The Blob: You think Big Ben remembers the last time he played the Raiders when Seymour gave him that cheap shot? Perhaps a motivating factor for the upcoming game?
Gerry Dulac: I'm sure he hasn't forgotten.
STX Steeler Fan: Gerry, why do you think our offensive line has such problems pulling on running plays. It just seems like defensive linemen rush straight through them and stop our backs for losses.
Gerry Dulac: I don't know, but it seems to be a recurring issuue. I think that's one of the reason they were excited about David Decastro -- he was more athletically gifted than past guards they had, a guy who could run AND be tough and nasty.
JAMESH: When Saunders returns, what is your gut feeling on how it will play out? Paulson is definitely a better blocker than Pope and can be used as emergency FB, but is just a rookie who can be placed on PS. They wouldn't keep all four and release a non-TE, would they?
Gerry Dulac: No, they won't keep four tight ends, especially because they already have a fullback on the roster (Will Johnson). Yes, Paulson is practice-squad eligible, but my guess is that he will be claimed off waivers if the Steelers would release him. But I'm not sure they would release him. They like the way he runs routes and catches passes.
TucsonKen: What changes have occurred with the Raiders with Al Davis' son now in charge? Is it noticeable?
Gerry Dulac: I don't follow them enough to know, especially because they aren't in the Steelers division and don't see them twice a year like, say, Baltimore or Cincy. But I don't think any changes would be detectable this soon, anyway. I know this, for an organization that had stability at the top w Al davis, they have been one of the most unstable organizations for the past decade. They've had three head coaches in four years and no established former coach would even think about taking that job.
JAMESH: So you think they will let Pope go?
Gerry Dulac: I didn't say that because I don't think they will. And here's the reason: As a vested veteran, they have to pay Pope his 2012 salary, even if they cut him, because he was on the opening-game roster.
CD: Can someone please tell Antonio Brown to quit with the showboating and walking 20 yards down the field after making a catch. C'mon, we all love him, but he's starting to act like Santonio.
Gerry Dulac: I'll tell him when we do the Antonio Brown show every Tuesday night at Redbeard's on Mt. Washington. But I know what you mean. Whenever he says something good on the radio, he gets up, walks 20 yards across the restaurant and high-fives the patrons.
STX Steeler Fan: I liked the way our defense played the second half of the Jets game. Do you think that was more strategic or the defense just settling down.
Gerry Dulac: No. I think they just played well, though I'm sure it was part stategic. I mean, Mark Sanchez only completed six passes for 58 yards after the opening drive, so someone was doing something right. The Steelers had only two sacks, but they had lots of pressures -- 6 by Woodley. Ike Taylor played better than it appeared, holding Santonio Holmes to three catches despite being targfeted 11 times. And how about Keenan Lewis? Stephen Hill did not have a catch, but he had two TDs a week earlier. And Ryan Clark was very good, very noticeable.
So I think it was a number of reasons.
Mile Hi Stiller: Given his recurring problems, has James Harrison played his last game for the Steelers
Gerry Dulac: I don't think he has played his last game, but I do think his return could be problematic. You don't have three setbacks with your knee, especially after having arthoscopic surgery to correct the problem, without there being an even bigger issue. Every time he has tested his knee and tried to return to practice, it swells. That's not a good thing.
Guest: Why do so many of the Steelers' OL get hurt in general and more particularly, during the game? (other teams never seem to be clamoring for more OL during a game)
Gerry Dulac: Bad luck, I guess. I think the Steelers are no different than other NFL teams who hve injuries up front. The ones who don't are the exception, not the norm,
Mile Hi Stiller: We haven't seen much of Rainey in the first two games but he sure doesn't look very shifty or explosive to me. Is he hurt?
Gerry Dulac: Welcome to the NFL. No, he isn't hurt. He's just finding out the difference between the preseasona nd regular season. Now he is facing every team's top players, instead of the second and third-team players he was facing in the preseason. And, in case you haven't noticed, they play a little faster and harder in the regular season.
Guest: Thoughts on Haley's offense thus far (especially in comparison to Arians)?
Gerry Dulac: I have no complaints whatsoever with his offense, and I don't think anyone else should, either, including the players. Their time of possession and third-down conversion rate are the best in the league and they have kept the defenses off the field for long periods of time. In Denver, the defense didn't do its part. They let the Broncos answer two long scoring drives by the offense with two touchdowns of their own and blew leads of 13-7 and 19-14. Against the Jets, they didn't allow that.
Gerry Dulac: That's all the time we have today, kids!! Hope u enjoyed the chat and we'll do it again next week.
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