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Thread: USA Today's "Steelers Team Report".

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    Default USA Today's "Steelers Team Report".

    Pittsburgh Steelers Team Report
    USA Today

    The rehabilitation of Ben Roethlisberger continues and he seems to be on the kind of track that will compel NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to reduce his suspension from six games to four. When he announced the suspension, Goodell said he could reduce it to four if Roethlisberger followed the correct path.

    He has been doing all the right things, so far. He successfully completed a behavioral evaluation ordered by Goodell and returned to the Steelers June 1, practicing with his teammates through the end of OTAs June 10. He lined up with the first team the entire time.

    Roethlisberger has spoken publicly three times once briefly to reporters after practice on June 3 and then in two televised interviews June 10 with separate Pittsburgh stations. He has done no national interviews to date.

    The quarterback also has offered private apologies to various people around the team, including some in the media, for his behavior toward them through the years. He promised that would change and team president Art Rooney II said he has seen a new Roethlisberger.

    "I think Ben came back with a bit of a new attitude," Rooney said in a video interview on the team's website. "And certainly you could start to see some changes in him. So I was pleased with the way the first week back went."

    Roethlisberger, of course, has a long way to go and he and those around him know it.

    "I'm committed more to being a better person off the field in the community, just as a person in general," Roethlisberger said in one TV interview. "And that's my new goal, be the best that I can be off the field."

    His teammates say he does not have to convince them of anything and for the most part they have expressed nothing but support for their disgraced quarterback.

    "We're just trying to move on," wide receiver Hines Ward said. "It's not an awkward feeling around here. It is what it is, everyone knows it, there's nothing to talk about. For us, having Ben out, coming out here, seeing the smile on his face, the camaraderie between players, that's what it's all about on the road to recovery and to get back to where he needs to get back to. We're like brothers; if he wants to come talk to us, we'll be here for him, if not we're not going to force the issue.

    "When you take the game of football away from somebody, it's very humbling. I know he's very humbled and disappointed he can't be out there with us competing but I know he's itching at the bit to get back on the field and have success like he's had over the years."

    Roethlisberger can practice in training camp and play in preseason games but once the regular-season begins, he must stay away from the team for the time he is suspended.


    Coach Mike Tomlin has been pleased with the progress made by first-round draft pick Maurkice Pouncey, who has practiced at center and right guard.

    "I think that he has proven to be mature beyond his years," Tomlin said. "His level of football maturity probably exceeds that of some 20-year-old first-round picks that we have had of recent years, like Lawrence Timmons and Rashard Mendenhall. He's got good football maturity. It's been a pleasant surprise. He's been comfortable at guard and center."

    The Steelers are searching for a back to be effective in short yardage. That might be starter Rashard Mendenhall, it might be rookie Jonathan Dwyer or it could be fan-favorite Isaac Redman, who picked up the nickname "Red Zone" for his effectiveness as an undrafted rookie near the goal line last training camp in practice and in preseason games. Redman led the Steelers with 145 yards rushing and three touchdowns in the preseason on 37 carries.

    "It is interesting," Tomlin said. "We've got some young guys in the backfield who might have a degree of pedigree that is geared towards those things."

    Tomlin also has been pleased with rookie linebacker Jason Worilds as he converts from college defensive end to outside linebacker.

    "There is very little hesitation in his movement. He is decisive and that shows a level of understanding. I am excited about what he has done at that standpoint at this juncture."

    QUOTE TO NOTE: "If our defense is having an off day, then we need to slow things down, give them a rest and compliment them. If we're clicking on all cylinders and they're not, then we're not balanced." WR Hines Ward.


    Over the course of the past week, the Steelers signed eight of their 10 draft picks all but their top two, C/G Maurkice Pouncey and LB Jason Worilds. They released eight players to make room on the 80-man roster for the rookies.

    [HIGH-LIGHT]FRANCHISE PLAYER:[/HIGH-LIGHT] PK Jeff Reed (tendered at $2.814M); signed tender April 13.


    [HIGH-LIGHT]FREE AGENTS (not tendered offers)[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    LB Rocky Boiman (not tendered as UFA).

    SS Tyrone Carter (not tendered as UFA).

    RB Carey Davis (not tendered as RFA).

    DE Travis Kirschke (not tendered as UFA).

    OG Darnell Stapleton (not tendered as RFA).

    CB Deshea Townsend (not tendered as UFA).

    [HIGH-LIGHT]RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS (*indicates restricted because of uncapped year):[/HIGH-LIGHT] None.



    WR Emmanuel Sanders (3/82): $1.801M/3 yrs, $586,000 SB).

    LB Thaddeus Gibson (4/116): 3 yrs, terms unknown.

    OT Chris Scott (5/151): 3 yrs, terms unknown.

    CB Crezdon Butler: 3 yrs, terms unknown.

    LB Stevenson Sylvester (5/166): $1.336M/$116,500 SB.

    RB Jonathan Dwyer (6/188): $1.293M/3 yrs, $77,800 SB.

    WR Antonio Brown (6/195): $1.288M/3 yrs, $73,000 SB.

    DE Doug Worthington (7/242): 3 yrs, terms unknown.


    LB Patrick Bailey: ERFA; terms unknown.

    QB Charlie Batch: UFA; 2 yrs, terms unknown.

    FS Ryan Clark: UFA; $14M/4 yrs, $3M SB.

    DE Nick Eason: UFA; 1 yr.

    NT Casey Hampton: Potential UFA; $21.3M/3 yrs, $11M guaranteed/$6.5M SB.

    *OT Willie Colon: RFA; (tendered at $2.521M with first-round pick as compensation); $2.521M/1 yr.

    CB William Gay: RFA; (tendered at $1.101M with fifth-round pick as compensation); $1.101M/1 yr.

    PK Jeff Reed: Franchise FA: $2.814M/1 yr.

    P Daniel Sepulveda: RFA; (tendered at $1.101M with fourth-round pick as compensation); $1.101M/1 yr.

    TE Matt Spaeth: RFA; (tendered at $1.101M with fifth-round pick as compensation); $1.101M/1 yr.


    S Will Allen: UFA Buccaneers; $4.4M/3 yrs, $950,000 SB.

    WR Arnaz Battle: UFA 49ers; $3.975/3 yrs, $975,000 SB.

    LB Derrick Doggett: CFL FA; terms unknown.

    LB Larry Foote: UFA Lions; $9.3M/3 yrs, $1.8M SB.

    QB Byron Leftwich (trade Buccaneers).

    CB Bryant McFadden (trade Cardinals).

    WR Antwaan Randle El: FA Redskins; $7M/3 yrs, $900,000 SB.

    OT Jonathan Scott: Not tendered as RFA by Bills; $545,000/1 yr.

    LB/LS Matt Stewart: FA; terms unknown.


    WR Joey Galloway: UFA Redskins; terms unknown.

    WR Santonio Holmes (traded Jets).

    RB Willie Parker: UFA Redskins; 1 yr, terms unknown.
    "You only have one life, and you will not get out alive. Make the most of your time and have no regrets." - Me.

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    Default Re: USA Today's "Steelers Team Report".

    Rookies I want to make the team (in no special order):

    --Witten* (My sleeper "talent")

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    DCBILL's Avatar
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    Default Re: USA Today's "Steelers Team Report".

    Note: If those four rookie LBs make the team, it will be interesting to see who doesn't!!

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