Tag Archives: Troy Polamalu
The Pittsburgh Steelers defense will face it's toughest challenege tomorrow against the Kurt Warner and their loaded-weapons offense.
Pittsburgh's defense doesn't exactly match up well against the high-powered Cardinals offense featuring Kurt Warner, Larry Fitzgerald, Anquan Bolder and Steven Breaston.
Kurt Warner will pose a significant challenge against the Steelers. Why you may ask. The Steeler defense was ranking #1 in every statistical category but haven't faced a passing offense like the Cardinals. However, the Cardinals have not faced a defense even close to the Steelers. This is a very intriging matchup to say the least. Warner has the quickest release in football (putside of Tom Brady) which may neutralize the blitzing of LaMarr Woodley and James Harrison. Then, if the Steelers send additional blitzers such as Troy Polamalu, Deshea Townsend, Lawrence Timmons, James Farrior then this could expose the secondary. Kurt Warner has the experience and field vision to find the open receiver and pick the Steelers apart. Very few quarterbacks we have faced, have the ability to do that; Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers, and Kerry Collins to name a few. Kerry Collins was very successful against the Steelers being very accurate and having loads of time to throw the ball. It will be up to the Steelers defense to get to Warner quickly and early to force him into a few quick turnovers. The New England Patriots gave the Steelers a very good blue print on how to get to Warner.
Expect Dick Lebeau to have a few tricks up his sleeve to make it a miserable day for Warner. I see the Steelers getting 5 sacks, 2 interceptions, and holding the Cards offense to under 300 yards before becoming the only team in Super Bowl history to have 6 Lombardi Tropheys.
Here We Go Steelers!
Troy Polamalu comes up with big play after big play. Sundays AFC Championship game against the hated division rivals, Baltimore Ravens was no different.
Polamalu finished the day with 5 tackles, 4 solos, and of course the game clinching 40-yard interception for a touchdown with only 4 minutes to play.
However, it seemed that Troy made more plays than what the above statistics show. Polamalu had one of his best games of the season and showed no signs of his calf strain injury that kept him sidelined for most of this past week's practices. He was simply all over the field.
Three plays really displayed why he's one of the best safeties in the league:
1) His display of closing speed when Ravens, rookie QB, Joe Flacco rolled out to his left. Polamalu closed in an instant to register a sack and a Ravens 10 yard loss on the play. Polamalu displayed why his closing speed, athleticism, and tackling ability is much talked about by NFL analysts.
2) Polamalu's play on 4th and short. With his 40+ inch vertical leap, Polamalu leaped over the offensive line of the Baltimore Ravens to grab Flacco and prevent him from picking up a short yardage first down. A critical play for the Steelers and Polamalu showed unbelievable athleticism.
3) His interception return for a touchdown that "sealed the deal" for the Steelers. Flacco completely didn't see Troy Polamalu breaking on the ball from the opposite direction. Troy read the rookie QB's eyes and made a great jump on the ball and an even nicer catch. Then, of course the rest is history. Polamalu made a few guys miss and returned the interception for a 40-yard touchdown which sealed the victory for the Steelers with just under 5 minutes remaining in the 4th quarter.
If Polamalu can have a similar game in the Super Bowl, he can possily "seal the deal" on his future Hall of Fame bid for the National Football League.
The Steelers defense will be featured on the following magazines this week:
ESPN Magazine is having a story on the Steelers defense. The entire Steelers is on the cover of the magazine (see below).
2. Sports Illustrated
The Sports Illustrated cover features LaMarr Woodley, the Steelers 2nd year pro, knocking Joe Flacco to the ground. Both of these will make a great addition to your Steelers memorabilia. Be sure to pick up your copies today. Check out a video of the Steelers ESPN cover shoot:
Troy Polamalu, the normally quiet All-Pro safety let his voice be heard when he openly criticized the NFL in its recent influx of unwarranted fines to teammates including fines to Hines Ward. Steelers players James Harrison, LaMarr Woodley, and Nate Washington have all received fines by the NFL in the past 2 games.
Troy Polamalu voiced his opinion when he said "I think regarding the evolution of football, it's becoming more and more flag football, two-hand touch," Polamalu said. "We've really lost the essence of what real American football is about. I think it's probably all about money. They're not really concerned about safety."
I agree with Polamalu that the NFL is overreacting on some of these fines and suspensions for illegal hits. Big hits is something that the NFL even promotes and makes money from. They fine the player which makes money for the NFL then the NFL consolidates these type of hits and sell them on DVD as highlight reels. Seems a little ironic to us. Seems like the NFL does care more about money than they do than the players as Mark Schlereth of ESPN indicates:
Troy Polamalu continues to say that ex-players such as Dick Butkus, Ronnie Lott, Jack Tatum wouldn't be able to play in today's NFL:
"When you see guys like Dick Butkus, the Ronnie Lotts, the Jack Tatums, these guys really went after people. Now, they couldn't survive in this type of game. They wouldn't have enough money. They'd be paying fines all the time and they'd be suspended for a year after they do it two games in a row. It's kind of ridiculous."
He's right, its a whole different game now than what it used to be. Now, some can say that the players in today's NFL are biggest and faster than ever before. It's true and proven, they're bigger, faster, and stronger. But you can also make the arguement that the equipment, medical procedures/medicine are better and more protective than ever before. Additionally, players such as QB's and WR's are protected in today's game.
However, a similar argument can be made for players in prior years of the NFL. In the past, the NFL players were much more aggressive. A linebacker could basically "clothesline" a receiver coming across the middle or actually "hit" a quarterback without being penalized. These actions were acceptable and the equipment wasn't nearly as advanced as it is now to protect players. These type of actions today results in a fine or suspention.
It seems like numerous people and media outlets agree with Polamalu's analysis of today's NFL. For more details on Polamalu's comments please refer to ESPN's article: