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Steelers Blog

Ta’amu knows what he needs to work on

Posted by Teresa Varley on August 23, 2013 – 9:17 am

Pre Season

Alameda Ta’amu won’t hesitate sharing what he needs to work on. He knows what he has to do in order to make the 53-man roster, and he reminds himself of it all of the time.  

“It’s my hands and pad level,” said Ta’amu. “When I am low and my hands are disciplined, I feel like I can control the man in front of me. But sometimes when I am too high I might get beat.

“If you look through my notebook, there are a lot of things that say hands, hands, hands. It’s that and pad level. Right now those are my biggest problem.”

Ta’amu said he works on the issues daily, and will continue to until he is where he needs to be.

“I try to focus on my keys,” said Ta’amu. “Wherever my eyes are, that’s where my hands are going to be. I have to discipline my eyes to know where to put my hands.”

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Ta’amu returns, working on getting better

Posted by Teresa Varley on October 31, 2012 – 4:48 pm

Rookie nose tackle Alameda Ta’amu is back on the active roster, following being reinstated on Monday and the team making room for him by waving safety Damon Cromartie-Smith on Wednesday.

Ta’amu spoke for the first time since he was arrested on Pittsburgh’s South Side for an incident he still faces multiple counts on.  

“It was just a big mistake,” said Ta’amu. “It was the biggest mistake I’ve ever made in my life. It won’t happen again. It was a bad night. I let a lot of people down, my family, fans and especially my teammates. I have to keep moving forward and keep getting better.

“I am trying my best to keep moving forward and getting better. I have to do everything the coaches and Rooneys want me to do and take it step by step.”

Ta’amu could not speak about the incident, but admitted he did fear losing his job because of it, and would have understood.

“I was scared, but it’s good to know everybody here is behind me and it was a mistake,” said Ta’amu. “Either way it would have been a life lesson. I am still here, I am learning. I want to get better.

“It was rough. I was embarrassed to call my family. It was just out of my character to do something like that. I just promise that it won’t happen again.”

Ta’amu said he is thankful to his teammates who have supported him through all of it.

“The veterans and all have had my back,” said Ta’amu. “The guys my age are like my brothers. We are brothers in here. They have my back. They tell me to keep my head up and move on with this.”

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Ta’amu suspended for two weeks

Posted by Teresa Varley on October 16, 2012 – 12:06 pm

Steelers rookie nose tackle Alameda Ta’amu has been suspended by the team for two games without pay, stemming from an incident that occurred on Pittsburgh’s South Side over the weekend.

Ta’amu will not be allowed to practice or play in the Steelers game this weekend against the Cincinnati Bengals or on Oct. 28 against Washington at Heinz Field.

“Due to his actions this past weekend we are going to be suspending him for two weeks,” said Coach Mike Tomlin. “This suspension is without pay. He will not participate in any organized team activities, he won’t be in meetings, he won’t be on the practice field and obviously he won’t be at our facility.”

Ta’amu was arrested early Sunday morning after being spotted driving recklessly and is facing multiple felony and misdemeanor counts

“We deem his actions a detriment to our efforts and we are treating it as such,” said Tomlin. “The other ramifications and so forth of this situation that I am not at liberty to discuss at this time, but we thought it was very important that we act and act quickly in terms of addressing this and we can focus our efforts on the men that are playing and getting ready to meet this week’s challenge.

“Obviously it’s a disturbing incident, one that we take seriously as members of this community and the organization which we are.”

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Ta’amu learning as he goes

Posted by Teresa Varley on August 3, 2012 – 10:00 am

Rookie nose tackle Alameda Ta’amu might have gotten camp off on the wrong foot when he thought a walk to a local Wal-Mart store was just a mile away from his dorm room at St. Vincent College, only to find out it was a three-mile walk.

Since then, though, he has relied on some veteran defensive lineman to learn the ropes at camp, particularly nose tackle Steve McLendon.

“I am sitting back and learning,” said Ta’amu. “McLendon has been a real big help for me. People keep saying he is coming along, getting better and that motivates me to get better. I try to stick with him every step of the way
“I am still learning. I have good teachers like McLendon and (Casey) Hampton helping me out along the way. I am not there yet, but I am getting there.”

McLendon is known for his work ethic, something Ta’amu is benefiting from.

“I was talking to him and he talked about how when he first came in he stuck with Ziggy (Hood) because he is a first-round pick and does not work like one,” said Ta’amu. “He works like someone with a chip on his shoulder. That is what I am trying to do, stick with McLendon and pick up the things he does.”

And McLendon is happy to help provide that leadership, just like Hood has done for him. That includes helping him with the plays, assignments, and even keeping him encouraged when the coaches get on him.

“We are going to need him,” said McLendon. “He has to keep his focus, work on the little things. He needs to play hard, smart and fast. Just the little things, he is coming along well.

“I told him don’t give up, work hard. Camp is hard. That is the whole point of camp you have to be mentally tough, take everything as it comes, calm down and play football, something that you have been doing all of your life.”

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Not a typical injury

Posted by Teresa Varley on July 29, 2012 – 6:13 pm

Rookie nose tackle Alameda Ta’amu has been back on the field the last few days after missing time at the start of camp with a foot injury and is still adjusting to the tempo of the NFL.

“It’s fast,” said Ta’amu. “The tempo is a lot different than college. Just like high too college, the NFL gets a lot faster.”
Ta’amu said the foot injury didn’t occur on the field, but on a walk to a local store.

“I think I had a sprained foot. They thought I broke my foot but I felt good,” said Ta’amu. “I went on a long walk to Wal-Mart. They said it was a mile but on my phone it was three miles. I won’t do that again.”

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