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09-22-2010, 07:02 AM
Steelers Notes: Tomlin calls out offense
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By: Mike Bires
Beaver County Times
Tuesday September 21, 2010 11:35 PM

PITTSBURGH — So far, a relentless ball-hawking defense has picked up the slack for the Steelers’ lackluster offense. But now coach Mike Tomlin wants some of his offensive stars to elevate their games.

On Tuesday, Tomlin basically called out wide receivers Hines Ward and Mike Wallace and tight end Heath Miller.

Tomlin said that in last Sunday’s 19-11 win over Tennessee, all three of them had a chance to make tough catches that could have boosted the offense.

“Charlie made some plays in the second half,” Tomlin said of quarterback Charlie Batch, who came in when Dennis Dixon left with a knee injury. “We had an opportunity to make some plays for him that we didn’t make. They were competitive catches, no question.

“There really wasn’t one guy. It was when you looked at all of our guys, I thought, very reliable people. Heath Miller had the opportunity to deliver a play or two for Charlie. Mike Wallace had an opportunity to deliver a significant play that would have put us in scoring position in a third-down situation. Hines was capable of maybe catching that touchdown on that little short fade.”

As Tomlin suggested, the plays he mentioned were well-defended by the Titans. Still, great players enhance their reputations by making great plays.

“Those are the kinds of plays that need to be made” Tomlin said. “Competitive plays, yes. Combative plays, yes. But those are the plays you have to make for a quarterback, particularly one that hadn’t played a bunch or is in the backup situation. We weren’t able to do that and that is why we weren’t able to ring the scoreboard up by sevens.”


-- There’s a chance that LT Max Starks will play Sunday in Tampa after missing last week’s game in Tennessee with a sprained ankle. Starks is expected back at practice today.

-- RG Trai Essex may be doubtful due to sprained ankle. If Essex can’t go, he’ll be replaced by Doug Legursky.

-- NT Casey Hampton, who missed the Tennessee game with a hamstring pull, may also try to practice. But Hampton may have to sit out one more game before he’s ready to play again.

-- WR Emmanel Sanders (thigh muscle) and LB Jason Worilds (shoulder) are also expected back at practice after missing the Tennessee game.

Another hot affair

This past Sunday in Nashville, several Steelers had a tough time dealing with the heat as temperatures soared as high as 94. It figures to be more of the same this coming Sunday in Tampa, where a high of 89 is forecast.

“September football, one o’clock kickoff down there, weather is a factor,” said Tomlin, who was a Buccaneers assistant coach from 2001-05. “Conditions will be a factor. We got to acknowledge that. We have to do the best we can to prepare ourselves for that.

“We have to play in it. It’s going to be hot on their sideline as well. Ultimately. how we play is really going to determine how that wears and tears on us.”

09-22-2010, 05:34 PM
He's right. I watched the game again and Heath had one go right through his arms along the sideline.

09-23-2010, 01:35 PM
Tomlin hit the nail on the head...our O needs to step up to help out our QB.