Steelers Notes from around the Web

Nick SignorelliSenior Writer IApril 30, 2010

KANSAS CITY, MO - NOVEMBER 22:  Wide receiver Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers warming up before a game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on November 22, 2009 in Kansas City, Missouri.  The Chiefs defeated the Steelers 27-24.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

You know those links on the side of the team pages from around the web? 

I never read them.

Funny thing is, some of them are actually pretty good.

Here are some interesting notes from there, and other areas of the web that you may not have known. Or maybe you did, so thanks for reading them again!


Hines Ward Says Ben Roethlisberger Suspension Justified

Being careful with his words, unlike last year, Hines Ward stated that Ben Roethlisberger...

"I don't know how the season's going to go. That's what is uneasy, the uncertainty," Ward said Friday. "As of now we don't have a starting quarterback. It's kind of like quarterback by committee, and so the uncertainty of that issue plays on a lot of guys' minds. You don't know who your starting quarterback is." And, "I think the suspension is justified—it is what it is…Is it disappointing? Yes."

Now, some people would be quick to jump on Ward, saying he was not being a good teammate, but Ward followed those statements up with...

"Life's all about trials and tribulations," Ward said as the Steelers began their mandatory three-day mini-camp without Roethlisberger. "Everyone on this team has been through adversity at one period of time, and that's what's so special about football. This is the one place you can come and get away from your problems, kind of leave all of that baggage at home.

"We'll welcome him with open arms. He's still our quarterback, and he doesn't have to win over anybody."

Casey Hampton then added, "I definitely know that if he comes in in shape and does what he's supposed to do, he'll win games for us. It's not a big deal," Hampton said. "I know Ben isn't a bad guy, he just made some mistakes."

How funny is that? Casey Hampton talking about someone having to come in, in shape.


Leftwich Taking the First-Team Snaps in Place of Big Ben

Most of the time when a new player is brought in, they have to earn their way onto the playing field.  Not Byron Leftwich.

Leftwich is taking the first team snaps with the Steelers during the weekly practices.

In a surprising note, Dennis Dixon is taking the second-team snaps, while Charlie Batch is with the third string.

With Leftwich signing a one-year contract extension, and Dixon running with the second team, it looks like when Big Ben returns, Batch will be the odd man out.


Bryant McFadden Already Running with the First Team Too

Another old face back with the team, is running with the first team defense as well.

Coach Mike Tomlin has Bryant McFadden running with the first team at the Steelers mandatory practice this week, after his one-year hiatus with the Arizona Cardinals.

There was little speculation that B-Mac would replace Will Gay as the starting corner opposite Ike Taylor, but did anyone think it would happen from Day One? 


Pouncey Gets a Surprise  Phone Call  

Coming from the University of Florida, there is little surprise if Max Starks, another former Gator himself made a call, welcoming his alumni brother, Maurkice Pouncey, to the team.

But, a Georgia Bulldog?

Hines Ward called to welcome the first-round pick to the Steelers. “That was more exciting than the draft,” said Pouncey. “I was like is this really Hines Ward on the phone?”

Asked how it felt to be the first-round pick of the Steelers, he responded, “It hasn’t hit me yet,” said Pouncey. “It probably will when I go on to the practice field for the first time in a Steelers uniform. I can’t wait to tell you the truth. I can’t wait to get around the guys, and see how the Steelers organization does it.”


Heath Miller, the Pro (Mini) Golfer?

Heath Miller will host the 13th Annual Mini Golf Classic, June 8th, at 5 p.m.  Click HERE for more information.


Troy Polamalu Back Practicing with the  First Team  

After missing most of last season with a knee injury, Troy Polamalu has returned to the practice field, and is with the first teamers.

"We had a couple of OTA practices last week, and it feels good," Polamalu said of his knee. "It's feeling better with time, thank God."

"It's just timing, rhythm, and getting the right read and reaction with the eyes and coordinating with the body," Polamalu said of returning. "I think it would probably be easier to lose if the defense were to change quite a bit. But when you feel comfortable within the system, it still takes time, but it wouldn't take me as much time."