Day 5 Afternoon Practice: Sanders stars in red-zone drill


By Dale Grdnic Photo: David Hague – Inside Pittsburgh Sports LATROBE, Pa. — Once again, situation down and distance work was the primary focus for the Pittsburgh Steelers during their Tuesday afternoon training camp practice at Saint Vincent College. And Steelers coach Mike Tomlin couldn’t have been more pleased about it. “That was a legitimate training-camp practice,” Tomlin said. “I loved the ebb and flow. There was success and failure on both sides of the ball, but I think we have our feet on the ground and growing as a football team. We need to match that effort (Wednesday). … But I liked the effort and enthusiasm.” The main team sessions started with a red-zone drill, first-and-10 from the 19. Ben Roethlisberger hit wideout Hines Ward with a short pass, and then it was changed to third down and six from the 16. Mewelde Moore went in motion and cameRead More »

Thursday Practice Report: Roethlisberger looks to move on from Ward’s comments


Inside Pittsburgh Sports The Steelers hope to have closure with the controversy created this past Sunday by Hines Ward. That closure is possible now that Ben Roethlisberger has addressed the issue with the Pittsburgh media. Speaking before practice Thursday, the Steelers’ quarterback admitted that he was “hurt” by remarks made by Ward on the pre-game show before a 20-17 overtime loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Ward in essence challenged Roethlisberger’s toughness for sitting out with what Ward described as “just a concussion.” “I told (Hines) I was just more hurt than anything,” Roethlisberger said. On Saturday when the Steelers learned that Roethlisberger wouldn’t play due to re-occurring headaches from a Nov. 22 concussion, Ward said he was frustrated. Ward was bummed out to be playing the hated Ravens without “Big Ben.” But imagine how Roethlisberger found out when he got the news. “Coach (Mike) Tomlin basically pulled me in hisRead More »

Wednesday Practice Report: Kemoeatu a full participant


*** Dennis Dixon’s days as a No. 3 quarterback may be over. His performance in the 20-17 overtime loss in Baltimore was so impressive that Charlie Batch’s run as the backup QB may be over. “We’re so proud of the way Dennis played,” Roethlisberger said. “He played with the fire and intensity we’ve seen from him in practice every day. He played his heart out. The Ravens found out what we’ve known all along. He’s a very good quarterback.” Up until last week, Dixon had been a No. 3 quarterback since his arrival in Pittsburgh as a fifth round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft. But he started against the Ravens due to Roethlisberger’s concussion and Batch’s broken wrist (both were hurt in the Nov. 22 loss in Kansas City). “I embraced it,” said Dixon, who completed 12 of 26 passes for 145 yards, one touchdown and an interception. “IRead More »

Ravens beat Steelers 20-17 in OT


Post-Game Reaction Under the circumstances, Dennis Dixon put on a good performance throwing a 33 yard touchdown pass to Santonio Holmes, and running for a 24 yard touchdown to put Pittsburgh up 17-14 in the fourth quarter with less than 6:24 remaining in the fourth quarter. In regulation, Dixon did everything the Steelers could have expected and surprisingly put the Steelers in position to win the game but the Steelers defense was unable to hold off the Ravens from tying the game.

Steelers @ Ravens Game Day Thread: All eyes on Dennis Dixon


Pittsburgh Steelers (6-4) @ Baltimore Ravens (5-5) The stunning developments over the past 24 hours of quarterback Ben Roethlisberger being ruled out to start tonight’s AFC North Showdown between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens, has put all eyes on quarterback Dennis Dixon. Dixon a second year pro, will make his first NFL start in a hostile territory against a divisional rival that is fighting for their playoff lives. This is a game that many NFL pundits already saw as being very difficult for Pittsburgh, even when it was believed that Ben Roethlisberger would be starting. Roethlisberger will be active tonight, but will serve as the teams No. 3 quarterback. Tyler Palko, an undrafted free agent, will be the Steelers No. 2 quarterback.

Wednesday Practice Report: Dixon the center of attention as Pittsburgh prepares for Baltimore


By Inside Pittsburgh Sports Dennis Dixon had a busy practice in his first day as the Steelers’ backup quarterback. With Ben Roethlisberger practicing on a limited basis due to his latest concussion and Charlie Batch recovering from broken wrist surgery, Dixon took the majority of snaps at Wednesday’s workout. Dixon even took snaps with the scout team because the Steelers did not sign a practice squad quarterback until after practice.

Position by Position Breakdown


The Pittsburgh Steelers prepare for their final pre-season contest of the year (Thursday Night 7:30 at Carolina), a lot of questions have been cleared up over the last month of training camp and the three previous warm up games. But a few question marks remain. Tim Benz takes an inside look….position by position…. at where the Steelers roster and line-up stands now as opposed to the beginning of camp in Latrobe back on July 31st. QUARTERBACK: Ben Roethlisberger managed to avoid major injury and legal distraction up until now. Although it is clear Big Ben’s Achilles injury at the end of camp was a scare and cost him a pre-season tune up opportunity against Washington. Roethlisberger still claims the injury isn’t 100% and says he took a hit on it in the Buffalo game as well. But the injury “watch and wait game” is something we are all familiar withRead More »

Day 7: Afternoon Practice: Insider Report


By Dale Grdnic LATROBE, Pa. — Ben Roethlisberger returned to practice Thursday afternoon, but is still showing signs that he is working his way back into shape as far as his arm strength goes. While he was sharp on the short and intermediate routes, Roethlieberger’s arm lacked some long-ball zip again Thursday, as one bomb was picked off by cornerback Roy Lewis, while another fell harmlessly short of the receiver and defensive back. After practice, Roethlisberger was carted up the hill with several ice bags wrapped to his shoulder. “Ben’s getting better, but we all are,” veteran quarterback Charlie Batch said. “I know I’m still shaking off the rust from last season, but we’re coming along little by little. It’s a process, as they say.” There was one drill where Roethlisberger displayed his accuracy. The Steelers linebackers covered the backs and tight ends off the line, and inside linebacker JamesRead More »

Wednesday Morning Practice: Roethlisberger throws 3TD’s in Redzone Drill


Broken Coverage The Steelers secondary had a tough time staying with the club’s receivers in a coverage drill, as quarterbacks Ben Roethlisberger, Charlie Batch and Dennis Dixon were pretty sharp from start to finish. In the 11-on-11, team red-zone drill, Roethlisberger threw three touchdown passes: to Santonio Holmes, Shaun McDonald and tight end Dezmond Sherrod, while Batch had one to McDonald. In the coverage drill, wideout Steven Black beat