The focus is simple - win
Thursday, October 4, 2007
By Teresa Varley
Of the four teams that have a bye this weekend, only one of them is coming off a win – the Oakland Raiders.
The other three - the Bengals, Vikings and Eagles – all lost last week, giving them an extra week to think about their last game, to not have the chance to erase the bad feeling a loss leaves in the pit of your stomach.
The Steelers don’t want to experience what those three teams are and hope to get back on the winning track this Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks at Heinz Field and ultimately head into the bye week on a positive note.
“It’s important to get that,” said quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. “It’s an NFC game so it’s good for us to get out there and face them. We would like to get to 4-1 by the bye.”
But the focus the team has for winning this week isn’t just because it’s the bye. It’s because of the approach that head coach Mike Tomlin has the team taking – one game at a time.
“This is a big game because it is the next one,” said Tomlin. “I tend to live one week at a time. You can break seasons down however you want to break them down. Some people will break them down into quarters. Some people will break them down into pre-bye week and post-bye week.
“The reality is that we have to play them all. We play them one at a time, so that is my focus.”
Tomlin’s message definitely has set in with the players.
“You don’t put more emphasis on it,” said guard Alan Faneca. “You can’t put any more emphasis on this game than the game after the bye. But it’s always nicer to end on a win.”
After winning their first three games of the season the Steelers suffered their first loss last week against the Arizona Cardinals on the road. Winning this week isn’t as much about the bye as it is about just getting back on track and moving forward on their path.
“We want to get back in the win column,” said rookie tight end Matt Spaeth. “No loss sits well with me. That’s part of the game. You can’t let it sit well with you. You have to come back and try to get another W.”
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Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren was asked during a conference call with the Pittsburgh media if there is any bitterness still having lost to the Steelers in Super Bowl XL.
“I was asked that in my own press conference,” said Holmgren. “I think I bump into people on the street and they will talk about it and I say, ‘Listen, it really is time for us to move on.’ We played the game, Pittsburgh won. It really is time to move on.”