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Tough test, a pro, almost there

Posted Oct 26, 2017

Learn more in this week's edition of Coordinator's Corner.

Each week one of the Steelers coordinators will share their insight in an exclusive interview that can be heard on SNR every Thursday in the 3 p.m. hour.

This version of Coordinators Corner will give you a sneak peek of what to expect, but it just touches the surface. Read what they have to say, but take my advice, listen every Thursday for the full interview. It will be worth your time.

Featured this week is defensive coordinator Keith Butler.

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Tough test: The defense will face a challenge this week going against Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford. Stafford has thrown for 1,428 yards through six games, with 12 touchdowns and only four interceptions. Butler knows a key to beating the Lions is getting to Stafford.

“Stafford is a very good quarterback,” said Butler. “Very good arm, sharp guy. Understands what his guys can and can’t do. Has a good command of the offense. And they have some players. They have a good football team. It’s going to be a challenge for us.”  

No ordinary Joe: It can take some time for a player to adjust to a new team, but it didn’t seem to take long for Joe Haden to adjust to his new home in Pittsburgh. Haden played seven seasons in Cleveland before signing with the Steelers during the preseason, and hasn’t just fit in, but is making an impact.

“He is a good football player for us,” said Butler. “He has helped us a lot. Your teammates are going to respect the way you play. As a player that was the most important thing to me, to have the respect of my teammates. How do you get the respect of your teammates? You know what the heck you are doing, you are prepared to do it and you do it. He does all of those things and that garners great respect for him on the field. And he is a pro.

“I think he feels a lot more at home. He was at one place for a long time. When you do that you know the guys around you, what kind of people they are, who you are going to hang out with and choose who your friends are. You really don’t know anybody when you come in. The good thing that I think he found here was a welcome locker room. Our locker room is one of the better ones in the league. Those guys do a good job of welcoming people, and they did that with Joe.”

Close, but not there: Butler doesn’t care that the Steelers defense is ranked No. 2 overall in the NFL right now for two reasons. First, it’s only Week 8 and there is a lot of football to play. Second, they aren’t No. 1.

“I think they all want to be good,” said Butler. “They want to be the best in the league. We aren’t the best in the league right now. Right now, more than anything they want a chance at the Super Bowl. That is coming by quarters, which is how we divide the season to get us in position to get in the playoffs, win the division. But that is a long way away. A lot can happen between now and then.”