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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 more, including 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 top four columnists in the country -- highest circulation category -- by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the top three columnists in the country by the National Headliners Awards. For 2013, he was named top columnist in the state by the Keystone Awards and second-place by the Pennsylvania AP Managing Editors.

90 Comments

  1. 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.

    • 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.

      • 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.

      • 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.

    • Very well said.

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

  2. yeah, gilbert did so well he was replaced by beechum

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

  4. Finding no morning thread I will put the links here

    JAL’s Rain Must Fall Morning Links

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QrmX8f1MAPE

    GENERAL DAILY UPDATED BASEBALL SITES

    1- MLB Transactions

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/pittsburgh_pirates/

    3 Pittsburgh Pirates Stats

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AsjN0zO-DxI0dHVOMzdPYm9wUEJtdVJ0WWUzVWhFc2c#gid=0

    BLOGS and such

    4—Pirates Prospects

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

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/09/first-pitch-the-six-year-plan-and-the-next-six-years.html

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

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/09/should-francisco-liriano-start-the-wild-card-game-on-the-road.html

    5 Bucs Dugout

    Pirates fall to Cubs, 4-2

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2013/9/25/4771672/pirates-fall-to-cubs-4-2

    6 Rumbunter

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

    http://rumbunter.com/2013/09/25/one-game-wild-card/

    7 WHYGAVS

    Game 159: Cubs 4 Pirates 2

    http://www.whygavs.com/pittsburgh-pirates/september-2013/game-159-cubs-4-pirates-2.html

    8 The Green Weenie

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

    http://oldbucs.blogspot.com/2013/09/opportunity-knocks-bucs-dont-answer-in.html

    9 Raise the Jolly Roger

    Cubs 4, Pirates 2

    http://raisethejollyroger.com/2013/09/cubs-4-pirates-2/

    10 City of Champions

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

    http://cityofchampionssports.com/2013/09/25/starling-marte-pittsburgh-pirates-playoff-x-factor/

  5. NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    11 Patriot News

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

    http://www.pennlive.com/sports/index.ssf/2013/09/maz_cal_like_what_the_pirates.html

    12 Pittsburgh City Paper

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

    http://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/on-the-record-with-frank-coonelly-president-of-the-pittsburgh-pirates/Content?oid=1694865

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

    http://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/hometown-hero-for-neil-walker-pirates-success-is-extra-special/Content?oid=1694861

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

    http://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/chris-peters-looks-back-on-his-time-in-the-middle-of-the-pirates-losing-streak/Content?oid=1694873

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

    http://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/payoff-pitch-after-20-losing-seasons-pirates-fans-finally-get-something-to-cheer-about/Content?oid=1694870

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

    http://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/writer-wrong-does-the-pirates-current-success-mean-that-our-past-criticisms-were-off-the-mark/Content?oid=1694879

    13 Rant Sports

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

    http://www.rantsports.com/mlb/2013/09/25/mlb-playoffs-how-can-you-not-root-for-the-pittsburgh-pirates/

    14 Cincinnati Enquirer

    Reds fall 1-0, lose series to Mets

    http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20130925/SPT04/309250084/Reds-shut-out-lose-series

    Video: C. Trent Rosecrans on Reds-Pirates

    http://cincinnati.com/blogs/reds/2013/09/25/video-c-trent-rosecrans-on-reds-pirates/

    15 KDKA

    Walk On Wednesday: Gerrit Cole Looks Like A Grizzled Vet

    http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2013/09/25/walk-on-wednesday-gerrit-cole-looks-like-a-grizzled-vet/

    16 CBS Sports

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

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/powerrankings

    17 St Louis Post Dispatch

    Cardinals’ magic number is 1

    http://www.stltoday.com/sports/baseball/professional/cardinal-beat/cardinals-magic-number-is/article_e3f9571c-22ef-5b46-ac1b-ed08023559a1.html

    18 PBC Site

    Loss likely means Bucs face Reds in Wild Card game

    http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2013_09_25_pitmlb_chnmlb_1&mode=recap_away&c_id=pit

    Ten reasons for Bucs’ long-awaited postseason return

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article/pit/ten-reasons-for-bucs-long-awaited-postseason-return?ymd=20130925&content_id=61683216&vkey=news_pit

    SPORTS WEBSITES

    19 Baseball Prospectus

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

    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=21899

    20 Fangraphs

    Pinch Hitting Report Card: Reds Pass, Orioles Fail

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/pinch-hitting-report-card-reds-pass-orioles-fail/

  6. Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

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

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/london-calling-steelers-vs-vikings-week-4-at-wembley/2013/9/25/4770690/steelers-ben-roethlisberger-comments-vikings-week-4-nfl-london

    5 Burning Questions on the Steelers as they head to London

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/9/25/4769134/steelers-questions-bears-roethlisberger-london-vikings-offensive-line

    22 Steelers Gab

    Steelers 2013 Scouting Report Week Four: Minnesota Vikings

    http://www.steelersgab.com/2013/09/25/steelers-2013-scouting-report-week-four-minnesota-vikings/

    Soccer(football)

    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

    http://www.standard.co.uk/sport/football/west-brom-1-arsenal-1-arsenal-win-43-on-penalties-monreal-dispatches-winning-penalty-to-set-up-fourth-round-tie-with-chelsea-8839827.html

    24 World Soccer Daily

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

    http://www.worldsoccer.com/247/world-soccer-daily-10-stories-you-need-to-read-25th-september-2013

    PENGUIN BLOGS and NHL Links

    25 Pensburgh

    Save the Best for Last. Pens Win 5-1

    http://www.pensburgh.com/2013/9/25/4771642/save-the-best-for-last-pens-win-5-1

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

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

  10. My explanation of the pirates weekend to come

    The Final Sprint September 26

    http://pbc-asylum.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-final-sprint-september-26.html

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

  12. 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.

  13. TOP SCORES IN SEPTEMBER
    stuart66 ~ 550
    Dom ~ 325
    TCB ~ 275
    RobertoForever ~ 250
    cherokee23 ~ 250

    CURRENT PARTICIPANT TOTALS
    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:***
    (1) PITTSBURGH PIRATES BUMPER STICKER
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323996932466962432

    First Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) BRAND NEW PITTSBURGH PIRATES FITTED NEW ERA 59FIFTY HAT
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323994233155485698

    Second Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) BRAND NEW PITTSBURGH PIRATES EARTH DAY GIVEAWAY HAT
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323994373731794947

    Third Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) PITTSBURGH PIRATES LICENSE PLATE FRAME
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323994796970627072

    Fourth Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) PITTSBURGH PIRATES BUMPER STICKER
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323996932466962432

    Fifth Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) PITTSBURGH PENGUINS BUMPER STICKER
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323996735837982720

  14. 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.

  15. *****ATTENTION*****
    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 :)

  16. 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.

    • 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 :)

  17. 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.

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

    • 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?

    • 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.

      • 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.

      • 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.

    • 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.

      • 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.

  18. 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.

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