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    SteelDad's Avatar
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    Does It Feel The Same?

    I was recently asked by someone who is obviously not a Steelers’ fan the following question. “Does it feel the same?” I looked in their direction and said, “huh?” “Does it feel the same every time? Does going through the playoffs all the time and being so close to another Super Bowl feel the same or does it lose some of its’ luster because your team has done it so much?” I imagine you too might get this question from time to time especially if you live outside of the ‘Burgh. My reply was simple. “It never gets old and it never will. While each one is different, the feeling is always the same. It’s euphoric, nerve-racking and exciting and you wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
    This got me thinking about our fans in general and how we all have one common goal, but the generations of Steelers’ fans all took different routes to get there.

    There’s the ‘50’s and 60’s generation that remember the dark days and all of the tough times for Steelers’ teams back then. This group is obviously dwindling with the onset of age, but this group also can attest to the fact that they know both good times and bad as Steelers’ fans and therefore they probably appreciate the team’s rise to prominence more than anyone else. There is of course the group that as kids (like me) who grew up during the ‘70’s and the amazing run of 4 titles in 6 years. For my money, this is when the Steelers’ Nation truly became “a nation” because so many kids across the country knew the two best teams were typically Dallas and Pittsburgh so you had to choose which one to follow. Some went with the Cowboys while some went to the Steelers. My guess is that the number of Steelers’ fans today grew exponentially during that time period.

    Anyone from those two periods will unfortunately recall the swoon of the 1980’s and the “Post-Bradshaw-Pre-Ben” Era that left many fans yearning for the good ol’ days. While the economic woes continued in Pittsburgh, the team could no longer help take fans’ minds off of those troubles like the ‘70’s teams could. For the kids across the country who were growing up in the 1980’s, they faced a similar dilemma as did those of the Dallas-Pittsburgh times. Only problem was they were choosing between San Francisco or Washington as the Steelers were no longer relevant on the national stage. The 1990’s brought back hometown boy Bill Cowher who vowed to return the team to past glory and Cowher did that indeed, but was it all just the ‘team’ that garnered a new following of fans or was it because of the kid called ‘Slash?’ As much as the return to the playoffs most years kept the diehards happy, the new generations of fans were captivated by Kordell Stewart as sales of his jerseys nationwide were pretty huge. Along came Jerome Bettis and Hines Ward as well and we were well on the way to something special once again despite the 1-2 record at home in AFC Title games.

    For kids growing up in the last decade, they have been treated to some pretty special, yet troubling things in following the Men of Steel. A home AFCC Game loss to New England in 2001 left much to be desired, but then came the boy from Ohio who as a rookie would lead us to an amazing season, yet another loss to the Pats. And then things started to click. An amazing run to the Super Bowl XL title and yet another 3 years later under new coach Mike Tomlin and now as the page turns on that decade, we find ourselves on the precipice again. While Ben Roethlisberger brought much glory to the Steelers’ Nation, he also brought much shame with off-field issues, but time heals and his life-lesson turned into life-lessons for all of us and especially our kids and newest Steelers’ fans.

    So now on the doorstep to what could be our 8th Super Bowl appearance and 7th title, does this ride feel any different? Yes, because there are some different players and different coaches and even different fans. But does the fact we have had so much success over the last 35-40 years degrade the feeling of this? Hell no.

    Marc Uhlmann
    www.steeleraddicts.com


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    Starter cmerrifield's Avatar
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    Great, Great write-up. This one feels more special to me because most people thought this was a rebuilding year for Pittsburgh. Even on here, there were many people who thought we would go 8-8 or 7-9 and miss the playoffs. I really want to see Farrior and Ward have the possibility of retiring on top, so this one feels different to me, but in a good way, I feel like this one has more pressure than the others.

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    Draft Pick roosterray's Avatar
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    Great Article.

    It feels great, I'm just as excited and pumped up.

    I'm not as nervous as the last 2, A calm confidence. I wasn't bothered when we fell behind cause I KNEW we were gonna come out ANGRY in the 2nd half. I almost thought it was good that we got popped in the mouth.

    This team is loaded with players who are still hungry and know what it takes.

    I want 7 really bad to give Goodell the finger cause of all the BS we faced this year with the refs. Its still us against the world.

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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    Great stuff Marc, I'll feature that on our SA Blog as well and link it back to you.

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    Thanks guys. I appreciate the praise!


    http://steeleraddicts.podomatic.com/
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    Great read bro!! Does it ever get old? Hell No!!!!! How can winning, making it to the playoffs and have a chance to go to another Super Bowl on a consistent basis ever get old?!?!?! I love our Steelers, win or lose, they are and always will be the greatest franchise in NFL history!!


    If you don’t stand behind our troops.....Please feel free to stand in front of them!!!


    "Give me a 6 pack, half hour of rest and lets go play them again....We can beat them."
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    Ratbird Slayer Farrior Fan's Avatar
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    Living here in Redskins country I have a lot of jealous friends. I agree with the feeling that each playoff run feels different. I was born in 73 and remember the 79 season a little and especially how awesome it was to win the SB. Then we suffered until 95 when Neil f#$%^ing O'Donnell thought Larry Brown was wearing Black and Gold. Ever since we drafted Ben it has been awesome. The 05 SB was the best for me. I knew we could beat the Colts and Broncos but winning them both on the road was a really tough task. I still think the immaculate tackle game was the best ever. In 08 I fully expected us to win it all as I do now. With our recent success of the younger players I am hoping that we do not have a letdown like after the 70s. I think one of the best parts about this years team is the fact that we overcame so many injuries and still not only won 12 games but we were in every one of them (except against the damn Pats). I think we should be the favorites this year but the Jets will definetly show up on Sunday. They didn't beat the Colts and Pats for nothing, they will not have a letdown (unless our D plays like they did vs the Ravens in the 2nd half - only we do it all game). The SB will be tough as well - the Packers have what I consider Steeler kryptonite - an elite QB. And the Bears have a great D - and everyone that even thinks about calling themselves a Steeler fan knows that D wins Championships. It should be a fun ride....especially if #92 continues what he started against the Ravens.

    I think this one is the most important since we would tie the Pats for SB wins since 2000 and claim the title "team of the decade"

    --- Added 1/21/2011 at 08:53 AM ---

    and oh yeah because we can give goodell the big middle finger

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    Quote Originally Posted by Farrior Fan View Post
    Living here in Redskins country I have a lot of jealous friends. I agree with the feeling that each playoff run feels different. I was born in 73 and remember the 79 season a little and especially how awesome it was to win the SB. Then we suffered until 95 when Neil f#$%^ing O'Donnell thought Larry Brown was wearing Black and Gold. Ever since we drafted Ben it has been awesome. The 05 SB was the best for me. I knew we could beat the Colts and Broncos but winning them both on the road was a really tough task. I still think the immaculate tackle game was the best ever. In 08 I fully expected us to win it all as I do now. With our recent success of the younger players I am hoping that we do not have a letdown like after the 70s. I think one of the best parts about this years team is the fact that we overcame so many injuries and still not only won 12 games but we were in every one of them (except against the damn Pats). I think we should be the favorites this year but the Jets will definetly show up on Sunday. They didn't beat the Colts and Pats for nothing, they will not have a letdown (unless our D plays like they did vs the Ravens in the 2nd half - only we do it all game). The SB will be tough as well - the Packers have what I consider Steeler kryptonite - an elite QB. And the Bears have a great D - and everyone that even thinks about calling themselves a Steeler fan knows that D wins Championships. It should be a fun ride....especially if #92 continues what he started against the Ravens.

    I think this one is the most important since we would tie the Pats for SB wins since 2000 and claim the title "team of the decade"

    --- Added 1/21/2011 at 08:53 AM ---

    and oh yeah because we can give goodell the big middle finger
    Good stuff Farrior! I know exactly what you're talking about!


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  9. #9
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    Great write up Marc!

    I'm from the same generation as you and going through all the ups and downs. It doesn't feel the same at all. Each one gets better and better. In the 70's I went to playoff games pretty much knowing the Steelers were going to win. There really wasn't much doubt and when there was it didn't last long. When they did lose it was devastating (76 & 77) because you never expected it. Now I expect to win but we don't have a team that is heads and tails better than all the rest.

    During the Cowher years we pulled for him so much not only because of the Steelers but he was a Pittsburgh guy, and anyone from Western Pa. knows the pride that comes along with that. He disappointed us time and time again, it was brutal even though we always had a good team. By the time he finally won it I was thrilled for Bettis, Ben, Ward but I really lost that close feeling for Cowher because I blamed him for all the past disappointments. (along with that cigarette smoking jagoff in the Pirates dugout in the 90's).

    Tomlin's SB was great because of the way we won. Harrison's int and return, Ben & #10's final drive. And the fact that Tomlin was the youngest coach to achieve it.

    If we do win 2 more games it will be the sweetest of all for several reasons. Not many thought we would be here, the fines and BS that the team went through, Ben's troubles, having an older team but the young guys stepping up, Tomlin surpassing what Cowher did in his short tenure here. And as you get older you appreciate and are more grateful, when your young you tend to take things for granted.

    Win or loose the next 2 games I'm grateful for all the fun this team has given me.
    "When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself."
    -Wayne Dyer

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    Quote Originally Posted by LarryNJ View Post
    Great write up Marc!

    I'm from the same generation as you and going through all the ups and downs. It doesn't feel the same at all. Each one gets better and better. In the 70's I went to playoff games pretty much knowing the Steelers were going to win. There really wasn't much doubt and when there was it didn't last long. When they did lose it was devastating (76 & 77) because you never expected it. Now I expect to win but we don't have a team that is heads and tails better than all the rest.

    During the Cowher years we pulled for him so much not only because of the Steelers but he was a Pittsburgh guy, and anyone from Western Pa. knows the pride that comes along with that. He disappointed us time and time again, it was brutal even though we always had a good team. By the time he finally won it I was thrilled for Bettis, Ben, Ward but I really lost that close feeling for Cowher because I blamed him for all the past disappointments. (along with that cigarette smoking jagoff in the Pirates dugout in the 90's).

    Tomlin's SB was great because of the way we won. Harrison's int and return, Ben & #10's final drive. And the fact that Tomlin was the youngest coach to achieve it.

    If we do win 2 more games it will be the sweetest of all for several reasons. Not many thought we would be here, the fines and BS that the team went through, Ben's troubles, having an older team but the young guys stepping up, Tomlin surpassing what Cowher did in his short tenure here. And as you get older you appreciate and are more grateful, when your young you tend to take things for granted.

    Win or loose the next 2 games I'm grateful for all the fun this team has given me.
    Well said Larry! Well said!! Your point about losing the closeness to Cowher really hit a spot with me because I feel the same way. We had such good teams that there was no way we should have lost most of those AFCC games were it not for Bill's "Marty Schottenheimer Transformation" each playoff season. Walking into my high school after those Pats losses was just brutal for me. Nothing like my snot-nose kids giving me grief about losing those games at home. Argh!! I get mad just thinking about it.


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