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News » Pittsburgh Steelers Inside Slant 2008-12-30


Pittsburgh Steelers Inside Slant 2008-12-30


Pittsburgh Steelers Inside Slant 2008-12-30
Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is OK, and so is Pittsburgh's running game.


Those were two conclusions from the Steelers' 31-0 whipping of Cleveland on Sunday. Roethlisberger suffered a concussion late in the first half, but he left the hospital Sunday night not long after he was sent there for observation. He should be fine when Pittsburgh lines up for its first playoff game Jan. 11.

The lack of a typical Pittsburgh running game has been a hot topic all season, and coach Mike Tomlin was determined to get it going against Cleveland's 29th-ranked run defense. Mission accomplished. The Steelers ran out of the I formation behind a fullback more than at any time this season, and Willie Parker had 116 yards as part of a 176-yard effort.

"I love the I formation, I love the plays that were called," Parker said. "I knew we were going to pound the ball, so you know I definitely love that being a running back."

Parker spoke up a few weeks ago about the Steelers' rare use of a fullback this season and their reliance on two tight ends to block near the line of scrimmage. He was used to a lead back in his previous seasons, when he was topping 1,200 yards each year from 2005 through 2007.

Tomlin did not take kindly to Parker going public with his complaints, but the coach's actions Sunday showed he too thought it was time to get back to what Parker labeled "Steelers football."

"It was a productive effort," Tomlin said. "I thought that we controlled the line of scrimmage."

The Steelers finished 23rd in the NFL as a rushing offense, their second-lowest ranking since they joined the AFC as part of the NFL merger in 1970.



Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 30, 2008

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Deshea Townsend Name: Deshea Townsend
#26
Position: CB
Age: 32
Experience: 11 years
College: Alabama
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