Asked and Answered

Asked and Answered: August 4

LATROBE, Pa. – Let's get to it:

You told us that ESPN is taping the Friday night practice from 6-9 pm., but I don't see it listed on their broadcast schedule. Do you think they are going to show it on a different day? I would like to watch it.


ANSWER: What I wrote was, "ESPN's SportsCenter On The Road will broadcast live from Latrobe Stadium from 6-9 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 5." It's listed on the programming grid for Aug. 5 as "SportsCenter," and the Steelers' night practice is a part of that. If you tune in at 6 p.m. and stay with it for the full three hours, you'll see several segments done from Latrobe Stadium. But it's not going to be "televised" the way you have come to expect a game to be "televised." It will be segments devoted to the scene, some interviews with key players and Steelers personnel from the site, stuff like that. Don't expect to tune into ESPN and see an entire session of backs-on-backers, with replay, analysis and slo-motion. That's not the show. If it was, the ratings would be awful, because a regular two-plus-hour football practice just isn't that compelling.**

Do you know what day, and if they will be holding the "Oklahoma" drill this year? Will it be open to the public?

ANSWER: There is no more Oklahoma-drill, not at Steelers training camp anyway. Bill Cowher may have done it once, back when he was a rookie coach in 1992, but it's been a long time since Chuck Noll used that as a tone-setter for the start of his training camps.

On the first practice of camp, testament was paid to two former Steelers (Heath Miller and Shaun Suisham) by current players (Ben Roethlisberger and Greg Warren) who wore their former teammates' practice jerseys to the afternoon workout. I also remember last year William Gay wearing Troy Polamalu's jersey. My question: is this a long-standing tradition or something that has just popped up recently?

ANSWER: The original master of the jersey-tribute for the Steelers was Joey Porter. As a player, Porter was the one who orchestrated the tribute to Dick LeBeau with the throwback Detroit Lions No. 44 jerseys, and Porter also coordinated the No. 6 Notre Dame jerseys in green to announce Jerome Bettis' return to his Detroit hometown for Super Bowl XL.

I was excited to see that we signed Ladarius Green, especially after the retirement of Heath Miller. I noticed Green is listed as (PUP) physically unable to perform. What exactly does this mean in his case?

ANSWER: Physically unable to perform (PUP) is a designation used in the NFL for players who suffer from football-related injuries during the preseason. Players on the PUP list may participate in team meetings, and take advantage of the training and medical facilities, but they cannot practice. In Green's case, he needed offseason surgery on an ankle he injured while playing for the San Diego Chargers in 2015, which qualified that as a football-related injury, and since he was unable to participate in training camp practices he was assigned to the preseason PUP list. Players can be moved off the PUP list to the active roster at any time, even after one practice. A player cannot be placed on the PUP list, however, once he has taken the field for a practice, even if only for a few minutes.

I love Asked and Answered. Thanks for keeping me informed and entertained. I read recently there's a new book about Chuck Noll? What are your top-five suggestions on books you think are a Steelers fan's must-haves?


Take a look at photos of the Pittsburgh Steelers' 5th training camp practice.

ANSWER: In no particular order: "Three Bricks Shy of a Load," by Roy Blount Jr.; "Dan Rooney: My 75 Years with the Pittsburgh Steelers and the NFL," as told to Andy Masich and David Halaas; "Double Yoi," by Myron Cope; "Chuck Noll: His Life's Work," by Michael MacCambridge; and if you're interested in a thorough biography of Art Rooney Sr., look for "Rooney: A Sporting Life," by Rob L. Ruck, Maggie Jones Patterson, and Michael P. Weber.**

It really seems to me that certain people in the media are trying to start problems with the Antonio Brown contract when there isn't a problem. I heard Brown's interview, and they take the part of him saying he needs to be taken care of and make it sounds like he's making demands. If I am I seeing the media (ESPN) doing that, does Brown see it?

ANSWER: Antonio Brown has said he's not going to hold out, and so the issue to me is a moot one.

Not a question Bob, a story instead: Obviously you know Fran Rogel, even though his playing days were before our time. I used to work our Parish festivals every year, and Mr. Rogel frequently came to play bingo. One year, as his wheelchair was being steered to a seat, a wheel caught and he was flung forward onto the ground. Everyone gasped and started to try and help, but before we could, Fran lifted himself on one arm, raised the other and said, "Touchdown!" A wonderful man, and a legitimate tough guy.

ANSWER: Another Fran Rogel story. During his career with the Steelers, the team's coach was Walt Kiesling, who is enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame for contributions to the sport other than him being a mediocre coach. Anyway, Kiesling started every game by having the quarterback hand the ball off to the fullback, who was Rogel. It got to the point of predictability that the newspaper reporters in the press box would mockingly chant, "Hey diddle, diddle, Rogel up the middle."

Art Rooney Sr. got tired of that and ordered Kiesling to run a different play to start a game, and while not being obviously insubordinate to his boss, Kiesling did order one of the offensive linemen to line up offside on purpose because he didn't want the owner to get into the habit of calling plays, even if those worked. The play went for a touchdown – because the opponent was expecting Rogel up the middle, but it was called back because of the penalty.

On the last question of a previous installment of Asked and Answered, it read: "People in my household say I should like the Saints, but I don't. I love the Steelers. Is it wrong to like the Steelers even though they are not my home team?" And your answer was: "Depends on who's paying the mortgage." You could have ignored this one, but you made an awesome point, and I was laughing/smiling all day because of it.

ANSWER: Thanks for the kind words.

I don't really have a question for you but I have a question for all of the Steelers Nation. I'm trying to find the unknown person who I believe is a Steelers fan who literally saved my life. I'm hoping you can help me by sending a message out to Steelers fans everywhere.

On May 11, I was in a very serious accident on I-84 westbound in Northeastern Pennsylvania, not far from Milford. An unknown man stopped, performed an emergency procedure on me, which literally saved my life by keeping me from bleeding out. It took almost 20 minutes for the EMTs to arrive on scene and another 10 until a helicopter came to fly me to a trauma center in Morristown, NJ. After dragging my wounded body off the highway, I was lying face down and I never saw the amazing person who saved me.

I was told by two other people who stopped to help that the guy who saved me was driving a black Buick or Pontiac with a large Pittsburgh Steelers logo on the hood. That's all I know. I truly want to meet and personally thank this amazing, selfless, Good Samaritan for keeping me alive. This man saved my life and it's very important to me that I find him. I would be very grateful if you could spread my message throughout Steelers Nation. Somebody out there knows this guy, and I need to shake his hand and hug him for myself and my entire family.

I've left out some gory details of my accident to weed out any fakes who might respond. I thank you in advance for any help that you may provide me. Sincerely and hopefully submitted, I am Dan Simpson, and my cell phone number is: 917-324-2078.

ANSWER: Happy to help, and I hope this brings you in contact with your hero.

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