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Thread: Brett Keisel's time here running out

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    Legend hawaiiansteel's Avatar
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    Brett Keisel's time here running out

    Brett Keisel's time here running out

    by Ed Bouchette



    End of career looms

    Maybe something could keep Brett Keisel from playing what looks to be his final two games in a Steelers uniform.

    Something such as being swallowed by a sinkhole or hit by a train might derail him. He is determined it won't be the plantar fasciitis that has kept him sidelined for all but seven snaps of the past five games.

    Keisel, 35, wants to pull on his uniform and join his teammates for their final two games of the 2013 season, what may be the final two of his storybook 12-year career with the Steelers.

    "I was very eager, especially this being my last year on my contract," Keisel said after completing his second practice this week. "I wanted to go down fighting with my teammates, and, whatever happens, I wanted to be out there playing with them and do my job. I'm here to work and play games, and that's what I want to do."

    He knows the drill because he has seen other teammates follow it over the previous two years, players of high stature and longevity such as linebacker James Farrior, wide receiver Hines Ward and his old defensive linemates Casey Hampton, Aaron Smith and Chris Hoke.

    The team that won two Super Bowl titles and three AFC championships in a six-year span is nearly gone. Others will soon follow, if not this year then next -- players from all three Super Bowls, cornerback Ike Taylor and safety Troy Polamalu. Soon, only quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will be left.

    Keisel believes he could play in 2014, but understands the Steelers might not want him back. After all, they released all those teammates except for Hoke, who retired.

    "That's very possible. That's the nature of the business we're in, everyone's getting younger. Whatever happens, I'm grateful for my time that I've been here. I'm grateful for the success we've had on this team."

    "But I want us to go out and finish this thing strong, win these last two games and go out on a positive note."

    He's not sure he would play elsewhere if given a chance and unwanted by the Steelers. He also does not want to think about either at the moment.

    "I bleed black and gold, everyone knows that," said Keisel, a native of Wyoming who has made his year-round home in Pittsburgh with his wife and three children. "I'm a Yinzer. I love this city. I plan on raising my family here. It's one of those things that it'll be a tough decision to be made when it's there."

    Keisel made the Steelers as a seventh-round draft pick in 2002 from Brigham Young, by excelling on special teams as a rookie. He waited four years (one on injured reserve, 2003) before becoming a starter. Once a starter, he never budged for eight years and made one Pro Bowl for the 2010 season, one in which he returned an interception 79 yards for a touchdown in a 38-13 victory at Tampa Bay.

    At right end, where he started 108 of the 138 games he played, he often led the Steelers in quarterback pressures -- such as in 2012 when he had 40 -- even though the 3-4 defense is not designed for ends to get to the quarterback. How he would love to sack a quarterback one more time.

    Thursday after practice, he stood erect at his locker in full uniform No. 99, Da Beard that has made more than $100,000 for Children's Hospital in full late-season growth and ready to be sheared for a fourth time in the coming months.

    "I love being a Steeler," Keisel said as he looked around at his teammates pouring into his home away from home the past 12 years. "I love being a part of this locker room. It's been awesome. I hope we can keep it going."

    He acknowledged it was difficult for him to answer the questions being asked because, "You hate thinking about the end."

    "You hate thinking about not being able to do it anymore. But everyone, especially if you're an older guy, you understand the business. You can't say that no one ever thinks about it. I have a lot of great memories and build new, fond memories every day, and that's what's been the best part."

    He has talked with some of the above former teammates about what it's like, the process of knowing when it's over.

    Smith stood in the same locker room two years ago and said he could never play for another team. Ward talked about playing elsewhere, but never did. Hampton joked about the end coming. Farrior left quietly. Hoke held a news conference to announce his retirement. Ward returned months after the Steelers released him to announce his retirement as a Steelers player.

    "I've talked to those guys a lot about it," Keisel said. "It's always an adjustment when you've been playing this game for as long as we have and it's not there anymore. Having those guys as mentors and as friends has helped throughout the whole process. Even them not being here, I talked to them about that. They're great friends, someone I'll always lean on for advice."

    He has two more games, including the finale at home, provided his foot holds up. If there is any football justice, it will.

    http://www.post-gazette.com/sports/2...s/201312200089

  2. #2
    Pro Bowler skyhawk's Avatar
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    Wow. It's really been an honor to experience some of these great Steelers in the past 10 years - Bettis, Ben, Troy, Deebo, Potside, big snack, Hines, Heath, Aaron and Brett Keisel. All true Steelers!

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    Pro Bowler thor75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skyhawk View Post
    Wow. It's really been an honor to experience some of these great Steelers in the past 10 years - Bettis, Ben, Troy, Deebo, Potside, big snack, Hines, Heath, Aaron and Brett Keisel. All true Steelers!
    Since we're reminiscing.....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpOG9K02F_g

    can't forget Peezy

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    Quote Originally Posted by thor75 View Post
    Since we're reminiscing.....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpOG9K02F_g

    can't forget Peezy
    Thanks for posting this Thor. When I saw some of those faces in the locker room.. Bettis, smith, kimo, porter, etc.. it gave me goose bumps..lol

    and it also reminded me how far that this team has fallen in a fairly short period of time.

  5. #5
    Hall of Famer fezziwig's Avatar
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    I don't get what everyone sees in Timmons. A guy that had taken so long to make it onto the field after being a number one selection. His talent to me should have been " rush the quarterback " He can blast off the line as well as anyone. They have him as a check valve in my opinion. Woodley was great when he had James Harrison getting all the attention. Once James left, Woodley was just good and now a liability. Pouncey is another guy I can't understand that gets so much credit. Yeah he's good but he isn't making that big of statement when he's on the field. Maybe because we had Dawson and Webster all the years I'm too critical of him. Those were centers that did and should have gotten the love. Hartings to me was just as good and probably better than Pouncey. Velasco is an improvement to Pouncey. If you don't agree with my Pouncey statement here's one you can't overlook, the guy can't remain healthy and is a liability. All you hear is, the offensive line needs to grow together, learn each others moves. That will never happen with the revolving door of centers since Pouncey can't stay on the field. The way Hood has been just average at best, I couldn't understand why they haven't had Heyward in there sooner. The Steelers are a farm team grooming guys and when they are ready to play / start, they can't afford them or over pay for a guy that owes them it all. Decastro seems to be improving and this WAS his rookie season and hopefully he will be an anchor on our line for years to come. I was all in Mendenhalls corner and attributed some of his lack luster to an ever changing line and an offensive coordinator that couldn't give two cents worth of attention to a run game. He seemed to have little focus and no one as a coach to groom him or to motivate him to do better. Today, I'm glad he's gone. I'm happy for Worilds that he is finally showing or getting the chance to do what they were all excited about him for when they drafted him. To me about Bell, he's better than the other guys on the team. He'll never be an NFL star, or someone teams game plan for.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thor75 View Post
    Since we're reminiscing.....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpOG9K02F_g

    can't forget Peezy
    Damn, that's what I was going to say. How you going to forget Peezy (the emotional LEADER)?

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    Quote Originally Posted by thor75 View Post
    Since we're reminiscing.....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpOG9K02F_g

    can't forget Peezy
    YO WO NIGH!! If only the current Steelers had some of that fire and enthusiasm. We got a glimpse of it in the Bengals game, but one can't help but be nostalgic for a premier defense and dominating running game. But I guess that sort of thing can't be part of the pass-happy NFL now.

  8. #8
    Hall of Famer fezziwig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steelerfan View Post
    YO WO NIGH!! If only the current Steelers had some of that fire and enthusiasm. We got a glimpse of it in the Bengals game, but one can't help but be nostalgic for a premier defense and dominating running game. But I guess that sort of thing can't be part of the pass-happy NFL now.
    you said it steelerfan. thanks for posting that clip. what exactly is he saying with yo wo nigh ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by fezziwig View Post
    you said it steelerfan. thanks for posting that clip. what exactly is he saying with yo wo nigh ?
    I can't take credit for the clip, someone else posted it. But its one of my favorites. As for the yo wo nigh? Philosophers and poets have been trying to figure that one out ever since that video came out some years ago. I think its one of those great mysteries that we will just have to take on faith. Who ride? WE RIDE!

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    The problem is, we haven't had a lot of guys step up yet to replace those long-time players. So far id say only Brown, DeCastro, Heyward, Bell, and Worilds look like they will ascend to that level. Maybe Al Woods, Im hopeful.
    Last edited by Discipline of Steel; 12-20-2013 at 07:40 AM.
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