IX-Another somewhat uneventful day of football this Sunday with the Steelers on a bye week many of the games turned out to be one-sided. Probably the most important game in Steeler nation was the match up of the Ravens and the previously undefeated Denver Broncos. Both teams struggled in the first half with the Ravens taking a 3-0 lead, but in the second half the Ravens and Joe Flacco were very impressive on offense and added a huge splash play on special teams and eventually ended up with a 30-7 home victory. It will be interesting to see how the Broncos recover after their first loss of the season when they play the Steelers next Monday night.
X-Trouble in Cleveland is abound. Reports from Profootballtalk.com are that G.M. George Kokinis who was handpicked by head coach Eric Mangini was escorted out of the building today. You almost have to feel bad for the woeful Brows who have struggled ever since they came back to the NFL in 1999. It would be hard to believe that owner Randy Lerner would fire Mangini after one season, but you also have to think that wholesale changes are necessary to get this once proud franchise back to their glory. If you read Peter King's Monday Morning Quarterback Column he points out that the Browns are no better off than they were 10 years ago.
XIII-Defensive Coordinator Dick Lebeau is confident that the Steelers defense is on the right track although he definitely has concerns about the 2009 version of the Pittsburgh Steelers steel curtain defense. Lebeau thoughts on Ryan Clark are he should not play if there is any chance that he will put himself in any danger, and added that "he would never ask a player to do something he wouldn’t ask his son to do." Talk about creating a team that feels like a family! On another note I have watched Lebeau this season on the sideline I was wondering if I was the only one who thinks Lebeau looks like he aged 5 to 10 years between this season and last? It’s scary to think he won’t be wondering the sidelines at Heinz Field at some point.
XIV-Mike Tomlin addressed the media for the first time in a while today after practice. It sure has been a while since we have had much to contemplate in terms of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Classic Tomlin in terms of his thoughts on whether he could overrule the Ryan Clark if he decided he wanted to play: "That’s a possibility, sure." "I don’t have a problem breathing when I go to Denver."
XL-The standard of expectation does not change. That certainly seems to be true to the 2009 Steelers defense after they lost Aaron Smith for the remainder of the season a few weeks back. The position has been filled admirably by the committee of Ziggy Hood, Travis Kirsche, and Nick Eason who has went from being off the roster to possibly starting this season if Kirstche is unable to play this weekend like the Steelers are preparing for.