Seinfeld equivalent – Izzy Mendelbaum, the old guy who can’t lose.
Real offseasonish – A whole lot of nothing. This is Pittsburgh’s typical bland phase, which they go through every 10 years or so, where some folks are retiring and others are trying to find their place. Steeltown always seems to work through it, because their philosophy of defence + running + suffocation is timeless, tested, and true.
Matinee Idol – Mike Tomlin. It’s the Omar Epps factor.
Big Ben – Congratulations to Pittsburgh’s quarterback, who just finished his first offseason without a sexual misdemeanor.
Antonio Brown – Last year’s peer-voted MVP might be Pittsburgh’s top receiver entering camp, because Mike Wallace might not enter camp. It’s no secret that Brown’s standout season in 2011 came while the rest of Mustardville was relaxing, but receiving has been the Steelers’ X-Factor for decades. There would be no 2009 Super Bowl without Santonio Holmes’ catch, and there wouldn’t have been a 2006 Super Bowl without Hines Ward’s MVP performance. Ditto for Lynn Swann’s 1970-era acrobatics, or anything from John Stallworth. Sure, they’ve got Wallace, but they’ll need Brown.
Shaun Suisham – Just kidding.
Heath Miller – One old man’s gone, another’s left behind. While Hines Ward may be retired, Heath Miller’s two Super Bowls remain with the black and gold. Can Pittsburgh win again? Nah, but if they have a shot, at least they have a veteran.
Heinz – This team owes everything it has to one of the NFL’s most loyal fanbases. They won’t win on sheer talent, so they can go for sheer heart.
Fantasy Sleeps – Once again, ladies and gentlemen, Emmanuel Sanders.
Anything less than playoffs would be disastrous, and the Steelers know it. They’ll climb into the postseason, but their party stops there.
White Cover Staff
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