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#pounditWednesday, December 1, 2021

Articles tagged: Pittsburgh Steelers

Mike Tomlin has harsh response to Chase Claypool’s ‘fun’ suggestion

Mike Tomlin

The Pittsburgh Steelers were completely embarrassed by the division rival Cincinnati Bengals last Sunday, and Mike Tomlin knows the team needs to make changes going forward. The music situation at practice is not going to be one of them.

After Pittsburgh’s 41-10 loss to the Bengals, wide receiver Chase Claypool told reporters that he feels the Steelers need to make practices “more fun.” In order to achieve that, he said they could try playing music during practice like they do in warmups before games.

Tomlin didn’t seem to appreciate the feedback. The coach was asked about it on Tuesday, and he essentially told Claypool to stay in his lane.

That was friendly compared to what veteran defensive lineman Cam Heyward said about Claypool’s comments. During a radio appearance on Tuesday morning, Heyward said he hopes his teammate was joking about playing music.

Claypool is only in his second NFL season, but he certainly is not afraid to speak his mind. The former Notre Dame star made himself look bad after the Steelers’ playoff loss last year, and his music suggestion isn’t the best look, either. He should probably learn to say less, especially when his team is struggling.

Steelers fan’s obituary takes funny shot at the team

Steelers logo

Wayne Olexa, a 76-year-old Pittsburgh-area man, died “after a long bout with the Pittsburgh Steelers,” according to his family.

Olexa passed away on November 14 — the same day the Steelers and Detroit Lions played to an overtime tie. His family said that was all the life-long fan could handle.

“He was at his home with family when the Steelers went into overtime against the 0-8 Lions and that was all he could take,” his obituary read.

Olexa was a high school sports standout and inducted into both the Swissvale High School Hall of Fame and the West Virginia Wesleyan Hall of Fame. He was prolific in three sports — football, basketball and baseball — and even drew an MLB tryout for the Pittsburgh Pirates back in the 1960s.

Olexa is survived by his wife, Jolie, and their three children.

Report explains how Steelers will handle Ben Roethlisberger’s retirement

Ben Roethlisberger throwing a ball

Tom Brady knew that as he got older and his career headed towards its end, Bill Belichick would not keep the aging quarterback on the New England Patriots. The Pittsburgh Steelers apparently plan to handle Ben Roethlisberger differently.

FOX Sports NFL reporter Jay Glazer, who is friendly with Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin and a very reliable reporter, talked about the matter during an appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” on Wednesday.

According to Glazer, the Steelers will allow Roethlisberger to end his career on his terms. Glazer added that when the time comes for Roethlisberger to step away, current backup Mason Rudolph will not be the replacement as the team’s starter.

“It’s kind of up to Ben, kind of like how it was with Drew Brees with the Saints, too. It’s like ‘we’re not going to push him out.’ As long as he wants to go, he is just going to keep going,” said Glazer. “I think they were a little surprised he came back. But, no. If Ben wants to go, Ben is going to go. But, I don’t see him going back after this year.”

Glazer believes the Steelers do not want to start over with a rookie quarterback. He suggests a veteran quarterback would be more enticing for the Steelers as a replacement for Roethlisberger when he does retire.

This report is interesting considering what happened over the offseason. There was heavy speculation that Roethlisberger might retire. There were reports about whether the Steelers would bring him back, especially given Big Ben’s contract situation. Ultimately, Roethlisberger agreed to a restructured deal with the team.

Roethlisberger, who turns 40 in March, might walk away after the season. But if he wants to play another season, it sounds like it will be with the Steelers.

H/T Trib Live

Photo: Nov 25, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) warms up before the game against the Denver Broncos at Broncos Stadium at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

TJ Watt reveals why he overruled agents in Steelers contract talks

TJ Watt

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker TJ Watt took the unusual step of halting negotiations and overruling his agents to sign his contract extension. On Friday, he explained why he made that decision.

It had been reported in September that Watt’s agents felt they could get more money out of the Steelers when negotiating his new deal in September. Watt ultimately overruled them and took what was on the table, which guaranteed him roughly $80 million.

Watt was asked to confirm this story on “The Rich Eisen Show” Friday, and admitted it was largely true.

“It’s partially true,” Watt admitted. “It just got to a point where there was back-and-forth toward the end, minor details. Anybody who’s dealt with any type of negotiation in life, once you get toward the end there’s always little things here and there that you want adjusted. Towards the end I just said hey, this organization, (Steelers owner Art Rooney II) have showed such great faith in me in wanting to keep me here. I’m so sick and tired of going back and forth, back and forth. They have a great deal on the table and let’s just accept it and move on.”

Watt is very comfortable in Pittsburgh and has shown his affection for the team and its fans. Plus, the contract did make him the highest-paid defensive player in the NFL, so it’s not like he took a massive discount for the sake of getting something done. That said, anecdotes like this are only going to endear him more to Steelers fans.

Steelers kicker cracks hilarious joke about getting hurt on fake FG play

Chris Boswell gets hit

Pittsburgh Steelers kicker Chris Boswell attempted to throw a pass during Sunday’s win over the Cleveland Browns, and he paid a hefty price. The veteran was knocked out of the remainder of the game, but he had a great sense of humor about it.

With 1:45 remaining in the first half and the score tied 3-3, the Steelers ran a fake field goal deep in Cleveland territory. Boswell rolled out and looked for an open receiver but was unable to find one. Rather than throwing a touchdown, Boswell was lit up by Browns defensive tackle Jordan Elliott. You can see a video of the play here.

Boswell was evaluated for a concussion after the hit and did not clear protocol. He thanked fans for their concern after the game with a hilarious Instagram post:

The fake field goal play backfired in a huge way. Steelers punter Pressley Harvin had no prior experience kicking. When Pittsburgh scored in the second half to cut Cleveland’s lead to 10-9, they were forced to go for two and did not convert. Harvin then kicked the ensuing kickoff out of bounds and gave the Browns great starting field position.

Fortunately for the Steelers, they pulled out the win anyway. Hopefully Boswell is able to return sooner rather than later.

Steelers left without kicker due to injury on failed fake FG play

Chris Boswell gets hit

The Pittsburgh Steelers failed to convert on a fake field goal play during Sunday’s game against the Cleveland Browns, and the questionable decision cost them much more than three points.

With 1:45 remaining in the first half and the score tied 3-3, the Steelers ran a fake field goal deep in Cleveland territory. Kicker Chris Boswell rolled out and looked for an open receiver but was unable to find one. Rather than throwing a touchdown, Boswell was lit up by Browns defensive tackle Jordan Elliott.

Here’s another angle of the play:

Boswell left the game following the hit and was evaluated for a concussion. He did not clear protocol and was ruled out for the remainder of the game. Former NFL referee and CBS rules analyst Gene Steratore said the Browns should have been flagged for a helmet-to-helmet hit.

Losing Boswell immediately proved costly for the Steelers. Their punter, rookie Pressley Harvin, has no prior experience kicking. When Pittsburgh scored in the second half to cut Cleveland’s lead to 10-9, they were forced to go for two and did not convert. Harvin then kicked the ensuing kickoff out of bounds and gave the Browns great starting field position.

Boswell getting hurt on the fake field goal was obviously the worst-case scenario for the Steelers, but it’s fair to wonder if it was worth the risk. While we’ve seen fake field goals that backfired a lot worse than that one, the injury changed the entire dynamic of the game.

Mike Tomlin furious over ’embarrassment’ from officials

Mike Tomlin official

The Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Seattle Seahawks in overtime on Sunday night, but Mike Tomlin was in no mood to celebrate after the game. The coach was furious over a sequence that took place at the end of regulation.

The Seahawks got into field goal range to force overtime following a hectic play with seconds remaining. DK Metcalf caught a ball along the sideline and fumbled, but Seattle retained possession. They then hustled to the line of scrimmage for a spike play to stop the clock. The stadium clock got to zero before Geno Smith got the snap off, and it was unclear if Seattle spiked the ball in time.

It didn’t matter, as the officials decided that play was halted with 3 seconds left so they could review the Metcalf catch. No one really knew what they were reviewing, as it was a clear fumble and recovery by Seattle. All the stoppage did was allow the Seahawks to get organized and immediately spike the ball when play resumed. They then kicked a field goal to tie the game at 20-20 as time expired. Tomlin was furious and cursed out the officials.

After Pittsburgh’s 23-20 OT win, Tomlin could be heard saying he’ll be “writing a check to the league office tonight.” He then proceeded to rip the officiating crew during his postgame press conference.

“I hated it. I cannot believe that game was stopped to confirm catch/no catch in that moment,” Tomlin said.

You can understand the officials wanting to get such an important play right. But, again, there wasn’t much to question. Metcalf clearly fumbled and the Seahawks jumped on the ball. Perhaps the officials wanted to see if Metcalf stepped out of bounds before the fumble. Either way, Seattle definitely caught a break.

At least the Steelers won. The same wasn’t true when they were on the wrong end of a much worse officiating blunder earlier this season.

Wife of Steelers LB coach Jerry Oslavsky dies

Steelers logo

Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebackers coach Jerry Oslavsky has been missing from practice for several days, and the team shared the unfortunate reason for his absence on Friday.

The Steelers announced in a statement that Oslavsky’s wife, Rayme, has died.

Oslavsky, 54, has been an assistant coach on Mike Tomlin’s staff for more than a decade. He served as a defensive assistant from 2010-2014 and has been the team’s inside linebackers coach since. He also played for the Steelers from 1989-1997.

JuJu Smith-Schuster could be out for season with shoulder injury

JuJu Smith-Schuster

The Pittsburgh Steelers got back on track in Week 5 with a win over the Denver Broncos, but they may have paid a hefty price for it.

JuJu Smith-Schuster left Sunday’s game with a shoulder injury. The expectation is that he will be placed on injured reserve, and Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that the Steelers fear Smith-Schuster may be out for the season.

Smith-Schuster hasn’t been very productive this season. He has just 15 catches for 129 yards and no touchdowns in four-plus games. Pittsburgh’s offense has struggled as a whole, so losing a top wide receiver could be very problematic for the team.

Smith-Schuster signed a one-year, $8 million deal to return to the Steelers this past offseason. He reportedly turned down better offers to remain in Pittsburgh despite seeing his role diminish a bit over the last few seasons.

Ryan Shazier attends Steelers game wearing his own jersey

Ryan Shazier with the Steelers

It’s always good to see Ryan Shazier at a Pittsburgh Steelers game, and he certainly had a good way of making sure everybody knew it was him.

Shazier, the former Steelers linebacker, was spotted at Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos — and yes, he was wearing his own jersey.

Shazier suffered a devastating spinal injury in a 2017 game against the Cincinnati Bengals that ultimately ended his career. The linebacker made a remarkable recovery from the injury which initially left him unable to move his legs.

Pittsburgh’s first-round draft pick in 2014, Shazier remains immensely invested in the Steelers’ fortunes. No doubt he enjoyed what turned out to be a 27-19 win on the afternoon.

Oct 28, 2018; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier (50) looks on during the game against the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports