Martavis Bryant has been disciplined by Mike Tomlin and will not be in uniform on Sunday night when the Steelers play the Lions on the road. Bryant says the punishment is a result of his misuse of social media.  Bryant casually announced the news at the start of a Wednesday-afternoon interview, “I’m not playing Sunday, which is fine. I mean, I’m not trippin’. It is what it is.” Bryant was running reps with the scout team on Wednesday, but seemed unfazed, and said he was moving on, “I had a couple catches today. The show must go on, even if I’m not playing.” Over the weekend, Bryant responded to a comment on social media about his production on the team, and said there was no way rookie JuJu Smith-Schuster was better than him.  Ben Roethlisberger doesn’t use social media, and says that’s the easiest way to avoid problems, “you can get caught up in a game with someone that sits behind a phone or a computer, they call them trolls or whatever, there’s a lot of things you can get caught up in if you’re not careful, and I think the best thing is to just stay away from it.” Bryant insists he has no problem with Smith-Schuster, or with anyone in the locker room, “I am a great teammate. I don’t have a beef with anybody in here. I love everybody in here. I work hard with everybody. I am trying to get better with everybody. As far as having a beef in the locker, I have never been that type of player.” Bryant says he’s frustrated, but declined to get specific, instead, deferring questions to his agent and his head coach.

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Remember the questions after the Steelers lost to the Bears? Picture in your mind the panic after the home loss to the Jaguars. Ben Roethlisberger has gone from being “finished” to having his 77th game with a passer rating over 100. Yesterday Ben’s rating was 117.4 and if the Steelers beat the Detriot Lions next Sunday night on the road, they’ll be 6-2 after the first half with a bye waiting for them. There are no guarantees in the NFL, especially at the halfway point, but it’s easy to get the feeling that the game against the Patriots on December 17th will decide the #1 seed for the AFC.

Chicago at Baltimore  RAVENS
Cleveland at Houston  TEXANS
Green Bay at Minnesota  PACKERS
Detroit at New Orleans  SAINTS
Miami at Atlanta  FALCONS
New England at NY Jets  PATRIOTS
San Francisco at Washington  REDSKINS
Tampa Bay at Arizona  CARDINALS
LA Rams at Jacksonville  RAMS
Pittsburgh at Kansas City  STEELERS
LA Chargers at Oakland  CHARGERS
NY Giants at Denver  BRONCOS
Indy at Tennessee  TITANS

 

I grew up watching the Steelers, and I’ve been covering them for 30 years. So if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that you don’t try to predict the season when only 5 games have been played. After throwing 5 picks, today’s was a game that Ben Roethlisberger would like to forget. So Ben, go ahead and forget it. Terry Bradshaw forgot about the time he had a zero-passer rating almost exactly one month before he won his 2nd super bowl.
And Peyton Manning forgot about his zero-passer rating performance about 3 months before he won his 2nd Super Bowl. One game doesn’t make a season. The Steelers need to get better–at quarterback, at running back, on the line, and on defense. But please put the panic on pause. Stop the hysteria, and get ready to scream at your TV next Sunday against the Chiefs.

NY Jets at Cleveland  JETS
Carolina at Detroit  LIONS
San Francisco at Indy  COLTS
Tennessee at Miami  DOLPHINS
Buffalo at Cincinnati  BENGALS
LA Chargers at NY Giants  CHARGERS
Jacksonville at Pittsburgh  STEELERS
Arizona at Philadelphia  EAGLES
Seattle at LA Rams  SEAHAWKS
Baltimore at Oakland  RAIDERS
Green Bay at Dallas  PACKERS
Kansas City at Houston  CHIEFS
Minnesota at Chicago  VIKINGS

Antonio Brown’s sideline temper tantrum on Sunday got the attention of both his quarterback and his head coach. Mike Tomlin offered these words for Brown, “be a professional.” In the second quarter, brown broke free on a pass route, but Ben Roethlisberger threw to the other side of the field, an incomplete pass to Le’Veon Bell.
Brown flipped a gatorade cooler out of frustration and brushed off his offensive coordinator Todd Haley when Haley tried to cool him off. Ben talked about it on his weekly radio segment on The Fan, saying of Brown, “he’s superhuman on the football field, and when that happens, it almost brings him back to being a mere mortal, if you will, because it just gets in his head and it just messes with all of us a little bit.” Roethlisberger also worried about the wrong message being sent to younger players.
“JuJu’s sitting right next to him looking at that. What’s JuJu thinking? Is he thinking that it’s okay to act that way?”

A Steelers win, and a Patriots loss, has the Steelers as the new favorite to win the Super Bowl, according to one Las Vegas bookmaker. One-quarter of the way through the regular season, the Steelers are 3-1, and all alone in 1st place in the AFC North. Yesterday’s win in Baltimore was highlighted by the re-emergence of Le’Veon Bell, who rushed for 144 yards. Bell had another 42 in receiving yards. It was also a significant day in the remarkable rise of Steelers cornerback Mike Hilton. The former undrafted free agent had 4 tackles, including his first NFL sack. Hilton also took advantage of a tipped pass by Ryan Shazier to pull in his first NFL interception, “it was exciting, we broke the streak playing in Baltimore, now we lead the division. We had an all-around
real game, we continue to play like that I feel like we can make something happen.”

New Orleans at Miami  SAINTS
Buffalo at Atlanta FALCONS
Cincinnati at Cleveland BROWNS
L.A. Rams at Dallas COWBOYS
Detroit at Minnesota LIONS
Carolina at New England PATRIOTS
Jacksonville at NY Jets JAGUARS
Pittsburgh at Baltimore STEELERS
Tennessee at Houston  TEXANS
San Francisco at Arizona CARDINALS
Philadelphia at LA Chargers EAGLES
NY Giants at Tampa Bay BUCS
Oakland at Denver BRONCOS
Washington at Kansas City CHIEFS

Le’Veon Bell is still looking for his first 100-yard rushing game of the season, but he believes he’s close to making that happen, “I think I’ve been explosive as I’ve always been. I think just, so far, I haven’t really. I’ve been close to breaking a couple of runs, you know, close to breaking a couple of catches, but it just hasn’t happened yet. Guys are making good tackles on me. Hopefully things will change I feel like I’m kind of due for like a big play. We gotta go out there and I gotta go out there and execute and do what I can.”

 

Steelers tackle and Army veteran Alejandro Villanueva with an extraordinary and uncommon show of humility. He said this about Sunday’s events at Soldier Field, where he stood alone with his hand over his heart during the national anthem, “I’ve made Coach Tomlin look bad, and that is my fault. My fault only. I’ve made my teammates look bad. And that is my fault. My fault only. And I made the Steelers look bad and that is my fault, and my fault only.”