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Wakeup Call: Hijacking of Steelers’ offense?

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Brief and to the Point …

>> The Monday column looks at why in the world anyone would think the Pirates are done.

>> The Pirates haven’t yet approached Jason Grilli, one of the National League’s top relievers, about an extension. He can be a free agent this winter.

There’s plenty of time, obviously, but it should be a priority. His 72 Ks are among baseball’s best, opponents are batting .182 off him. Oh, and the Pirates are 58-1 when leading after seven innings.

Even if Grilli’s 35, you don’t let that walk. He’s willing to stay, but the team’s got to step up. Once he hits the open market, forget it.


>> This might sound over-the-top, so don’t take it terribly seriously, but didn’t you get the feel Saturday night when Ben Roethlisberger was engineering — and apparently ad-libbing — that 98-yard drive in Buffalo that he was sticking out his tongue at Todd Haley and all the Trent Dilfer-esque plays they’d been running to that point?

Come on. It had to cross your mind.

First, early in that big drive, he gestures angrily toward the Steelers’ sideline after an illegal-substitution penalty, then he suddenly breaks out the downfield throws.

And when the halftime quotes were gathered by the Bills and disseminated to reporters in the Buffalo press box — that’s how it works in preseason — came this from Ben: “I just started calling my own plays. We went no-huddle and up-tempo, and we were throwing the ball.”

Mike Tomlin tried to downplay it afterward, but really … how else could you read this other the quarterback just hijacking the offense?

Don’t misunderstand, though. Not saying that’s a bad thing, given the dramatic differences before and after.

>> I’ll make my weekly appearance on TribLIVE Radio today at noon.

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