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Steelers Blog

Steelers lead Packers 31-21 at end of 3rd

Posted by Teresa Varley on December 22, 2013 – 6:51 pm

The Steelers got the ball to start the half, and used a bit of trickery to stay alive in the opening drive. Faced with a fourth-and-two punter Mat McBriar faked the punt and completed a 30-yard pass to David Paulson. A 15-yard rougher the passer penalty was tacked on to give the Steelers the ball at the 13-yard line. Ben Roethlisberger made it count when he scrambled up the middle for a 13-yard touchdown to take a 17-14 lead.

After stopping the Packers, the Steelers were buried at their own two-yard line. Le’Veon Bell got the carry and fumbled, recovered by Tramon Williams at the three-yard line.

The defense came up huge when Vince Williams stopped Eddie Lacy for a two-yard loss and Matt Flynn couldn’t connect with Jarrett Boykin. On third down Flynn had to throw it away. Mason Crosby’s field goal attempt was blocked, but a penalty for batting the ball forward gave the Packers a first down. The Steelers challenged the call after it was shown Ryan Clark had possession, but the officials stated possession in the field of play is not able to be challenged, giving the Packers the ball at the two-yard line. Lacy took it in from the two to give the Packers a 21-17 lead.

Bell came back strong, hurdling for a 25-yard gain. Bell took it for three more yards, but was stopped for no gain. An unnecessary roughness call on the Packers gave the Steelers a new set of downs. Jonathan Dwyer rattled off a seven yard gain, and Roethlisberger then found Dwyer in the air for a seven-yard gain. Roethlisberger then went to Matt Spaeth for his first catch of the year, an 11-yard touchdown and 24-21 lead.

The defense came up huge again, with Cortez Allen intercepting Flynn and returning it 40 yards for a touchdown to extend the Steelers lead to 31-21.

End of third: Steelers 31, Packers 21

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Steelers lead Dolphins 7-3, end of 1st Q

Posted by Teresa Varley on December 8, 2013 – 1:34 pm


The Steelers went three-and-out on the opening drive of the game, but their defense returned the favor, shutting down the Dolphins on their opening drive. Troy Polamalu broke up a Ryan Tannehill pass that he came close to intercepting, and then Cam Heyward sacked Tannehill for an eight-yard loss.

The Steelers got the ball at their own 26-yard line, and in the snow kept things on the ground to get rolling. Le’Veon Bell rattled off runs of four, nine, six and three yards. On third-and-one Jonathan Dwyer pounded it up the middle for six yards to keep the chains moving. Ben Roethlisberger hit Heath Miller for 22 yards to the 24-yard line, and Bell added a six-yard gain. Bell was knocked for a two-yard loss, but got the first down on a nine-yard reception. Bell was stopped for no gain, but added a five-yard carry to the six-yard carry. On third down Roethlisberger hit Emmanuel Sanders for a five-yard touchdown, giving the Steelers an early 7-0 lead, off a 12-play, 74-yard drive that ate up 7:05. On the play, Roethlisberger passed Terry Bradshaw with most touchdown passes in franchise history with 213.

Cortez Allen broke up a Tannehill pass intended deep for Mike Wallace. Lamar Miller added a seven-yard carry, and then Tannehill scrambled for eight yards, and then took off running for 48 yards to the Steelers 13-yard line. The defense held them, forcing the Dolphins to settle for a 30-yard Ryan Sturgis field goal.

End of first quarter: Steelers 7, Dolphins 3

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Steelers lead 20-3 after third

Posted by Teresa Varley on November 24, 2013 – 3:21 pm

Third Quarter

The Browns got the ball to start the half, but the defense forced a three-and-out courtesy of Will Allen holding Greg Little to a four-yard completion on third-and-five.

Ben Roethlisberger went to work from his own 23-yard line finding Le’Veon Bell for 11 yards. Bell added a six-yard gain, and Roethlisberger went to Emmanuel Sanders for six more yards and the first down. Heath Miller pulled in a six-yard reception and Bell added a three-yard gain. Jonathan Dwyer was stopped on consecutive carries for no gain, giving the Browns the ball on downs.

It would be the Steelers defense that would come up big next. Will Gay came on the blitz and hit Jason Campbell, knocking the ball free and Will Allen recovered and returned it 49 yards to the four-yard line.

The Steelers converted fast with a four-yard touchdown pass from Roethlisberger to Sanders for a 20-3 lead.

Brandon Weeden got the call again at quarterback, and got the Browns going, driving them down to the 28-yard line. They would go no further, and on fourth down Billy Cundiff’s 46-yard field goal sailed wide left in the wind.

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Steelers defeat Lions, 37-27

Posted by Teresa Varley on November 17, 2013 – 4:24 pm

The Lions drove down to the 10-yard line early in the fourth quarter and on fourth down faked a field goal with holder Sam Martin taking the snap, taking it three yards before he was hit by Steve McLendon, who forced a fumble. Ryan Clark recovered and the Steelers took over at the three-yard line.

Working from deep in their own territory, Ben Roethlisberger got them some breathing room when he hit Antonio Brown for a 16-yard reception. Heath Miller pulled in a nine-yard reception to 29-yard line and Le’Veon Bell got the first down on a six-yard carry. Roethlisberger went back to Miller over the middle for a 21-yard gain. Bell was stopped for a two-yard loss, and on second down Rashean Mathis broke-up Roethlisberger’s pass. Roethlisberger scrambled down the right sideline on third down for 10 yards, coming up two yards short of the first down at the Lions 36-yard line. Roethlisberger hit Bell for a three-yard gain and the first down, keeping the drive alive. Roethlisberger hit Jonathan Dwyer for a 13-yard gain and then went to Jerricho Cotchery for a 19-yard gain to the one-yard line. A pass interference call gave the Steelers a new set of downs. Dwyer was stopped for no gain. On second down Roethlisberger hit Will Johnson for the one-yard touchdown and 30-27 lead.

The defense came up huge, with Will Allen intercepting Matt Stafford’s pass and returning it 27-yards to the Lions 34-yard line.

The Steelers offense took advantage with Roethlisberger hitting Cotchery for a 20-yard touchdown to extend the lead to 37-27.

The defense was able to hold off the Lions late to secure the win.

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Steelers lead Bills 10-3 at halftime

Posted by Teresa Varley on November 10, 2013 – 2:20 pm

The Steelers opened the second quarter with Jonathan Dwyer going off right guard for a six-yard gain and first down. Felix Jones went off left guard for nine yards, and then Dwyer took it up the middle for two yards. Emmanuel Sanders got the handoff from Le’Veon Bell and tiptoed along the sideline for a 25-yard gain to the Bills 25-yard line. Bell added gains of nine, six and three yards to the seven-yard line. On third down Ben Roethlisberger was sacked for an 11-yard loss, brining on Shaun Suisham for a 36-yard field goal to tie the game at 3-3.

After the defense stopped the Bills, Roethlisberger and company went to work. Roethlisberger got away from pressure to complete a shovel pass to Bell for 34 yards to midfield. Roethlisberger completed a four-yard pass to Sanders and Dwyer added carries of eight and six yards. Roethlisberger hit a wide open Antonio Brown for 24 yards to the five-yard line.  Roethlisberger then hit Jerricho Cotchery in the corner of the end zone for a five-yard touchdown to give the Steelers a 10-3 lead, completing an 86-yard drive.

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Steelers support Northside Catholic School

Posted by Teresa Varley on November 8, 2013 – 10:45 am

Steelers Chairman Dan Rooney and former Pirates owner Kevin McClatchy co-chaired the 16th Annual “Gala Pittsburgh Sports Night” at Heinz Field on Thursday night in conjunction with the North Side Friends and Neighbors and Diocese of Pittsburgh Bishop David Zubik.

The annual event benefits Northside Catholic School, providing assistance to help those unable to meet the financial requirements for a Catholic education and to aid the school’s operation.

Pennsylvania Congressman Michael Doyle and Dr. Robert Paserba, Secretary for Catholic Education for the Diocese of Pittsburgh were honored as the 2013 North Side Hall of Fame Awardees.

Steelers’ players, including Jerricho Cotchery, Jonathan Dwyer, Bruce Gradkowski and Derek Moye, along with Steelers and Pirates alumni and local college athletes, were on hand signing autographs and meet guests. A silent and live auction also took place, highlighted a trip to see the Steelers play at Baltimore and a chance to throw out the first pitch at a Pirates game.

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Dwyer wants to finish the race strong

Posted by Teresa Varley on August 21, 2013 – 4:18 pm


Running back Jonathan Dwyer hates to see injuries at his position, but knows if someone goes down like Le’Veon Bell did against the Redskins he needs to take advantage of the opportunity.

Dwyer got most of the carries against the Redskins with Bell injured in the game and Isaac Redman and LaRod Stephens-Howling not in uniform because of injuries, carrying the ball 14 times for 68 yards.

“You want your opportunity,” said Dwyer. “I don’t want it because someone got hurt, we all want a fair competition. We all want an opportunity. I hope these guys can come back and play from a team aspect and for the competition.”

Dwyer, who said offseason conditioning has him in good shape, is behind Redman and Bell on the depth chart, but is still battling to win the starting job.

“It’s not where you are at the start, but where you are at the end when the race is over,” said Dwyer.

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Being consistent is a key

Posted by Teresa Varley on August 3, 2013 – 12:14 pm

Running back Jonathan Dwyer is in a battle for the starting job, and said the most important thing he has to do to win it, is be consistent.

“The key is to be consistent, be on top of everything and show I am dependable all of the time,” said Dwyer. “In all reality you have to work on every part of your game.”

Dwyer also said he feels like he has to always prove himself, something that drives him.

“I feel like I have to prove something every time I am on the field,” said Dwyer. “I have a chip on my shoulder. I know what I want and it’s to be here, be a starter and be in that role for a long time.”

2013 Steelers Training Camp

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Steelers playing for pride

Posted by Teresa Varley on December 27, 2012 – 7:00 pm


Linebacker LaMarr Woodley is accustomed to football season extending beyond the 16-game regular season schedule. Only once during his six-year career had the Steelers missed the playoffs, that being in 2009, and if you asked him a few months ago he would never have thought this year would be the second time it happened.

“We are not used to it, but we put ourselves in the situation so we have to deal with it,” said Woodley. “It’s frustrating knowing you had every opportunity to put yourself in a good position to be in the playoffs and you weren’t able to.”

Woodley said he can look back at different games, different plays, throughout the season and see what happened, see why the team is where they are today, particularly some of the games early in the season.

“We were giving up too many big plays early in the year, plays that went 30 or 40 yards for a touchdown,” said Woodley. “Those plays hurt us. We gave up too many of those and were counting on the offense too much to bail us out when usually we take care of business.”

The Steelers have one last chance to take care of business on Sunday when they host the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field. It will be an opportunity for them to show that no matter the scenario, they aren’t about to give up.

“We know what we are capable of. We know the talent we have here,” said running back Jonathan Dwyer. “To be where we are is upsetting. Letting games slip away from us on stupid mistakes makes you want to do better.

“It’s motivation for this week. You want to prove yourself each and every day you step on the field. This week we want to prove ourselves and finish on a good note.”

All week players have been hearing the talk that the game doesn’t mean much because there are no playoff implications. But for men who know what it means to wear the black and gold, there is plenty on the line. Most notably pride.

“I think it’s definitely pride and wanting to end the season on a positive note,” said Dwyer. “The season didn’t go the way we wanted it to, but I think the best thing is to end in a good way to give us momentum heading in to the next year. You want to take it personal, make sure you do what you have to do and get the win for our team and our fans.

“You don’t want to go out on a down note. The fans here deserve a win. Winning is a good way to go out. You want to end the season on a good note.”

The Steelers will face a long offseason, one that will bring changes to the makeup of the team like every offseason does. And this week could be one final time to play together, and you can bet they are going to put it all on the line.

“The guys you have been lining up with, worked all year with, you get to go out there with them again,” said receiver Jerricho Cotchery. “The reality is you might not line up to that guy again. You appreciate those moments and go out there and give it your all for them, the fans and this organization.”

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Sharing some sound advice

Posted by Teresa Varley on November 19, 2012 – 7:36 pm

Enjoying a four-course meal at an upscale restaurant is not something that happens often for inner city school students, but on Monday night it did for some football players from Perry Traditional Academy, part of the Pittsburgh Public School system, thanks to the efforts of Steelers Chris Carter and Jonathan Dwyer.

The high school players took part in a mentoring session that Carter and Dwyer hosted at Capital Grille in Pittsburgh, rewarding them for their achievements on and off the field and providing them encouragement to continue to become better individuals and athletes.

“It was for kids from the inner city schools who might not be as privileged as others,” said Carter. “I grew up like that so it hits home with me. They are going through some things and sometimes they don’t have the resources or the people to talk to, sometimes you don’t know anybody who is in the situation where you want to be.

“Growing up I had big dreams to be in the NFL but I didn’t have anybody to talk to. I remember how much I would have appreciated someone mentoring me, giving me advice and guidance. That is what we are trying to do, help these kids by talking about relationships, family, school and dedication to their sport. All of that is necessary to get to this level and contribute to their success. We want to give them something to think about.”

Dwyer and Carter let the young men ask them whatever questions they wanted, and they were able to answer them from someone who was once in their shoes.

“It was an opportunity for us to spend time with kids who look up to us for guidance and want a role model to help them,” said Dwyer. “It was a chance for us to give advice to these kids. I wish I would have had the opportunity to meet guys at the level I am playing at to get their advice and sit down and meet with them and get that extra edge to live my dream as well.”

While they shared the hard work and dedication it took to get to where they are today, the players were also forthcoming sharing some of the pitfalls along the way, assuring them that while you might stumble, you can always get back up again.

“We opened up and let them know we are normal people and you just have to work hard to get to where you are,” said Carter. “But the biggest thing is them understanding we made plenty of mistakes and you can rebound from them. You are never stuck in a situation, you can always get out. Coach (Mike) Tomlin tells us all of the time how do you get out of a hole. The first step is to stop digging and the second step is to stand up. You are never stuck in a situation. There is always a way out.

“That is what we wanted to get across to them. They might not have the support they need, might have different distractions, everybody lives a different life, but there is still a path for them to get to the top and get to where they want to be.”

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Giving teams a lot to prepare for

Posted by Teresa Varley on November 7, 2012 – 9:56 pm

Jonathan Dwyer knows when Rashard Mendenhall is healthy that the former number one draft pick will be back in the starting lineup. But even then, he can see everyone getting their shot in the backfield.

“We’ll just be a running back by committee,” said Dwyer. “Whoever has the hot hand gets more of the carries.”

Over the last three weeks Dwyer has had two 100-yard plus games, while Isaac Redman turned in a 147-yard performance against the New York Giants while Dwyer was injured.

Dwyer expects to be back on the field this week, while Mendenhall is also working his way back, possibly giving the team a full stable of healthy backs for the first time all season in a few weeks. If that happens, Dwyer feels the best plan of action is to give everyone a shot at carrying the ball, until someone gets going.

“It’s good to rotate, let everyone get a feel for it,” said Dwyer. “Everybody has a role, whatever that is. Whoever gets that feeling gets the majority of the carries and another guy rolls in when he gets tired. With all of us able to make plays when we touch the ball, who knows what can happen.”

Dwyer credits the recent success of the ground game with getting comfortable with Todd Haley’s playbook and finding running plays that work to the strengths of the backs.

“We just found things we like to do,” said Dwyer. “Coach Haley has a feel for us now. He knows how we are as individuals and he is going off of that.

“I had two big games and Isaac had a phenomenal game last week. It shows how deep the running back position is and teams have to prepare for all three of us and Baron (Batch), Will (Johnson) and (Chris) Rainey. They have to prepare of all of us.”

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Knowing who the true heroes are

Posted by Teresa Varley on November 6, 2012 – 4:01 pm

As Steelers Jonathan Dwyer, James Harrison, Doug Legursky and Brett Keisel entered one of the hangers at the Air National Guard’s 171st Air Refueling Wing in Pittsburgh, you could see the excitement on the faces of those who serve this country, seeing players they cheer for on Sunday afternoons right in front of them.

But for the players, on this day they weren’t the heroes, the ones people look up to. Not even close. It was the men and women in uniform who were the heroes.

“You get to see what they do to protect and serve us and give us the freedoms we have,” said Harrison. “It’s obvious they are the true heroes. We go out here and play a game and we consider it battle. They go out there and put their lives on the line and they don’t come home. I’m going to come home after a game.”

The visit, done in conjunction with USAA, was a part of the Steelers “Salute to Service” in honor of Veteran’s Day. The players were there to say thank you to those who serve the country and learn a little bit more about what they do on a daily basis.

Part of the tour of the base included learning the different aspects of their job, from refueling planes in battle to helping close to home as some members were recently deployed to the New York/New Jersey area to help in Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts.

“It’s a great opportunity and we are so happy they came here,” said Colonel Tony Carrelli, Wing Commander at the guard base. “One of the great things about a guard unit is we are a community Air Force, we are the Pittsburgh Air Force. We are strong to our ties to the community. There is such great support. Any time we can host someone on the base it’s a great opportunity because they are so supportive of us.

“As you walk around the base you see Pennsylvania. The patches have been adapted to show that. We go all over the world supporting missions and people look at us and say you are Pittsburgh.”

The most obvious symbol of Pittsburgh is the Steelers logo and Terrible Towel painted on the nose of one of the KC-135 Stratotanker jets that are used for refueling missions.

“To see the picture on the jet explains it all and how much pride they have in Pittsburgh,” said Dwyer, who has family that served in the military. “It’s a great feeling and it motivates you more to go out and do our jobs each and every day because they fight for us to be able to do what we do every day, wake up and not worry about anything.”

The players got a tour of the jet, with Harrison sitting in the pilot’s seat trying to convince them to let him turn on the jets, to Legursky, Dwyer and Keisel, with his son Jacob, touring the entire plane, including climbing down into a small area and seeing how the fuel is transferred from one plane to another.

“It was awesome,” said Keisel, who has family currently serving and many military veterans in his family as well. “All of these people here are our heroes. They protect us, protect all of our rights. To have the opportunity to and bring my son and show him about these guys and what they do is awesome.”

The team was presented with a photo of the plane, and in return the unit was given a helmet signed by Dan Rooney, Sr., Art Rooney II, Mike Tomlin and the four players on hand.

The most exciting part for the players, though, was when they had the opportunity to sign where the logo is painted on the nose of the plane and the realization that every time that plane takes flight for a mission, their names will be on there.

“That plane going overseas and on so many missions, with that art on the nose of the plane and to have my signature on it and it continue to serve our country, it’s a pretty big honor,” said Legursky, whose father Wayne served in the 82nd Airborne. “Coming from a military family it’s close to my heart. To come out here and hang out with people who serve is the least I can do for everything they do for our country.”

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Dwyer knows how to overcome adversity

Posted by Teresa Varley on October 25, 2012 – 9:50 pm

Jonathan Dwyer is no stranger to facing adversity. As a kid he battled challenges in school, fighting to try and retain the information he learned in class each day, drawing a blank during the middle of a test, even though he knew the answer.

It was frustrating for him, watching his grades suffer even though he was a smart kid. He just couldn’t remember things.

It wasn’t until a teacher at Shiloh Hills Christian School in Georgia suggested that the fifth-grader see a doctor that he learned what the problem was. He was diagnosed with attention deficit disorder (ADD), a disorder associated with hyperactivity that results in lack of attention and concentration and impaired short term memory.

Dwyer said it was the “greatest thing that happened in my life,” getting the diagnosis, because he could now move forward, treat it, and fight back.

Thanks to the treatment, the problems with ADD are in Dwyer’s rear view mirror, but dealing with adversity isn’t.

In the Steelers 34-31 loss to the Oakland Raiders earlier this season, Dwyer fumbled in the second quarter with the Steelers up 14-7. The Raiders recovered, and eventually turned it into a game tying touchdown.

The next week Dwyer learned he would be inactive for the Philadelphia Eagles game when he walked into the team meeting room and Coach Mike Tomlin had written as much on the message board.

“That is how I found out,” said Dwyer. “That is how we do business. He is honest, straight forward and I appreciate that. It makes me work harder and eliminate my problems and mistakes from my game.

“I made a mistake and learned from it and moved on. It’s a situation you go through, live with and try to make the best of it and move on.”

Dwyer, who was also inactive the following week against Tennessee, doesn’t feel like he was unfairly singled out because of the fumble, as there was nobody more disappointed that it happened than he was. 

“It should have never happened,” said Dwyer. “I was disappointed with myself. You make mistakes. But I don’t think I was being punished.

“It’s something to learn from and you humble yourself and get better and try to make the most of your next opportunity.”

With Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman both sidelined with injuries against the Bengals, the running game was in Dwyer’s hands. And this time, he responded with the same vigor he had as a fifth-grade kid responding to the challenge. He came out in the game on fire, becoming the Steelers first 100-yard rusher of the season with 122 yards on 17 carries.

“It feels good,” said Dwyer. “It makes you know what you can do and believe in yourself and go off the momentum and keep going.”

Dwyer doesn’t know what his playing status will be this week as injuries continue to play a part in the running back rotation. But whatever the role is, he will be ready.

“I am getting myself prepared for it if it is there,” said Dwyer about getting playing time. “I am trying to (make the most of my opportunities). I am not there all the way. I am not where I want to be. I want to be the best I can possibly be. I am taking steps each and every day.”

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Vote for Jonathan Dwyer

Posted by Teresa Varley on October 23, 2012 – 8:11 am

Running back Jonathan Dwyer is nominated for the FedEx Ground Player of the Week for his performance against the Cincinnati Bengals and Steelers fans can help him win.

Dwyer, who got his first start of the season, had 122 yards on 17 carries in the Steelers 24-17 win over the Bengals. He is the Steelers first 100-yard rusher this season.

Click here to Vote for Dwyer.

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Mendenhall plans on playing

Posted by Teresa Varley on October 15, 2012 – 7:23 pm

A week ago the Steelers were at full strength at running back, but going into Sunday’s game against the Bengals the rotation there is uncertain.

Rashard Mendenhall, who returned from his ACL injury against the Eagles two games ago, injured his Achilles against the Titans on Thursday night, while Isaac Redman suffered an ankle injury.

Mendenhall, though, thinks he will be ready to go this week.

“I’m planning on being able to play,” Mendenhall said after Monday’s practice. “It’s a little tight. We’re just kind of working through it this week. I’m just taking it day-by-day. It’s not something I’m worried about too much.

“I know we’re both trying to get back. We’ll be day-to-day. Come Sunday night we’ll know for sure.”

Mendenhall said the Achilles injury could have resulted from a combination of favoring other areas coming off the ACL injury, as well as the short week coming back from playing on a Sunday to Thursday. He knows it’s a risk that comes with the game.

“I’m not frustrated at all,” said Mendenhall. “It’s just part of it. I’m going to continue to work. I’ve been in this position before. I’m just going to continue to work out of it. This process is a long process coming off of a major surgery so I’m just continuing to get better with it.

“With every extra day I’m just trying to do everything I can – work out, get extra treatment, different things like that.”

If either Mendenhall or Redman can’t go on Sunday, the Steelers do have a stable of running backs ready to carry the load, including Baron Batch, Chris Rainey and Jonathan Dwyer, who has been inactive since Mendenhall has returned to action.

“It’s just been a numbers game,” said Dwyer. “I don’t play as much special teams as the other guys. I am just preparing for it and am excited to get the opportunity. I just have to do what I have been doing, I try to make some type of play to get the team going and do whatever I can to help us get the win.”

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KidZone Show Guests – Sept. 18

Posted by Teresa Varley on September 17, 2012 – 3:39 pm

Show taping takes place at Heinz Field in the FedEx Great Hall

Doors Open at 5:30 p.m., show taping begins at 6:30 p.m. 

Kids under age 12 are free, all others $5.00.

Two shows are taped per night. Parking available in lot Gold 1A.

The McDonald Steelers KidZONE Show airs Sunday mornings 
at 10:30 A.M. on The Pittsburgh CW.

Show begins airing on Sunday, Sept. 16 through Sunday, Dec. 30

Once guests are known for each show we will publish them on this page.

 Taping Dates

Tuesday, September 4 – Jerricho Cotchery and Ryan Mundy  
Tuesday, September 11 – Baron Batch and Cortez Allen
Tuesday, September 18 – Jonathan Dwyer and Chris Carter
Tuesday, September 25 –  
Tuesday, October 2 –  
Tuesday, October 16 – 
Tuesday, October 23 –

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