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09-24-2010, 12:05 AM
Steelers take on Bucs in Tampa

http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/ ... a9af144d61 (http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/Steelers-take-on-Bucs-in-Tampa/9844c2d1-4de4-408c-8ab0-9aa9af144d61)

Pittsburgh Steelers (2-0) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-0)

Date: Sunday, Sept. 26, 2010

Kickoff: 1 p.m., ET

Site: Raymond James Stadium (65,908) • Tampa, Fla.

Playing Surface: Natural Grass

TV Coverage: CBS-TV (locally KDKA-TV, channel 2)

Announcers: Gus Johnson (play-by-play) Steve Tasker (color analyst)

Local Radio: Steelers Radio Network WDVE-FM (102.5)/WBGG-AM (970)

Announcers: Bill Hillgrove (play-by-play) Tunch Ilkin (color analyst) Craig Wolfley (sideline)

Spanish Radio: Grupo Imagen - Destrito Federal (Mexico City) XEDA-FM 90.5

Steelers-Buccaneers complete game notes

A Look at the Coaches

Pittsburgh Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin

Overall regular-season record: 33-17 (.660)/fourth season

Regular-season record at Pittsburgh: 33-17 (.660)/fourth season

Playoff Record/Years: 3-1/two years

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Head Coach Raheem Morris

Overall Regular-season Record: 5-13 (.278)/second season

Regular-season Record at Tampa Bay: 5-13 (.278)/second season

Playoff Record/Years: n/a

Series Notes

Overall: Pittsburgh leads 7-1

At Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh leads 3-0

At Tampa Bay: Pittsburgh leads 4-1

Neutral Sites: n/a

Last Meeting: Dec. 3, 2006 (in Pittsburgh)

Pittsburgh 20, Tampa Bay 3

Postseason Series: n/a

(postseason record not included in overall series record)

Pittsburgh owns a 7-1 record against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers...the teams have not met during the Mike Tomlin era...the Steelers have won the last three meetings in the series...Pittsburgh came away with a 20-3 in the last matchup on Dec. 3, 2006 at Heinz Field...the Steelers won the last game between the teams in Tampa, a 17-7 victory on Dec. 23, 2002 (Monday Night Football)...the Steelers suffered their only loss in the series when the teams met on Dec. 6, 1998 at Raymond James Stadium (L, 16-3)...prior to the 1998 meeting, the teams had not met since the Steelers defeated the Buccaneers, 31-22, on Dec. 24, 1989, at Tampa Stadium.

Steelers-Buccaneers Connections

Steelers-Buccaneers Connections: Several Steelers have ties to the Buccaneers and the Tampa area. Head Coach Mike Tomlin was the defensive backs coach for Tampa Bay from 2001-05. Running backs coach Kirby Wilson coached for the Buccaneers from 2002-03. QB Byron Leftwich played in three games for Tampa Bay in 2009. CB Bryant McFadden (Hollywood, Fla.) and LB Lawrence Timmons played collegiately at Florida State while OT Max Starks (Orlando) and C Maurkice Pouncey (Lakeland) played for the Florida Gators. CB William Gay (Tallahassee) and WR Antonio Brown (Miami) are also from Florida.

Buccaneers with ties to the Steelers or Western Pa. include OG Keydrick Vincent, who was originally signed by Pittsburgh as an undrafted rookie free agent and played with the team from 2001- 04. TE John Gilmore played at Penn State. Defensive assistant Chris Mosley played at W&J (1999-2001) while quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt, who was born in Pittsburgh and played at Pitt (1989-92), was drafted by the Steelers in 1993 (8th round).

What To Look For

• Pittsburgh looks to begin the year 3-0 for the second time during the Mike Tomlin era (3-0 in 2007) and just third time since 1992.

• The Steelers look to improve to 8-1 all-time against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

• Pittsburgh looks to improve 5-1 on the road in the series history.

• Pittsburgh looks to improve to 2-0 against NFC foes this year.

• The Steelers look for their 22nd win in the last 26 games against NFC teams.


WR Hines Ward

• Needs one touchdown to move into a second-place tie with RB Jerome Bettis on the team’s all-time touchdowns list. Ward currently has 79 career touchdowns (78 receiving, one rushing) while Bettis finished his Steelers’ career with 80 touchdowns.

TE Heath Miller

• Needs 116 receiving yards to move into second place on the team’s all-time list for tight ends. He currently has 2,764 career receiving yards, trailing only Bennie Cunningham (2,879) and Elbie Nickel (5,133).

DE Aaron Smith

• Needs 2.5 sacks to move into seventh place on the team’s all-time sack list ahead of Dwight White (46.0). Smith currently has 44.0 career sacks.

LB LaMarr Woodley

• Looks to extend his team record to 11 straight games with at least a half-sack. He has posted at least a half-sack in 10 straight games, dating back to the middle of the 2009 season. During that span, he has 13.5 sacks.

K Jeff Reed

• Needs four field goals to become just the second kicker in team history to have at least 200 career field goals. Reed currently has 196 career field goals and trails only Gary Anderson (309).

09-24-2010, 07:34 PM
they should take all of the professional sports teams out of Tampa Bay... :moon

Buccaneers blacked out again despite visit from Steelers

The Pittsburgh Steelers are one of the NFL's most popular traveling road shows, a nationally beloved team known for often taking over enemy stadiums.

That won't be enough to get them on TV in Tampa.

Despite a matchup of 2-0 teams, the Steelers-Buccaneers game will be blacked out in the Tampa Bay market Sunday, the second time the Bucs have failed to sell out this season. Their opener vs. the Browns met the same fate and was the team's first blackout since 1997.

-- Nate Davis


09-25-2010, 01:52 AM
Freeman's turn to try Steelers defense
By F. Dale Lolley, Staff writer dlolley@observer-reporter.com
http://www.observer-reporter.com/or/loc ... nsive-work (http://www.observer-reporter.com/or/localsports/9-24-Steelers-defensive-work)

PITTSBURGH - The Steelers have faced a pair of talented young quarterbacks in Atlanta's Matt Ryan and Tennessee's Vince Young over the past two weeks and left both licking their wounds following those games.

Ryan and Young, both Pro Bowl players, combined to complete 34 of 54 passes for 318 yards, no touchdowns and four interceptions in losing to the Steelers. Young didn't even make it out of the third quarter, getting pulled in favor of veteran Kerry Collins.

Up next for the Steelers is Tampa Bay's Josh Freeman, a second-year quarterback with just 12 career starts.

The Steelers (2-0) travel to Tampa Bay (2-0) Sunday in a meeting between two of the eight remaining unbeaten teams in the NFL.

"They aren't like any other defense we have seen," said Freeman, who led the Buccaneers to wins in four of their past five games, no small feat for a team that won just three games last year.

"They do a great job of mixing it up, getting pressure on the quarterback and forcing turnovers. We realize that it is going to be a big challenge, but we are not really changing anything. Obviously, there are game plans we are changing, but we are sticking to our core principals, keeping the ball secure and just taking what they give us."

Thus far, the Steelers haven't given opposing teams much.

Pittsburgh is tied with Miami for the fewest points allowed (20) through two weeks. The Steelers have given up just one touchdown, that coming in the final minute against the Titans after they switched to a prevent defense to protect a 19-3 lead.

The Steelers knew they would need to play dominant defense in the first four games to help an offense playing without star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. But the defensive players also were upset with how they played in 2009, when they slipped from first in the league in total defense to fifth.

That's spelled trouble for opposing offenses, who have turned the ball over eight times while being stifled by Pittsburgh's ferocious attack.

Can they keep it up?

"We don't see why not," said linebacker James Farrior. "That's the plan."

The plan calls for the Steelers to shut down the opposing running game and put them in third-and-long situations.

Then, the fun starts.

"Every third down is something crazy," Farrior said. "We're trying to confuse the quarterbacks."

Two big parts of that are strong safety Troy Polamalu and inside linebacker Lawrence Timmons.

Polamalu has the ability to line up at one spot and cover another after the snap of the ball. But it's been the play of Timmons, a 2007 first-round draft pick, that has been the biggest improvement.

Timmons didn't play much as a rookie, saw action in the dime defense in 2008 and became a full-time starter in 2009. But he suffered a high ankle sprain in the preseason and it bothered him throughout the season.

He's healthy now and causing havoc. Timmons leads the team with 26 tackles, putting him on pace for 208.

"He's all over the field. He's making everybody better," Farrior said. "I haven't seen anyone block him yet. He's playing out of his mind right now."

Odds and end zones

Guard Chris Kemoeatu was fined $5,000 by the NFL for his part in a first-quarter fight at Tennessee. ... Wide receiver Hines Ward also was fined $5,000 for the league for excessive grabbing of the face mask against the Titans. ... Quarterback Dennis Dixon is expected to miss three weeks after having surgery Wednesday to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. ... Dixon and guard Trai Essex (ankle) were the only two Steelers to miss practice.

09-25-2010, 01:54 AM
Steelers game a measuring stick for Bucs

http://www.foxsportsflorida.com/09/24/1 ... eedID=6925 (http://www.foxsportsflorida.com/09/24/10/Steelers-game-will-be-measuring-stick-fo/landing_bucs_blog.html?blockID=317521&feedID=6925)

The game between the Steelers and the Bucs is not just a battle of undefeated, 2-0 football teams. It’s a contest between a perennial playoff-contender in Pittsburgh and an up-and-coming Tampa Bay team that is in the midst of a youth movement. The Bucs are one of this year’s surprise teams in the NFL but NFL pundits believe that the Tampa Bay’s 2-0 record is merely a product of playing two winless teams in Cleveland and Carolina.

A win against Pittsburgh on Sunday at Raymond James Stadium would go a long way to answer the critics.

“It’s a good measuring stick for us,” said Buccaneers defensive end Tim Crowder, who leads the team with two sacks. “We know their defense. We know what they can do – it’s just the attitude and the swagger that they have out there. Once we get there with this defense – look out. Those guys get mad when someone gets two yards on them. Once we get that attitude we can be real special, too.”

Sunday’s game figures to be a defensive struggle as Pittsburgh is ranked 31st in total offense (240.5 yards per game) and Tampa Bay is ranked 24th (280.5 yards per game).

Each team’s defense has been playing exceptionally well through the first two weeks with the Steelers ranking first in fewest points allowed (10 points per game) and turnover margin (plus-6) while the Bucs rank third in points allowed (10.5 points per game), rank tied for fourth in turnover margin (plus-4) and have pitched two second-half shutouts.

Tampa Bay’s defense will be without the services of starting free safety Tanard Jackson for the rest of the season as he has been suspended without pay for one year after failing another drug test and violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

That will present some challenges to a Bucs defense that aspires to be the physical, turnover-creating unit that resides in Pittsburgh. The Bucs defense is anxious to see if it can match the violent play of the Steelers or come out on time.

“We’re not at their level yet; I think we still have a ways to go,” Crowder said. “We just keep building towards that and hopefully we can look back at the end of the season and know that we had a real good year. We still have 14 more games to go.”

The Bucs enter Sunday’s game with some real momentum and are looking to continue to ride that feeling with a 3-0 record heading into next week’s bye.