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Pittsburgh Steelers

Stadium: Heinz Field | Coach: Mike Tomlin
Team RankingOverallRushingPassing
Offense5th119.5 (11th)286.9 (5th)
Defense14th102.2 (10th)241.6 (16th)

Steelers report: Strategy and personnel

The Sports Xchange
 
Strategy and personnel · Notes, quotes · Inside slant
 

The Steelers placed rookie cornerback Keenan Lewis (back) on injured reserve and signed cornerback Trae Williams from Seattle's practice squad. Williams was a fifth-round draft pick by Jacksonville from South Florida in 2008 but has not made a 53-man roster until now.

PLAYER NOTES

--WR Mike Wallace was named Steelers rookie of the year. Wallace is fourth on the Steelers with 37 receptions and tied for second with five touchdown catches. His average of 18.7 yards per catch leads the top 50 AFC receivers.

--QB Ben Roethlisberger was voted the first alternate to the Pro Bowl and likely to be added to the roster because it's probable that one of the three QBs voted to the AFC team will make the Super Bowl.

--TE Heath Miller was voted the first alternate to the Pro Bowl and he too could play in the game, which would be his first.

--LB LaMarr Woodley was voted first alternate at outside linebacker to the Pro Bowl. His 11.5 sacks are third in the AFC and lead the Steelers.

--WR Joey Galloway, signed last week, did not suit up in his first game but likely will be active Sunday in Miami.

GAME PLAN
The Steelers' run defense has not been in top form lately, allowing a 100-yard rusher last Sunday for the first time in 37 games and allowing two teams to top 170 yards in their past three games. They expect Miami to run. On offense, Ben Roethlisberger returns to the site of his first start and will try to show why he should have made the Pro Bowl as the Steelers come out slinging it again.

MATCHUPS TO WATCH
Dolphins LB Joey Porter vs. OT Max Starks. Porter is a passionate former Steeler who will relish this matchup against both his former team and Starks.

Dolphins RB Ricky Williams vs. Steelers run defense. Steelers lost No. 1 ranking and have slipped to No. 3 after Ravens gouged them for 175 yards. Williams has over 1,000.

Steelers WRs Santonio Holmes and Mike Wallace vs. rookie Dolphins CBs Vontae Davis and Sean Smith. Miami has 23rd pass defense and Pittsburgh has No. 7 pass offense.

INJURY IMPACT
SS Troy Polamalu practiced Wednesday on a limited basis but he is unlikely to play. Tyrone Carter will replace him. WR Hines Ward has both hamstrings injured. He is likely to play but he might not hold up. RB Willie Parker has a shoulder injury and did not practice Wednesday. DE Brett Keisel has a stinger that's been bugging him for the past two games. G Chris Kemoeatu could miss his third straight game with a left wrist injury, rookie Ramon Foster again will replace him.

Copyright (C) 2009 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.

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