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|08-14-2007, 10:21 PM||#1|
Join Date: Jun 2007
Member Number: 5713
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Steeler notes after 2nd preseason game
The PG's Gene Collier with observations on Lawrence Timmons and more ...
Lawrence Timmons, the Steelers' top draft pick who missed most of mini-camp, most of maxi-camp, and all of the exhibition season to date, was in street clothes again last night, but he did turn up in the official game program's "On The Spot" feature.
The question: What motivates you as a player?
The answer: "I am the most motivated when I see other people working hard around me. I am a firm believer that you are who you're surrounded by and to see everyone else going all out is the ultimate motivator. I always like to be around people that are pushing themselves, because it will always push me at the same time."
Timmons likes to be around such people, there's just no evidence yet that he likes to be get involved with them.
Tonight's game was the first Heinz Field test of the league's improved technologies regarding the procedure used for reviewing replays. Whether it provides the referee improved angles and better resolution, it's clearly a triumph of acronym artistry. The new system, called FORCE, stands for Football Officiating Replay Challenge Expeditor.
Willie Colon, making his first preseason start at right tackle, appeared to outplay veteran Max Starks. Though Colon committed a false start penalty, Starks got beaten pretty badly by Green Bay defensive end Cullen Jenkins, who was a terror in the first half.
Warren Young's been hanging around the fringes of Pittsburgh's roster so long that he might consider a name change to Walter Old, but he pulled in a 41-yard touchdown pass from Charlie Batch last night, piggy-backing a productive performance last Sunday at Canton.
You'd have been more likely to remember his name, however, had he rolled up on Ben Roethlisberger's leg on the Steelers sideline, something Young barely avoided while making a catch in the third quarter.
The PG's Ed Bouchette on Chris Hoke injury:
Backup nose tackle Chris Hoke left the game in the third period with what appeared to be a serious left knee injury.
A doctor and trainers examined Hoke on the field with 4:27 left in the third quarter. He walked off the field on his own but slammed his helmet angrily to the ground as he crossed the sideline.
After another examination on the sideline by Dr. James Bradley, Hoke walked into the locker room.
The PG's Ed Bouchette reflects on practice making perfect, eventually:
It's a good thing the Steelers hold extra special teams practices in training camp this season -- or else they might have had more mistakes in the kicking game tonight.
Two big ones occurred in the first half alone. Cedrick Wilson returned a punt 45 yards to Green Bay's 23 but Deshea Townsend was called for holding and the ball was brought back to the Steelers' 45.
Nevertheless, the Steelers managed to score their first touchdown on that drive. But when Jeff Reed kicked for the extra point, it was blocked.
The PG's Gene Collier reflects on the Steelers Nation's appetite for change, plus some keenly selected stats:
There's nothing like the preseason collision of a couple of 8-8 teams, as the saying goes, unless it includes the debut of the NFL's newest mascot, in which case the electricity is pretty much indescribable.
With an initial approval rating of 6 percent compared to such non-descript entities as the Pirate parrot and the Penguins' Iceburgh, no one was suggesting that Steely McBeam might not make it out of training camp, but the very notion of a mascot seemed to proving unpopular with the rock-ribbed traditionalists in the fan base (95 percent), to say nothing that his name sounds like that of an Irish porn star.
McBeam made a smart play to start his career, coming on the field at the same time as the Green Bay Packers last night so that it was hard to tell whom was getting booed.
A similar convulsion occurred in the first weeks of the Bill Cowher Era, when the new coach, in the summer of 1992, lined the Steelers up on the sideline opposite the one they'd used under Chuck Noll.
I'm not saying people lost their stuff over it, but there was a line out the door and around the block at Western Psych.
The game matches two of the most storied franchises in NFL history, and that includes the game's recent history, specifically in the so-called "free agent" era, which began in 1993.
Since then, the Steelers and Packers own two of three best records in the league.
The top five:
Green Bay (139-85-0)
New England (134-90-0)
Kansas City (131-93-0).
The PG's Ed Bouchette has a quick note on the pre-exhibition entertainment:
The Frisbee Dogs were the pregame entertainment and at halftime of the Steelers game tonight. It'll be the best halftime entertainment they have at Heinz Field this year -- perhaps even the Grambling band, if it plays at the Pitt game.
Too bad some NFL receivers aren't as good catching footballs as the canines. Nate Washington could take a lesson in concentration from them. They hardly ever miss and they don't spike the Frisbee after a long reception. Also, they keep their mouths shut on the field except to open them to grab the Frisbee.
The PG's Bob Smizik checks in with pre-exhibition game notes:
No sign of Steely McBeam as I walked from the parking lot on Ridge Avenue to Heinz Field this afternoon, although my arrival might have been too early for the Steelers mascot. He figures, though, to be around quite a bit welcoming fans as they approach Heinz Field in the future.
A lot of people are upset that the Steelers even have a mascot. It's not the Steelers way, is how the reasoning goes. Well, it isn't the Steelers way. But time marches on. The Rooney family might not be big on mascots but it's not going to turn its back on marketing opportunities.
McBeam is an entree to young fans and an opportunity to sell more merchandise. All those fanatical Steelers rooters who have drawers fulls of the team's merchandise can now add a Steely McBeam t-shirt or sweatshirt or hat. The opportunities to ring the cash register are endless.
That's not a criticism. The NFL is a business and all revenue streams must be pursued.
Here's hoping the Steelers keep Mr. McBeam under control. It's fine if he's making the rounds outside the Heinz Field before the game and is walking through the stands -- while not blocking views -- during the game. But if he takes his act to the field, well, that's going to far. Last year the Tennessee Titans mascot was riding around in some kind of motorized vehicle and ran over and injured a member of the New Orleans Saints. That's known as going too far. We think the Steelers have enough good sense to keep their mascot under control.
Steely McBeam is here to stay. Let's just hope he stays within a subdued role.
|08-15-2007, 05:02 PM||#2|
Join Date: Sep 2006
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Re: Steeler notes after 2nd preseason game
Thx for the info.
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