Best asked and answered: June 23

November 8, 2021
DAVID BOGNAR OF GERMANY, WI: For those who needed to put 4 Steelers up entrance on a regular basis, who would you set subsequent to Joe Inexperienced within the sort out? Will or not it’s Ernie Stautner, Casey Hampton, or Cam Heyward?

ANSWER: I’ve by no means seen Ernie Stuttner play, however I imagine his accomplishments – a Corridor of Fame recruit, the primary participant in franchise historical past to retire his jersey – spoke of excelling in his profession, and people {qualifications} will make him a stable selection as a sort out on the entrance 4 Steelers all alongside. Possibly it is simply my private choice, however I’ve a number of respect for the way in which Cam Heyward performs and what he brings to the crew as a captain and by way of his taking part in behaviour. Along with my private choice, there’s an necessary historic reality in Heyward’s favour: Within the historical past of the Steelers franchise, solely two All-Professional First Crew’s first-team defensive linemen have been voted on greater than as soon as: Joe Greene and Cam Heyward. So I would go along with Heyward alongside Joe Greene as a result of I do not suppose there can be a number of offensive line going to be prepared to go down and soiled, if crucial, with these two.

April 5 2022
Luis Philip of Chihuahua, Mexico: Are you able to inform us a few main upheavals or tragic defeats that you just suppose the Steelers have confronted, in your opinion?

Reply: One of many issues you need to perceive is that the inaugural NFL season for the franchise was in 1933. Meaning the Steelers can be within the ninetieth NFL season in 2022, so once you ask questions on “the worst ever” or “Finest ever” together with a number of historical past. Limiting myself to the post-Noll period, I would wish to level out the 1994 Asian Championship recreation loss to San Diego at Three Rivers Stadium, as a result of the Steelers had been a double-digit favourite over the Chargers and had been stung by taking part in the sport to not lose as a substitute of taking part in to win and lose to the Inexperienced Bay in Tremendous Bowl XLV, as a result of that was sabotaged by transitions – a pick-six by Nick Collins within the first half after which a loss by Richard Mendenhall within the fourth quarter.

December 16, 2021
Steve Madden from ELDERSBURG, MD: One in every of your responses on December 14 was “Requested and Answered” concerning the kicks and the truth that the NFL and schools use a distinct ball. What’s the distinction between a Okay ball and that utilized in faculty soccer? Moreover, why would not faculty soccer use the identical ball as a result of it’s basically an NFL “coaching area”?

Reply: You would possibly view faculty soccer as an NFL “coaching floor”, however faculty soccer would not see itself as that, nor does it trouble to strengthen that notion. And so, there are variations in tools and guidelines, and I believe there’ll all the time be variations between faculty soccer and American soccer. For the soccer ball used: Usually, faculty footballs may be as much as 1-1/4 inches smaller than an NFL soccer ball. For extra particulars, the circumference of a faculty soccer ranges from 20-3/4 inches to 21-1/4 inches in size from finish to finish, versus 21 inches to 21-1/4 inches within the NFL. An NFL ball lacks streaks, a school ball has two white balls within the center, and whereas all faculty footballs have streaks, the balls fluctuate barely from crew to crew. That is in distinction to the consistency of the NFL, the place each crew will get the identical ball.

In 1999, the NFL switched to particular groups “Okay-balls” as a result of there was a rising concern that balls and punters had been manipulating common balls to make them fly greater and straighter. In 2015, enlisted a gaggle of former NFL gamblers and mentors to elucidate some “commerce scams.”

Former NFL heart participant Michael Hested, who performed 9 seasons with the Buccaneers, Raiders, Redskins and the Chief, stated he would go to the tools room each Monday and break the noses of 36 footballers by hitting them on the finish of a desk or door jamb. Husted then inflates the balls as much as 30 psi (NFL soccer customary between 12.5 and 13.5) earlier than putting them within the sauna for 2 days earlier than letting the air out and setting them within the solar. What this course of did was soften the pores and skin and widen the candy spot. The ball would then be inflated to regular stress nevertheless it was mainly a totally completely different soccer ball on the time of the match.

Three-time Professional Bowl soccer participant Reggie Robbie will sit and rub the soccer ball with a bit of Astroturf to interrupt it. He would additionally take a heavy weight board, put it on prime of the soccer ball, then stand on it and roll it. Others could soak the balls in evaporated milk or lemon juice. Some soccer balls within the microwave or baked within the oven.

Okay balls (or kick balls) don’t journey so far as ball bearings, and can’t be “steered” as precisely as gentle, spherical balls. The Okay balls usually are not a distinct dimension than common NFL soccer, however gamers describe them as being stronger and smarter than common NFL soccer. When the Okay-ball was first launched in 1999, the unique aim was for every kick to comprise a brand new ball. When that did not work, scores of Okay-Balls had been rotated all through the match to verify every one was kicked the identical variety of instances.

However after quarterback Tony Romo, additionally holder of the Cowboys on the time, could not deal with a brand-new Okay-ball in a Dallas playoff in 2007 in opposition to the Seattle Seahawks, and a stumble that price his crew a win, the principles had been as soon as once more modified. The Okay-ball scores had been numbered from 1 to 12, the #1 ball was used on the preliminary begin and saved taking part in till it was now not an possibility, at which level the Okay-Ball No. 2 and so forth and so forth. forth.

At this time, below Rule 2, Division 2 of the NFL Rulebook, six new soccer balls are shipped on to the referee for every recreation and opened within the officers’ locker room precisely two hours and quarter-hour earlier than kickoff. All Okay balls are particularly marked by the referee and used solely in kicked conditions.

Might 24, 2022
Sean Chalmer from Bendigo, Australia: We noticed that we “terminated” John Simon’s contract. What is the distinction if there’s any distinction between terminating a contract somewhat than “releasing it?”

Reply: The distinction in terminology used displays John Simon’s years of service within the NFL. Gamers with lower than 4 years of NFL service are waived, which implies they go to waiver wire and may be claimed by any crew, and if a participant claims he should play for the claimant crew or not play in any respect. A participant like Simon, who’s retired, has 4 or extra years of NFL service, which implies he is now free to play for any crew he is thinking about.

12 Might 2022
Michael Kosminsky from Warren, Pennsylvania: For those who needed to choose Heinz Area’s most iconic second, what wouldn’t it be?

Reply: That is straightforward for me. Troy Polamalu’s 40-yard pick-6 within the 2008 AFC Championship recreation in opposition to the Ravens ought to have offered the seize factors within the 23-14 victory that despatched the Steelers to Tremendous Bowl XLIII, the place they received their sixth Lombardy Cup in franchise historical past with a win 27-23 over the Arizona Cardinals.