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Steelers News: Is Super Bowl 53 only about the Patriots potentially tying the Steelers’ 6 rings?

Time to check on the latest news surrounding the Pittsburgh Steelers.

NFL: AFC Championship Game-New England Patriots at Kansas City Chiefs Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ season is over, but if you think the news surrounding the black-and-gold is over — think again. For the drama-filled Steelers, things are just heating up, and this is where the daily links article comes in. You might have missed some key news, and we fill you in and give you the latest, and sometimes greatest, news surrounding the Steelers.

Today in the Black-and-gold links article we take a look at how the Steelers fan base approaches the upcoming Super Bowl between the Los Angeles Rams and the New England Patriots. Clearly, all of Steelers Nation will be rooting for the Rams, but is it all just about the number of overall rings, or is it something more?

Let’s get to the news:

Tim Benz: Can Steelers still be considered ‘best ever’ if Patriots win Super Bowl?

By: Tim Benz, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

The present state of the Steelers is a mess. They’re a non-playoff team with a dysfunctional locker room, a defense that can’t get the job done consistently, a neutered coach and an owner in a state of denial over how bad things have gotten.

The future doesn’t look so good either. They’re probably going lose Le’Veon Bell and trade Antonio Brown. Ben Roethlisberger is 36 years old. They may need to replace a starter or two on the offensive line.

What Steelers fans usually fall back on is the past — the easy claim that their Black and Gold are the undisputed best franchise of the Super Bowl era.

Six Super Bowl championships, more than any other organization. What a warm, fuzzy blanket to wrap yourself in when times are bad.

That may be a little harder to do come Sunday night if the New England Patriots beat the Los Angeles Rams. Because then New England will have six Vince Lombardi trophies, too. And they will have done it in 11 Super Bowl trips, three more than the Steelers.

It’s hard to make a case against New England.

But let’s try. Because like I just said, Steelers fans can’t cling to anything else at this point.

(To read more, click the link in the article above...)

Pittsburgh ranked as top city for football fans

By: Chris Pastrick, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Of course, we know it.

But now everyone else can recognize the Pittsburgh is the best city for football fans.

WalletHub has released its 2019 ranking of Best Football Cities for Fans, and wouldn’t you know it: the city of Black and Gold is No. 1.

And it wasn’t really close. Pittsburgh topped all major cities (those with 300,000 people or more) with a 63.49 score, based on 21 metrics — like team’s performance, championships, franchise value, ticket price, fan engagement, and popularity index.

Boston landed second, with a 55.24 score. The other top 5 cities were Green Bay (55), Dallas (53.71), and New York (49.2).

Cleveland (30.41) landed dead last among the 30 major cities, with Cincinnati (40.02) at 17, and Baltimore (37.44) at 21.

The study looked at more than 240 U.S. cities with at least one college or professional team.

WalletHub divided the results into 3 categories: major, midsize (100,000 to 300,000 people), and small (less than 100,000).

Green Bay topped the midsize list, while Tuscaloosa, Ala., was best among small cities.

Pro Bowl: Tomlin’s reputation riding on defense

By: Dale Lolley, DKPittsburghSports

Art Rooney II took some heat when he said last week he had seen improvement in the Steelers’ defense in 2018 and the team was through replacing assistant coaches on Mike Tomlin’s staff.

That was not what the very vocal crowd that wanted defensive coordinator Keith Butler replaced wanted to hear.

The reality is that Butler was in no more trouble than Tomlin at this point. Why?

Because as much as anything, the way the Steelers play defense is the way Tomlin wants them to play.

“Well, Keith Butler is obviously our defensive coordinator and Coach Tomlin as the head coach, like any head coach, has the right to be involved on both sides of the ball, which he is,” Rooney said in an interview with KDKA-FM last week. “And you know, Coach Tomlin came up as a defensive coach and I think he and Coach Butler work closely together on that. And the truth of the matter is, even though it wasn’t everything we would have hoped for, statistically, we were one of the better defenses in the league this year.”

This isn’t something new. Tomlin has taken more control of the team’s defense since Butler replaced Dick LeBeau as defensive coordinator after the 2014 season. Tomlin isn’t making the defensive calls from play to play. That still falls on Butler. But given the two men’s past working relationship, they are firmly on the same wave length on how the defense will work.

“You could see it happening,” one former Steelers defensive player told me. “(Tomlin) had a very hands-off approach with Coach LeBeau. With Coach Butler, (Tomlin) has been more and more vocal about what he wants and how he wants it done. It’s (Tomlin’s) defense. He’s got his stamp all over it.”

So if Tomlin had been inclined to replace Butler, he might as well have been replacing himself, as well.

(To read more, click the link in the article above...)