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10-24-2010, 09:55 AM
Week 7: Five questions
By: Mike Bires
Beaver County Times

Sunday October 24, 2010 12:05 AM

How much Wildcat will the Dolphins use against the Steelers?

For several years, Miami running back Ronnie Brown was the king of the Wildcat. But in the Dolphins last two games, they only lined up in Wildcat formation once. That play went for a 2-yard loss in a 41-14 loss to New England. Last week in a win at Green Bay, the Dolphins never used the Wildcat. That could change today as offensive coordinator Dan Henning tries to figure out ways to exploit the Steelers’ highly-regarded defense. But overall this year, the Dolphins have only run the ball 16 times out of Wildcat formation and averaged only 1.7 yards per play. The Steelers have prepared for their Wildcat. But they might not see much of it.

How good is Miami tackle Jake Long?

Consider Long’s place in NFL history: He was the first overall pick of the 2008 draft. Since the first draft in 1936, only three tackles were taken with the very first pick. The first was USC’s Ron Yary in 1968. The second was Ohio State’s Orlando Pace in 1997. Yary is already in the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Pace will probably get in, too. In both of his pro seasons, Long, a former Michigan star, has gone to the Pro Bowl. Since the NFL/AFL merger of 1970, only four players taken with the first overall pick made it to the NFL’s all-star game as a rookie. The first three were running backs: Houston’s Earl Campbell in 1978, Detroit’s Billy Sims in 1980 and New Orleans’ George Rogers in 1980.

Will the Steelers be playing in their white jerseys they typically wear for away games?

No. Typically, most NFL teams wear dark jerseys at home but the Dolphins exercised their right as hosts to wear white today. Often teams in warm weather climates make the Steelers wear black because black attracts more heat. The weather forecast today in South Florida calls for 84-degree temperatures and a 30 percent chance of showers. The Steelers have not worn their white jerseys yet this year. In away games at Tampa and Tennessee — where the temperatures were 90 and 87 at kickoff, respectively — the Buccaneers and Titans chose to wear white.
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Will there be a lot of Steelers fans cheering today at Sun Life Stadium?

The Steelers always have a good following on the road, but that was especially true in Tampa on Sept. 26, when it seemed they had almost as many fans in the stands as the Bucs. Tickets for today’s game will be harder to come by as the game is sold out. But thanks to Aliquippa native Dave Palombo, who owns a bar in nearby West Palm Beach, the Steelers’ cheering section will have a Beaver County flair. Palombo bought 90 tickets for the game, many of which will be used by Steelers fans from Aliquippa, Hopewell and Center who made the trip to South Florida.

Which NFL team has the most regular-season wins since the NFL/AFL merger?

The Steelers. In the past 45 years, they’re 376-243-2 with a winning percentage of .606. The team right behind them is the Dolphins, who are 375-244-2 for a .604 winning percentage. Rounding out the top five are Dallas (369 wins), Denver (357) and Minnesota (357). Mike Bires