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The “unique” connections this writer has with several members of the 2018 Steelers

The author of Random Thoughts lists some possibly little-known personal facts about the current Pittsburgh team and compares their similarities somewhat self-indulgently to himself.

NFL: AFC Divisional Playoff-Jacksonville at Pittsburgh Steelers Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Sometimes in the offseason, I find myself searching for any information I can find to cram into my black-and-gold brain. As I was prepping for this week’s edition of Throwback Thursday, I was reminded of how former Steelers running back Erric Pegram once owned every episode of Sanford and Son. I, in turn, have all six seasons on DVD. So it made me reflect and wonder what I have in common with current Steelers.

With that in mind, I compiled a list of interesting facts about some 2018 Steelers, and how closely, or not so closely, I relate to them. Enjoy.

Steeler Center Maurkice Pouncey goes by his middle name, not his given name...LaShawn.

  • For BTSC purposes, I go by both my first and middle names...Bryan Anthony Davis.

Le’Veon Bell’s mother, Lisa, is a lifelong Steelers fan.

  • My father, Bill, is a lifelong fan as well. There was many a bonding Sunday between my father and I. That black-and-gold bond still exists today.

As a high school senior, Chris Boswell was selected to play in the 2009 US Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio.

  • As a high school senior, I was selected to play “Sonny” in the Richland High School production of Grease.

Ramon Foster wasn’t the only NFL lineman in his family. His older brother, Renardo Foster, played seven games for parts of four seasons in St. Louis, Atlanta and New Orleans.

  • My only sibling, Lisa, has never played in the NFL nor written for BTSC.

Coach Mike Tomlin went to William and Mary.

  • That school has way too high of standards to enroll me, but my father’s name is William and my Grandmother’s name is Mary.

Stephon Tuitt majored in Anthropology at Notre Dame.

  • I majored in Communications/Theater at Pitt-Johnstown.

Joe Haden, Tyson Alualu and LaShawn Pouncey were all drafted in the top 18 of the 2010 draft.

  • My best friend and I both worked at the same radio station after college.

Marcus Allen is not related to his Hall of Fame namesake, but his Godfather is enshrined in Canton. His name is Curtis Martin.

  • I am not related to the Brian Davis that triumphantly played played for the Redskins in SB XII. My Godfather, Bob, did not play in the NFL.

A year before signing with the Steelers, Jordan Berry was working the graveyard shift at an Australian McDonalds.

  • A year before signing with BTSC, I sold prostate medicine for a pharmaceutical company.. Also, I never worked in the fast food industry, but I worked the graveyard shift as a Top 40 deejay in Johnstown, PA.

Both of Dave DeCastro’s parents hail from South Africa. His father’s family were mostly all rugby players.

  • Both of my parents hail from Johnstown. Neither played rugby, but both play a pretty mean game of pinochle.

Morgan Burnett is the only Steeler on the winning end of Super Bowl XLV.

  • I was the only Steelers fan at our Super Bowl Party to win sixty dollars for putting my initials on squares. It’s no consolation though, the party cost way more than that and I’m still not over the Rashard Mendenhall fumble.

Artie Burns is the legal guardian of his two younger brothers.

  • I am the legal guardian of four dachshunds...oh yeah, two kids as well.

Marcus Gilbert’s father, Jeff, protected three US presidents as a member of the Secret Service.

  • Among his other proud accomplishments, my father protected valuable packages as a courier for FedEx.

Alvin Dupree’s Godmother had a dream before her Godson was born that he’d grow up to be a football player that would go by “Bud,” hence the nickname.

  • I don’t think my Godmother, Rita, had any such dream about my being a football blogger that sometimes goes by (my initials) BAD.

New Mexico native Landry Jones has interesting ties to Texas professional sports. He is named after legendary Cowboys coach Tom Landry and is married to a 2013 draft pick of the WNBA’s San Antonio Stars.

  • This Pennsylvanian/Marylander has no ties to Texas sports, but after my 8-month-pregnant mother saw James Caan and Billie Dee Williams in the TV movie Brian’s Song, I became Bryan...but with a “y” instead of Shawn (BAD is much better than SAD). Also, My wife decided to forego the WNBA to marry me, and more so because she doesn’t play basketball.

James Washington played tennis in high school.

  • I played bass drum in high school.

JuJu Smith-Schuster was born John Sherman Smith. The nickname came to replace “John John”. The moniker was given to him when he was only a few months old by his aunt.

  • I was born Bryan Anthony Davis, but my ass-clown friends nicknamed me”Raisin” because of my hair in ninth grade. The handle stuck for four excruciating years. Although they were both in my wedding, I’m still planning revenge for the nickname 33 years later.

James Conner appeared on an episode of Ellen in 2016 to celebrate being a cancer survivor.

  • Although I’m proud to call myself a cancer survivor, I was never asked to appear on Ellen, but I’ve watched it on television.

Justin Hunter is a world class long jumper, competing in the IAAF World Junior Championships in 2010.

  • I’ve competed in four World Series of Trivia and a Big Mac-eating contest. But I’ve never been considered world class at anything.

Trey Griffey was drafted in the 24th round of the 2016 MLB Draft by the Mariners. The 24th round is significant because that’s the number his HOF father wore in Seattle.

  • I was really bad at baseball, but my dad lobbied the coaches to select me in the last round of the Arbutus Little League in 1984. If that’s not HOF fathering...I don’t know what is.

Alejandro Villanueva paid $245 to attend a regional NFL combine in 2014.

  • I paid $20 for B.J. Finney’s game-worn pants in April.

Coty Sensabaugh and his wife Dominique decided to forego their honeymoon in 2016 to hand out shoes to people in need in the Dominican Republic.

  • My wife and I never officially went on a honeymoon, but we did go to Cracker Barrel and tipped well.

Ben Roethlisberger is on track to tie Mike Webster as the longest-tenured Steeler at 15 seasons.

  • I’m on track to tie Anthony Defeo as the longest-tenured fan who writes for BTSC. If correct, we are both going on 39 years of Steelers fandom.

Joe Haden won a Maryland state championship in football as a quarterback and two in basketball as a point guard.

  • I live in Maryland and have won three People’s Choice Chili titles.

Haden is also involved with an organization trying to eliminate the use of the word “retarded”.

  • No jokes here. It’s an ugly word and I applaud Joe for working towards the removal of it from our lexicon.

First rounder Terrell Edmunds first name is actually FeDerrius.

  • That’s way too awesome to even try to compare to. I fold.

Now, that I’ve read this myself. I’ve come to two conclusions. No. 1, I’m practically a Steeler and No. 2, you’re never getting the four minutes back that it took to read this. Nevertheless...Go Steelers!