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Pittsburgh Steelers, Miami Dolphins Might Again Meet in Bad Weather

Can the Pittsburgh Steelers stop Mike Wallace Sunday when he returns to Heinz Field as a Miami Dolphin?

If Ike Taylor continues to struggle, the speed that burned Steelers opponents from 2009 to 2012 could burn the Steelers in a game they must win to have any realistic chance of making the playoffs.

Taylor might get a little help covering Wallace, however. And we’re not just talking about safety help.

We’re talking about help from Mother Nature.

According to NFLweather.com, snow is expected for Sunday’s game. A slippery field might slow down Wallace a little.

If it does snow, it wouldn’t be the first time the Dolphins and Steelers have played each other against a backdrop of extreme weather.

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Pittsburgh Steelers Must Find a Way to Re-Sign Jason Worilds

Just a few weeks ago, it looked like the Pittsburgh Steelers couldn’t afford to keep Jason Worilds in 2014.

The 25-year-old Worilds becomes an unrestricted free agent after this season. In his first three seasons, the outside linebacker had just 10 sacks. Considering their salary-cap constraints, it seemed like a no-brainer for the Steelers to let him go.

Now, if he keeps playing the way he has, the Steelers can’t afford not to keep Worilds.

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Pittsburgh Steelers Show They’re Still Not Good Enough in Thanksgiving Loss to Baltimore Ravens

The Pittsburgh Steelers didn’t turn the ball over Thursday night.

Ben Roethlisberger wasn’t sacked.

Jason Worilds had two sacks, a forced fumble and 10 tackles.

Le’Veon Bell averaged 4.6 yards per carry.

None of this seemed possible in September or even a month ago. But the Steelers showed again on Thanksgiving that they’re getting better.

They just weren’t good enough to win at Baltimore. Their rally from a 13-point deficit fell short – and their playoff hopes were reduced to slim and none – in a 22-20 loss.

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Pittsburgh Steelers Get Splash Plays, Protect Ben Roethlisberger in 27-11 Win Over Cleveland Browns

It took a while for the scoreboard to show it, but the Pittsburgh Steelers were doing a lot of good things Sunday in their 27-11 win at Cleveland.

The Steelers (5-6) had won two straight but entered the game with fragile playoff hopes. Needing a win over the Browns to make the playoffs a more realistic possibility, they were mired in a 3-3 stalemate and losing the field-position battle for most of the first half.

However, the men in the white jerseys weren’t looking like the Fumblegate Steelers who lost at Cleveland last season.

Troy Polamalu had a spring in his step. He made a couple of tackles and broke up a third-down pass early in the second quarter.

Jason Worilds continued to reward the Steelers’ patience with him. He didn’t have a sack, but was in the face of Browns quarterbacks Jason Campbell and Brandon Weeden all afternoon. He hurried Campbell into the third-down incompletion that Polamalu defended.

Ben Roethlisberger wasn’t in much of a hurry. For the first time in more than a year and for just the fifth time in the last five years, he wasn’t sacked.

Even though the Steelers weren’t moving the ball much in the first half, the offensive line’s work was evident. Instead of escaping pressure, Roethlisberger looked like a classic pocket passer. It was a rare sight.

All these efforts eventually converged to create the familiar sight of the Steelers beating the Browns.

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Injured Linebacker Larry Foote A Little Peeved At Steelers’ Fans

The Pittsburgh Steelers lost two starting players for the season in the opening loss to the Tennessee Titans and one of those players was linebacker Larry Foote. It was sad to see Foote go down like that considering it is not a guarantee that he is brought back next year. I for one am hoping the team brings him back to bring his leadership and mentoring to the young linebackers on the team. According to an article by Scott Brown of ESPN.com, Foote was very surprised that it looked like Lions fans outnumbered Steelers fans during the home win versus the Lions this past week.
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Pittsburgh Steelers Are in Playoff Race, But Don’t Get Too Excited Yet

Have you bought your Pittsburgh Steelers “In the Hunt” T-shirt?

Weren’t Steelers players wearing “In the Hunt” caps with the tags still on in the locker room Sunday after their 37-27 win over the Detroit Lions?

Why not? The Steelers improved to 4-6 and earned that coveted “In the Hunt” status with Sunday’s comeback victory at Heinz Field.

Channel surf long enough this week and you’ll come across an AFC playoff picture graphic, and look whose logo is in that third column under the “In the Hunt” heading.

That’s right, it’s the hypocycloid of the Pittsburgh Steelers. The same Steelers who started this season 0-4.

The New York Jets (5-5) currently occupy the sixth and final playoff spot in the AFC. They hold the tiebreaker over the Miami Dolphins (5-5) because of a better AFC East record. But that could change because the Jets and Dolphins still have to play each other twice.

The Steelers are one of six teams a game back at 4-6. They’ve come a long way and they provided plenty of reasons Sunday to be encouraged about the last six weeks of the season.

But the Steelers haven’t accomplished enough yet for their playoff chances to be taken seriously.

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Lions vs. Steelers: Unlikely Heroes Emerge in Pittsburgh’s 37-27 Win over Detroit

Where there’s a will, there’s a way.

Two Wills who had been doing a lot of grunt work for the Pittsburgh Steelers thrived in the spotlight Sunday in a character-building 37-27 win over the Detroit Lions at Heinz Field.

Fullback Will Johnson caught the game-winning touchdown pass and safety Will Allen’s interception set up the touchdown that put the game away.

There seemed to be no way the Steelers (4-6) would win this game. They had leads of 14-0 in the first quarter and 17-3 with 10:34 left in the first half, but found themselves down 27-20 at halftime. They had never overcome a deficit of more than three points to win a game this season.

Calvin Johnson made Ike Taylor look every bit of his 33 years with touchdown catches of 79 and 19 yards, and Joique Bell scored on a 2-yard run to put the Lions ahead.

The Steelers defense allowed 379 yards in the first half, putting them on pace to obliterate the franchise-record of 610 they surrendered at New England two weeks ago.

There would be no such infamy Sunday. The Steelers shut out the Lions and held Johnson without a catch in the second half, but that almost wasn’t good enough to win this game.

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Lions vs. Steelers: Fun Facts and Interconference Intrigue

The Pittsburgh Steelers (3-6) face a tall task Sunday against the NFC North-leading Detroit Lions (6-3) at Heinz Field. If they can somehow win this game, then we can talk about how winning the AFC North isn’t entirely impossible.

The Steelers would have an opportunity to get into the thick of things in the division with games at Cleveland in Week 12 and at Baltimore in Week 13.

But beating the Lions is a big hurdle. For now, let’s keep the optimism in check and look at how Sunday’s Steelers-Lions pairing demonstrates why interconference play in the NFL is better than interleague play in Major League Baseball.

The Steelers, like every team in the NFL, play four interconference games every year. There’s a certain intrigue to these games because the Steelers only see these opponents once every four years.

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Pittsburgh Steelers’ Dominating Win Over Buffalo Bills Is Just Like Old Times

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ 23-10 win over the Buffalo Bills Sunday was the sort of tidy, comfortable victory that used to be as much a part of autumn in Pittsburgh as pumpkins and squash.

The Steelers ran for 136 yards and allowed less than 100 rushing yards.

The Steelers forced the Bills to punt on 11 of their 14 third downs.

The Steelers held a rookie quarterback to 155 passing yards, 78 in the first 55 minutes of the game. They sacked EJ Manuel three times, including the first career sack for rookie Jarvis Jones.

This is all stuff Steelers fans have taken for granted.

Until this season.

Hopefully we appreciated and soaked in the Steelers’ dominating performance Sunday, because who knows when it will happen again.

Looking at the Steelers’ remaining schedule, it’s unlikely the defense will get another rookie quarterback to pick on this season.

The Steelers have struggled to get to the quarterback and force turnovers over the past couple of seasons, but at least they still can be relied upon to feast on rookie quarterbacks. They’re 17-2 against them since Dick LeBeau became defensive coordinator in 2004.

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Pittsburgh Steelers: 2013 Midseason Report Card Grades for Defense, Special Teams

You thought the Pittsburgh Steelers’ offense and coaches had bad midseason grades?

Wait ’til you see these.

If the first half of the 2013 season was a term paper, the one written by the Steelers’ defense would be laced with red ink.

DEFENSIVE LINE

The Steelers have yielded 131.2 rushing yards per game, 31st in the league. Looking at it another way, opponents have attempted 248 runs on the Steelers defense, tied for sixth in the league. That high yardage total is partly because teams are running a lot on the Steelers. The Steelers are 17th with 4.2 yards allowed per carry, which still isn’t up to snuff even if Pro Football Focus (subscription required) gives nose tackle Steve McLendon a positive grade for his run defense. Casey Hampton has left a big void.

Cameron Heyward is becoming a disruptive force, beating out Ziggy Hood as the starter at left defensive end. He has a sack, two batted passes and is tied for eighth among NFL defensive ends with 15 quarterback hurries.

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