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Wednesday saw a major changing of the guard. No, I am not talking about the U.S. presidency. I’m speaking of the retirement of Roethlisberger’s draft mate, Philip Rivers. Rivers is heeding Old Man River in joining fellow 2004 draftee Elie Manning in the post-football world, where the water is fine. And Rivers looked a heck of a lot better than Ben …
 
It’s now painfully clear the Steelers have the worst quarterback in the AFC North. The Steelers division rivals all possess young, up-and-coming QBs. Two were taken at the top of recent drafts, and the third was a steal at the bottom of the first round. The Steelers have an aging, diminished Big Ben Roethlisberger. Yet what comes after Ben is even …
 
The NFL playoffs are marked by legendary but bizarre games. You got the Fog Bowl, the Ice Bowl and now we have the COVID Bowl. The Cleveland Browns are limping into Pittsburgh with their supposedly genius head coach and a growing list of players on quarantine due to the coronavirus. The depleted Cleveland team has Steelers Nation brimming with conf…
 
Troy Polamalu is an enigma. He just might be the closest things pro football has ever had to a superhero. He off-the-field alter-ego, however, is meeker and milder than Clark Kent. He had supernatural ability to immediately diagnose, then blow up an opposing team’s play. He vaulted over the line of scrimmage and tackled the quarterback nanoseconds …
 
Ask not for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for Big Ben Roethlisberger, the Steelers QB nicknamed after the famous London clock tower. Steelers Nation is populated by a significant number of spoiled fans once-relishing a perfect season but now turning on their Hall of Fame quarterback. Many are seemingly ready to write off Big Ben after two-straight …
 
December could prove to be the cruelest month once again for these Steelers. If so, it will be because the seeds of the Steelers’ offensive implosion were sewn back in August. That’s when a surgically repaired Big Ben Roethlisberger first showed signs his deep ball wasn’t there anymore. He and the Steelers have shied away from it ever since. Now, i…
 
When does a Steelers win, even over the hated Ravens, fell like a loss? When you drop passes all over Heinz Field, fumble a punt, give up a long touchdown pass to the third-string QB – and most of all when you lose your relentless pass rusher, Bud Dupree, to a season-ending knee injury. This stomach-turning Steelers win feels like a major turning p…
 
The running game has long been sacred for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Absent a running game, the Steelers offense -- indeed it’s entire football philosophy -- just didn’t work. Until now. Until Big Ben Roethlisberger, wise and wily in his 17th season and seeing the field like never before, can dump off the football at will. Until these four Horsemen o…
 
Pop a Prozac, Pittsburgh. Football warning signs are flashing brightly and loudly in the 412 area code about these far-from perfect 8-0 Steelers, who seem to be flirting with their first loss week in and week out. Yes, I’m talking about the real risk of this supposedly perfect team losing to the better-than-advertised Joe Burrow-led Bengals at Hein…
 
The Steelers’ big win in Baltimore has celebrating players rapping along to what’s now being billed as the 7-0 team’s official song: ‘Take Over Your Trap’ by the late Bankroll Fresh. The lyrics that are printable do show why the song has struck a chord with the Steelers. This, after the team walked into the Big Crabcake on a rainy, cold Un-Charm Ci…
 
Big Ben Roethlisberger’s trio of troubling interceptions vs. the Titans ended up costing the Steelers points on long drives – but luckily not the too-close-for-comfort 27-24 contest. The lingering effect of those picks could be the proof that Big Ben isn’t the same gun-slinging Steelers quarterback of old. The new Ben isn’t the same as the old Ben.…
 
Pittsburgh’s proud pro football tradition was never just about the pigskin. It was about the community of fans that came to be known as Steelers Nation. It was the connection between town, team and stadium section mates that became strong as steel. It was the communion of excitement, shared experience and common purpose that brought together that c…
 
What’s worse than being forced by COVID-19 to take your bye in Week 4? For the Steelers, it’s watching the Cleveland Browns offense break out with 49 points against the Dallas Cowboys.But it’s not just the Browns. Offenses across the NFL are scoring like crazy. Yet, the Steelers, under a surgically repaired Ben Roethlisberger and despite plenty of …
 
It’s now clear this coronavirus-shrouded NFL season will be a game of attrition and a survival of the fittest. With COVID-19 striking at least three players and five coaches on the Tennessee Titans as they prepare to meet the Steelers in the Music City Sunday, the real rules for this season like no other are emerging. One thing stands clear above a…
 
The Steelers defense is suffering from a serious case of split personality. In one respect, they’re on a record pace for pressuring quarterbacks, blitzing relentlessly and playing highly aggressive. The result has been sacks, interceptions and fumbles – all great! But then there’s the other side of this conflicted Steelers defense. This is the perm…
 
The Steelers look good on the field, but they’re facing a big backlash over their divided social justice stand off of it.It was a mixed message to say the least. The Steelers high profile Monday Night Football attempt to stand united against racism was seemingly sabotaged by a war-hero left tackle. With the rest of the team wearing the name of Pitt…
 
For the Steelers, it’s long been a frustrating tale of two units -- offense and defense. During the best of times for the offense, the defense was in tatters and full of holes. Swiss cheese, instead of the Steel Curtain. When the defense shined last season, the offense crumbled, along with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s throwing elbow. But for th…
 
Notre Dame receiver Chase Claypool became the Steelers top draft pick in 2020. Yet, he was the 11th receiver taken off the board, as the Steelers lacked a first-round selection. No matter. Claypool has quickly become the most highly touted rookie receiver going into the 2020 season. But it’s one thing making acrobatic catches in practice. Can Clayp…
 
Finally, the 2020 Steelers training camp at Heinz Field is starting to resemble an actual training camp. This week, players put on the pads, and the organization allowed the media inside to get a closer -- but not too close -- look at players from Big Ben Roethlisberger and his surgically repaired throwing elbow to irrelevant rookies who may or may…
 
My, how times of changed for the suddenly shark-like Steelers secondary. Once a pathetic Pittsburgh weakness, it’s now a fast-rising strength that should strike fear in the hearts of opposing quarterbacks. The clear catalyst was the trade last September to acquire Minkah Fitzpatrick from the Miami Dolphins. Now, Minkah’s talking about ranking with …
 
Steelers Nation, meet the new boss; same as the old boss. That being quarterback Big Ben Roethlisberger, who says he’s back and better than ever. In a training camp interview, Ben proclaimed his surgically repaired elbow is the best it’s been in years; he’s lighter than he’s been in some 14 seasons; and feels he has years left to his NFL career. So…
 
Whether it’s Juju Smith-Schuster’s skin-tight unitard dance on the China-owned social media app, TikTok, or Zach Banner’s unexpected Twitter blowup over Stephon Tuitt’s stand on the National Anthem, the Steelers seem to be sowing division at a time they should be coming together as a team in training camp. This has some long-time Steelers analysts …
 
To black and gold faithful, Antonio Brown stands as the ultimate fool’s gold. All flash, no substance. Plenty of style, but no steel. Stats, but no championships. A big talking, look-at-me player who put self above team. This makes Brown the ultimate failure and biggest disappointment in Steelers franchise history. But there’s another side to this …
 
Steelers Nation is in an uproar in wake of the new ‘Madden ‘21’ video game ratings that seem to diss one of their superstars, while hinting at a big comeback for a fan favorite. Is this simply the tale of two computer game ratings that won’t really matter much once the real season begins? Or a prescient prediction of things to come in 2020 – namely…
 
The image of the Steelers as the ultimate NFL misers is a bygone trope that won’t die. The Pittsburgh football team founded for $2,500 by Art Rooney does pony up and pay its stars. They have the salary cap troubles to prove it. But would they ever go as far as the Kansas City Chiefs just did in locking up quarterback Patrick Mahomes to a 10-year ex…
 
Fans still have faith in seeing live, in-person football in Pittsburgh this fall. That’s why this Steelers season ticket holder plunked down cold, hard cash for 4 season passes, no questions or COVID worries asked. Why? Well, it’s Steelers football. That’s why. I’ve been part of it since the 80s at the old concrete bowl that was Three Rivers Stadiu…
 
Ben Roethlisberger’s soul-baring comments have the feel of a man looking himself hard in the mirror, examining every scar, recognizing that some were self-inflicted, but accepting the long journey and the many mistakes it to get here. He’s not only still standing, but the better for it. Roethlisberger sounds like he’s stepping up for one last stand…
 
JuJu Smith-Schuster was a second banana who flourished in the shadow of then-Steelers superstar Antonio Brown. When the spotlight -- and opposing defenses -- shone on JuJu in the No. 1 role, he wilted. Badly. Now with other receiving options rapidly rising as the Steelers retool and a returning Big Ben Roethlisberger looks to rev up the offense, Ju…
 
Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling National Anthem protests now seems prescient. Eight-plus excruciating minutes of video showing a white police officer kneeling on the neck of George Floyd until his heart stopped beating has made it so. It sets up an explosive start to what was already going to be a very unusual football season due to the coronavirus pan…
 
The Pittsburgh Steelers spent plenty of draft capital on its defense over the years. But for various reasons, many of those picks didn’t have positive returns. But the team brain trust admitted their drafting deficiencies and made up for them by trading for Minkah Fitzpatrick, signing Joe Haden and Steven Nelson and discovering Mike Hilton – and th…
 
For Big Ben, his bushy Brett Keisel-like beard was a marker of his long recovery from throwing elbow surgery after the second game last season. The fact that Ben’s locks and beard are now nicely trimmed – along so it seems with his body as seen in that slick 38-second video – signals the Steelers’ future Hall of Famer is back. And with everyone fro…
 
You might want to pop a Prozac, Pittsburgh. There’s mounting gloom and doom swirling around the 2020 Steelers. I’ve rounded up all the recent arguments for why the playoff-starved team will struggle yet again. Unfortunately, it’s all here in this shocking – some would say, treasonous -- edition of the Steelers Update Podcast from PennLive. See acas…
 
Antonio Brown – who’s looking to get back to the NFL on a paying basis anyway he can – would love to flock with the high-flying Ravens. In Pittsburgh, this prospect has spawned two schools of thought. On one side, Steelers fans' nightmares now run with Brown-Ravens highlight reels. This, as the social-media-savvy receiver rubs in every catch and ce…
 
About the best you can say is the 8-8 Steelers added some special teams players for 2020 and brought in rookies who’ll replace second-tier stars like receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and linebacker Bud Dupree next season. This, so the Steelers have the salary-cap firepower to re-sign true superstars like T.J. Watt and Minkah Fitzpatrick. Still, the Ste…
 
Steelers already have their 2020 first round pick in the form of proven playmaking safety Minkah Fitzpatrick. Good thing, too, because this could be the most unpredictable NFL draft of the modern era due to the limitations of the coronavirus. Strap in, Steelers fans. It’s going to be wild. When it’s over, let’s hope the Steelers have one or two rea…
 
Both James Conner and Ben Roethlisberger should be very interested in the Steelers’ upcoming draft. It could just determine the future roles for both offensive stars, should the team spend a premium pick to select their successors. So who will it be for the Steelers at pick 49? Quarterback Jalen Hurts, running backs Jonathan Taylor or J.K. Dobbins …
 
Sure, Eric Ebron is nice, new and nifty in his Steelers’ uni. But he’s not nearly enough in today’s pass-happy Patrick Mahomes-dominated NFL. And Steelers fans should find no comfort if Antonio Brown actually flocks with the Ravens this season. Such a deal would signal a measure of comfort by both parties that this will be a successful partnership.…
 
Steelers are finalizing their draft day moves, just as their former star Antonio Brown looks to be out of moves after a former Pittsburgh coach shuts him down cold. I’m talking about current Tampa Bay Head Coach Bruce Arians’ hard pass on pairing Brown with a willing Tom Brady, who was brought in to take over the Bucs’ offense. This stiff-arm from …
 
The release of two big NFL names with big NFL arms has stirred visions of Big Ben backups with Steelers-starter potential in the minds of Pittsburgh fans. So who’s the better 412 area code fit -- Jameis Winston and his interceptions or Cam Newton and his injuries? Maybe neither - but not how you’d think: Don’t believe for a moment the Steelers are …
 
Shakespeare once said, parting is such sweet sorrow. For Steelers fans, watching good players go, it’s bitter as could be. Yet, the Steelers have played free agency the same way for decades. Early days when big money buys up the biggest, hottest names, the Steelers opt to sit it out, biding their time and awaiting bargains. The challenge this criti…
 
There’s plenty of pot-stirring going on right now in Pittsburgh. But soon, bullets will fly for real when free agency begins March 18th. Rest assured, the Steelers are quietly and secretly targeting their kind of talent, aiming to improve the team the “Rooney Way.” That means less hype, less ego – but bigger heart, better bargain and high character…
 
The Bud Dupree franchise-tag dilemma requires some serious re-thinking by the Steelers. The team should be very nervous when conventional wisdom is so squarely on the side of the player Pittsburgh fans so recently wanted to ride out of town. It screams of a contract-year flash-in-the-pan that could burn the Steelers already tight budget. T.J. Watt …
 
A 5-second video of a bushy-bearded, badly-bloated, blue-shirted Big Ben Roethlisberger lightly tossing a soft football inside a gym has all of Pittsburgh predicting the Steelers will be back in the playoffs in 2020. Ever-confident Steelers management is doubling down, doing nothing to downplay expectations, despite the fact that Big Ben’s bad elbo…
 
Don’t believe in Mike Tomlin’s mental mastery. Get yourself a transcript of Tomlin’s comments to Stephen A. Smith on Monday’s ‘ESPN First Take.’ Study it. Parse every word. Devine the multiple meaning behind every sculpted sentence. Then, truly appreciate what a wise leader, master motivator, quintessential coach and superb football business execut…
 
Antonio Brown has something to prove, all right. But it’s not in the ring with some YouTube yapper, Logan Paul. It’s to himself, as a supremely talented football player, and to the fans who saw him do incredible things over 9 seasons – some of whom still believe in Brown, despite his best efforts to repel them. Antonio’s only redemption comes with …
 
Perhaps Antonio Brown has been properly humbled. Maybe taking away all those fat NFL game checks finally got his attention. Whatever the wakeup call was, Antonio the grinder seems back -- and he’s grinding toward a goal of returning to the NFL. For now, he’s making the right moves gaining the sympathy of NFL players, coaches, analysts – even all-po…
 
The Steelers traded up in 2003 to secure soon-to-be Hall of Famer Troy Polamalu, and he promptly became the key cog in their two-time Super Bowl-winning defense. Now even Tom Brady says Troy belongs in Canton. But the bigger question is whether the Steelers have landed another Polamalu-like player with last season’s trade for safety Minkah Fitzpatr…
 
Some of Antonio Brown’s most recent bizarre behavior includes throwing phallically-shaped gummy’s at his former girlfriend and the mother of his three boys outside his Florida home. He’s had increasingly hostile clashes with local police called in to mediate the situation, then proudly posted the profanity-filled video on social media. Now, Brown f…
 
The Titans showed the football world how to go right at Lamar Jackson and the Ravens. They didn’t just get their feathers plucked, their deepest vulnerabilities were revealed. Both Jackson and his team face long-term game-planning headaches as the copycat NFL duplicates what Tennessee did. First among those mimickers will be the Steelers, potential…
 
The ending to Tom Brady’s season wasn’t much better than that of the Steelers. When last we saw the aging GOAT, he was throwing a pick-six to the Tennessee Titans, en route to a crushing 20-13 Wild Card loss. To think it could be the GOAT’s last game in New England? But Tom Brady a Steeler? Pittsburgh fans have plenty to say about that – and it’s c…
 
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