IX-With Larry Johnson's release this week it shines a light on the fact that if the Steelers had just listed to the fans and media throughout the years they could have a four headed monster of a back field that includes Larry Johnson, T.J. Duckett, Isaac "Redzone" Redmann, and Lorenzo Neal and get rid of this Mendenhall scrub. Not to mention LeCharles Bentley is still sitting at home waiting for a call from Kevin Colbert and company. Somebody always has to rain on the fan's parade and this time it is the examiner who argue that the Steelers should stay far away from the former Penn State standout.
X-Troy Polamalu and Coke Zero brought attention back to the classic Mean Joe Greene commercial with their reenactment of the commercial during Super Bowl XLIII. But the classic Mean Joe Greene commercial actually won a "Cilo Award" for excellence in advertising in 1979 but Mean Joe was unable to attend the award ceremony and has yet actually receive the hardware for award. In commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the commercial Coca Cola has actually tracked down the trophy and they will present Mean Joe with the award before this Sunday's epic matchup against the Bengals at Heinz Field. During the ceremony Tommy Okon, who was the boy in the Coke commercial, will be reunited with Joe Greene for the first time in years. Below is the video for your viewing pleasure.
XIII-Beth Apone Salamon wrote a special tribute to her father and really all of Steeler Nation this weekend with her piece entitled "The Heart of a Steelers Fan." Her father has a congestive heart condition that makes him sleep all day and night only to wake briefly to eat, and then back to bed. There is one exception which usually happens on Sundays starting in September and hopefully continues all the way until February. Her father a former Pittsburgh Press music critic, is alive and active every Steeler game and Beth's heartfelt piece gives the impression that it says as much about Steeler nation as it does her father.
XIV-The Steelers held the Broncos to only 27 yards rushing on Monday Night without Aaron Smith and Travis Kirschke and they still managed to hold a decent Bronco's rush attack to 1.9 yards per carry. It certainly is early to say, but it looks like the injury to Aaron Smith could be a lot less impactful than it was in 2007 when the rush defense became an open wound for David Garrad to lumber through. While the Steelers seem to be overcoming Smith's injury it is undeniable that the defense looks much different without a certain long-haired samoan guy running amuck.
XL-In Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports' midseason post he writes that the emergence of Rashard Mendenhall could make the Steelers one of the better offenses in the league and help Ben Roethlisberger emerge as an M.V.P. candidate during the second half of the season. Cole also listed the Steelers as his favorite to win the Super Bowl thanks to Mike Tomlin's ability to keep his team motivated and "on the details."
XLIII-Phil Dzikiy is a former contributor to the Beaver County Times and a huge Steeler fan. He just did a solid Steelers mid-season report card that captures a lot of the strengths and weaknesses of the team and what we can look forward to in the second half of the season. Also check out his top 100 albums of the decade, which is quite impressive. I have tried to make a few lists like this in the future and my tastes varies from day to day even hour to hour so much that I can never come close to completing a list like this.