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Holmes Welcomes New Challenges
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Errant Spike Still Haunting Burress
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Mularkey to Unveil "Nuances" vs Jagwads
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2001: Week 1
Pre-Game Show

Steelers at Jagwads
Send your comments, predictions, smak, & insults about our upcoming opponent as well as your postgame critiques from the previous week. Whether your message is a simple, "Go Steelers!" or detailed, in-depth analysis, tell us what you think and we'll post it.
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Jaguar Facts

Record: 0-0

The Jags have MAJOR injury problems!

OUT (WILL NOT PLAY)
Tony Brakens (DE)
Elvis Joseph (RB)
John Wade (C)
Westmoreland (LB)

QUESTIONABLE
Tony Boselli (OT)
K. McCardell (WR)
Fernando Bryant (CB)

Official Site
It's FINALLY Here!
Okay, NOW We're Awake, People!
Article by McMillen & Wife

We're in the middle of making painstaking, agonzing, tedious and frankly hell-like changes to our site in preparation for our impending move to "mcmillenandwife.com", so we'll make it short and sweet this week, folks. Nothing in-depth that you didn't already know, in otherwords (don't worry... we'll be back to our regular long-winded selves next week).

This isn't a "gimme" game by any circumstances. The Jags aren't what they used to be, and the Steelers appear to be a significantly improved squad over last year's offering. Throw in the fact that the Jaguars are currently decimated by injuries (detailed in the table below) and on paper, it adds up to a Steeler win.

Now, we all know the Steelers have taken their lumps in the Florida cesspool known as Jacksonville over the years. One win in six tries... not exactly the stuff warm fuzzies are made of. And as usual, the media seems to be obsessed with the "heat" factor and how it will affect the Steelers (as if it's not hot in Pittsburgh in the summer). And Tom Coughlin's annual practice of signing a Steeler player just released on waivers to pick his brain has received significant attention.

Here Kitty, Kitty
Can the Steelers tame the beat-up Jags in the Florida sun? Looks mighty good to us!
But in the end, none of these things will matter... the Jags are too beaten up, and the Steelers are a better team with big a chip on their shoulder.

Prediction: Steelers 20, Jagwads 10

See 'ya after the "game", bruthas & sistas!

Tim McMillen
Webmaster, McMillen & Wife


Fan Smak & Analysis
The following articles are listed in the order they were received (with the most recent entries at the top). This isn't a "guestbook" format... I read and manually insert every message, so you may not see your submission show up immediately. Thanks a million for your comments, people!
Submitted by Grampa ZigZag
My two cents ain't worth two cents. I believe we will take the Jags,I don't know if we will make a wild card, It all depends on Stewart, If he finally acts like a Q.B. we have a good shot, if not, well we have better things to think about.Come on Kordell, I'm beggin' you, be a man, step in there and do the right thing, youve had enough time to get your act togather, now either you win or take the money and run.


Submitted by Jonathan Pasterick
Thoughts on the game: Besides the fact that I'm as nervous as a Colombian judge on Red Bull about it?

I hope Ainsley Battles is tight-lipped. I know that Coughlin picked him up after the Steelers cut, probably to pick his brain about the offense. I don't know how much of a difference that stuff makes. Aside from that, this is a game the Steelers SHOULD win. The Jaguars finished last season strong, but those games were meaningless. They have a number of injuries right now that could hurt them. Brackens is out, Boselli and McCardell are playing with significant injuries, and there is no telling what the story with Jimmy Smith and his abdomen are. He had three offseason surgeries, which even if they aren't affecting him now, they had to have compromised his offseason conditioning.

I also personally happen to believe that Mark Brunell is on the downslide as a QB. I think he's gotten a bit trigger-happy in the pocket, especially against blitzing teams like the Steelers, because he's not as elusive as he used to be and his knees aren't healthy. Fred Taylor is their one killer of a player, and the Steelers have to do something about him. He destroyed them in the second game last year.

The key for the Steelers Sunday, as it will be all season long, is to shorten the game. The Jags have a pretty potent offense when it's clicking, and the Steelers have to keep them off the field, which means using a strong running game.

I think the Steelers defense will be fine, as will the offensive line.

Like always, it comes down to QB and WR play for the Steelers. Who knows what will happen with Kordell when the games start to count, but he seemed to have a bang-up preseason to go along with a strong end to last season. Honestly, I like the Steelers by about 10 in this one. I really am excited about this season. The only downside is that the Steelers play in such a tough division. I understand when a lot of prognosticators don't pick them to make the playoffs, because of the depth of the AFC Central, and that's fair I guess, but this team could really surprise some people. We shall see. Anyway, looking forward to the new site, and hope to be in a good mood on Monday.

Later bro,
Jonathan Pasterick


Submitted by Keith Thomas
Well, its lonely down here. As some of you know, during the last year I relocated to Buenos Aires. And although Iím happy thus far with the outcome of this rather large change in my life (which I needed to make) Iím feeling a little homesick.

You see, as I write this, the 2001 NFL season is almost underway. In less that 48 hours the Steelers will open down in Jacksonville (God letís hope we donít have a repeat of the last time when we opened in Jacksonvillle Ė Remember, we lost Lloyd....) I missed that game, just like Iíll miss all but a few from this coming season. (I think Iíll be able to see the games on ESPN and the Monday Night Game.)

When I made the decision to relocate, the one thing about the US, the one thing (other than missing all of my friends, of course) was that I KNEW Iíd miss was my beloved Steelers. Making it all the more difficult was an offer from Tim McMillen to write on his website. For those of you who donít know, Tim McMillen runs the best Steeler fan website on the Ďnet. Iíve been copying these Steeler E-Mails to him for a while, and I really wanted to take him up on the offer. Once again, thanks Timmy! And, I hope that rain check will be good once I get back to the USA.

Iíve tried to follow the team as best I can from down here, but with Internet time as costly and expensive as it is, its difficult (and I donít exactly have the time anyway.) Fortunately, my brother upgraded my subscription to Steelers Digest, for which he now moves from the status of being a man, to being a God. (My students complained to me about missing a soccer game the other night because we had class, I told them that didnít want to hear it because I was missing and entire season!)

Well, by the time most of you read this the Jacksonville game will be history, but I havenít had time to write an preseason forcast before now so, here goes.

Looking toward the season Iím cautiously optimistic. The AFC Centralís going to be a TOUGH division. Baltimoreís the defending champ, Tennessee slipped last year but I wonít rule them out, and Jacksonville canít be counted out either, despite their cap/injury problems.

Last year the profits-that-be in both the NFL National Media and in the ALL KNOWING Pittsburgh sports media, predicted nothing but gloom and doom for the Black and Gold. The team had lost too many free agents, Dan Rooney had picked the wrong man in the Cowher vs. Donahue struggle, Cowheríd lost his ability to motivate people, Kordell was, well, Kordell etc.... And, to be certain, things started out pretty ugly, but we won a few game. Then came them middle of the season with the losses to Tennessee, Filthadelphia, and the Jags, each one getting progressively uglier. The critics, sometimes gleefully, let everyone know that the Steelers were looking exactly like they had during the 1999 and 1998 meltdowns.

Then a funny thing happened. The Steelers went out and showed everyone that games are won on the field, not on paper. They had a chance to fold, and indeed, for a time I thought the critics were right.

But the Steelers didnít fold. They didn't listen to the critics. They continued to believe in themselves, and won some tough, hard fought battles. Put simply, in 2000 the Steelers learned how to win again.

Rest assured learning how to win is as an essential lesson in football as is learning how to run block.

Iím pretty pleased with the moves that were made in the off-season, with the notable exceptions, of course.

Losing Dermonti Dawson was TOUGH. The guyís every bit a Hall of Famer. But heíd missed, the majority of games in the past two seasons? Well, the reality of the salary cap dictates that youíve got to let guys like that go. Still, itís a shame, and his leadership WILL be missed.

My first reaction to their cutting of Levon was that this will hurt the Steelers, and indeed it might (although they tell me the rookie we drafted is looking pretty good.) Now Iím not so sure of it. The fact that Levon ended up signing for much less than we were going to pay him should tell you something. And I also think its clear that Levon had lost a step, and perhaps that had something to do with the decline of our run defense as the season wore on. So, perhaps cutting Levon was something that had to be done.

But itís the way that it was done that really left a bad taste in my mouth. Levon was a warrior and a leader of this team. I donít care what the business circumstances were, the guy deserved to learn of his fate from someone in the Steelerís top three. Rooney, Colbert, or Cowher. Instead he learned from a reporter. What the hell would have been so hard about saying: ďLook, Levon. Weíve got to make a difficult decision and it affects you. I just wanted to give it to you straight because of everything youíve done for this team. We might want to resign you, but we feel you deserve a chance to test the market.Ē Come on folks, all of your are men, treat your employees with the respect the deserve! (This is old news, but Iíve had NO one to vet to about this down here.)

OK, enough of that. I do like, however, that the Steelers were more aggressive in their off-season moves. Dan Rooneyís never going to spend like the Carmen Policyís or Daniel Synderís of the league, but he did loosen things up quite a bit.

Thank God they did the right thing and resigned Bettis. That man embodies the sprit of the Pittsburgh Steelers. He sets the tone for the offense every bit in the same way that Greg Lloyd set the tone for the defense back in the 1990's. Bettis is a warrior, a hustler, and a leader. And, most importantly, he's still a Steeler.

I like that we picked up another safety since it was clear that Scott Shields (another Donahue bust) wasnít up to playing in the NFL. Picking up Jones at LB was a good move, at least for the money. While Iím glad we re-signed Fu, Iíd be a little more comfortable with the fact that we let Huntley go if Fu had shown any ability to stay healthy.

Signing Chad Scott and Dwayne Washington were good moves, (so as not to go into Free Agency with our top four CBís as free agents.) Iíd feel a lot better of weíd signed Holmes, but Iím guessing the franchise tag will either fall on him or Gildon.

Getting rid of Gilbride was the right move. Cowherís talking a little bit of a chance with Mularkey, but I like the move, and its also clear that Gilbrideís read and react offense was too complicated.

So what happens next? Well, thereís where Iím a little in the dark. Canít comment on the use of the 4-3, or the new offense, or how Kordellís looked, or the progress (or lack thereof) of Plexico, or our draft picks. (I was surprised Ainsley Battles, he looked pretty good for an undrafted FA. Oh well, sometimes undrafted FAís are one year wonders.)

I feel naked without this information, naked without being able to comment.

I will tell you one thing. I did fly my Steelerís flag on the opening day of training camp, and Iíll fly it again on game day!

The seasonís upon us. Enjoy it!

Until next time,

ďChew tobacco, chew tobacco, spit, spit, spit! If you ainít a Steelerís fan you ainít shit!

Keith Thomas,
President,
Pittsburgh Steeler Fan Club of Buenos Aires


Submitted by Nat LaBorde
Welp...........Here we go,new season,new offensive coach,....same old Jagoffs!First off though,I'm going out on a limb here......Kordell Stewart will have a awesome year,that's right Kordell Stewart! And so will the Steelers,they'll win the division!!!!It starts with the Jagoffs and will leave the Titians AND the so called badass Ravens wondering what hit them!..In tomorrows game it isn't even gonna be close,the Steelers are going to thrash the Jagoffs,completely and totally!!!I'm going to the bar to watch it,only thing that scares me is that Vampire from Salem's Lot on the sideline for the Jagoffs,that coffin[coughlin] bastard gives me nightmares,what a creepy looking S.o.b!!!.Other than that,no problem!!

God Bless the MIGHTY STEELERS!!GO STEELERS!!!

Nat LaBorde


Submitted by Florida Fan
Hey all , Glad to finally find a web site that I can chat with fellow Steelers fans. I am a long way from home down here in Tampa so its nice to be able to chat with people with the same interests. Does anyone know of a GOOD Steelers bar in the Tampa Bay/ St Petersburg area to go too? I used to have one , but it closed down and was turned into a strip club( NICE) Well tomorrow is the big day and the Steel Boys will be wiping the Jaguar blood off their jerseys for sure. GO GOLD AND BLACK!!


Submitted by Mike "Turbo-Tounge" Terry
I just thought this was interesting. hopfull Ainsley Battles will get a chance to play on spec teams for the the dumpwater swamp cats and get himself a bad boo boo on his head.

Quoted From the PG: "Coach Tom Coughlin pulled his Agent 007 routine again when he claimed S Ainsley Battles." "It's another example of Coughlin signing a former Steeler to his roster just before the Jaguars play them. It has incensed the Steelers for years, but no one has publicly complained."

Coughlin did it with QB Jim Miller in 1997 and picked his brains for two weeks before the Jaguars played the Steelers. He cut Miller the day after their game. At his news conference yesterday, laughed and said, "That's old NFL stuff." He turned serious and said, "We saw [Battles] on film. We liked him. Now that we have him here, we'll ask him some questions."



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2000: 0-0
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