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Podcast: Le’Veon addresses Ben comments

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Today’s TribLIVE Radio show featured special guest Le’Veon Bell on his looming NFL debut in London, as well as comments made by Ben Roethlisberger that easily could be construed as critical. Also, I discussed Pitt football with Trib beat man Jerry DiPaola and introduced the one, the only @SuckMeter.

Here’s video of the opening segment …

Thanks to all!

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.


  1. tpbco says:

    RE: Ben’s comments.

    One of the things I came away with after watching the last Monday nite game and interviews (confirmed actually) was Peyton Manning’s work ethic. He moved from Indy to Denver and threw himself at learning the new system, players and coaches. Does he have an ego – sure, but no one doubts the effort he puts forth, especially in regards to the gameplan, studying defenses and his own play.

    You never hear that about BBR. I have no idea if he does or doesn’t, but you never hear about it and if it was happening, you would think you would. The impression given is that he likes drawing plays in the dirt, was not on board with the new OC and generally plays the part of spoiled superstar (remember the Rosetta Stone), sort of the anti-PM. And it shows. You almost have the impression that he would rather have a game like against the Bears…400+ yards and 2 TDS ( and 2 Ints) and lose playing sandlot than perform like he did (forced) at the begining of last season and win. And I have generally been a fan, saying this. Even Jay Cutler was getting rid of the ball in under 3 seconds. That’s why there was only one sack Sunday nite, Woodley had it and was credited with 5 pressures.

    The reading I’ve done in various websites, like PFF, suggested that the issue was not as much the OLIne as people want to believe. Both DeCastro and Gilbert actually graded pretty well. Adams didn’t and Foster was below the mark, but BBR had a good pocket for a lot of the game, especially in the second half. He did throw for 400 yards…

    Remember Adams was going against Jules Peppers and that’s a mismatch at Adams stage in his career. The INT with Cocthery (sp) was pointed out as being totally on BBR. He had a good pocket and threw off target and too early – Pick 6. The lost fumbles were just sloppy football.

    Just maybe he needs to look in the mirror before calling out rookies and young players and perhaps consider leading by example…the way PM does, IF he wants to be considered elite. I usta think he was, not real sure any more.

  2. petev says:

    yeah, gilbert did so well he was replaced by beechum

  3. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    How could ANYONE get excited about Le’Veon Bell at this point in time?

  4. Ghost says:

    I’d have to quibble with the O-Line and however they “graded out.” They stunk, and it was out there for all the nation to see.

    That said, Ben stunk himself, and went backwards last Sunday night. He made poor decisions (like the pick six you pointed out), was sloppy with the ball fumbling twice, and generally ignored the club directive of the last two years to get rid of the ball quicker. I have zero issue with him calling out teammates who are not putting out championship-caliber efforts. The Steelers need that voice and they need it from him. The issue, as DK and you state, is that Ben also MUST look in the mirror and be more honest about what is looking back at him.

  5. Ghost says:

    Bell is still an empty vessel in which we can put some hope. The rest of the players we already know are stinking it up.

  6. JAL says:

    Finding no morning thread I will put the links here

    JAL’s Rain Must Fall Morning Links


    1- MLB Transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    3 Pittsburgh Pirates Stats

    BLOGS and such

    4—Pirates Prospects

    First Pitch: The Six Year Plan, and the Next Six Years

    Should Francisco Liriano Start the Wild Card Game on the Road?

    5 Bucs Dugout

    Pirates fall to Cubs, 4-2

    6 Rumbunter

    What’s Your Strategy for Pirates One-Game Wild Card Game?


    Game 159: Cubs 4 Pirates 2

    8 The Green Weenie

    Opportunity Knocks; Bucs Don’t Answer In 4-2 Loss

    9 Raise the Jolly Roger

    Cubs 4, Pirates 2

    10 City of Champions

    Starling Marte could be the Pittsburgh Pirates’ playoff X-factor

  7. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    11 Patriot News

    Bill Mazeroski, Cal Ripken, Jr. like what revitalized Pittsburgh Pirates can accomplish in playoffs

    12 Pittsburgh City Paper

    On the Record with Frank Coonelly, president of the Pittsburgh Pirates

    Hometown Hero: For Neil Walker, Pirates success is extra special

    Chris Peters looks back on his time in the middle of the Pirates’ losing streak

    Payoff Pitch: After 20 losing seasons, Pirates fans finally get something to cheer about

    Writer Wrong?: Does the Pirates’ current success mean that our past criticisms were off the mark?

    13 Rant Sports

    MLB Playoffs: How Can You Not Root For The Pittsburgh Pirates?

    14 Cincinnati Enquirer

    Reds fall 1-0, lose series to Mets

    Video: C. Trent Rosecrans on Reds-Pirates

    15 KDKA

    Walk On Wednesday: Gerrit Cole Looks Like A Grizzled Vet

    16 CBS Sports

    MLB Power Rankings: Handing out awards for best, worst of 2013

    17 St Louis Post Dispatch

    Cardinals’ magic number is 1

    18 PBC Site

    Loss likely means Bucs face Reds in Wild Card game

    Ten reasons for Bucs’ long-awaited postseason return


    19 Baseball Prospectus

    The BP Wayback Machine Tuesday Morning Ten Pack, 9/05/06

    20 Fangraphs

    Pinch Hitting Report Card: Reds Pass, Orioles Fail

  8. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

    Ben to offensive line: ‘Be tough, be nasty’

    5 Burning Questions on the Steelers as they head to London

    22 Steelers Gab

    Steelers 2013 Scouting Report Week Four: Minnesota Vikings


    23 London Evening Standard

    West Brom 1 Arsenal 1 (Arsenal win 4-3 on penalties): Monreal dispatches winning penalty to set up fourth round tie with Chelsea

    24 World Soccer Daily

    10 stories you need to read, 25th September, 2013


    25 Pensburgh

    Save the Best for Last. Pens Win 5-1

  9. JAL says:

    Rain Must Fall Queen 1989

  10. Jandy says:


  11. kr70 says:

    So when you get down to it this series is for a home game. It doesn’t matter much were you play it, Tuesday is the must win game. Sure I’d love to see it in Pittsburgh but winning it is the big deal.

  12. The Justice Avenger says:

    Morning All – Was going through some old junk in boxes and found my old Green Weenie. Hoping it still has some of its old powers left from years back. Going to need it this weekend. Bummer of a day yesterday. Gotta take advantage of things when the table is set. Well, here we go…huge weekend ahead…Pirates and Reds…1970’s all over again! Wow… Have a good day everyone.

  13. The Justice Avenger says:

    Even thought I just said it is a huge weekend ahead…and it is…your post kr is very, very true… Well said…

  14. Jandy says:

    Raise the Green Weenie! :)

    Good Morning Mr. Justice…hope your day is wonderful :)

  15. theplanisworking says:

    Did you say on the bottom of the other thread that Dejan was across my Pond??

    Care to share some details? ;)

  16. Jandy says:

    Not YOUR pond, silly El Dorko Hippo, across THE POND…:P

  17. Jandy says:

    Happy fackin Thursday, Hipposter :*

  18. theplanisworking says:

    My mistake, La Dorka Nuna! ;)

    No Pirate game today…………. hopefully that means a calm blogosphere.

    Hope work doesnt bury you today.
    Maybe the Morning links will be up by noon? ;)

  19. theplanisworking says:

    You also, Jandalicious.

    Or, Happy Hump Day plus another Hump! ;)

  20. Jandy says:

    Ahhh work is a four letter word. We have lots of work coming in, so that means I have contracts to review before they are signed and sent out. That’s a good thing!

    Dejan is prolly already done with his lunch…he must be busy, busy busy. No morning thread for us…

  21. Jandy says:

    LOL. The sun will be out again today, so I am happy. :)

  22. theplanisworking says:

    I am off.
    Hope to see you and your daughter later.

    Behave yourself, or the “Mercys” and “Oh Good Lords” will come out in abundance.

  23. theplanisworking says:

    As Sgt. Esterhaus would always say…………………

    “Lets Be Careful Out There”. :D

  24. Jandy says:

    behave? Impossible! :P
    Later, friend.

  25. The Justice Avenger says:

    A toast to the old Sargent from Hill Street Blues. One of the best shows…ever! Thanks for the line, Plan…

  26. The Justice Avenger says:

    The “other paper”. Jandy!


  27. Jandy says:

    I know, I’m bad…but it’s a good story, and it’s funny. ;X

  28. Jandy says:

    I may get a BOLD REAMING!!!

  29. JAL says:

    My explanation of the pirates weekend to come

    The Final Sprint September 26

  30. JAL says:

    Traveling this weekend. Will try to keep links up but may may posted a bit later in the morning.

  31. Steve says:

    Although this writer has (rightfully IMO) criticzed the Joebots for their continued denial and attempts to restore the reputation of their departed icon his constant praise for BOB in between taking jabs at the University of Pittsburgh football program grows old.

    I don’t quite understand the zeal over the Pirates post-season when it may all be over in one quick game. All the talk about pitching lineups, etc. for a potential 7 game series are just that – talk.

    DK: I’m fan of Chryst. BOB has gotten better results to date. No science to it.

  32. Jandy says:

    Simple explanation, thanks JAL :)

  33. Jandy says:

    Safe travels, friend.

  34. Jandy says:

    And what’s wrong with enjoying how far these guys have come this season? When is the last time you or I have been able to even THINK about a post-season pitching or batting line-up?
    Enjoy it.

  35. Playoffs by 2012 says:

    stuart66 ~ 550
    Dom ~ 325
    TCB ~ 275
    RobertoForever ~ 250
    cherokee23 ~ 250

    bman ~ 2855
    JRay3 ~ 1950
    War Horse ~ 1565
    Nor Cal Stlrfanrc (Ryan) ~ 1475
    JUCOFan ~ 1300
    Dadtackular ~ 1100
    blazer ~ 1050
    Nate83 ~ 1025
    KJX ~ 750
    RobertoForever ~ 740
    fellocolonial ~ 700
    TCB ~ 675
    Chico ~ 600
    Ermine ~ 600
    theplanisworking ~ 500
    Irish ~ 475
    stickyweb ~ 450
    cherokee23 ~ 400
    JohninOshkosh ~ 335
    EricBowser ~ 325
    OZ ~ 300
    Bill Born ~ 230
    Boise Bucco ~ 200
    Evan ~ 200
    Hal Smith ~ 200
    kr70 ~ 200
    tdb1977 ~ 185
    A1C McG ~ 100
    Damon ~ 100
    Dom ~ 100
    PetroSteel ~ 100
    steelercrazy ~ 100
    Vette60 (Randy in RVA) ~ 100
    mlrgenuine ~ 50
    Pucknutz ~ 50
    stuart66 ~ 50
    Big B ~ 0
    Fish ~ 0
    MarkV ~ 0
    pants-n-at ~ 0
    Ruffian706 ~ -40
    JoeyBats ~ -75
    Ben ~ -80
    Alexandre Giesbrecht ~ -100
    Brian ~ -100
    Dcpinpgh ~ -100
    John in WM ~ -100
    Kevin S ~ -100
    buffalo_bob ~ -150
    buggee ~ -150
    Ghost ~ -150
    Matt hoffman ~ -150
    Arriba Wilver ~ -200
    DormontGeorge ~ -200
    Ryan76 ~ -200
    TJ ~ -200
    BDHumbert ~ -225
    tmp444 ~ -225
    Drew71 ~ -250
    Frankie ~ -250
    Patrick ~ -250
    cmat0829 ~ -300
    Joey Mellons ~ -300
    Rick in Crete ~ -300
    Steve J. Smith ~ -300
    toochca ~ -300
    absolute59 ~ -350
    DemonDachshund ~ -450
    The Gunner ~ -500
    TK ~ -500
    Keith ~ -550
    Jandy ~ -575
    radio wave ~ -575
    JaxBuc ~ -650
    Jason81 ~ -900
    Karen22 ~ -950
    Brandie ~ -975
    cosmo ~ -1000
    pattonbb ~ -1050
    JMB ~ -1350
    Kevin ~ -1535
    JD ~ -2275
    Lad9 ~ -2300
    Bizrow ~ -5000

    ***The Most Points for the end of SEPTEMBER will win:***

    First Place at the end of the season will win:

    Second Place at the end of the season will win:

    Third Place at the end of the season will win:

    Fourth Place at the end of the season will win:

    Fifth Place at the end of the season will win:

  36. Arriba Wilver says:

    “Just talk” is what we do. ;-)

  37. macchamp74 says:

    So the Penguins are going into their “Hoka Hey” phase the weekend.

    DK: Like hell they are. Take a look at their actual itinerary up there and compare.

  38. Makes sense of it all.

  39. The MAC is always getting picked on.

    Now, a bold reaming from London.

  40. Jandy says:

    and we do it good! ;)

  41. Jandy says:

    Stu is leading the pack this month! Good job, Stuart!

  42. Drew71 says:

    Maybe Mario should conduct a thorough investigation.

  43. macchamp74 says:

    Us mid-majors thick skinned! :)

  44. Jandy says:

    Dejan said a BAD word…he said look!

  45. Paul Fey says:

    Very well said.

  46. Jandy says:

    Actually, I think it’s an honor, Mac ;)

  47. Jandy says:

    hey Revvie! :)

  48. Arriba Wilver says:

    I think Sleepy is Grumpy.

  49. Jandy says:

    Newbies and lurkers, we want to chat with you! If you post your hometown, Bizrow will add it to the list of Dejan’s Lunatics’ Asylum.
    Don’t be shy, we don’t bite :)

  50. Jim S. says:

    Well said, Ghost.

    I think the OLine is abysmal, but I also wonder if any OLine could protect Ben. I just don’t think he has evolved over the last several years. After winning his 2nd Super Bowl in dramatic fashion, I thought he was on the way to a HOF career. He may have improved his accuracy and ability to see the field a bit since then, but his decision making has never gotten any better than it was when he first came in the league IMO. Ghost may be right that it could be attributable to how much effort he puts into his craft in comparison the legendary work ethic of guys like Peyton and Brady. I think he’d rather just be a “gunslinger” than put the time in to intellectually become a better QB. Maybe he’s also not bright enough to do that.

    Gunslingers put up big passing numbers, but they also make huge mistakes at inopportune times. Ben’s mistakes killed the Steelers vs. the Bears.

  51. Jandy says:

    Need. More. Starbucks.

  52. Arriba Wilver says:

    You betcha.

  53. Jim S. says:

    Enjoy your travels, JAL. It is a tribute to your generous service in providing links that some of us do this on the rare occasions you are away. :-(

  54. Dom says:

    Just off by 225 with three games to go.

  55. 21sthebest says:

    I heard from a friend of a friend’s neighbor’s cousin’s in laws who knows Ray Shero’s barber that Ray told him that the only success the team has ever had was because they go to West Point.

  56. Jandy says:

    Yes, Dom, you are right there too :)

  57. NMR says:

    Translation: waahhhhhhhhhhh!

  58. Jandy says:

    But does Ray Shero’s barber know this? And did HE go to West Point too???

  59. Jim S. says:

    I get the frustration over the possibility of the Pirates season ending so quickly. But, it is better than it used to be with only one WC team getting a chance to prove itself in October. We just need to find a way to win that game – home or away – to extend for a full series.

  60. Tom P. says:

    It’s been well reported already, but in keeping with my daily update, if the Pirates win two this weekend, the play the Reds Tuesday at PNC. If they win less than two, they play the Reds in Cincinnati.

    If the Pirates win all three and the Cardinals lose all three, the Pirates play the Cardinals Monday at PNC for the division. Anything else, we tip our collective caps to them and set our sights a little higher next year.

    On a positive note, the Pirates are in the playoffs and the Yankees are not. The world has, indeed, turned upside down.

  61. Jandy says:

    Concise and to the point! ;)

  62. NMR says:

    Nothing like Hoka Hey to get Dejan responding to Pirate discussion.

  63. Jandy says:

    Thanks again, Tom, for your daily update. Much appreciated.

    I fully intend to tip my cap and raise the jolly roger to our boys regardless of how the remaining games play out.

    They have truly come a loooooonggg way :)

  64. Jandy says:

    ha! I even posted a link from the other paper…no reaming for me ;)

  65. Jim S. says:

    Good morning all! Boy, the Bucs made life a lot more difficult this weekend with that dysmal offensive showing yesterday. But, nothing worthwhile in life comes easy, and nothing has come easy for this team all year. I still think they will have a successful weekend in Cincinnati, and get back to PNC for the WC game next Tuesday.

    I have no idea what to expect of the Steelers in London. I just don’t. They seem like a mess to me, and I wonder if the rookie RB is coming back a week or two early in part because the QB decided to call out his manhood.

    The Pens seem to be playing fairly well of late in the pre-season, although I admit I have not seen any of the action. They have issues, but still a ton of firepower.

    So, on that note, how would you rank the 3 GMs of Pittsburgh’s 3 pro sports teams right now and why? I’ll start the ball rolling.

    1. Neal Huntington – Very impressive showing over the past year or two, especially. But, the evidence is now pretty clear that the groundwork has been set for several years as far as putting this franchise back on sound footing.

    2. Ray Shero – My opinion was he changed the roster too much heading into post-season last year, but it is hard to argue with his overall track record.

    3. Kevin Colbert – It is also hard to argue with the total body of work for Mr. Colbert, but I think things started going backwards a few years ago and the decline may be accelerating.

  66. Dom says:

    It’ll be awfully hard to catch him so late in the game but I suppose it is possible.

  67. Arriba Wilver says:


  68. Jandy says:

    Second place is still good, Dom :)

  69. Rob says:

    I would say Ben is more Brett Favre than Brady or Manning.

  70. Dom says:

    I guess we should be delighted to have three A grade caliber GMs in our town.

  71. Jandy says:

    That’s a tough one Jim.
    I’m a hockey nut, so I’m gonna put Shero first. I don’t think he added too much for the playoff run last season, I think the pieces he added were mis-managed.

    Second, I’ll put Neal Huntingdon. He’s come a looonggg way the last two years and his results speak for themselves.

    Third is Colbert. The decline must be reversed. Can we get Bill Cowher to come back and help?

  72. Tom P. says:

    The Morning Java post is up. To use a phrase from a few years back, “Ants marching,” which (I think) means migrate the discussion to the new post.

  73. 21sthebest says:

    I’m a baseball nut and I’ll put Shero first!

  74. Jandy says:

    OO0= OO0= OO0= OO0= OO0= OO0= OO0= OO0= OO0= OO0=

  75. Dom says:

    Shero #1 in my book. The Pens are contenders if not the favorites to win the cup every year.

    Colbert #2. Although the Steelers in regressing they’ve been so good for so long it’s hard to ignore what’s he’s done.

    Huntington #3. Doesn’t mean he’s bad. He probably has the toughest job out of the three men.

  76. tpbco says:

    I agree that if anything Shero may have over done it at the trade deadline last year, don’t think it was intentional, but the deals must have just fallen in his lap and snowballed and when Sid came back after the first game, then chemistry was problematic.

    It would have to be shown to me that Colbert is doing significantly worse in the draft from prior years. Every draft has/had gimmes, steals and busts. What has changed, due to the salary cap problems, is the inability to sign FAs like Farrior, Clark, Jeff Hartings, Ray Seales, Kevin Greene, etc to “cover up” any busts or holes. Now those busts (if they truly are, rather than just inexperienced) are a lot more visible because they are forced to play.

    Huntington does deserve credit, but after 20 years (yes I know he isn’t responsible for all of them) I think he still has more to do. This year obviously is great. Next year and the year after will demonstrate whether there is truly a positive trend here, rather than a one and done. The Nats thought they turned the corner too, after one successful year. How he maintains and improves the organization form this point may be a little more challenging than not.

    All that said, we’re lucky to have 3 GM’s even in the conversation.

  77. tpbco says:

    Never said or implied that the OLine played great. They didn’t. But I suspected they weren’t as bad as most thought, so I went to some “unbiased” sources for their opinion.

  78. Kevin says:

    Jim, if there’s one good thing about the situation with the pirates. Their opponent in the upcoming series looked as lost yesterday or moreso than the pirates. Reds getting 4-hit shutout by Dice-K. And that’s not my opinion. I was listening to MLB radio on XM on the way in this morning.

    To answer your other question:

    1. Ray Shero – he has been a wizard mastermind since joining the penguins.

    2. Neal Huntingdon – some people on here believe that aliens stole Neal’s brain and replaced it with something fantastical this past season. He clearly has been way better lately but I’ll give him another year before even considering whether he’s in the same league as TGRS.

    3. Distant third. It’s probably not fair but everybody says the steelers keep getting older every year and the window is all but closed at this point. Gruden said quite spectacularly “getting younger doesn’t exactly mean better”. I don’t see much positive coming down the pipeline as I do with the pirates.

  79. Jim S. says:

    Great comments by everyone on my GM question. I wondered how that would shake out, and maybe it would change if more people weighed in. I guess my take would be that, given the situation Huntington inherited he has done a stellar job. I, like a lot of people, was not ready to accept that he was doing a good job until fairly recently. I think that is because of all the baggage that has been attached to that franchise for so many years through its own fault. Also, his boss has not helped the perception of the organization with some of his very public blunders, and that, for better or worse, has attached itself to Huntington to a large degree. Finally, even though it appears now that true progress has been made for several years internally for the Bucs, it is hard to accept looking form the outside until actual W-L success is achieved.

    Huntington is now starting to get credit for the turnaound. His challenge now is to: A) sustain the success on the field that has been realized this season; and B) take the on-field success of this season to the next level and bring a WS Champion back to the Pirates. The other 2 GMs in town have realized that level of success.

  80. Jim S. says:

    Thanks, Kevin. I agree with you that the Reds cannot be feeling very good about their performance this week. They stunk it up vs. the Mets in crunch time.

  81. Jandy says:

    I tried moving this thread to the new “morning Java”

    Don’t mean any disrespect :)

    Thought more might see it.

  82. Jim S. says:

    Appreciate it!!

  83. Sarah says:

    My sense is that Shero over did it at the trade deadline cos he lacked faith in DB. He tried to force great players into the mix, hoping that they might make the difference…..
    But Bylsma was apparently clueless how to use Iggy, who never really stepped up as a leader. Morrow fell into the Happybto be Here crowd too.

    Murray was a poor fit for the quick moving scheme DB insisted upon…often forcing his partner to cross into his corner and handle the puck. Didnt work in the playoff pressure cooker.

    It was a bold move by RS but it didnt work.

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