Steelers admit they were overconfident; looking for redemption on Sunday
Nothing looms more inviting to the Steelers than the game Sunday at Heinz Field, where they not only play the Seattle Seahawks but also where they believe they can bury their performance in the first game of the season in Baltimore.
"I wouldn't kick any dirt on us," defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau said. "We'll be back. We'll be back."
There was little of redeeming value from their 35-7 thumping in Baltimore on offense or defense, and players and coaches from both sides are eager for a second chance.
"There'd be something wrong if we don't expect more from ourselves," tight end Heath Miller said. "We obviously didn't play our best."
Some of them thought they traveled to Baltimore either too cocky or not ready to match the kind of emotion the Ravens brought to one of football's fiercest rivalries.
"We came out thinking like we were AFC champs," offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said, "and they were obviously [upset] since February, and we didn't match that. It was real obvious."
Said defensive end Aaron Smith, "I really think we didn't play with emotion -- it's an emotional game -- and Baltimore did."
The thoroughness of Baltimore's domination in the opener -- Troy Polamalu called it a well-deserved dose of humility -- has caused many to re-evaluate whether the Steelers are candidates to return to a third Super Bowl in four years. Former NFL defensive lineman Warren Sapp, on "Inside the NFL" on Showtime, called the Steelers defense "old, slow and it's over" this week.
"Warren is acting like he's the first person to say that to us," defensive end Brett Keisel said. "We've been hearing that for a long time. I don't think we're old, I don't think we're slow, I don't think we're done. But that's up to us. We have to go out and prove that."
Said LeBeau: "It's like the guy who got up and said this could be the last day of my life. Sooner or later you're going to be right."