It’s the offseason for the Pittsburgh Steelers and there are so many topics to talk and write about. Free agents, the GM conundrum, the starting quarterback, traiming camp, and breaking news will all be covered here at BTSC. But who’s going to give you little-known-facts out of the 500 Level?
Luckily, your one-stop, and non-stop, shop for everything Steelers employs a Steelers fan that was allegedly dropped on his head as a one-year-old during the Immaculate Reception. Useless and somewhat fascinating facts are his forte. So, here we are with off-the-wall thoughts from the dark side of a black-and-gold brain that nobody asked for. But the joke’s on you as you’ll be telling your peeps something you read here later.
Michael John Douglas played some epic characters during his 44 years of screen acting. Known professionally as Michael Keaton, his breakout came in 1982 playing Billy “Blaze” Blazejowski in Nightshift and has been known as Mr. Mom, Batman, Beetlejuice and Ken in Toy Story. But one role that the Oscar-nominated actor will always be known for is as a diehard Steelers, Pirates and Penguins fan. The Mountour high grad is vociferous and proud of his Steel City fandom and reps the 412 and the black and gold everywhere he goes.
BTSC Steelers Jeopardy
(Answer at bottom of article)
Middle Name Madness
We love citing the second name of members of the Men of Steel here at Behind the Steel Curtain. We always cite Benjamin Todd Roethlisberger, Christopher Lynn Boswell and Trent Jordan Watt, but who else? Hence, the “More You Know Middle Name of the Week”. This week we feel compelled to feature the Steelers player that was drafted tenth overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the 2010 NFL Draft. A force in the middle of the Steelers’ defensive line, Alualu is looking to return from an injury that kept him out for all but two games in 2021.
Tyson Asi Alualu
This Week’s Birthdays of Steel
5/15 - John Dekker (1983)
5/16 - Keith Butler (1956)
5/17 - Wayne Capers (1961), Keenan Lewis (1986), Earl Morrall (1934), Ernest Pough (1952), Jay Riemersma (1973), Ed Stofko 1920,
5/18 - Flozell Adams (1975), Karl Dunbar (1967), Dave Smith (1947), Will Wolfird (1964)
5/19 - Chris Doehring (1973), Brady Keys (1936), James Parrish (1968), Craig Wolfley (1958)
5/20 - Justin Hunter (1991), Frank Sinkovitz (1923)
5/21 - Joey Clinkscales (1964), Danny Farmer (1977), Adrian Klemm (1977), Ara Parseghian, Guy Whimper (1983)
There’s so much talk about the Steelers opening on the road for the 8th season in a row, but the Steelers have fared well in than span, only losing to New England twice. Pittsburgh has a record of 4-2-1 during the road-start streak that ranks 5th longest in history. By starting against Cincinnati for the first time ever in an opener, the Steelers now have only one AFC team that they’ve never opened against…the New York Jets. As for the National Football Conference, the Men of Steel have yet to begin a new season against the likes of the Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Carolina Panthers or New Orleans Saints. All in all, the Steelers have opened with 84.3% of the current teams in the league.
Not knowing yet what they had in Hines Ward as a receiver in the late 90s and early 2000s, the Steelers selected a wide receiver first in both the 1999 and 2000 draft. With the diminutive Troy Edwards going first in 1999, the team was compelled to go big with Plaxico Burress a year later with the 8th overall pick in Y2K. After five seasons, and not being the undisputed WR over Ward, the 6’5” Burress left for the New York Giants in free agency only to miss out on the Steelers triumph in Super Bowl XL. Not to be outdone though, the receiver would catch the winning pass for the Giants in their Super Bowl XLII upset of New England. Despite a stellar career, the Michigan State Spartan was never named to a Pro Bowl. Possibly most infamously known for serving jail time for accidentally shooting himself in a New York night spot in 2008. After his early release from incarceration, Burress would be back to the league two years later for a stint with the New York Jets in 2011 and a return to the ‘burgh very late in 2012 with the Steelers, where he played four games and caught a touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger. Sadly, Plaxico’s career ended in camp before the 2013 when the veteran suffered a rotator cuff injury. In his five original seasons, Plax had 261 receptions and 23 TDs, He may not have been an absolute Steeler legend... but the sight of No. 80 wearing No. 17 in the Big Apple is still disconcerting.
Hollywood Madison Avenue
With Kenny Pickett becoming a Pittsburgh Steeler, there will be plenty of references to the legendary Pittsburgh amusement park, Kennywood. Opening in 1899, the fun park is one of only two amusement parks on the National landmark registry. The legendary roller coaster, The Steel Phantom, was even mentioned, along with the park, on an episode of CSI. Now boasting the Steel Curtain roller coaster, Kennywood is very in sync with the local football franchise. In 1985, Jack Lambert and Myron Cope teamed up to record a memorable and funny commercial as they rode the Raging Rapids water ride. It ended up being an epic ad in Pittsburgh television history.
The Cliff Clavin Corner
In 1979, the Steelers won their fourth Super Bowl with a completely homegrown team, Meaning they had no players that were drafted or acquired from other teams.
So, there you have it. Anybody can spout out stat after stat, but not everybody can embrace the colorful and personal side of the Pittsburgh Steelers. So, the more you know, the more you can stupefy your friends, family and neighbors with your big, black-and-gold brain. By the way, “What is wearing three different uniforms?” is the correct clue in BTSC Steelers Jeopardy.
We’ll see you right here next week. Until then keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the hypocycloids.