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The old, new guy


This is my first post on the Steel Mill blog, so I figured I would introduce myself. I’m the old, new guy on the Steelers beat, I guess you could say.

I’m old because I’ve been at the Trib for 26 years, yet I’m new because this will be my first full-length exposure to the Steelers and the NFL. For those familiar with my work, I spent 13 years covering the Pirates. Those years spanned 1993-2005. Yes, the first 13 years of the Pirates’ string of 20 consecutive losing seasons. I like to say I saw more losing games by the team I covered in those 13 seasons than any sports writer in the world.

After 10 years as an assistant sports editor, I’m excited to get back to working a beat, joining Chris Adamski and Ralph N. Paulk on our coverage team.

The Steelers aren’t totally unfamiliar to me. Our family has had season tickets since 1970, and I was eight years old when I watched Franco Harris make the Immaculate Reception. I traveled to the first four Super Bowl sites (yet only saw 3 of the title games, which is another story for another time) and such experiences likely helped steer me toward a career in sports writing.

I covered the 2006 training camp after one of our writers left the paper. I also was part of our coverage team for Super Bowl XL in Detroit. And, as an editor, I coordinated coverage of the Super Bowls in Tampa and Dallas.

And now I’m back. I’m excited to be able to provide Steelers coverage to its rabid fan base and Trib readers. It’s going to take some time to get acclimated, so all I ask is not to be too harsh on me in the beginning.

I will take my responsibilities as a beat writer seriously, although I also like to have fun and be light-hearted in some areas of coverage. That’s evidenced by the accompanying photo, which my wife Lori took as I was preparing to leave for my first day of school, er, coverage.

I thank you for reading this far and look forward to your input as I grow into my new role.





Author: Joe Rutter

After 13 years covering the Pirates -- the first 13 of their losing streak from 1993-2012 -- I moved away from PNC Park and into an assistant editor's position. Now, in 2016, after 10 years away from a beat, I'm back and happily covering the Steelers.

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