Who Says There Is No 'I' In Team?

Riley YapCorrespondent IDecember 6, 2009

TAMPA, FL - FEBRUARY 01:  Troy Polamalu #43 of the Pittsburgh Steelers gestures on the field against the Arizona Cardinals during Super Bowl XLIII on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Sports has always revolved around the team.  Rarely does a team revolve around a single unit or player, although in this case, it does.

Troy Polamalu of the Pittsburgh Steelers affects the team in numerous ways which often lead to the teams success. However, throughout this year's 2009 season Polamalu has been placed on the injury report more than once.

Over the duration of the unfolding season, Polamalu has only played in four out of 13 weeks.  He did start his fifth week in Cincinnati but further injured himself towards the middle of the game.  He missed two very important games against Kansas City and Baltimore which proved to be detrimental.

Now that I have given you a little background information on the situation with Polamalu over the season, let's get to my point.

Within the five games that Polamalu did play, he contributed twenty solo tackles and three interceptions.  Even though he has played so little, he leads the team in interceptions.

Polamalu affects the team in so many ways. The defensive side of the ball needs him now more than ever, as well as the rest of the team.  He brings a different edge to the gridiron and helps to create the chemistry we are used to seeing, much like the 2008 Steelers.

After a very disappointing loss to the Oakland Raiders in Week 13, we can honestly say that our defense is not the same.  The defensive injuries has hindered us to play Steelers defense that we are used to seeing.  With playmakers out such as Aaron Smith, Troy Polamalu, and Travis Kirschke, the defensive side of the ball has been forced to adjust.

Troy Polamalu does not only influence the defense, but also the offense.  When Polamalu makes an interception, or forces a fumble, or makes a clutch tackle, the offense can have some peace in mind when some things are not going there way.

Despite his tremendous influence, the medical staff, did make a good decision by holding Polamalu out of this week's game against the Raiders.  As much as we Steelers fans want to see him out on the field, we cannot afford to lose him before the playoffs. (Which is thinking very optimistically).

The saying "There is no I in team," does not really apply to Troy Polamalu.  Just the presence of Polamalu on the field brings a different atmosphere.