Tag:Pittsburgh Steelers
Posted on: September 18, 2010 4:45 pm
 

Leftwich released by Steelers

Posted by Will Brinson

The Pittsburgh Steelers released Byron Leftwich on Saturday in a move that's not expected to be permanent.

The team, according to Steelers' Digest on Twitter , released Leftwich (who's out for several weeks after a preseason injury) and signed defensive lineman Steve McLendon off the practice squad.

The move is purportedly just to boost the team's defensive line depth -- Lord knows you can get gassed trying to stop Chris Johnson -- and apparently Leftwich will be signed again by next week.

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Posted on: September 18, 2010 12:04 pm
 

Hot Routes 9.18.10: Haley hates your fantasy team

Posted by Will Brinson

It's a morning (well, close to it in this case) collection of stuff for you to read. In this case, while you watch football. Send suggestions to us on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL) and if you're nice we'll include them.
  • Todd Haley is totally aware of your fantasy football team. He's also totally aware that you spent much of Monday night (and will spend much of Sunday) screaming at him for playing Thomas Jones as much as Jamaal Charles (and at Jones for even existing). And you know what? He doesn't care .
  • Here's a nice little story about how the Browns are familiar with the Chiefs defense. But it's much, much more valuable reading for the quote from Eric Mangini about the time he lived in the same house with Romeo Crennel and they were both really, really fat .
  • Chad Ochocinco is on a Dwight Schrute "black Bears are best" type of Twitter rampage, hitting up some "facts." My favorite ? #fact I will smashed by Ray Lewis at some point in the game, i will jump as usual n continue to talk shh, why? I ain't got no sense #shrugs
  • BShrout of Mile High Report takes a gander at "Yards Per Point" and how it's relative to a team's long-term success. (As in, over the course of a season, if a defense forces teams to require more yards per point, their opponents won't score as many points. Or, if an offense requires lots of yards per point, they're unlikely to score as often. I think that's what happening -- either way, good stuff.
Posted on: September 17, 2010 7:29 pm
 

Chris Johnson vs. the Steelers front seven

C. Johnson hasn't had great success in the past against Pittsburgh (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

I wondered if Andy, in his weekly key matchup feature, would look at how the Steelers front seven would try to shut down Titans RB Chris Johnson.

Andy went with Michael Vick vs. the Lions defense (read it; it’s a fascinating look), so that leaves me to make sense of the Tennessee-Pittsburgh game.

Johnson, as you know, has 12-straight games where he’s rushed for at least 100 yards. That’s two off Barry Sanders’ all-time record. But remember, the Steelers are traditionally pretty good at stopping the run – in the past 35 games, an opponent has reached the century mark in rushing only once (Baltimore’s Ray Rice).

So, what will happen Sunday? Well, if the past is any indication, it could be a long day for Johnson. Last year, in the season opener, he gained 57 yards on 15 carries, and the season before, he was held to 69 yards.

But the past two seasons, Johnson – no matter what Adrian Peterson thinks – has been the best RB in the league. Yet the Steelers have their gameplan.

"It's a big priority,” OLB LaMarr Woodley told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. "You stop the run, you force a team to go to its passing game, which allows us to bring a little heat and get to the quarterback.

"We hit him as a team (the past two seasons). We constantly got to him. When running backs are taking hits after hits from big guys, they slow down a little bit."

True, but not every team can boast the tackling skills of Woodley, James Farrior and James Harrison. This week, though, Johnson might catch a break because starting NT Casey Hampton is out for the game.

Most important for the Steelers is for the defense to maintain gap control.

"He's not real heavy but he's so fast and strong," NT Chris Hoke told the paper. "He jump-cuts on a dime, he's very quick at making his reads. You have to make sure you're gap-sound on every play because he gets a little crack and he's gone.

"It's easy for a guy like that, to get everybody a little over-excited – you want to make sure he doesn't make a big play so maybe you get out of your gap a little bit and you run to the ball and he cuts back when you're running to the ball. You have to make sure you stay square to the line of scrimmage so there is no cutback lane."

And what does Johnson – and his teammates – have to do in order to get that 100-yard game? The Titans offensive line has to work harder than the Steelers.

"One thing they do a lot of times is just outwork guys," Titans guard Leroy Harris told the Tennessean. "Every guy is working to the whistle, no matter what. Their technique is sound. They hold responsibility. They do their job. They outwork guys and they keep running to the ball.

"You can’t let the other guy outwork you. You don’t let the other guy make the play. We’ll do that. We also make sure we see the different looks they have and the blitzes they have. We get bodies on guys."

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Posted on: September 17, 2010 10:44 am
Edited on: September 17, 2010 11:02 am
 

Podcast: Week 2 early game previews

Posted by Will Brinson

It's Friday, which means we're one good night's worth of sleep from getting about 48 straight hours of glorious football.

Saturday is fun, of course, but Sunday is where the real action happens -- Andy Benoit and I hopped on the old podcast machine this week to preview the games that will be played. This particular segment previews the early games on Sunday, and we discuss whether Marshawn Lynch to Green Bay makes sense (and whether Buffalo can beat Green Bay), what the mess is wrong with the Jets offense (and whether they can hang with the Pats), if Jimmy Clausen's time has come in Carolina, whether Chad Henne needs to just go ahead and retire and give his starting job over to Chad Pennington, and whether or not teams like Kansas City and Arizona can magically go to 2-0.

Click play below or make it easy on yourself and Subscribe via iTunes .

If you can't view the podcast, click here to download .


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Posted on: September 13, 2010 12:20 pm
 

Key injury for the Steelers

Posted by Andy Benoit

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that Steelers offensive tackle Max Starks suffered a high ankle sprain against the Falcons and will be out until roughly around the time Ben Roethlisberger returns.M. Starks

The Steelers already had to bring in Flozell Adams to replace injured right tackle Willie Colon prior to the season. Jonathan Scott filled in for Starks down the stretch against the Falcons, but you have to wonder if the Steelers would be willing to move Adams into the blindside role. Adams spent his entire Cowboys career playing the left side. Plus, Scott is too much of a lumbering mover to survive at left tackle in pass protection.

The only other offensive tackle on the roster is Tony Hills. Instead of shuffling bad offensive tackles around, Pittsburgh may want to consider moving guard Trai Essex outside. Essex began his career at tackle. If he moved back to the position, Ramon Foster, a starter on the ’08 Super Bowl team, could fill the void at guard.


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Posted on: September 11, 2010 12:27 pm
Edited on: September 11, 2010 12:30 pm
 

Hot Routes 9.11.10 tying loose ends before Wk 1

Posted by Andy Benoit

 
Seahawks linebacker Aaron Curry and 49ers tight end Vernon Davis will apparently be renewing a rivalry when their teams square off Sunday.


The Bills signed former Jaguar/Cowboy/Dolphin linebacker Akin Ayodele, a veteran who is well-experienced playing in a 3-4 scheme.

Darrelle Revis and Charles Woodson both recently signed lucrative deals. The Denver Post reports that Champ Bailey could be next. Bailey could sign an extension that would keep him with the Broncos through 2014 (he’ll be 36).

Is it fair to point out that Vikings safety Tyrell Johnson, an athletic second-round pick whom the team probably would have been willing to draft late in Round One, lost his starting job to Husain Abdullah, an undrafted guy who didn’t eat or drink anything during training camp?


Joshua Cribbs is making more of a mark at wide receiver.

Looks like Beanie Wells will be out for Week 1.

Redskins safety Kareem Moore is bouncing back quicker than expected from his August 23 arthroscopic knee surgery. Reed Doughty is still expected to start against the Cowboys.

Is Kevin Mawae a Hall of Famer?

Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis is eyeing a midseason return after suffering his second ACL injury in seven months this past spring. The Panthers aren’t ruling him out – he’s only PUP at this point.

Raiders running back Michael Bush is questionable for Sunday with a fractured thumb.

Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette believes Ben Roethlisberger will start Game 5 no matter what.


Normally we don’t share stories about parking arrangements for games, but this one is somewhat interesting because the Royals and Chiefs have a rare doubleheader Monday.



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Posted on: September 10, 2010 11:10 pm
 

Data says Cowboys are still America's team

Posted by Andy Benoit

For all of you who hate hearing the Dallas Cowboys referred to as “America’s Team”…sorry, but Nielsen’s numbers seem to back up the epithet. The Cowboys are the most popular team in the United States – by far.
 
Here’s how Nielsen explains its scores:Dallas

The Nielsen Sports Media Exposure Index measured all 32 NFL teams in four categories during the 2009 regular season: local team ratings, gross national TV audience, online buzz volume, and monthly unique audiences to official team websites. Teams in each category were assigned a score, with the top rank worth 100 points and each subsequent ranking assigned a lower weighted score based its distance from the top. Final team rankings were calculated using the sum of scores across all four categories, and then indexed with the highest total equaling 100.

The Cowboys were the most-followed team on national television and their website was the most-visited. The Saints were the most popular team on a local television basis (in other words, percentage-wise, fans in New Orleans watched their home team on TV more than fans in any other NFL market watched their home team.)

The overall top 10 most popular teams in the NFL last season were as follows:

1. Cowboys
2. Steelers
3. Giants
4t. Bears
4t. Packers
4t. Vikings
7. Eagles
8t. Colts
8t. Saints
10. Patriots

It shows the power of the NFL that a team from a mid-sized western Pennsylvania market and a team from a tiny Wisconsin market can both rank in the top five in popularity. Also, you may notice that 7 of the top 10 teams last year were from the NFC. Good thing Fox pays more than CBS for broadcast rights (even if that is only a result of the NFC having an overall larger market than the AFC).

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Posted on: September 8, 2010 10:41 pm
 

Podcast: Week 1 early game previews

Posted by Will Brinson

Are you ready for some football? No, seriously, are you?

Because it's football time, people. Less than 24 hours from kickoff.

And that's why Andy Benoit and I are here to run over the Week 1 games with you, doling out helpful information to help you understand who will win, and answering all the important questions about Week 1, like "Is Tampa Bay-Cleveland the worst game of the season?"

So, go ahead. Click the play button. Got a question? Hit us up on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL)

Oh, be a friend and subscribe either by RSS or iTunes below.

If you can't view the podcast, click here to download .
Or, make it easy on yourself and  Subscribe via iTunes .


For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow  @cbssportsnfl   on Twitter   and subscribe to our  RSS Feed .
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com