Why register with the Steelers Fever Forums?
 • Intelligent and friendly discussions.
 • It's free and it's quick. Always.
 • Enter events in the forums calendar.
 • Very user friendly software.
 • Exclusive contests and giveaways.

 Donate to Steelers Fever, Click here
 Our 2014 Goal: $450.00 - To Date: $450.00 (100.00%)
 Home | Forums | Editorials | Shop | Tickets | Downloads | Contact Pittsburgh Steelers Forum Feed Not Just Fans. Hardcore Fans.

Go Back   Steelers Fever Forums > Steelers Football > Pittsburgh Steelers

Steelers Fever Fan Shop

Doc's Sports Get FREE NFL Picks and College Football picks as well as Football Lines like live NFL Lines and updated NFL Power Rankings all at Doc's Sports Service.

Pro Bowl
8:00PM Eastern on ESPN

Thread Tools
Old 01-26-2009, 06:43 PM   #1
A Son of Martha

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Mesa, Arizona
Posts: 7,976
Gender: Male
Member Number: 10438
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Ward's health could determine Steelers' success in Super Bowl

Ward's health could determine Steelers' success in Super Bowl

TAMPA -- Hines Ward is not the fastest receiver in the NFL. He is not close to the biggest. If you made a list of the best receivers in football, you might make stops in Arizona (Larry Fitzgerald, Anquan Boldin), New England (Randy Moss, Wes Welker) and Houston (Andre Johnson) long before you stumbled onto Ward in Pittsburgh.

But in more than a decade with the Steelers, no receiver has been more integral to his team's success. Not Moss, not Terrell Owens, nobody.

"That's the guy," Steelers offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said of Ward, "[who] makes a lot of things happen in big ball games."

Besides Ben Roethlisberger and Troy Polamalu, Ward is the player the Steelers can least afford to be without, and the story of Super Bowl XLIII may be how effective Ward can be despite spraining the medial collateral ligament in his right knee in Pittsburgh's AFC Championship victory.

Last week, while his teammates prepared for afternoon practice, Ward was sitting on a training table watching television with his leg propped up. Even through the glass, you could see he was smiling.

Along with undergoing rehab at the team's practice facility, Ward has woken up several times in the middle of the night to treat the knee with ice and electrical stimulation. An injury of his kind normally takes about a month to heal. Ward will be playing on it after only two weeks.

He said there was no way he was skipping the Super Bowl. If he had to do extra rehab to make it to Raymond James Stadium, it would be done.

"You know Hines is who he is because he's outside the box," Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said last week. "He is different than most. I embrace that as opposed to resist that. What's right for Hines isn't necessarily right for us normal people. I recognize that he is different, and I'll see him at the stadium in Tampa."

Ward's sturdiness and ability to overcome injury has been a staple of his career. In 11 seasons, Ward has caught 800 passes and has missed just six games. His feistiness and blocking ability are the skills that separate him from other receivers.

Several years ago, when the Steelers receiving corps also featured Plaxico Burress and Antwaan Randle El, it was fascinating to hear opposing coaches praise Ward. When Gregg Williams was the head coach in Buffalo, he asked Bills receiver Josh Reed to watch as much film on Ward that he could.

"I'm one of Hines Ward's biggest supporters," Williams said at the time. "Here's a guy that was a quarterback in college that moved to receiver, and now he's as tough and as physical as anybody. His teammates have so much respect for his ability to play the game."

Through the years, Ward has used his trips to the Pro Bowl to ask other receivers about route running and other fundamentals.

"I like to run [routes] different every time -- give it a stutter step, a lean or a head move," Ward said at the time. "You learn that. I remember as a rookie when I first got here, I thought the game was all speed. I was running so fast that I was out of control getting in and out of breaks. Now, the game has slowed down tremendously."

At 32, Ward is the veteran in a receiving corps blessed with youth. While Roethlisberger's deep passes to Santonio Holmes and Nate Washington have provided explosive moments for the Steelers this season, Ward has given stability and toughness, often by sacrificing his body against a safety or a linebacker on a downfield block.

One more time, this Sunday in Tampa, the Steelers will ask Ward for one more sacrifice. In truth, though, the Steelers don't have to ask. In sickness and in health, that is what Ward has always done.

On a team identified by iron will, who could imagine that a 6-foot, 205-pound receiver would be the greatest example of all?

Email comments to siwriters@simail.com

Find this article at:
mesaSteeler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-26-2009, 07:34 PM   #2
Team Captain
shevdog's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Valley Forge, PA
Posts: 880
Gender: Male
Member Number: 120
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: Ward's health could determine Steelers' success in Super Bowl

Well the Steelers have done a good job in January with no int's and just a fumble or so against the Ravens. Turnover free play will be key, regardless of Ward's play.

Steelers Football: Simply the Best!
shevdog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2009, 04:09 AM   #3
Galax Steeler
The Virginia Hillbilly
Galax Steeler's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Galax Va
Posts: 112,635
Gender: Male
Member Number: 3287
Thanks: 1,647
Thanked 4,576 Times in 1,912 Posts
My Mood: Lurking
Default Re: Ward's health could determine Steelers' success in Super Bowl

Of course Ward could determine the outcome of the superbowl the man is a big piece of our offense but we have guys who can step up if we need them but hopefully Ward will be ready to go.
Galax Steeler is online now   Reply With Quote


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:45 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Shoutbox provided by vBShout v6.2.1 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2015 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.0.8 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2015 DragonByte Technologies Ltd. Runs best on HiVelocity Hosting.
Navbar with Avatar by Motorradforum
no new posts