Asked and Answered

Asked and Answered: Oct. 13

Let's get to it:

JIM NEAL FROM FAYETTEVILLE, TN:
Antonio Brown's numbers have been lacking of late. I believe it was Ben Roethlisberger who said the reason was because every team is double-teaming him "like they always do." With Roethlisberger and the offense putting up great numbers each week, do you think other teams will ever stop double-teaming Antonio Brown?

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ANSWER: It's possible, but with the numbers Antonio Brown put up over the last couple of seasons – 265 catches for 3,532 yards and 23 touchdowns – it's not going to happen anytime soon. For opposing defenses to be influenced away from double-teaming Antonio Brown, somebody else is going to have to make himself into a fearsome weapon, most likely a fearsome down-the-field weapon because that's what would scare a defense the most. Of the current options on the roster, that individual would turn out to be Sammie Coates, who has a 22.2-yard average per catch and six receptions of 40-plus yards to this point in the 2016 season.**

NATHAN HOBBINS FROM TROY, NY:
After the team's embarrassment in Philadelphia, and then its response of dominance over Kansas City and the Jets, it got me wondering: what is the worst regular season loss ever of an eventual Super Bowl winning team?

ANSWER: There have been 50 Super Bowls played, and there's no way I'm going through 50 years worth of regular season games. I did remember the New England Patriots getting blown out by Kansas City in Arrowhead Stadium the last time they won the Super Bowl, and I can tell you the score of the game was 41-14. It happens.

MIKE MCGREGOR FROM MCDONOUGH, GA:
When a player gets fined like Antonio Brown has for his touchdown celebrations, is it deducted from his paycheck, or does he have a certain amount of time to pay the fine?

ANSWER: The amount of the fine is garnished from his next paycheck.

CALVIN SCHLEY FROM FORT MYERS, FL:
Do you think that Vince Williams has earned the right to be on the field more even when Ryan Shazier returns?

ANSWER: As I've explained to y'all many times, my opinion doesn't matter in issues such as these, so I'll turn to the man whose opinion does. This is what Coach Mike Tomlin said when asked about the Williams/Shazier situation: "We're comfortable with the division of labor and where we have the guys playing. Vince (Williams) is doing a heck of a job for us right now in relief of Ryan."

MELINDA SCHLEGEL FROM SAN DIEGO, CA:
Is there any way that Steelers fans can petition the Rooneys to NOT retire the bumblebee uniforms? I think they are great uniforms and we win a lot in them. Steelers Fans Unite to keep bumblebees!

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ANSWER: I don't ever want to be painted as someone who discourages activism, but I really think your efforts would be in vain. The Steelers wore their 1934 throwbacks six times starting in 2012, and they were 4-2 in them with the losses coming against the Bengals and Ravens. Not a great showing by the bumblebees there. The other issue comes from the rules the NFL has for teams to choose and wear throwbacks. A five-year commitment is required from the team, and approval of every team's choice of a throwback is required from the league. All of this is a process, which means there can be no quick resolutions on anything. Because let's be serious, the selling of merchandise is a critical factor in this, and the jerseys have to be ordered and manufactured to be available for retail.**

NEILL MOONEYHAM FROM AURORA, MO:
I love Asked Answered. Le'Veon Bell seems to be a matchup nightmare for defenses. Do you think Ryan Shazier is the best matchup with Bell? I'm glad we have both.

ANSWER: What I do know is that during training camp, in every backs-on-backers pass drill, Mike Tomlin matched up Le'Veon Bell and Ryan Shazier for a lot of the repetitions.

ZACHARY CORBY FROM ROOTSTOWN, OH:
I do not have a question, but I just want to point out that your sarcastic responses to some questions and "observations" keeps me going through the week. I have never seen so much humor as I do in some of your responses.

ANSWER: Thanks, and thanks for writing. Messages like this one help balance the ones such as the one I just deleted that referred to me as a "condescending tool." Strange how that one was deleted and yours was published, huh?

CHRIS CARTER FROM KANSAS CITY, MO:
In the Steelers-Jets game, Stephon Tuitt was flagged for pass interference in the first quarter against Brandon Marshall. On TV, the official reported that the Jets declined the penalty and took "the result of the play." Clearly, however, the result of the play was an incomplete pass. Was Marshall credited with a reception on the play, or did the official misspeak on the field?

ANSWER: How dare you use words like "clearly" when referencing the job done by NFL officials. Just kidding. Anyway, on the play you reference, Brandon Marshall was credited with a catch for 18 yards, and because of the penalty it would have been stupid for Mike Tomlin to bother challenging the play. Upheld or overturned, the Jets still gain 18 yards, and it would've cost him one of his challenges.

DAVE HAMMOND FROM CAPE MAY, NJ:
You could tell Thad Spreg from Hawaii that if he "likes" the Steelers home page on Facebook, your column will appear automatically on his timeline the day you issue it. Enjoy your insights and sarcasm. We have a print in our house that says, "Sarcasm, just another service we offer here."

ANSWER: I love it when somebody does my work for me. Thanks.

DAVID MAURO FROM LOVELLS, MI:
Helping Carrie Taylor out from last Tuesday's edition of Asked and Answered: I go online and use an Internet based radio app (iHeartRadio, for example) and tune to a Steelers radio station.

ANSWER: I just hope Thad and Carrie are regular readers. But then again, why wouldn't they be?

MEGAN HUTH FROM HANOVER, MD:
I like your honesty and the sass in your answers. Does someone force you to answer these? Or do you just think these people ask really dumb questions?

ANSWER: I am not creative enough to be making this stuff up on a regular basis. (See below.)

CHRIS STATHAM FROM CAIRO, NY:
Seeing how extra points are kicked from the 15-yard line now, and 2-point conversions are attempted from the 2-yard line, it's safe to say that has eliminated all of the guesswork regarding whether a team is going for a 2-point conversion. Do you think a team may ever try to catch another team off guard and go for a 2-point conversion from the 15-yard line? Seems completely illogical, but what is your take?

ANSWER: It more than SEEMS completely illogical. It IS completely illogical.


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