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Old 12-18-2010, 07:31 AM   #1
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Default Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season
By John Harris, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Saturday, December 18, 2010
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt...nt_714371.html
John Harris is a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review sports columnist and can be reached at 412-481-5432 or via e-mail.

Strong safety Troy Polamalu could miss the remainder of the regular season after aggravating his strained right Achilles tendon, sources told the Tribune-Review on Friday.

Polamalu, however, could return for the playoffs.


According to a Steelers source, the length of Polamalu's absence depends on the team's playoff positioning. The Steelers (10-3) hold a one-game lead over Baltimore in the AFC North.

The Steelers face the New York Jets (9-4) on Sunday, then close the regular season against Carolina (1-12) and Cleveland (5-8). They have only three days off before facing Carolina, possibly not enough time for Polamalu's injury to sufficiently heal.

The Cleveland game Jan. 2 might be meaningless for playoff positioning, and the Steelers could opt to sit not only Polamalu but also other starters.

Polamalu is doubtful for Sunday's game against the Jets.

Polamalu was diagnosed with the Achilles injury after the Steelers' 39-26 loss to New England on Nov. 14 but has not missed a game.

He returned an interception 45 yards for a touchdown against Cincinnati last week but aggravated the injury when Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer fell on the back of his leg at the end of the play. Polamalu limped off the field but finished the game.

As he has done since injuring his Achilles, Polamalu missed the first two days of practice this week. But he also sat out yesterday's practice, a change from previous weeks.

Steelers players rarely play if they don't practice Fridays. Polamalu didn't speak with reporters yesterday.

Free safety Ryan Clark practiced at strong safety this week. Ryan Mundy filled Clark's position yesterday.

Polamalu, a leading candidate for the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year honors, has a team-high six interceptions in 13 games this season. He made big plays in each of the Steelers' past three wins that resulted in a touchdown against Cincinnati, set up a touchdown against Baltimore and stopped Buffalo's offense in the red zone.

It is up to defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau to find the right combination of players to replace that productivity.

Last week Clark and Polamalu switched positions after Polamalu aggravated his injury.

Linebacker Lawrence Timmons' role also could increase with Polamalu's absence.
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:19 AM   #2
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

I think we still win the division, but I think we drop this game to the Jets. The need it really really bad and we're missing our best TE and obviously Troy. However, I also believe we'll win the division because Baltimore plays New Orleans this week and will probably also lose, keeping things the way they are in the AFC North. So my question is, if we lose to the Jets and then win the last two and the Jets also win out, would they have the Number 2 seed and we have the number 3?
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:24 AM   #3
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

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I think we still win the division, but I think we drop this game to the Jets. The need it really really bad and we're missing our best TE and obviously Troy. However, I also believe we'll win the division because Baltimore plays New Orleans this week and will probably also lose, keeping things the way they are in the AFC North. So my question is, if we lose to the Jets and then win the last two and the Jets also win out, would they have the Number 2 seed and we have the number 3?
No because the jets will be the wild card cause the pats will win the div. So if we finish better then the ravens and the winer out of the afc west and the winer out of the afc south we get the 2 seed
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Old 12-18-2010, 11:02 AM   #4
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

I really think we win this one even without Polamalu. I have a feeling that the Defense and Offense will play hard for him because he's out.
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Old 12-18-2010, 11:53 AM   #5
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

I doubt the Steelers lose to the Jets, but if they do, not the end of the world, 2 very beatable teams next 2 weeks. I think it would be wise to let Troy rest for the rest of the season and get ready for the playoffs
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Old 12-18-2010, 12:09 PM   #6
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

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Originally Posted by dcsteel5804 View Post
I think we still win the division, but I think we drop this game to the Jets. The need it really really bad and we're missing our best TE and obviously Troy. However, I also believe we'll win the division because Baltimore plays New Orleans this week and will probably also lose, keeping things the way they are in the AFC North. So my question is, if we lose to the Jets and then win the last two and the Jets also win out, would they have the Number 2 seed and we have the number 3?
Oh wait, some one else who dares to think we could lose this
game to NY. Must be a troll, huh?
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Old 12-18-2010, 12:18 PM   #7
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

If we can beat the Jets without Pola and Miller, then that says nothing but good things about the team this year. If not, then the question marks start flowing, and then hopefully not getting bigger.
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Old 12-18-2010, 12:22 PM   #8
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

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I doubt the Steelers lose to the Jets, but if they do, not the end of the world, 2 very beatable teams next 2 weeks. I think it would be wise to let Troy rest for the rest of the season and get ready for the playoffs
I agree totally with this, and have seen factual evidence that Troy does not get rusty when he rests, but only seems to come back even stronger. The number of instances of this are now multiple, and he's never been ineffectual after a hiatus from playing.....the opposite always happens.
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Old 12-18-2010, 12:26 PM   #9
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

No more lame excuses from the coaching staff, it's time that the offense do its part and carry more of the load.

As for Troy done for the year, I can't say that I'm not surprised. He's just one of those players who appears to be injury prone. It's time to start thinking about his successor and look to the draft for this position. It's a tough pill to swallow but it is what it is. After 7 seasons of service, it looks as though that his body is breaking down. When you consider the fact that the average NFL career is 3 and 1/2 seasons, he's done well for himself.
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Old 12-18-2010, 12:52 PM   #10
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Default Re: Achilles injury could sideline Polamalu for rest of regular season

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No more lame excuses from the coaching staff, it's time that the offense do its part and carry more of the load.
Exactly. The defense has won 10 games so far, now let's have the offense win one.

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Originally Posted by ZoneBlitzer View Post
As for Troy done for the year, I can't say that I'm not surprised. He's just one of those players who appears to be injury prone. It's time to start thinking about his successor and look to the draft for this position. It's a tough pill to swallow but it is what it is. After 7 seasons of service, it looks as though that his body is breaking down. When you consider the fact that the average NFL career is 3 and 1/2 seasons, he's done well for himself.
Not the case at all. Polamalu is just starting to be the best that he's been. He was seriously injured last year so he only played 5 games. This year he's played all 13 games so far, and did quite well, it's not like he's got another season/playoff ending injury. Most of his injuries have been minor and almost every player has minor injuries every year. Polamalu will play succesfully for at least 5 more years, you can hold me to that.
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