Sunday, August 31, 2008

Steelers make cuts to have team at 53

The Steelers have made their roster cuts to have the team down to the 53 players on a roster for the season. Charlie Batch was officially placed on injured reserve, which means his season is over. He will collect his salary of $1,355,000 this season and can work out and rehabilitate at the Steelers' facilities, which he couldn't have done had the Steelers reached an injury settlement with him. He is likely four more weeks from playing, and had they reached an injury settlement, he could have signed immediately with any other team, but not with the Steelers for another 6 weeks because NFL rules state that a player cannot sign with the team that reached an injury settlement with that player immediately. He wouldn't have been able to play with the Steelers until at least week 10 or 11 anyway. Byron Leftwich was kept as the number 2 quarterback and Dennis Dixon as the number 3, as they did not want to risk losing him on waivers.

The rest of the cuts are as follows:

Willie Reid, wide receiver
Ryan McBean, defensive end
Paul Ernster, punter
Eddie Drummond, wide receiver/return specialist
Patrick Bailey, linebacker
Billy Latsko, fullback
Doug Legursky, guard
Matt Lentz, guard
Roy Lewis, cornerback
Grant Mason, safety
Jeremy Parquet, tackle
Scott Paxson, defensive tackle
Jordan Reffett, defensive end
Micah Rucker, wide receiver
Dezmond Sherrod, tight end
Lee Vickers, tight end
Justin Vincent, running back
Travis Williams, cornerback
Arnold Harrison, outside linebacker *
Mike Humpal, linebacker *
Ryan Mundy, safety *

*Players were waived after reaching an injury settlement.

The Steelers are able to sign up to eight players to their practice squad beginning at noon today. Parquet and Lewis are players they would like to sign, as well as others.

The Steelers were also looking into possibly trading one of their backup offensive linemen, tackle Max Starks, center Sean Mahan, and tackle Trai Essex, but nothing ever materialized. We heard a rumor that Sean Mahan is demanding a trade, but we shall see.

We personally hope to see Mundy back in some form, be it practice squad or whatever. We were also surprised at the release of Lewis after we had heard the Steelers really liked him, but he does appear to be one of the players they would like to sign to the practice squad. Arnold Harrison always had a place in our heart on special teams and it's sad to see his season end. If you watched the game, you saw how angry he was. Hopefully he heals soon. As for the rest, most aren't surprises to us. The only one being the Willie Reid/Dallas Baker choice, but only because we weren't sure who they were going to keep. Hopefully it all works out for the best.

You can read PG's article here and Trib's here. The Trib also lists the Steelers 53-man roster with a few "quick hits" here.

Mike Prisuta writes a column on the Steelers and their practices here. And you can read View from the Press Box by Scott Brown here. Included in that article is the fact that running back Rudi Johnson was let go from the Bengals.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

It's official

Chad Johnson has reportedly officially changed his name to Chad Ocho Cinco. The man is also officially nuts. Let's hope he never has kids or gets married or gets traded. Actually, we kind of hope he does get traded and can no longer be number 85, then what? We brought up when we first heard this that eighty-five in Spanish is not ocho cinco, but ochenta y cinco and we finally found someone else who brought this up. So thank you to akus over in The Pensblog comments section for pointing this out. We don't feel so alone now in being somewhat educated in Spanish.

akus said...
Hey Johnson,
its ochenta y cinco

Spanish-Ebonics comes alive.


Mark me as the 6th one to read the filler post.

6 down,3 to go.

8/30/2008 1:23 AM

Thank you!!! You receive the gold star of the day!

As for Steelers news, they have decided to go with Byron Leftwich as their backup and Charlie Batch will either go on IR or reach an injury settlement with the team and be available to them later when he has healed, provided he hasn't signed with anyone else. Mike Tomlin has also made many of the other cuts necessary to cut the team from 75 to 53 yesterday, but decided not to announce any until today. The team has until 6 p.m. to be down to the required 53 to start the season.

We're sorry we've been absent as of late, we've been under the weather. Should be more news on final cuts tomorrow, see you then.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Steelers sign Farrior to 5-year deal

The Steelers signed a contract extension yesterday with linebacker James Farrior. The contract is worth $18.25 million total with a $5 million signing bonus and he will make slightly less than $10 million the first two years and $12.6 million over the first three. The 33-year-old linebacker now knows he will retire as a Steelers player, what he wanted all along. The contract was designed for Farrior to retire within three years and not five. To read Ed Bouchette's article, click here.

Bob Smizik has an opinion on the Steelers signing James Farrior to an extension, as well as information on how the deal got done.

We're glad to see James Farrior stay, he's been good for the Steelers and not every guy who's over 30 years old is a bad choice. We were surprised though, since it's always said the Steelers want nothing to do with contracts to players over around the age of 30. Congratulations to James on his contract and it'll be nice seeing him retire in the black and gold.

The head of the NFL players' union, Gene Upshaw, has died at the age of 63 of pancreatic cancer.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Polamalu is back...or is he?

Peter Diana/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Troy Polamalu juggles three balls on the sidelines at the last day of training camp.

As much as we love Troy's juggling skills, we're prefer to see him healthy. Polamalu should be taken off of the physically unable to perform (PUP) list on Tuesday and be able to practice in Pittsburgh with the team. Polamalu may also play in the Steelers' third preseason game Saturday night in Minnesota if he is himself. Saturday he ran in Saint Vincent and invited about 50 kids from the crowd to run with him. He also ran Sunday and both days felt good he said. You can read comments from Polamalu and Dick Lebeau in the article at the PG here.

The Steelers brought in a familiar face yesterday when they added Orpheus Roye. The 35 year-old defensive end was drafted by the Steelers in 1996 then joined the Browns in 2000 as a restricted free agent. The Browns released him in February to save money. Info on Heath Miller, Ryan Mundy, and Charlie Batch is all in the Steelers notebook here.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Eight looks really great

Okay so we're not going to promise that we'll never get off-topic again because, really, what fun is that? But history was made tonight and it deserves recognition. Michael Phelps won his eighth gold medal to go eight for eight in Beijing and become the first person in Olympic history to win eight gold medals in one Olympic games surpassing Mark Spitz's record of seven. If you didn't watch this all unfold, you were missing out. There were blowout wins, and wins by a fingernail for lots of drama and ups and downs. At 23 years old, it's not too bad to be Michael Phelps, not too bad at all.

Others can probably say it better than we can, so you can read coverage here.

Over at the PG on the Steelers front there are a few articles. Troy Polamalu could return to practice on Tuesday, Steelers notebook says Santonio Holmes will return some punts during the next preseason game against the Minnesota Vikings, and an article about Stanley Druckenmiller.

In Penguins news, Seth over at Empty Netters had a post today about Ryan Whitney missing 3-5 months and a link to an article.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

History is being made

First off, we once again get that this is a Pittsburgh football and hockey blog, but those are sports so we're not getting too far off topic by mentioning this. Plus we even talked about a movie once. *Gasp* Yesterday night Michael Phelps finished first in the 100m Fly by .01 seconds (that picture is worth a thousand words). Phelps was seventh of eight at the turn and somehow chased down the leader and out-touched him by .01 seconds. Ridiculous. Watching that race, there was no way you would have thought Phelps was going to win. Most people expected him to chase down the leader and at least contend for the top spot, but down to the last few meters it looked like he was going to run out of room. Even watching it, you thought for sure he was second, as did his own mother, before seeing the 1 placed by his name. And before any of you who don't watch swimming, or want to be haters and say it was fixed, well the touches are recorded by touchpads that are electronic and don't lie. I'm sure you haters will say they do. Watching the replay slowed down, it's pretty amazing to see what happened. Make sure to catch this race on YouTube or something if you didn't see it. It's worth the look, we promise.

And here's the slow-mo of the finish, no sound but it works. There's also plenty of videos of the full race on YouTube, most not so hot but they're there if you're interested. 

We're witnessing history here and it's pretty amazing. By far one of the best athletes in the world. Don't miss his final race tomorrow, the 400 medley relay where he'll be swimming the fly leg of the race. The race should start just before 11 p.m. EST.

And for the ladies, check out that bod! If you're interested in a close up of that bod, check out Sports Illustrated's Olympic Preview from a couple weeks ago. You can go to and look at it. Trust the females here, it's worth the look. ;-)

Heinz Kluetmeier/SI

And as for the Steelers, the PG has a couple new articles reviewing the Steelers-Bills preseason game and James Harrison being upset with the defense. And even the Ravens have found a little class.

EDIT: Ryan Whitney is out for at least three months after having surgery on his foot.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Steelers lose their second preseason game

The Steelers lost their second preseason game to the Buffalo Bills in Toronto last night 24-21. We ended up getting to watch the game on TV because it was on "BTN," Buffalo Television Network, or something like that. And the announcers were horrible. But anyway, speaking of basically horrible, the first-team defense didn't look so hot last night. We know they don't show too much in preseason and all that but they looked bad. Hopefully that gets corrected before the start of the season. Also on the horrible list would be the coverage on that 95-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the third quarter after Rashard Mendenhall's 6 yard touchdown. Is special teams ever going to get better? Are we ever going to be able to not hold our breath every time someone is going to return a punt or a kickoff? Also, is it just us or does the whole, they score a touchdown and then they let the other team score right after that happen often? 

Roethlisberger to Holmes looked pretty darn good tonight once again and Holmes looks like he's going to have a big year. In terms of Byron Leftwich, we weren't that impressed. That whole fumble thing reminded us of a move Tommy Maddox would have made back in the day. Not good. Dennis Dixon looked pretty good to us. He's obviously is still learning but he looks like a heck of an athlete. That 47 yard TD run was nice. We thought his arm looked pretty good too, especially on that hail mary to end the game.

Overall, not too great but things should look up, they have all the weapons.

Head over to the PG for best coverage in town and we'll see you later.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Preseason game 2 today

The Steelers play their second preseason game tonight at 7:30 in Toronto against the Buffalo Bills. The starters will play more in this game. Unfortunately we will not be able to watch since we are considered outside the market area. Which we have to say is the stupidest thing ever. Thank you NFL. We'll have to try to catch some of the highlights when the game is replayed on the NFL Network.

The Post-Gazette has an article today from Ed Bouchette on James Farrior that is a good read, entitled "Oldest member of Steelers' defense continues to play every snap."

The Post-Gazette's restaurant critic does an article today on what it takes to feed a hungry Steelers team.

Check out the Trib for some more Steelers articles including one on how Timmons is pushing Foote at linebacker.

And on a football related note, we couldn't resist mentioning this. Chad Johnson wants to legally change his name to, wait for it now, wait for it...OCHO CINCO! Are you kidding? That is ridiculous. But it fits we suppose. Is he really saying he wants to be Chad Ocho Cinco for the rest of his life?  Wow. According to Pro Football Talk, he's taken the first steps in the state of Florida towards changing his last name to exactly that. We have to say this isn't funny at all and to us this is even a little far for Chad Johnson. Not to mention that doesn't Chad call himself "eighty-five?" Like, who covered eighty-five? (the Steelers? yeah, we think so) If he's going for the whole, eighty-five in Spanish thing, then he's got it wrong. Ocho cinco would be eight five, not eighty-five so WTF Chad? Seriously. Eighty-five would technically be ochenta y cinco. Next time you decide to make a big deal out of something so ridiculous, please know the correct terminology before you open your big mouth.

In Penguins news the new arena groundbreaking is today at 11 a.m.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


So once again we suck at getting a daily post done. And coming up with titles for our posts. And probably a lot of other things too. Slowly we're getting things back together, so please bear with us.

Tonight we'll keep it short and once again tell you to head over to the PG to read all of their great content. Ed Bouchette's chat transcript is a good one as usual and there is even more writing on the infamous Anthony Smith. The Steelers play their next game Thursday against Buffalo in Toronto.

Almost completely off topic for this blog other than it's a sport and this blog is about sports, are the Olympics. Now we didn't care too much about them, especially with all of the boycott China talk, it kind of ruins things a bit. Plus we're kind of obsessed with hockey and football. Obviously. But as for the Olympics, we were pretty wrong on them and got more into it than we thought. Although don't get us wrong, we're not exactly sitting on the edge of our seats over table tennis. Playing is so much better than watching, of course. The men's swimming 4 x 100m free final was pretty exciting and amazing to watch. And seeing a 23 year-old freak have the most gold medals in Olympic history and dominate his sport to that extent is pretty awesome. Now to clarify, Michael Phelps just has to be some sort of freak to dominate the way he does period, let alone when swimming that much each day. Today he was going to be swimming over 5 miles. May not be that impressive to some but this is the Olympics with the best swimmers in the world. The more you learn about Phelps, the harder it is not to be amazed or not root for him to get yet another gold medal. Try not to be impressed, we dare you.

Phelps has a lot to be smiling about.

Now go watch some swimming!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Steelers sign Byron Leftwich

Basically some quick hits for this morning since it's 4 am. We know, we really need to get our schedules better arranged.

First off, the Steelers have signed Byron Leftwich to a one-year deal worth $645,000 and a $40,000 signing bonus. Both Leftwich and Daunte Culpepper were in Pittsburgh Sunday morning and passed physicals and then worked out privately. Leftwich won the job and they were able to sign him, although if they could not work out a deal with Leftwich they were prepared to sign Culpepper. The Steelers also brought in another punter to compete with Paul Ernster in Mitch Berger who is a seasoned veteran, making the Pro Bowl twice in his career. To make room for these two additions the Steelers had to release two players, wide-receiver Gerran Walker and linebacker Anthony Trucks who were both first-year free agents. Read about all this and more from the PG here.

Casey Hampton has been removed from the physically unable to perform (PUP) list and is now practicing with everyone else. Mike Tomlin likes where he is at right now, but says Casey is not done yet. Tomlin would not reveal how much Casey weighs or how much weight he has lost, but said that he will be getting extra work after practice. You can read about Casey, the punter competition, and more at the PG here.

In the NFL notebook you can read about injuries on other teams, including Plaxico Burress, and Brett Favre's first penalty lap here.

The Trib has a few things to offer here.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Steelers looking for veteran QB to back-up Big Ben

So with Charlie Batch injured, the Steelers are looking for a veteran quarterback to back-up Ben Roethlisberger. What names come to your mind? Honestly, our thinking ability basically sucks lately as we feel like we're losing our minds so we really didn't get a chance to think about it before we heard two names. And then we kinda gagged a little. How does Byron Leftwich or Daunte Culpepper sound? You too? FSN Live stated tonight that Leftwich is supposed to be invited to camp to work out for the team and possibly Daunte Culpepper. Guess we'll see how this plays out this week. The Trib has some info here.

And as of now the Post-Gazette has posted tomorrow's articles and they mention Byron Leftwich only and it sounds like he's ready to work hard. Hopefully things go well here.

Time to sleep for us, it's been a long day, but be sure to check out the rest of the PG's stuff as they, in our humble opinion, have the best info.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Steelers win!

The Steelers won their first preseason game tonight by a score of 16-10. We got to catch most of the game and it was pretty good we guess. What we saw of the first team looked excellent. Ben Roethlisberger was 2 for 2, 38 yards, and a touchdown. What a line! But seriously, for the limited time he was out there, he looked good. Ward made a great catch and Santonio Holmes had a nice touchdown to cap off their first drive. Willie Parker looked like Fast Willie Parker and Rashard Mendenhall looked pretty darn good as well. Limas Sweed had a few nice catches and some names we don't recognize looked good too. Unfortunately Charlie Batch broke his collar bone in the game making a positive out of a negative. This isn't good for the Steelers. If something were to happen to Ben, they now won't have the best backup in the NFL. Behind Charlie are two rookies, and what are the chances a rookie gets thrown into the mix and takes the team to 15-1 again? Nada. We wish Charlie well and hope he heals fast. Guess this means we'll be seeing a lot of Dennis Dixon and Mike Potts. Dixon had flashes of good tonight we thought, we think we'll enjoy watching him more.

We could probably say more but we have to get up early in the morning and could really use the sleep, so we'll leave you with a few links to check out.

Gene Collier writes an article about Anthony Smith entitled, "Growing oh-so tired of Anthony Smith." We have to say we agree. The Steelers don't need any form of whatever it is that Smith is. Insubordinate? Cocky? Big mouth? Good at getting burned? Stupid? Yeah, pick one. Whether you like him or not, he's done some stupid things and better shape up or someone is going to take his spot.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Steelers play tonight at 7:30

Don't forget to watch the Steelers first preseason game tonight at 7:30 on either FSN Pittsburgh (if you're in the "Steelers zone") or NFL Network. If you have FSN Pittsburgh you can watch Savran on Sportsbeat starting at 6:30 for a full hour of pre-game coverage. NFL Total Access is also on for a full hour starting at 6:30 but we have no idea what kind of coverage they'd have. Obviously not all Steelers like Savran but we're throwing the option out there for you.

Over at the PG Ed Bouchette writes an article about Fast Willie Parker having to prove himself after injury and Rocket Rashard Mendenhall making his debut.

If you want to read Bob Smizik's article about Casey Hampton and how he thinks Coach Tomlin went too far with his punishment, you can read it here.

And here are the headlines over at the Trib.

Enjoy the game!

Thursday, August 7, 2008


Can you tell we're excited about football season? We finally get to see some action this Friday night at 7:30. It'll be nice to see all the new faces and what they can do. And maybe our only chance to see some of them. Limas Sweed should be getting a lot of playing time and we're excited about that one. Ben Roethlisberger is going to start and probably play a series, after that Charlie Batch should take over. Dennis Dixon and Mike Potts will also play. To see who else will be getting starting duties, read the Steelers notebook over at the Post-Gazette here.

Anthony Smith is at it again. After last year's guarantee and his past hard hits in training camp, he's done it again, only this time to someone a bit higher up. Smith hit Hines Ward on a pass over the middle and Ward was none too happy about it. Ward hasn't like some of Smith's other hits previously on Willie Reid, and wasn't any happier about his own hit. Ward wasn't smiling when he was asked about it and said that he wasn't going to discuss it. We're sure he probably had a discussion with Anthony later on. You can read the PG article here.

Also over at the PG is an article on Stanley Druckenmiller and how his offer is still on the table. You can read it here.

And last but not least, Gene Collier writes an article about how the NFL is now trying to crack down on unruly fans. Although by the looks of their rules, you won't be allowed to do a whole lot of anything. And don't buy too many of those $8 beers or you'll be too intoxicated and they'll throw you out, possibly forever. And yes, this does include verbally abusing the opposing team's fans. What fun is that? Of course there should be a line, but at this rate you won't even be able to say Cleveland sucks. And that sucks. Read his article here.

Here is our favorite picture of the day, Heath Miller working hard at training camp.

Matt Freed/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Heath Miller catches a pass at training camp.

Don't forget to watch the game Friday at 7:30. If you have FSN Pittsburgh, Savran on Sportsbeat will be on at 6:30 with a full hour of pre-game coverage, followed by the game. If you don't get FSN Pittsburgh, or if you're outside what the NFL determines to be "Steelers territory" and can't watch the game itself, the game will be on NFL Network live at 7:30.

Happy Birthday Sidney!

Happy 21st Sidney! Is it time to stop calling him Sid the Kid now? That's going to be hard to shake we think. Here's to hoping Sidney has a great 21st birthday. Don't party too hard Sid! If you're of age, feel free to have one of these, or one of these in honor of Sid's birthday, but don't get too crazy. We don't think your boss will accept your hangover as acceptable because it's Sidney's birthday.
Getty (obviously)
Lookin' good Sid!

Happy birthday Sidney! (We couldn't resist!)

Edit: Head over to the Sidney Crosby Show for another 21st birthday post, including a collage. (Link to the right)

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Sidney Crosby prefers whiskey

We know we're still not doing very well in terms of updating the blog and we apologize. We haven't felt well for a while and the last few days have been pretty bad so we're trying to rest up (and failing miserably obviously). We are trying to think of some new stuff for this blog while we're out of commission, hopefully something good will come of this. Please forgive us.

And referring to the title of this post, Sidney Crosby did an interview with the Trib about his upcoming 21st birthday and revealed his preferred drink of choice is whiskey. Jack Daniels or Crown Royal to be specific. Now when we first heard this we thought, why is Sid the squeaky clean Kid drinking before his 21st birthday? Then we realized we were more out of it than we thought and remembered he's from Canada and you can drink in Canada at 18 or 19, 19 where Crosby is from. Obviously turning 21 isn't quite as exciting for Sid as it may be for those in the US, but at least he's now legal here. You can read the interview here. So who's up for buying Sid a drink for his birthday?

If you live in the Pittsburgh area be sure to head over to the Sidney Crosby Show (link to the right) and check out some info on some drink specials and a Sidney Crosby look-a-like contest at a Pittsburgh bar in honor of Sid's birthday. We'd love to see pictures of this.

By the way folks, if you don't already know, his birthday is August 7th. And if you don't know where his lucky number came from, his birth date is 8/7/87. Makes sense huh?

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Day Seven

Day seven of training camp wasn't a good one in some aspects as Ben Roethlisberger is listed as day to day with a groin injury. Let's hope this soon passes and Big Ben is healthy and ready to go.

Peter Diana/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Big Ben grimaces while stretching at training camp.

Please go and read the rest of the day's headlines over at the Post-Gazette. We know we're setting a horrible example for the rest of the season right now, but we will get into shape sooner or later, we promise. Again, any ideas for making it better around here (besides having better posts, we know), leave a comment or send an e-mail. Thanks.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Training camp day 6

Once again we're going to apologize for the shortness of this post. We've had a rough few weeks and hopefully soon we'll get back into the swing of things and get this stuff going. We want to make a few changes, hopefully positive ones, around here and any new ideas are welcomed. Feel free to leave a comment or send us an e-mail, we love new ideas.

And moving on, there are a few stories coming out of camp yesterday including that Ben Roethlisberger may have a groin issue. Ed Bouchette said he looked OK, but Mike Tomlin reported after practice that he may have a slight groin problem. Let's hope Ben has a healthy season. Santonio Holmes left camp because of a death in the family but should be back tomorrow. Our condolences go out to him. Also in news, Dan Rooney is being honored by the Queen of England, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, with an honorary Commander of the British Empire. Mr. Rooney will receive the honor for his quote "exceptional contribution to peace and reconciliation in Northern Ireland," according to a statement released by Shaun Woodward, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland. Congratulations to Dan! He's done so many great things for this team, community, and others, we can only hope he will remain with the Steelers. You can read the rest of the Steelers notebook over at the PG here.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Dan Rooney enjoying himself at training camp.

Also over at the PG is an article by Ed Bouchette about last year's team MVP James Harrison. You can read it here.

You can read all the Steelers headlines over at the Trib here.

Also be sure to check out the Steelers website for lots of training camp photos. If you don't know the address, a link is on the right side of the page.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Exciting time of the year

Tonight's post is going to be quick as it's 3 am and we need sleep. All we have to say at this point is that we're getting really excited for football season. The Steelers have so many weapons it's unreal. Ward, Holmes, Sweed, Washington, Miller, Mendenhall, Parker...crazy. When you think about it, there's a lot to be legitimately excited about this year. Now if the offensive line would shape up, things would look even better. Now be sure to head over to the PG and read today's articles, especially the Steelers notebook and the article on Santonio Holmes.

Sorry for the short post, we should be back tomorrow.