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Stories tagged: NFL


Amazing battle of big plays

TAMPA, Fla. – Within seconds everything kept changing. This is how it is in today’s NFL. The greatness doesn’t come over long drives with plenty of grinding and banging by …


Warner’s chance at history comes up short

TAMPA, Fla. – As the ball slipped out of his hand and to the plush turf with 7 seconds to play, the chance for history was lost for Kurt Warner. …


Norman Chad: Team of Destiny reaches end of run in Tampa

On this day of destiny, the Team of Destiny had a date with destiny. Alas, the Pittsburgh Steelers spit in destiny’s face and chewed up destiny’s darlings. And, so, my …


Pittsburgh sets black-and-gold NFL standard

TAMPA, Fla. – They stand alone now, as true royalty must. The Pittsburgh Steelers are the Yankees. Without the tabloid headlines.


Steely determination

TAMPA, Fla. – When the Pittsburgh Steelers won their fifth Super Bowl three years ago, the franchise dubbed it “one for the thumb.” Sunday night’s 27-23 victory over the Arizona …


Title contest features contrasts

TAMPA, Fla. – Dynasty vs. doormat. The Pittsburgh Steelers have signified success in the Super Bowl era with their stable ownership, brilliant coaching and throwback style. A victory today would …


Rush toward the title

TAMPA, Fla. – For the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers, today’s Super Bowl is about the rush. For Arizona, it will be rushing the ball to give quarterback Kurt Warner …


Super Bowl catalyzes two distinct groups

If you need convincing that Super Bowl Sunday has evolved into a national holiday, consider this: It’s now possible to hear arguments about the proper way to observe the occasion. …


Innovator LeBeau never shows his age

TAMPA, Fla. – He is a master of disguise, so perhaps it’s not surprising that Pittsburgh Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau once was actor Michael Caine’s double in a movie. …


Sackmasters head Hall of Fame finalists

TAMPA, Fla. – The art of the sack was never lost on these five guys: Bruce Smith, Derrick Thomas, Claude Humphrey, Richard Dent and John Randle. Among the greatest practitioners …


Goodell: NFL not immune

TAMPA, Fla. – Despite fears of a worsening economy and potential labor problems, commissioner Roger Goodell tried to be upbeat Friday. In his state of the NFL address at the …


Aches gone, but memories still fresh for Hornung, Sayers

Paul Hornung and Gale Sayers share assorted memories and stories, membership in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, an agent, 40-year-old aches and duties as the featured guests at Sunday’s …


Hair-raising tales expected in Tampa

TAMPA, Fla. – Try this in high school or at the mall, and you’d have an all-out brawl. But at the Super Bowl, it’s perfectly OK: Go ahead and grab …


NFL mom is son’s No. 1 cheerleader

Like millions of football fans this Sunday, Spokane’s Cynthia Bracey-Coleman will be sitting in her living room with friends watching the Pittsburgh Steelers take on the Arizona Cardinals in the …


Steelers, Cards not above trick plays

TAMPA, Fla. – Trickery has a place at the Super Bowl, and the Steelers and Cardinals aren’t above using it to win. Yes, both teams’ repertoires are spiced with shenanigans. …


Super Bowl has first Australian

TAMPA, Fla. – He will be the first Australian to play in the Super Bowl. A punter with a former life in Australian Rules Football, which could make him a …


Harrison lets play do talking

TAMPA, Fla. – Troy Polamalu looked down from his podium at a 10-deep crush of media. Well, at least some of the questioners were actually reporters. Ben Roethlisberger’s audience was …


Cardinals, Steelers hit Tampa

TAMPA, Fla. – The pilot of their airplane stuck a team flag out the cockpit window as the Arizona Cardinals landed in a place few could have imagined. Ever.


Cards live Chad’s dream

In James Brooks’ fabulous 1987 film, “Broadcast News,” William Hurt’s character asks, “What do you do when your real life exceeds your dreams?” To which Albert Brooks’ character responds, “Keep …


Foes once joined forces

TAMPA, Fla. – They wore hand-me-down jerseys, the little rips and tears widening with every loss. The holes at quarterback and kicker were more obvious. The brief World War II …


Familiarity shouldn’t provide edge

TAMPA, Fla. – Yes, Arizona coach Ken Whisenhunt knows the Pittsburgh Steelers’ offense like no one else from another team. He helped design it. He taught Ben Roethlisberger to run …


Browns hire Kokinis as GM

CLEVELAND – Baltimore pro personnel director George Kokinis has been hired as Cleveland’s general manager, reuniting him with new Browns coach and close friend Eric Mangini. Kokinis, who began his …


Guy doesn’t dwell on Hall of Fame

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – After two hours of talking about his life and his days with the Oakland Raiders, Ray Guy turns to a waitress who’s been eavesdropping. “I bet you’d …


Steelers have support of President Obama

TAMPA, Fla. – President Barack Obama is a Bears fan who apparently will root for the Steelers in Super Bowl XLIII. Why? Because Steelers owner Dan Rooney was a major …


Steelers know Fitz can give anyone fits

PITTSBURGH – There’s a lot of buzz this week among the Pittsburgh Steelers about the ability of 6-foot-3 Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals to “high point” the ball – …


Look beyond the stars in Super Bowl

For the key to the Super Bowl, look beyond the hair. The hair, of course, belongs to Arizona’s Larry Fitzgerald and Pittsburgh’s Troy Polamalu – two of the biggest stars …


Destiny leads Cardinals to Super Bowl 43

In a 48-hour period that will change America forever, the Arizona Cardinals are going to the Super Bowl and Barack Obama is going to the White House. What price would …


Steelers will play for sixth title

PITTSBURGH – Tough and mean, like the original Steel Curtain. These Pittsburgh Steelers delivered too many hard hits and their quarterback was steady enough to outplay the kid and the …


Super Bowl TV ad sales still strong

The Super Bowl is on track to remain one big, glitzy bash even in these tough economic times. That’s not to say some advertisers aren’t nervous about buying expensive ad …


Unlikely finalists in NFC

GLENDALE, Ariz. – One by one, the players walked through the Arizona Cardinals’ spacious locker room showing off their “Prove It” T-shirts. They might as well have been Philadelphia Eagles, …