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Thread: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

      
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    Default Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Tuesday, December 14, 2010
    By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
    Peter Diana/Post-Gazette
    http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10348/1110602-66.stm

    Former Steelers receiver Santonio Holmes will return with the Jets Sunday at Heinz Field.Santonio Holmes returns to Heinz Field with the New York Jets Sunday and his performance has been about what his bosses had hoped to get from him when they traded a fifth-round draft pick to the Steelers in April.

    After serving a four-game suspension to start the season, Holmes has 41 receptions for 620 yards, a 15.1-yard average and four touchdowns. He dropped a pass in the end zone Sunday when he was wide open and the ball hit him in the facemask. It cost the Jets four points when they settled for a field goal in a 10-6 loss to Miami.

    But that is what you get with Holmes, who dropped two touchdown passes in close losses for the Steelers last season. He can make the spectacular play and miss the easy one. He helped the Jets win three consecutive close games with big catches in regulation or overtime this season.

    The reunion of particular interest will be Holmes vs. cornerback Ike Taylor. The two were together for four seasons after the Steelers drafted Holmes in the first round in 2006.

    "Santonio came off his four-game suspension and is really doing his thing, turning into a man, coming up late in big games -- three touchdowns I think in three games, game-winning touchdowns," Taylor noted. "We know what 'Tone can do. You can see [quarterback Mark] Sanchez looking for him every game. That's what he does.

    "No question, he'll be fired up. He'll be ready. I'll be ready, he'll be ready."

    So will safety Ryan Clark, who insisted that Holmes was a good teammate and never caused internal problems when he played with the Steelers.

    "I'm excited about it," Clark said. "First of all, excited because he's playing well. I think he's an amazing player. And despite all the outside stuff people say about him, he was a good teammate. He's a good guy in the locker room -- never any problem in the locker room, didn't have an attitude, wasn't arrogant -- so it's good to see him doing well.

    "Next week I hope he doesn't catch a pass."

    Mike Wallace replaced Holmes as the starting split end for the Steelers. His five receptions for 78 yards Sunday gives him 46 for 946 yards. Those yards rank eighth in the NFL. He is second in the league with an average of 20.6 yards per catch and his eight touchdowns rank 10th.

    'In good position'
    The Steelers like their position at 10-3 and the No. 2 seed in the AFC with three games left. This time last season, they were 6-7 after losing five in a row.

    Even a loss to the Jets Sunday would keep them at No. 2.

    "We're in a good position," Hines Ward said. "We control our own destiny. To be 4-1 in the AFC North feels good right now."

    That record in the division would be the first tiebreaker should they and the Baltimore Ravens finish deadlocked. The Steelers have one more game against a division opponent, Jan. 2 in Cleveland.

    "I think we're in the driver's seat in the AFC North," linebacker James Farrior said. "And that's the key, win the North and getting a ticket to the dance."

    The Steelers play Carolina at home a week from Thursday.

    "We still have the Jets, we still have Carolina and the Browns," linebacker LaMarr Woodley noted. "When you start looking ahead, that's when teams beat you. We just have to focus on what's in front of us."

    Close calls
    Clark was among the few who sounded a note of concern with how the Steelers have been squeaking by opponents lately.

    "We're not dominating," Clark said. "We're not dominating. We're winning, we're not dominating."

    Do they need more production on offense?

    "Yeah," Clark said. "We would like it. You know what I mean? We know we need to be a balanced team -- offense, defense, special teams. We know everybody needs to play well.

    "I think in Buffalo, we were clicking [on offense], we just weren't getting into the end zone. And you look at the Baltimore game, you take what you can get against a defense like that.

    "But we know we need to score more points. Those guys are working on it. It's crazy because we moved the ball. We move the ball on people. We clearly have the talent and I think they'll get it going."

    While they have dominated only a few teams on the scoreboard -- a 36-13 win in Tampa, a 38-3 win against Oakland -- the Steelers have been dominated themselves just once in a 39-26 loss at home to New England.

    The Patriots hold the No. 1 seed in the AFC with an 11-2 record, same as Atlanta in the NFC. The Steelers beat the Falcons in the opener at home in overtime, 15-9.

    "I don't know who you would say is elite," Clark said of all the NFL teams. "I don't think anybody here is scared to go play Atlanta. Nobody here is scared to play the Patriots again."

    Not even after the Patriots roughed them up in Heinz Field?

    "Sometimes people have good days," Clark said. "We don't worry about that. We'll see them again, hopefully."


    For more on the Steelers, read the blog, Ed Bouchette on the Steelers at www.post-gazette.com/plus. Ed Bouchette: ebouchette@post-gazette.com.


    Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10348...#ixzz185SqA5ho

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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Holmes had off the field issues, but I can't remember any clashes that were publicized between players. As for me, SB XLIII....Holmes will always be a Steeler hero.
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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Let's just hope the game plan is to shut him down or at least limit his productivity to a few catches. It would really suck if he came back and had a career day against us.

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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Quote Originally Posted by WYsteel View Post
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    "I don't know who you would say is elite," Clark said of all the NFL teams. "I don't think anybody here is scared to go play Atlanta. Nobody here is scared to play the Patriots again."

    Not even after the Patriots roughed them up in Heinz Field?

    "Sometimes people have good days," Clark said. "We don't worry about that. We'll see them again, hopefully."
    Oh ****. Looks like Bill has some bulletin board material if we meet them again.

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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    If Tomlin/LeBeau get on the same page as the defense and pound the **** out of Brady and the offense can add a 5th, 6th, and 7th play into the offensive playbook; the Patriots will go down as will any other team.

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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    I hope that the fans, upon Holmes first catch, give him a nice courtesy applause.

    After that, onward with the usual boos etc that a visiting player should get.

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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Quote Originally Posted by vandelay industries View Post
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    I hope that the fans, upon Holmes first catch, give him a nice courtesy applause.

    After that, onward with the usual boos etc that a visiting player should get.
    Just one minor change.....after that obligatory catch, throw him a water bong! One that been sitting outside since he left town

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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Bires: Happy Holmes-coming ... not

    By: Mike Bires Beaver County Times
    Monday December 13, 2010 11:59 PM



    After serving a four-game suspension, Santonio Holmes has been embraced in New York. AP file photo


    PITTSBURGH — Santonio Holmes, MVP of the Steelers’ most recent Super Bowl win, will be back in town this weekend. The guess here is that it’s a homecoming he’s not looking forward to.

    For one, he didn’t leave on pleasant terms. His time with the Steelers was terminated because of mounting off-the-field issues.

    Second, he’s going to face a relentless defense that’s more than a little anxious to play a struggling offense like the one the New York Jets now have.

    If Holmes hasn’t yet, he’ll soon watch videotape of what the Steelers did Sunday to the Cincinnati Bengals.

    He’ll see that the Steelers held the Bengals to just 34 rushing yards.

    He’ll see that the Steelers sacked Carson Palmer three times and intercepted three passes, including two for pick-sixes.

    He’ll see that Terrell Owens, who came to Heinz Field with 71 catches, was held to just one.

    Five weeks ago, T.O. put on a monstrous performance in a loss to the Steelers with 10 catches for 141 yards and two TDs. But this time, he was a non-factor. Dick Lebeau, the Steelers’ wily defensive coordinator, devised schemes that, if executed properly, would make Owens a no-show.

    “They did a great job of game-planning,” Owens said.

    That’s also what Steelers safety Troy Polamalu said. Against the Bengals, Polamalu intercepted two passes. Both were intended for Owens.

    So now Lebeau, and his defenders, will prepare for a Jets offense that has failed to score a touchdown in the month of December. The Jets (9-4) were blown out in New England two weeks ago, 45-3, and they lost at home Sunday, 10-6 to Miami.

    In his last two starts, Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez has thrown zero TD passes while throwing four interceptions and compiling lowly passer ratings of 27.8 and 45.38. Among all NFL starting QBs this season, Sanchez ranks 28th at 74.2. For his first game at Heinz Field where he’ll face the vaunted Steelers’ defense under freezing cold and windy conditions, Sanchez will likely be in dire straits.

    The same could be said of Holmes, who dropped a touchdown pass Sunday in the loss to the Dolphins.

    Holmes, the Steelers’ first-round pick in the 2006 draft, certainly enjoyed good moments in Pittsburgh. His spectacular catch with 35 seconds left gave the Steelers a 27-23 win over Arizona in Super Bowl XLIII. Last season, he caught 79 passes for 1,248 yards and five TDs. But during the off-season, he failed a drug test that would lead to a four-game suspension at the start of the 2010 season.

    That was the last straw as far as Steelers management was concerned.

    During his time with the Steelers, Holmes appeared on police blotters for disorderly conduct, domestic violence and marijuana possession. The Steelers were so tired of his off-field shenanigans that they traded him to the Jets for just a fifth-round draft pick.

    “It will be strange seeing Santonio in a different uniform,” Steelers receiver Hines Ward said. “But I’m sure Ike (Taylor) and the rest of our DBs will be ready for him.”

    Mike Bires can be reached at mbires@timesonline.com.

    http://www.timesonline.com/sports/sp...oming-not.html

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    Default Re: Players set welcoming tone for reunion with Santonio Holmes

    Quote Originally Posted by bdeff View Post
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    Holmes had off the field issues, but I can't remember any clashes that were publicized between players. As for me, SB XLIII....Holmes will always be a Steeler hero.
    I'm with you on this... It's unfortunate about his off-field problems! I really think he is a great player and had fantastic rapport with Ben!

    He made several key plays down the stretch in the '08 run (TD catch in the front of the EZ in Balt, Punt return vs. Chargers, and basically the entire final drive of XL3), and for that, he will always have my respect as a player...his child-support and pot issues out the window!

    I'm kind of torn whether to give him an ovation, for his past on-field accolades...or boo him mercilessly for letting the team down and forcing a trade b/c he couldnt get his act together?
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