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'We have a demeanor about ourselves'

Posted Oct 11, 2017

Gilbert ready to play 'turning point' game at Kansas City.

Offensive tackle Marcus Gilbert practiced today, intends to do so again tomorrow and anticipates returning to the Steelers’ lineup on Sunday in Kansas City.

“I need to get back on this moving train,” said Gilbert, who has missed the last three games with a hamstring injury. “I’m one of the pieces that need to be out there for our guys. This week is going to be a turning point for a lot of the guys out here.

“We have a demeanor about ourselves. The games that we’re supposed to win, we didn’t do so, and I think a lot of guys are a little on edge. And then me coming back, I feel a little urgency. I missed a lot of time, and I feel like I have really fresh legs. I’m just ready to be back out there with my guys.”

Gilbert started the first two games but didn’t finish the Steelers’ 26-9 victory on Sept. 17 against Minnesota.

“Having me back and having all our guys working in their normal sports, that gives us a leg up, especially moving Chris Hubbard around,” Gilbert said. “He’s done a great job (filling in for Gilbert at right tackle) but just moving him around, even at the tight end position, helps us big time. Just to move those big bodies out there, it’s critical.

“It helped us last year and I think it’s going to help us this year.”

Gilbert would return just in time for a potential matchup with outside linebacker Justin Houston, who had 22 sacks in 2014 (his last full season) and has 5.5 through five games this season for the 5-0 Chiefs.

“They’re undefeated, we’re not,” Gilbert said. “We’ve been struggling a little bit. But the thing about our team is, we have a lot of vets. We’ve been here before. We know how to handle adversity. We have great leadership.

“I’m just glad to be back out there no matter who I’m playing against. I’m just glad to finally get a chance to be healthy and take back what’s ours.”

Gilbert also expressed complete confidence in quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who has been dealing with fallout this week from comments he made following last Sunday’s 30-9 loss to Jacksonville.

“Maybe I don’t have it anymore,” Roethlisberger momentarily wondered aloud after the first five-interception game of his career.  

“He’s not frustrated at all,” Gilbert insisted. “This guy’s one of the toughest guys I’ve probably ever been around. He looks at this and he laughs at it, I call it a little mind game. You guys can believe whatever y’all want to believe, I just know he’s going to be ready whenever this Sunday comes, you better believe that.

“There’s a lot of nay-sayers out there, they don’t think that he has (it), or say he should have retired. If you guys want to believe that he’ll let you guys go out there and believe that, then he’ll have that five-touchdown or six-touchdown game. He’s proven himself, there’s not much to be said. Everybody has up and down games but if certain guys aren’t running the right routes or we’re not blocking, getting hats on hats, that falls on our shoulders, too. Everybody’s had a little piece to do wth it, not just him.

“He knows how to overcome adversity. He’s done it in the past. I expect big from No. 7 this weekend.”