Gerry Dulac: Well, I would imagine it would be close, if not greater, than the run-pass ratio against the Bengals. If the Steelers ran 33 times and passed 23 against the fifth-ranked rush defense in the league, I would imagine they would at least do the same against the Browns, who have the second-worst rush defense in the league, gave up 290 yards rushing last week to the Ravens and have allowed six 100-yard rushers in the past six games.
But, of course, that's why they play the games ...
Wild Bill: Hello Gerry, I saw that Darren Perry is interested in the Penn State coaching job. Any thoughts on how interested State ought to be in him?
Gerry Dulac: I'm not interested in who might be interested in the Penn State job. Thousands of coaches are interested in that job. I'm only interested in which coaches interest the university. To answer your question, not at all.
Mike: Are the Steelers concerned about the health of Emmanuel Sanders? He seems to have not recovered from his foot and/or his other spate of injuries (knee).
Gerry Dulac: Best I can tell, his foot is not an issue, even though the Steelers continue to list that as the reason he has missed a couple practices here and there. The reason he did not practice last week on Thursday is because his surgically repaired knee felt a little sore after practicing on artificial turf on Wednesday. That is the reason he did not practice yesterday too -- they were inside on the artificial turf. They are concerned only to the point that they dont want to put too much needless stress on a knee that recently had a torn meniscus repaired.
cburgstiller: Seems crazy Kapinos was still available when needed? Is he actually statistically more effective than Sepulveda had been?
Gerry Dulac: Couldn't agree more. I thought he would have been picked up by someone right before the season because he was outstanding at training camp and in the preseason. And I was more shocked when he was still available when Sepulveda was put on IR. He has been outstanding. I suspect the Steelers won't make the same decision heading into 2012.
Mike: Any thoughts on Hines Ward's disappearance and the quick reemergence? Are they trying to get him his milestones and then move on?
Gerry Dulac: They want to make sure he gets his catches to reach 1,000, that's why. Pay attention to when he gets in the game -- it's usually not in any kind of key passing situation. I think if you go back and look at that semi-deep pass he couldn't get to against the Bengals, you will understand why his playing time has been limited and he is not used in most three-wide receiver sets.
cburgstiller: Do you think keeping Woodley out tomorrow is more a case of just making sure he's ready for San Fran? Would he be on the field tomorrow if it were a playoff game?
Gerry Dulac: I think the Steelers found out against the Bengals that Woodley could not get leverage or explode off the snap because of his hamstring. They realized rather quickly that they were better off with Jason Worilds in the game. Because of the short week, that situation is not going to change, probably even if this were a playoff game.
Mike: In all seriousness, thanks very much for a thoughtful and in depth response. others that host similar chats (no names, please) tend to provide curt and sarcastic answers to legitimate questions. thanks again
Gerry Dulac: Buzz off!!! Just kidding. Thanx
John B: Do you think this years Steelers can beat this years Packers?
Gerry Dulac: I think they stand a much better chance for three reasons:
1) Their offense is better and more explosive with the continued all-around development of Mike Wallace and the growth of Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders; 2) Their pass defense is much improved, most notably because of William Gay and Keenan Lewis; and 3) I don't think they would turn the ball over three times and not getting a turnover.
Froggy: Predictions on which of this year's veteran Steelers won't be around next year? My guess would be Smith, Hoke, Ward, Sepulveda, and Hampton.
Gerry Dulac: Aaron Smith, Bryant McFadden, Chris Hoke and possibly Larry Foote on defense; Chris Kemoeatu, Mewelde Moore and possibly Max Starks on offense. I'm not ready to concede that Hines Ward will not be back, but he will have to take a significant pay cut if he does. Same with Kemo -- he could come back at a substantially lower number. Also, Dan Sepulveda.
t: More on Hines ... Peter King made mention of Hines and the HOF. He listed some other receiver with 950+ receptions who aren't in the hall. the majority played in domes. How much more impressive is what Hines has done in his career given the conditions he's played in and the style of offense he's played in?
Gerry Dulac: There's no doubt what he has been able to do over such a long period of time is very impressive. As clutch and as tough a receiver as there is, even in the long history of the league. But he will have a tough time getting in the HOF in my opinion. Not because he doesn't deserve it; just because a lot of voters are reluctant to keep putting Steelers in the Hall.
Jm: Hey Jerry. Do you think Timmons has the athletic ability to transform from the linebacker position to safety? Could he play the game like Troy?
Gerry Dulac: No. Not fast enough. And too big.
Jack Splat: How is Ben's thumb? Wouldn't be smart to sit him tomorrow night for Batch?
Gerry Dulac: Why? His thumb is sore, not restrictive. No different than James Harrison with a sore back.
Guest: Is it time to play Heyward more and see if he can generate a pass rush?
Gerry Dulac: This isn't college. You don't build for the future with a 9-3 team that can win the division and still be a No. 1 seed. Save that stuff for the Colts and Vikings. Or Pitt.Gerry Dulac: That's all the time we have today, kids. See you next week. Enjoyed the questions!!
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