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mesaSteeler
12-31-2008, 07:23 AM
Carter fills void at safety for Steelers
Intelligencer Journal
Published: Dec 31, 2008
02:45 EST
http://articles.lancasteronline.com/local/4/232009

By MATT PAWLIKOWSKI, Correspondent

"Isn't it rich?
Are we a pair?
Me here at last on the ground,
You in mid-air.
Send in the Clowns."

With apologies to Steven Sondheim, those words best befit the Cleveland Browns Sunday at Heinz Field, where the Steelers cruised to a 31-0 win in the regular-season finale.

The victory gave the Steelers their best record (12-4) since the 2004 season, not to mention the momentum they lacked heading into the playoffs last year.

"We just beat up the Cleveland Browns," wide receiver Hines Ward said. "We did what we wanted to do going into the playoffs."

The special teams played well. The running game was strong once again, and while Ben Roethlisberger's concussion put a damper on things, the thing that stood out, as it has all season, was the play of the defense.

Pittsburgh held the Browns to just 126 yards, including 20 passing. As a unit, it ended up the year as the top team in the NFL in total defense (237.2 ypg), passing defense (156.9 ypg) and scoring defense (13.9 ppg).

"That's big, especially when you are not playing with your starters most of the time," safety Tyrone Carter said. "That just goes to show the character of this team. Guys work hard, so when their number is called they are going to let the coaches know that they're not going to lose a step no matter what happens."

Carter, who played in place of Ryan Clark against Cleveland, is just the latest example of a player stepping up and maintaining the level of excellence seen all season long against what was arguably the NFL's toughest schedule.

A former Jim Thorpe Award winner at the University of Minnesota, it was "Carpe Diem" for Carter, who recorded four tackles and two interceptions, including one returned 32 yards for a touchdown, to beat the Browns.

"It was great being out there again," Carter said. "Being part of a great win, not only for me but my teammates, as well as going into this playoff roll with a big win and carrying that momentum over to the next game."

Asked about Carter's play, Coach Mike Tomlin said anything less would have been out of the ordinary this year.

"I think that the guys have really embraced the concept of the standard of excellence not changing," Tomlin said. "We have had our share of ups and downs, and injuries, basically, like everybody else in this league has over the course of the season. Along the way, we have had guys step up in stretches and deliver for us like Tyrone did today."

The thing that made Carter's day special was his performance after sustaining what was later called a minor concussion.

"I wanted to go back in bad, but I got dinged after that one hit," Carter said. "I kept saying, 'I'm good, I'm good,' and I remembered everything. But when you have a head injury, they want to make sure you have a clear head. So I waited around."

His first interception came with the Steelers holding a 14-0 lead. With 7:47 left in the third quarter, Bryant McFadden blitzed Browns quarterback Bruce Gradkowski and hit his arm as he was throwing. Carter read it perfectly, stepped in front of Jerome Harrison, and raced 18 yards to set up a Jeff Reed field goal.

His second one came with 8:52 left in the fourth, putting an exclamation mark on the Steelers' day. Gradkowski was looking for Jamal Lewis this time, and once again Carter read the play perfectly and took it 32 yards for a score.

"I was really going up to make a play on (Harrison), I saw him leaking out, but then I saw the ball, it was up in the air and I grabbed it." Carter said of his first. "The second one, it was the same thing again, and it came to my hands and I said, 'this time I'm not going to miss the end zone. I'm not going to hear about it on the sidelines.' I'm a running back by nature, and went back to my running back days."

Carter called it a gift for defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau.

HometownGal
12-31-2008, 07:45 AM
Tyrone had one helluva game on Sunday. :thumbsup: It's a good feeling going into the playoffs knowing that we have such great depth defensively and that just about anyone can step in at any given moment and get 'r done. :tt02:

slippy
12-31-2008, 09:23 AM
we've seen carter play well before. he had a great game in SB XL!

The Duke
12-31-2008, 09:43 AM
Funny how many people were down on him after he jax playoff game and wanted him replaced

You do your thing Ty. Excellent backup

KeiselPower99
12-31-2008, 11:32 AM
Funny how many people were down on him after he jax playoff game and wanted him replaced

You do your thing Ty. Excellent backup

I was thinking the same thing. He didnt tackle Garard and everyone wanted him replaced now he is up for defensive player of the week. I always liked him since we brought him in and this year proves why. :tt02:

19ward86
12-31-2008, 12:02 PM
he is a good backup but that is all.

lilyoder6
12-31-2008, 12:09 PM
the only reason he' s up for def player of the week is b/c he got 2 int's...

the man is a good BACK-UP... but he is getting old and slower.. sooner or later he should be replaced

lilyoder6
12-31-2008, 07:44 PM
i might feel more comfortable in TC in the passing game.. but the man is pretty small to support the run.. cough jax last yr cough

markymarc
01-02-2009, 06:08 AM
the only reason he' s up for def player of the week is b/c he got 2 int's...

the man is a good BACK-UP... but he is getting old and slower.. sooner or later he should be replaced

Money post right there. And actually I vote for much sooner this guy getting replaced. I have never like TC on this team.