PaVa Steeler wishes all at BTSC and throughout Steeler Nation the best this holiday season has to offer: joyous times with family and friends, safe travels, and hope for all in the upcoming New Year. With apologies to Clement Clarke Moore (for the second year in a row), I present to yinz another adaptation of "The Night Before Christmas."
‘Twas week seventeen, for all of Steeler Nation
Where hopes were stirring but with much consternation;
The playoff odds were calc'd, the chance would be rare
That the Steelers could find themselves actually there;
The players were preparing while trainers did heal
With visions of redemption turning woe into weal;
While Tomlin and Haley and Smith and LeBeau,
Were finishing plans for the final grand show,
When down from their offices arose such a clatter,
They sprang from their desks to see what was the matter.
Away to the conference room they raced as a group,
To find the media jackals looking for a scoop.
The klieg lights on the scowls filling their faces,
Caused our four coaches to slow their own paces.
What appeared to our coaches' immediate chagrin,
An impromptu press conference was set to begin;
Led by a troika of hacks looking to raise a flap
Abetted by an ex-player named Warren Sapp.
More rapid than vipers their speculations they came,
They sneered and they shouted and disparaged many a name;
"Ben hates Haley, Haley hates Ben, Defense too old,
Tomlin can't manage a clock, when do Steelers fold?
To the basement of the North, your demise is assured;
Even your QB's future on team is obscured."
As bandwagon fans facing a losing record flee,
These hacks predict the Steelers' foundation a scree;
The monolith Kevin Colbert built now mere rubble
Never mind the team still on the playoff bubble.
In spite of losses to teams like Raiders and Fins
Despite a winless four game start, there was no quit;
In the face of critics and doubters the team did spit.
"Take away our toys", the veterans decreed,
As Tomlin the head coach slyly agreed,
For not just the young players was the losing mark;
"We're all in the losses together" said Ryan Clark.
Colbert said not a word, but went straight to his work,
His skill at finding replacements quite a perk;
Velasco for Pouncey (injured by David),
Unwanted by Titans, now highly rated.
Around him the offensive line began to gel;
Until against the Ravens in pain he too fell
Only to be replaced by another Colbert find
Wallace (Cody not Mike) who in September was signed.
Despite the risk of Coach Mike's first losing season,
Regardless of playoffs, for hope there is good reason
Haley's plans and Roethlisberger's execution
Proved these two could find resolution.
No matter the outcome of the game with the Browns,
No matter the playoffs, opponent or rounds,
There are signs of resurgence, quality and skills:
With our young players, Heyward, Bell, Johnson (Will)
With our coaches keeping the players tightly focused
So forget the media, their headlines so bogus
In this season of hope, redemption and good cheer
This Sunday yell loud enough for all to hear
HERE WE GO STEELERS HERE WE GO!