end of the game and was understanding of what was going on."



Charlie Batch came in and completed eight of 13 passes for 195 yards and two touchdowns. Hines Ward had eight receptions for a career-high 171 yards, and three touchdowns, the most he has ever scored in a game.



But it wouldn't be enough. Falcons quarterback Michael Vick has a career day as well, completing 18 passes for 232 yards and four touchdown passes, a career-high for one game.



Steelers defense came out swarming early, giving the Falcons no room to run on their opening drive. An illegal formation penalty on the first play put the Falcons in a hole and when Warrick Dunn was stopped for a one-yard gain, they were forced to go to the air. Vick looked for Roddy White short, but it fell incomplete. On the next play Vick went back to White deep, but Bryant McFadden was there to break-up the pass and force the punt.

Unfortunately for the Steelers, though, special teams cost them again. Santonio Holmes fielded the punt at the 21-yard line and Omare Lowe stripped the ball and forced the fumble, which was recovered by Adam Jennings for the Falcons. Vick made the Steelers pay for the mistake when he hit Alge Crumpler on the next play for a 22-yard touchdown, giving the Falcons and early 7-0 lead.

The Steelers were able to shake off the rough start, though. Holmes got the kickoff return and took it back 42 yards, giving the Steelers good field position on their own 42-yard line. Parker took it for five yards and on third down Roethlisberger hit Holmes for 13 yards to the Falcons 40-yard line. Roethlisberger went right back to the air, finding Cedrick Wilson for a 20-yard gain. Faced with another third-down, Roethlisberger connected with Nate Washington tat the Falcons eight-yard line for a 17-yard gain. The offense couldn't punch the ball into the end zone and had to settle for a 28-yard Jeff Reed field goal, closing the gap to 7-3.



Things continued to work in the Steelers favor. After a short run by Dunn and an incompletion, Vick threw deep for White along the sideline, but Troy Polamalu stepped right in front of the pass and intercepted it.



The offense marched the ball down the field, aided by a 16-yard completion to Wilson and a 16-yard run by Parker. Roethlisberger then hit Ward for a 12-yard gain for a first-down. Three plays late he went right back to Ward for an 11-yard touchdown, giving the Steelers a 10-7 lead.



The defense continued to stymie the Falcons offense, forcing a quick three-and-out.



It was back to the air for the Roethlisberger and the offense, hitting Jerame Tuman for a 21-yard gain. He came right back to Ward for 19-yards, and the Steelers got a break when Ward fumbled on the play and Heath Miller recovered. Roethlisberger spread it around, hitting Wilson for an 18-yard gain as he fought his way to the Falcons two-yard line. Parker tried to get it in the end zone, but was stopped one-yard shy. On the next play, Roethlisberger moved around in the pocket and had plenty of time and his patience paid off, finding Miller in the back of the end zone for a one-yard touchdown, extending the lead to 17-7.



After another strong stand by the defense, the offense had the chance to take control of the game. But Roethlisberger fumbled the snap from Jeff Hartings and the Falcons recovered. For the second time in the game the Falcons made the Steelers pay for their turnover. Vick moved the Falcons into scoring position and then hit Crumpler for his second touchdown of the game, bringing them to with three-points at 17-14.



The Falcons kept rolling. They went for the onside kick and executed it perfectly, recovering at the Atlanta 49-yard line. Vick was able to keep the passing game going, moving it down the field with completions to Ashley Lelie. Vick then hit Michael Jenkins for 17-yard and the touchdown, putting the Falcons back on top 21-17.



It was right back to work for Roethlisberger and with just over two minutes to play in the half, he had his work cut out for him. Starting at his own 20-yard line, Roethlisberger got the offense going with a nine-yard completion to Ward and a 14-yard pass to Sean Morey. He then hit Holmes on a perfect pass to the Falcons 10-yard line. The offense wouldn't be denied the end zone as Roethlisberger hit Washington for a 10-yard touchdown, putting them back on top 24-21.



The Steelers were hit with a celebration penalty on the play, forcing them to kick from the 15-yard line. Allen Rossum made them pay for the penalty with a 51-yard return, with a 10-yard tripping penalty added on after Jeff Reed made a touchdown-saving stop. Vick had the ball on the Steelers 28-yard line with just under a minute to play, but James Farrior came up with a huge interception to stop the drive and send the Steelers into the half with a three-point lead.



Both teams went three-and-out on their first drives of the half and then the Steelers got the ball back. On second down, Roethlisberger threw incomplete to Ward and was hit by three Falcons defenders and took a blow to the head, leaving him lying on the Georgia Dome turf for an extended time. He was able to get up and walk off the field with help, but looked dazed and was taken in to the locker room.



Batch came in and his first pass was incomplete, but a penalty kept the drive alive. On the next play, though, Parker fumbled and the Falcons recovered.



For the third time in the game the Falcons made the Steelers pay for their turnover when Dunn capped a four-play drive with a one-yard touchdown, putting the Falcons back in the lead, 28-24.



It wouldn't take long for the Steelers to bounce back. Batch first hit Holmes for a 12-yard gain to their own 32-yard line. Two plays later he hit Ward around the Falcons 40-yard line, and then Ward broke free straight to the end zone for a 70-yard touchdown, giving them back the lead, 31-28.



Just as quickly as the Steelers scored, the Falcons responded with a 31-yard touchdown pass to Crumpler to put Atlanta back on top 35-31.



The Falcons added a 25-yard field goal by Morton Andersen to extend their lead to 38-31.



The Steelers might have been down at that point, but they weren't out. Batch stepped up completing a huge 49-yard pass to Washington. On the next play he hit Ward for a 17-yard touchdown, his third of the game, to tie the game at 38-38.


The Falcons got a last chance to win it in overtime with a field goal. Michael Koenan's attempted a 56-yard field goal, which would have been good, but the Steelers called time out before the snap. His next attempt was short, but Polamalu was called for running into the kicker. Andersen came on for the 52-yard field goal, but it to was short, sending the game into overtime. Andersen would rebound, though, as his 32-yard field goal won the game in overtime.



SCORING SUMMARY
1ST QUARTER
TD Alge Crumpler, 22 Yd pass from Michael Vick (Morten Andersen kick is good), 13:12. Drive: 1 play, 22 yards in 0:07.
FG Jeff Reed 28 Yd, 8:46. Drive: 11 plays, 48 yards in 4:26.
TD Hines Ward, 11 Yd pass from Ben Roethlisberger (Jeff Reed kick is good), 2:22. Drive: 9 plays, 66 yards in 5:23.
2ND QUARTER
TD Heath Miller, 1 Yd pass from Ben Roethlisberger (Jeff Reed kick is good), 9:56. Drive: 9 plays, 88 yards in 5:42.
TD Alge Crumpler, 3 Yd pass from Michael Vick (Morten Andersen kick is good), 4:46. Drive: 6 plays, 25 yards in 2:50.
TD Michael Jenkins, 17 Yd pass from Michael Vick (Morten Andersen kick is good), 2:04. Drive: 7 plays, 51 yards in 2:42.
TD Nate Washington, 10 Yd pass from Ben Roethlisberger (Jeff Reed kick is good), 0:58. Drive: 6 plays, 80 yards in 1:06.
3RD QUARTER
TD Warrick Dunn, 1 Yd run (Morten Andersen kick is good), 5:44. Drive: 4 plays, 26 yards in 1:45.
TD Hines Ward, 70 Yd pass from Charlie Batch (Jeff Reed kick is good), 4:11. Drive: 4 plays, 80 yards in 1:33.
TD Alge Crumpler, 31 Yd pass from Michael Vick (Morten Andersen kick is good), 1:10. Drive: 6 plays, 75 yards in 3:01.
4TH QUARTER
FG Morten Andersen 25 Yd, 6:24. Drive: 7 plays, 64 yards in 4:10.
TD Hines Ward, 17 Yd pass from Charlie Batch (Jeff Reed kick is good), 3:19. Drive: 6 plays, 79 yards in 3:05.
OVERTIME
FG Morten Andersen 32 Yd, 8:04. Drive: 11 plays, 65 yards in 6:56.


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Last edited by flex001; 10-24-2006 at 01:57 AM..
 10-24-2006, 05:07 AM         #269
[Word oF MouF]  OP
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lemme get outta here...smells like sh*t
 10-24-2006, 05:37 AM         #270
flex001  OP
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 [Word oF MouF] said:
lemme get outta here...smells like sh*t
so funny :finger:
 10-24-2006, 11:36 AM         #271
[Word oF MouF]  OP
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^^^ lol
 10-25-2006, 08:35 AM         #272
flex001  OP
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[pic - click to view]


Wednesday, October 25, 2006
By BOB LABRIOLA

Steelers.com

He has been asked the question often, and his answer always has been the same. Now, it's clear why.

Ask Coach Bill Cowher about the statistic that's most important, and his answer is predictable: turnovers. And based on how the Steelers' season has unfolded through its first six games, it's difficult to argue with him.

"The most telling stat, and I have said this before, is the turnover/takeaway ratio," said Cowher during his Tuesday news conference. "You can look down through the league and if you lose in that category, you are not going to win many games."

The Steelers have won two of their first six games, and two of those four losses can be tied directly to turnovers, maybe directly to specific turnovers.

Against the Bengals at Heinz Field on Sept. 24, the Steelers held a 17-14 lead with just over eight minutes to play. Sacks had ruined each of the previous two Bengals possessions, and with the Cincinnati defense having its usual trouble stopping the run, it seemed as though the Steelers were in control when Kyle Larson dropped back to punt on a fourth-and-18 from the Bengals' 24-yard line.

Ricardo Colclough fumbled the punt, and the Bengals recovered at the 9-yard line. Next play – touchdown pass to T.J. Houshmandzadeh. On the second play after the ensuing kickoff, Verron Haynes fumbles at the 30-yard line. Next play – another touchdown pass to Houshmandzadeh. Steelers lost, 28-20.

Against the Falcons in the Georgia Dome last Sunday, the Steelers had a 17-7 lead early in the second quarter because they answered Atlanta's opening-possession touchdown with two touchdowns and a field goal on their first three possessions. The Falcons had just gone three-and-out and punted for the third time when the Steelers offense lined up for a first-and-10 at its own 23-yard line with 7:39 left in the half.

To that point in the game, Ben Roethlisberger was 11 of 15 (73.3 percent) for 166 yards and two touchdowns, and Jeff Hartings was the anchor of an offensive line that was dominating the opponent, but a fumbled exchange was recovered by the Falcons, and the entire game changed. The Steelers lost, 41-38, in overtime.

"We are having to overcome ourselves," said Cowher, "and it is hard enough to beat teams that are good football teams. We are just not doing the things in the second half that it takes to finish games and we have to do a better job of that, whether it is sustaining focus or whether it is physical or mental, whatever it may be. The mind controls the body for the most part."

The Steelers have turned the ball over 14 times in their first six games, and the only teams with more are Detroit, Oakland, Cleveland and Arizona. And the Lions and Cardinals have played seven games already, but still, in today's NFL, that's just not good company to be keeping.

"We have 14 turnovers in six games," said Cowher. "There are only four teams that have more than that. The thing about that is, with the 14 turnovers, 11 of them have come in the second half of games. Those are very hard to overcome.

"As we sit here 2-4, it is obviously not where we wanted to be, nor envisioned ourselves to be. We have to do a better job as coaches stressing detail and the little things and doing better jobs as players to try to sustain that focus throughout a game."
 10-25-2006, 08:36 AM         #273
flex001  OP
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Tuesday, October 24, 2006
By Teresa Varley
Steelers.com



Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is listed as questionable for Sunday's game in Oakland after suffering a concussion against the Atlanta Falcons.



Roethlisberger had an MRI done of his brain and neck and both came back normal. He also has an impact test and a concussion test done.



"We are very encouraged by the results," said head coach Bill Cowher. "We will monitor his progress as the week goes on. But again, I emphasize that we are very encouraged by where he is at as we speak today."



Cowher did not go into detail as to how severe the concussion was, but did indicate that the team will take no chances in rushing him back too fast.



"I can say we are taking every precaution," said Cowher. "He did take the test. He will take the test again later in the week to make sure he is cleared medically before we subject him to playing. We are encouraged by where he is. It's too early to make a final decision. We will do so after we take all medical precautions."



The injury comes just as the passing game was picking up speed. Roethlisberger has had strong performances against the Chiefs and the Falcons and the passing game has looked like it's back on track.



"Obviously we have been throwing the ball very well and not turning it over," said Cowher. "I think that's a big thing. We have cut down on the interceptions. He has looked very comfortable. The receivers have done a good job of running crisp routes. I see us throwing the ball before guys get out of a break and that's when I know we are getting our timing back.



"I've been very encouraged by the play of Ben and Charlie (Batch) when he came in. Throwing the football we have been very crisp the last couple of weeks."



* * *

Injury Update: Out: James Harrison (ankle) and Mike Logan (hamstring). Doubtful: Willie Reid (foot). Questionable: Cedrick Wilson (groin), Clark Haggans (ankle), Joey Porter (hamstring), Roethlisberger (concussion) and Case Hampton (hamstring). Probable: Tyrone Carter (shoulder), Santonio Holmes (toe) and Dan Kreider (ankle).
 10-27-2006, 11:45 PM         #274
flex001  OP
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Thursday, October 26, 2006
By Teresa Varley
Steelers.com

Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger took part in a limited role in practice on Wednesday and remains questionable for Sunday's game against the Raiders in Oakland.

Despite the limited activity, Roethlisberger wants to play and is hoping doctors will clear him to do so after he suffered a concussion against the Falcons last week.

"I feel good," said Roethlisberger before practice. "I'm just trying to get ready to get out there and help the team any way I can. I am going to try to play. If I am okay and coach and I talk, hopefully I can convince him."

Head coach Bill Cowher said that he will not entertain the thoughts of letting Roethlisberger play unless he is cleared by the team doctors, including neurosurgeon Dr. Joseph Maroon, who has met with Roethlisberger several times already.

"The first thing I want to do is make sure he is cleared medically," said Cowher. "At that point I will a.ssess where he is at, watch him work, talk to him and make sure there is no apprehension on his part. After talking with him and watching him work, we will make a decision from there.

"I don't want to go to step two or three until we get past the first step. It's all speculation. He seemed good out there today. He seems very positive. We'll go from there."

Roethlisberger is expected to get some work in practice on Thursday as well, but it hasn't been determined yet how much.

"We'll see how he feels," said Cowher. "Hopefully he will be able to do more then. It will be a day-to-day evaluation. By the end of the week we will have a better sense of where he is at as far as his availability."


Roethlisberger suffered the concussion after being hit by three Falcons defenders after a pass attempt in the game.


"The last thing I remember is throwing the ball to Hines (Ward) and seeing those guys coming so I tried to duck out of it," he said. "As I ducked I remember getting hit in the chin and I felt like I busted my whole jaw. One of their players said something to me and that's the last thing I remember."


* * *

Roethlisberger feels like the Steelers can make a run if they get the right combination of strong play and a little bit of luck.


"The funny thing about football is there is a lot of skill involved, but there is quite a bit of luck involved," he said. "It's about the ball getting tipped this wall or bouncing this way. We haven't been getting those breaks right now. We got those the last two years and it hasn't happened this year. We just have to keep playing this level of football and hope the ball will start bouncing are way."
 10-27-2006, 11:46 PM         #275
flex001  OP
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Friday, October 27, 2006
STEELERS NOTEBOOK:

Head coach Bill Cowher is not expected to make a decision on Ben Roethlisberger's status for Sunday's game against the Raiders until Sunday morning.

Roethlisberger practiced on Thursday and Cowher was encouraged by his progress, but he still plans on waiting.

"He feels better than he did," Cowher said. "We'll see how he feels after traveling across the country."

* * *

Linebacker Joey Porter has practiced the last two days and was upgraded from questionable to probable on the team's injury report. Porter has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury.

"He's looked very well," Cowher said. "Barring any setbacks, he should be fine."

Cornerback Deshea Townsend also is expected to return to the starting lineup after seeing limited time the last two games because of a hamstring injury.

* * *

Steelers wide receivers Nate Washington, Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes were fined $5,000 each by the NFL for the excessive celebration penalty they were flagged for against the Falcons.

The penalty came after Washington scored on a 10-yard touchdown reception and Ward and Holmes joined him in dancing in the end zone.

"It doesn't sit well with me," said Washington. "But I got to deal with it."

Earlier this season running backs Willie Parker and Verron Haynes were each fined $5,000 by the NFL for celebrating Parker's touchdown against the Cincinnati Bengals.
 10-27-2006, 11:47 PM         #276
flex001  OP
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SAINTS-STEELERS GAME MOVES TO 4:15 PM ET ON FOX

BEARS-GIANTS TO BE NBC SUNDAY NIGHT GAME ON NOV. 12,

IN FIRST WEEK OF FLEXIBLE SCHEDULING






The Chicago Bears-New York Giants game on Sunday, November 12 will be played at 8:15 PM ET on NBC and the New Orleans Saints-Pittsburgh Steelers game will move to 4:15 PM ET on FOX as part of the first week of flexible scheduling, the NFL announced today.


This season the NFL is implementing for the first time a "flexible scheduling" feature on Sundays in Weeks 10-15 and in Week 17. November 12 (Week 10) marks the first week of flexible scheduling, which will ensure quality match-ups in all the NFL Sunday time slots and give teams a chance to play their way onto primetime and into the late-afternoon 4:15 PM ET time slot on CBS and FOX.


For each of the flexible scheduling weeks with the exception of Week 17, the NFL will announce the start times of games on Sundays no later than 12 days prior to that weekend. In Week 17, in order to ensure a Sunday night game and doubleheader games with playoff implications, the decision to move the start time may be made on six days notice.


# # #
 10-29-2006, 01:42 PM         #277
Surfinfool  OP
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damn this thread is fu*ken nuts....props to you all bro
 10-29-2006, 01:57 PM         #278
Krieger08  OP
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This thread is the sh*t. Props to my boy Flex
 11 years ago '04        #279
Magnificent Phoenix|m 13 heat pts13
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$7,120 | Props total: 229 229
yep...well the Steelers and Cowher deserve to get demoted...if they would have had a winning season u'd see the steelers playing sunday night, but 2-5 doesn't cut it
 flex001 said:
SAINTS-STEELERS GAME MOVES TO 4:15 PM ET ON FOX

BEARS-GIANTS TO BE NBC SUNDAY NIGHT GAME ON NOV. 12,

IN FIRST WEEK OF FLEXIBLE SCHEDULING






The Chicago Bears-New York Giants game on Sunday, November 12 will be played at 8:15 PM ET on NBC and the New Orleans Saints-Pittsburgh Steelers game will move to 4:15 PM ET on FOX as part of the first week of flexible scheduling, the NFL announced today.


This season the NFL is implementing for the first time a "flexible scheduling" feature on Sundays in Weeks 10-15 and in Week 17. November 12 (Week 10) marks the first week of flexible scheduling, which will ensure quality match-ups in all the NFL Sunday time slots and give teams a chance to play their way onto primetime and into the late-afternoon 4:15 PM ET time slot on CBS and FOX.


For each of the flexible scheduling weeks with the exception of Week 17, the NFL will announce the start times of games on Sundays no later than 12 days prior to that weekend. In Week 17, in order to ensure a Sunday night game and doubleheader games with playoff implications, the decision to move the start time may be made on six days notice.


# # #
 11-02-2006, 03:09 PM         #280
flex001  OP
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Disappointed with the start; but hoping to finish strong
Wednesday, November 1, 2006
By Teresa Varley
Steelers.com

Steelers head coach Bill Cowher talked about his disappointment with the team's 2-5 record during his weekly press conference and he didn't shy away from taking responsibility for it.
"It starts with me," said Cowher. "There has been a lot of frustration that has taken place through the course of these games in terms of the different ways that we have found to lose them and the bottom line is that we have lost. Each one of us has to do more, and again, it starts with me. I can a.ssure you that we will do whatever we deem necessary or have to do to win a football game."

Part of the frustration is that there isn't one particular area that has led to the team's problems. One week it could be the offense, the next defense and the next special teams. Turnovers have been one thing that has really haunted the Steelers this year. They have 18 of them in seven games. Last year they had 23 turnovers in 16 games.

There just isn't a quick fix, other than to start winning.

"There's no easy answer to the inconsistencies of this team," said Cowher. "It would be unfair to pinpoint any one area. Go back to some of our inabilities defensively, in the Atlanta game on third down. We played well in two of the last three weeks on defense. Offensively we have not been able to run the ball consistently. We hadn't thrown an interception in two weeks, then we come back and do it.

"Our kickoff coverage team is probably 30th in the National Football League in terms of starting point. Our punt return net-punt is 32nd. There is no question that one of the biggest disappointments has been the kicking game. Those are the facts. We have to find a way to rectify it. We're not making any excuses. We're just not getting it done."

With nine games still to play, and a tough AFC match-up against the 5-2 Denver Broncos this Sunday, the Steelers definitely have their work cut out for them.

"It's not going to get done over night," said Cowher. "We have to take steps to do this. It starts everyday when we come in here with our preparation."

When the players return to the practice field on Wednesday they will know what is at stake. They know they have to get back on the winning track and it's going to take an all out effort on the part of every player and coach to do so.

"I think it's very important to deal with where we are, what the facts are, and I think we have a veteran team that understands that," said Cowher. "There are no easy or clear-cut answers to that. If there was, certainly a lot of things would have been rectified to this point. But there aren't and the only answer is to go out there and continue to do the little things, the attention to details and again it starts with me."
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