12-04-2007, 02:07 PM
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Schein: Steelers Could Be The One
Excerpt from his Monday column:
And now there is one — Pittsburgh. It's the Steelers winning this weekend or the Patriots go undefeated.
Eric Mangini created the word "Spygate." New England is going to rightly treat the Jets like the freshman team. I don't think a 35- or 40-point win is out of the question.
Don Shula, in ultra-bitter fashion, wondered aloud if the Pats should have an asterisk attached to their record. New England is going to win by the same type of score against the hapless, winless Dolphins.
Eli Manning gets confused against the Vikings. Wait until he sees the Patriots.
So it is all up to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
This is likely the only obstacle for New England.
And Pittsburgh can absolutely do it.
Dick LeBeau's defense plays with that physical style Baltimore displayed last night, only better.
Ben Roethlisberger has a knack for being clutch. And if A.J. Feeley and Kyle Boller can play well against New England, so can Roethlisberger.
Assuming he can hold onto the ball, Willie Parker can run against the Pats.
And a player like Hines Ward was built for a game like this.
In talking to Ward on Monday, we asked him the keys to beating New England.
Ward chuckled heartily and said, "Wait, you can beat New England? You think we have a chance?"
The star receiver then got very serious.
"They definitely have a great team," he said. "But we have a lot of prideful guys in our locker room. A few years ago we won the Super Bowl. We have a lot of guys who were part of that and they want it again. It's going to take every guy. We have to have Troy Polamalu out there, Santonio Holmes out there. We are going to need every weapon.
"They have a solid front line. Everyone talks about the age of their linebackers, but next to our linebackers, they are playing as well as anybody in the league. They are playing great. They are gelling. Asante Samuel is great. You make a mistake on him it is a pick six and he's taking it back to the house."
Ward has been exchanging text messages with Rodney Harrison, as the two hard hitters have been looking forward to this game since the schedule came out.
Who knew then the implications of this game?