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83-Steelers-43
01-27-2008, 07:05 AM
Are Bouchette articles still permitted? :wink02::chicken:

Ed Bouchette on the Steelers: A history of Com-Plax-ity
Burress' excellence in last week's NFC title game rekindles the debate over the decision the Steelers faced after the 2004 season
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

.A four-year old debate re-appeared this past week because Plaxico Burress and the New York Giants landed in the Super Bowl.

Should the Steelers have made a better effort to sign Burress to an extension in 2004, or before he became a free agent in 2005? As it was, they made little effort at all.

Burress, a 6-foot-51/2 wide receiver, wanted a contract extension in the spring of 2004, his fifth and last year of the contract he signed as the eighth pick in the 2000 draft. When talks went nowhere, Burress skipped a required minicamp that May, which incensed coach Bill Cowher.

Burress, though, reported to training camp on time and finished out his last season. He signed with the New York Giants as a free agent in March 2005 for $25 million over six years, including a $5 million signing bonus.

The Steelers may not have tried harder to sign Burress because they did not think they could afford both him and Hines Ward, whom they wanted to sign in 2005 when he had one year left on his contract. They also knew that if they gave Burress a huge deal in 2004, they would have to give Ward a better one in 2005 or lose him.

Basically, the Steelers believed they had to make a choice between Burress and Ward and they chose Ward. Since then, Burress has had good success with the New York Giants. He still has not made a Pro Bowl, but that does not mean he is not important to the Giants and quarterback Eli Manning.

In the Giants' overtime victory in Green Bay in the NFC championship game, Burress caught 11 passes for 154 yards. He had his third-most productive pro season in 2007 with 70 catches for 1,025 yards and 12 touchdowns, fighting through a painful right ankle injury all season.

It's the same kind of injury that Steelers halfback Barry Foster had in 1993. Foster, against the club's wishes, decided to have surgery on his ankle, ending his season, rather than waiting. Burress opted to play on.

Although Burress has at times irked coach Tom Coughlin because he works out in Miami much of the offseason rather than in New York, Coughlin told me last March that he loves the guy. Coughlin said he and Burress not only get along but that Burress has been good in their locker room. Burress also was voted by New York writers as their version of the Chief Award for his willingness to assist them in their jobs.

So, should the Steelers have tried to keep him? Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger after his rookie season and only year playing with Burress, asked them to keep him. They wound up signing Hines Ward that summer and then won a Super Bowl in 2005 without Burress.

So, in that sense, they made the right decision. But they drafted Burress eighth, their second-highest draft choice since Terry Bradshaw was picked No. 1 in 1970. You'd think they might have tried a little harder to keep him. He showed how good he could be in 2002 when, with Ward setting a team record with 112 receptions, Burress caught 78 passes for 1,325 yards.

Also, had they kept Burress they would not have had to draft a wide receiver to replace him in 2006, when they traded up to take Santonio Holmes in the first round. Instead, they might have drafted a center to replace Jeff Hartings -- Ohio State's Nick Mangold, drafted 29th by the New York Jets.

Taller doesn't mean better

Roethlisberger's public plea for the Steelers to acquire a tall receiver elicited a predictable response from Ward -- who wasn't pleased.

The quarterback said he could use a tall receiver in bailout situations -- when he's under a heavy pass rush -- and in the red zone. But the Steelers already provide him with those kinds of receivers. They have 6-5 Heath Miller and 6-7 Matt Spaeth. Perhaps they are tight ends and not wide receivers, but they ARE receivers.

Tall wide receivers are difficult to find, at least good ones. The Steelers drafted one in the fourth round in 2005, 6-4 Fred Gibson, and they cut him before the season began. They drafted 6-3 Dallas Baker on the seventh round this year and he wound up on their practice squad.

When the 6-5 1/2 Burress played here, he did not perform particularly well in the red zone anyway. The biggest misunderstanding was that he should be thrown the fade pass. They tried. Burress had terrible timing; he also did not jump very well and went down easily after the catch.

Miller has the potential to be a great red zone receiver, and if they feel the need for someone taller, they should use him more often. But I can't remember a Steelers receiver who was so good at catching a ball inside the 10 and fighting his way into the end zone the way Ward has during his career.

The bottom line is what counts: The end zone fade caught by someone 6-5, or the touchdown scored by the 6-foot receiver who fought through three tackles at the 5 to cross the goal line.

Officially speaking, they've been awful

The officiating in the Steelers playoff loss to Jacksonville earlier this month was terrible, but that's the way it's been throughout the postseason.

The officiating in the playoffs has been worse than in regular-season games.

A big reason, I believe, is because they split up the crews during the playoffs. A crew spends its entire season together, learning each other's work habits and pace and mannerisms, and calling games a certain way.

Then the NFL assigns officials based not on how these crews perform as a group, but by grading each individual official. It then assigns officials to the playoffs based on those grades.

Football likes to call itself the ultimate team sport, yet in the playoffs it breaks up its teams of officials -- and not for the better.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08027/852555-66.stm

GBMelBlount
01-27-2008, 07:35 AM
Miller has the potential to be a great red zone receiver, and if they feel the need for someone taller, they should use him more often. But I can't remember a Steelers receiver who was so good at catching a ball inside the 10 and fighting his way into the end zone the way Ward has during his career.

The bottom line is what counts: The end zone fade caught by someone 6-5, or the touchdown scored by the 6-foot receiver who fought through three tackles at the 5 to cross the goal line.

:thumbsup:

Steeldude
01-27-2008, 08:57 AM
burress isn't the kind of tall WR you throw bailout passes to. he rarely fights for the ball. his fundamentals are poor when it comes to catching the ball at it's highest point. i am glad he is gone. i wanted the steelers to draft urlacher that year.

a tall WR would mean more hanging, deads lobs from BR. no thanks.

DaGooseMon
01-27-2008, 09:34 AM
Ed "Bullchette" sure is trying to milk this Ben comment for all it's worth isn't he... :funny:

Other than recapping why the Steelers didn't keep Burris, hat articles basically says nothing. 3 minutes of my life that I'll never get back...

83-Steelers-43
01-27-2008, 09:40 AM
hat articles basically says nothing. 3 minutes of my life that I'll never get back...

Isn't it a thing of beauty that we as Americans have the option of reading certain articles?

God Bless America!!!

fansince'76
01-27-2008, 09:42 AM
A quick review - Burress was and still is a jagoff and I for one am glad he's gone, and I haven't missed him for a moment since he left. How quickly some folks forget:

Burress off base

Ward said Plaxico Burress was off the mark when his former teammate accused the Steelers of putting him in "shackles" and their fans of racism.

Burress told WTAE-TV's Jon Burton recently that, with the Steelers, "I felt my opportunities were kind of limited, so to speak, and at times, I kind of felt myself like playing in shackles. They weren't going to change, and I wasn't going to change."

Burress, who signed as a free agent with the New York Giants after five years with the Steelers, told Burton that "I was never really liked in that city. I mean, I don't think I was liked as a person. I was kind of seen as a black kid, young African-American, cornrows, drives fancy cars, wears diamond earrings, things like that. They just kind of based their perception off of what I drove and what I did and things like that. All those things were never a part of any other player on that team but me."

Ward, who wears matching 2-carat diamond earrings himself, said the only prejudice Steelers fans show is against players who do not produce.

"As far as the city and him with cornrows and stuff, they love everybody. You go out there and perform, regardless of race, color, ethnic, how you wear your hair, they don't care. The fans here know football. They know the guys who produce and give it all they got and they appreciate it. To sit there and say the city had it out against him, I don't really go along with that. I saw a lot of No. 80 jerseys in the stands."

Burress, in the interview with Burton from Giants training camp in Albany, N.Y., said fans got down on him after he dropped a pass in the end zone in the AFC championship game in January and they never let him forget it.

"It kind of seemed like everything was thrown on my back off of one play that I didn't make," Burress said, "and I took that kind of personal, from the people in that city and some of the things that were said about me."

It's different with the Giants, he said.

"I fit New York more than what I fit Pittsburgh. Nobody's worrying about my big truck or my Rolls-Royce or what I have on. That makes me feel good. People just accept me how I am instead of looking at me and judging me."

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05242/562302.stm

Sorry, a berth in the Super Bowl doesn't make things OK.

83-Steelers-43
01-27-2008, 09:42 AM
burress isn't the kind of tall WR you throw bailout passes to. he rarely fights for the ball. his fundamentals are poor when it comes to catching the ball at it's highest point. i am glad he is gone. i wanted the steelers to draft urlacher that year.

a tall WR would mean more hanging, deads lobs from BR. no thanks.

Agree. I was never a fan of Burress. I can sit here and look at what he's doing with NY, but I tend to look at what he did for the Steelers. Besides complain, drop balls and underachieve, I'm not remembering much.

NY can have him. I'm content with watching Holmes come into his own.

GBMelBlount
01-27-2008, 09:44 AM
What an ass.

Mosca
01-27-2008, 10:17 AM
Burress, in the interview with Burton from Giants training camp in Albany, N.Y., said fans got down on him after he dropped a pass in the end zone in the AFC championship game in January and they never let him forget it.

"It kind of seemed like everything was thrown on my back off of one play that I didn't make," Burress said, "and I took that kind of personal, from the people in that city and some of the things that were said about me."

Or maybe it was the time he caught the ball falling, and got up and spiked it without having been touched? There were a few other plays like that, bone-head moves that negated his athleticism. The truth is that he dropped as many key passes as he caught. Think, bigger, faster, drafted-in-the-first-round Nate Washington.

This is a situation of everyone being better off for the change. It was better for us, and it was better for Burress. Move along, nothing to see here folks.

rbryan
01-27-2008, 10:30 AM
Exactly, Burress grew up when he left here. It was the best move for everyone.

I'd still take Ward over Burress regardless of his so called turn around which more than likely never would have happened had he stayed.

stillers4me
01-27-2008, 10:48 AM
Plax is gone.

Jerome is gone.

Cowher is gone.

Movin' on.

Atlanta Dan
01-27-2008, 11:46 AM
Of course the last great episode in the failed experiment of "throw the fade to Plax in the end zone" was at the start of the 4th quarter in the Steelers-Pats AFC Championship in January 2005.

A TD would have brought the Steelers back to within 7 (after being down 21) with almost the entire 4th quarter to go. Plax characteristically botched the catch and then ripped the Steelers for his contract negotiation status post-game.

As a prior poster said, time to move on - since I will root for any other NFL team against the Pats I will root for Plax next week but the guy is a team cancer - everything is cheery now but he has had numberous run-ins with not only Coughli but his teammates since he landed with the Giants

Rhee Rhee
01-27-2008, 12:19 PM
burress isn't the kind of tall WR you throw bailout passes to. he rarely fights for the ball. his fundamentals are poor when it comes to catching the ball at it's highest point. i am glad he is gone. i wanted the steelers to draft urlacher that year.

a tall WR would mean more hanging, deads lobs from BR. no thanks.

noo... were u not watching the NFC championship game?? the guy was battling Al Harris the entire game... I LOVED IT!!!

if there was a way to satisfy burress and ward i would have loved it... those two toegether and with antwan randle el produuced the best steeler WR corp in my opinion (a very close second would be stallworth and swann)

i definitely wish we could have re-signed burress... u have no idea how dangerous our team could be with two solid recievers like plax and ward and a versatile back like willie... if we resigned him we'd be the ones going 19-0 not the patriots

fansince'76
01-27-2008, 12:46 PM
....Burress grew up when he left here.

News to me.

More Burress Douchebaggery in NY.... (http://www.nypost.com/seven/05202007/gossip/pagesix/pagesix.htm)

....And Even More (http://www.nypost.com/seven/11292006/sports/giants/strahan_to_plax__you_quit_giants_paul_schwartz.htm )

Edman
01-27-2008, 01:34 PM
Sorry, one great season a Super Bowl appearance doesn't erase the past. Up until this year Plax was not living up to his true potential. If he's going to play the race card, then screw him. Jerome Bettis, Hines Ward, Joey Porter, Joe Greene, and Greg Lloyd are ICONS in Pittsburgh, and they're black. So there goes that "Pittsburgh is racist" BS theory. Burress was an underachiever in Pittsburgh and nothing more. Underachieving as a 1st round pick will get you some crap from the fans.

In fact, the fans didn't give Plax crap at all. It was until Plax blasted Pittsburgh in the papers as a Giant was what drew the ire from Steeler Nation. Plax himself said he didn't want to be here after the '04 Title game (where he did his infamous half-assed effort in catching that endzone pass) despite Ben's pleas to want him to stay. Yet , idiot Plax apologists blame this on the front office and the coaching staff.

Saying Plaxico got a bum rap in Pittsburgh is utterly asinine.

d2609j
01-27-2008, 01:36 PM
The Steelers made the right decision to let him walk at the time. Chambers had signed with miami that year for somewhere near 32 million for 6 years. That would have been Burress starting point with the Steelers. If I remember right alot of teams passed on him in free agency, including the Giants breaking off contract talks , and he went 5 or 6 weeks without being signed. I think he even changed agents during that period. and lost money in the long run. The steelers were not the only team who saw the down falls. One season where his team makes the super bowl doesnt change that.

HometownGal
01-27-2008, 01:42 PM
Once a dick, always a dick. That is all.

RoethlisBURGHer
01-27-2008, 02:32 PM
Plax is a chump. What did he do in Pittsburgh? He dropped a lot of big balls (biggest being the already mentioned 2005 AFCCG endzone fade drop), didn't want to block downfield (something he now does in NY). After the AFCCG, he blasted the Rooneys (great way to get a contract anywhere in the NFL, blast one of the most respected ownership families in the NFL), blasted the city of Pittsburgh and the Steelers fans, blasted the coaching staff.

He complained about having three different starting quarterbacks the time he was here (Kordell, Maddox, Big Ben)...however the Steelers draft a QB in the first round so the offense has consistency at the potistion.

And now, he plays the race card. I didn't care what color his skin was, what jewlery he wore, what he drove, and what clothing he wore. I loved Joey Porter...he was a black man, flamboyant jewlery, nice vehicles, plus he was a loudmouth. I love Hines Ward, and he wears twin diamond stud earrings. I loved Jerome Bettis, and he's black.

Plane and simple, Burress didnt want to be here, and after the 05 AFCCG, the Rooney's didn't want him here either. Good riddance, we won a Super Bowl without the chump. We'll win more Super Bowls without the chump. We've drated Santonio Holmes, and I would much rather have Holmes than Burress any day of the week and infinity times on Sundays, Mondays, and occasional Thursdays and Saturdays.

I wish him luck in Super Bowl 42, only because he is facing the Patriots...and I hate them more than I hate him.

Stlrs4Life
01-27-2008, 02:56 PM
I too don't miss Pexico. He isn't all that. 1 game doesn't make him all of the sudden real great.

alittlejazzbird
01-27-2008, 03:31 PM
Ward, who wears matching 2-carat diamond earrings himself, said the only prejudice Steelers fans show is against players who do not produce.

"As far as the city and him with cornrows and stuff, they love everybody. You go out there and perform, regardless of race, color, ethnic, how you wear your hair, they don't care. The fans here know football. They know the guys who produce and give it all they got and they appreciate it. To sit there and say the city had it out against him, I don't really go along with that. I saw a lot of No. 80 jerseys in the stands."

Hines could not be more right about this. While there will always be ignorant blowhard fans of every team, the very vast majority of Steelers fans don't care if a guy is purple with yellow spots -- he plays for the Steelers, he better produce. Plax can whine all he wants about how no one understood him, but the tape doesn't lie.

Burress is a whiny malcontent, and believe me, that didn't magically change when he went to the Giants. At the beginning of the season, when the Giants were terrible and left for dead, he was yapping to the media about something every week. As it always does, winning has silenced him somewhat, but like TO, he'll be baaaack as soon as the wheels fall off again.

Hines Ward, as we all know (please, let's not start THAT up again), needs to feel disrespected in order to play his best, but he is a man of extremely high character, and he's a player and a human begin who I will take any day on my team over a shallow, status hungry, self-absorbed whiner like Burress. The Giants are welcome to him, and we've done fine without him, thank you very much.

Rumor in NYC had it that Burress was FURIOUS that the Steelers won the Super Bowl the year after he left, by the way.

Galax Steeler
01-28-2008, 03:42 AM
I would take hines any day over plaxico I never did like him.

Steel Pit
01-28-2008, 04:14 AM
Screw Plaxico Burress. The marbles in his mouth-mumbling idiot. I'm glad that the Steeelrs let him go. Gee whiz, I'm not that impressed with his damn numbers. Besides, he's accumulating those numbers in the weak-A$$ NFC.

Steeldude
01-28-2008, 09:46 AM
noo... were u not watching the NFC championship game?? the guy was battling Al Harris the entire game... I LOVED IT!!!

if there was a way to satisfy burress and ward i would have loved it... those two toegether and with antwan randle el produuced the best steeler WR corp in my opinion (a very close second would be stallworth and swann)

i definitely wish we could have re-signed burress... u have no idea how dangerous our team could be with two solid recievers like plax and ward and a versatile back like willie... if we resigned him we'd be the ones going 19-0 not the patriots

did he fight when he was in pittsburgh? no. he was constantly alligator-arming passes, whining, stepping out-of-bounds early and getting pushed around. i would rather have a WR who shows up every game and gives it his all.

signing burress in no way would make a 19-0 season. even if they signed moss the steelers weren't going 19-0. a tall WR is not going to fix this team's problems.

klick81
01-28-2008, 10:49 AM
It's nice to think..."what if...". But like plenty people have said, it's a better situation for both parties. Let it be.

Dino 6 Rings
01-28-2008, 11:42 AM
When Plax was with the Steelers, he had a lot of growing up to do. And losing the 04 AFC Title game was the nail in his coffin with the Steelers. Remember, I'm pretty sure he dropped a fade pass in that game for a TD. Anyway, he needed to get out of P-burgh, he wasn't a good fit. We wanted a fast get open guy, not a toss it up and pray he grabs it guy. And it worked. We won the SB, (as Hines pointed out) without Plax. Now Plax has grown up a little in NY, with all the attitude on that team when he got there, he had no choice. A Manning, Shockey, Tiki, Toomer, Plax wasn't even 3rd or 4th fiddle in attitude on that team. So he had time to develop his game a little more and get away from the "what about me" stuff.

Watch this off season, god forbid if the Giants win, he'll be intolerable once again.

Haiku_Dirtt
01-29-2008, 11:23 AM
A quick review - Burress was and still is a jagoff and I for one am glad he's gone, and I haven't missed him for a moment since he left. How quickly some folks forget:
.

Concur.

Tall, atheletic first round receiver = immature pampered and expensive primma donna

No one (I didn't) questioned Plax's ability. But the contribution to the BOTTOM LINE is the keystone (pun intended) of analysis. And bottom line. I'm 99.9999999% sure Plax didn't contribute to our last Super Bowl win.

I'm 100% sure that our 'midget' Hines did though. WTF BEN!

That being said I hope he kicks the living crap out of NE.

The_WARDen
01-29-2008, 12:26 PM
A quick review - Burress was and still is a jagoff and I for one am glad he's gone, and I haven't missed him for a moment since he left. How quickly some folks forget:



http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05242/562302.stm

Sorry, a berth in the Super Bowl doesn't make things OK.

People also forget how he disappears in playoff games. Now he FINALLY shows up in 1 playoff game (mainly because the Packers were too stupid to adjust) and now he's this great WR??

If he gets 4+ recepts for 50+ yards in the Super Bore I'll be impressed.

:yawn:

steel striker
01-29-2008, 05:52 PM
Plax showed his true colors after that 2004 afccg talking about how we did not throw him the ball enough. Yeah well maybe Plax if you wold have done more of catching the ball than complaining about maybe things could have been better. All Plax did was complain and, now he is saying that the giant wr are better than the cheaters wr's. Plax is on crack and, even though I'm pulling for the gmen because I can't stand the cheaters. Don't get me wrong Plax is a very good down the field weapon but, he brings alot of baggage as well. Like it has been mentioned before I would take Hines Ward over Burress everytime because, Hines has more heart than that quitter know as Plax.

The_WARDen
01-30-2008, 02:04 PM
Even in this playoff year, he's come up small..

vs TB 4 catches for 38 yards and 0 TDs
vs Dallas 1 catch for 5 yards and 0 TDs (are ya kidding me? 1 catch)
vs GB 11 catches for 151 yards and 0 TDs and 1 fumble...he can thank GB for being a bunch of idiots with their coverage.