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  1. #31
    Rookie Free Agent Roadkill's Avatar
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    I saw this t-shirt once that said The Earth is 93% covered by water and 7 % covered by Polamalu seems to be true

  2. #32
    SA Affiliate - Sports Jabber Deb's Avatar
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    Troy Polamalu, the Man Meant to Be a Steeler, Paces Pittsburgh Again

    Troy Polamalu, the Man Meant to Be a Steeler, Paces Pittsburgh Again

    Posted Jan 19th 2009 7:00 AM by Chris Burke (author feed)
    Filed Under: Ravens, Steelers, NFL Playoffs, Super Bowl




    Troy Polamalu once appeared destined to be a San Diego Charger. The Southern Cal product still sat on the board when the Chargers' pick came up at No. 15 in the 2003 NFL Draft. San Diego needed a safety to replace recently-released Rodney Harrison.

    Instead, the Chargers traded down, letting Philadelphia jump up to take Jerome McDougle. So Polamalu slid another spot -- and Pittsburgh quickly bartered up to No. 16 in order to draft him, leapfrogging a team that held both the No. 17 and No. 18 picks.

    The Arizona Cardinals.

    Sure, Arizona had -- and still has -- strong safety Adrian Wilson, so Polamalu likely would not have wound up in the desert anyway. But Kansas City's decision to deal the 16th pick to Pittsburgh turned into a brilliant stroke of luck for the Steelers. Polamalu showed why, yet again, in Sunday's AFC title win over Baltimore that sends Pittsburgh to the Super Bowl against those Cardinals.

    All week long, there was concern about Polamalu's health. In Pittsburgh's divisional-round romp over San Diego, Polamalu hurt his calf, then subsequently sat out of practice for several days leading up to Sunday.

    Even in the early moments of the conference championship game, CBS' broadcasting team of Jim Nantz and Phil Simms said Polamalu looked gimpy during the pre-game. It's a little scary to think of how dominant Polamalu would have been against Baltimore had he been completely healthy.

    He sealed Pittsburgh's win by intercepting Joe Flacco, then weaving his way, hair flowing behind him, into the end zone. But that was just the icing on the cake.

    Late in the first quarter, with Baltimore in Pittsburgh territory after a Willie Parker fumble, Polamalu perfectly timed a Flacco snap on fourth-and-one -- flying over both teams' lines, reeling in Flacco, and not letting him go until the cavalry came to stuff the Ravens QB shy of a first down.

    Early in the third, Baltimore attempted to run a zone read with Flacco, but Polamalu stuffed it out, burying the play for an eight-yard loss. Two snaps later, he nearly picked off a pass.

    The Steelers didn't blitz Polamalu repeatedly against the Ravens, like their strategy sometimes calls for. So, instead, the six-year vet stuck in coverage, disrupting Baltimore's passing routes.

    Ed Reed's heroics for the Ravens this postseason furthered the notion that Reed may well be one of the best safeties in NFL history. And while it's true that Reed and Polamalu line up at different safety spots -- the former at free safety, the latter at strong -- Pittsburgh's defensive star deserves to be in any discussion Reed is part of.

    Polamalu's calf was the center of Steel Town attention this week for a good reason. James Harrison had a ridiculous season, but Polamalu is the heartbeat of the Pittsburgh defense.

    He's a defensive chameleon -- how many guys in the league can play zone coverage, pick up a receiver in man, blitz the quarterback and stop the run with almost-equal effectiveness? Not many. Not even Reed, for all his deserved accolades, can do that.

    Just think about Polamalu's key plays from Sunday (those ones discussed above), and where he was on the field at the time.

    On that game-clinching interception, he staked out Flacco's right, protecting against any medium-depth routes. For the quarterback sneak, he stormed the middle of the line; on Flacco's bootleg, Polamalu planted himself wide right, lined up almost as a cornerback; his third-quarter near-interception came on a pass deep down the middle.

    If you didn't know better, you would swear there's more than one of him.

    The Steelers are plenty happy to have the lone version, though -- and no doubt just as thrilled that San Diego or Kansas City didn't see in Polamalu what Pittsburgh did.

    Sunday's win over Baltimore was a classic example of what Polamalu brings to the table. When he's playing well, whether completely healthy or not, there are few defensive players in all the league that are as dynami




  3. #33
    Space Invaders Champion, Asteroids Champion NOVA STEELERS's Avatar
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  4. #34
    STEELER NATION RULES
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    yeah, so much for his calf injury. He's a qiuck healer too, dam he's awesome!

  5. #35
    Stairwayto7's Avatar
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    Troy is awesome! I cant say enough about him, to do him justice.


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