Let's get to it:
ANTHONY COPPER FROM PORT CHARLOTTE, FL:
Do you think William Gay can become the Steelers all-time sack leader this season?
ANSWER: I not only believe he can, but I'm convinced he will. James Harrison currently has 74.5 sacks, which puts him 2.5 behind Jason Gildon's franchise best 77 sacks. At this early stage of the season, the Steelers haven't been aggressive in attacking opposing quarterbacks with a variety of pressures, but once the young defensive backs gain more experience and understanding, I believe that will create more blitz-potential situations. When that happens, Harrison will get his sacks, because he is still that good.**
CASSIDY ELI FROM NEW ORLEANS, LA:
When a practice squad member gets on the active roster, does his pay immediately change? If he goes back to the practice squad, does it change back? Does he get a signing bonus each time?
ANSWER: When a player is signed to the active roster from the practice squad, he gets an immediate bump in pay, and it's a significant raise for a player when he gets an active roster game check vs. a practice squad game check. The NFL minimum salary is $450,000 for a rookie, which comes out to $26,470 per week over a 17-week regular season. The minimum salary for a practice squad player is $6,900 a week. And so the difference is $19,570 per week. And no, there would be no signing bonuses involved in transactions of this kind.
Take a look at the best photos from Week 2. The Steelers defeated the Bengals 24-16.
SCOTT SOKOLOWSKI FROM CLARKSVILLE, MD:
The weather was no doubt a factor last Sunday against the Bengals when it came to Ben Roethlisberger being able to get the ball to Antonio Brown. It also seems that the officiating crew was permitting a bit more of a "hands-on" approach to defense against him. I am curious whether anyone on the officiating crew working Steelers-Bengals was also officiating in Seattle last year when Brown encountered Richard Sherman?
ANSWER: The referee in Seattle last November was Walt Anderson, and the referee in the game against the Bengals last Sunday at Heinz Field was Peter Morelli. The only name common to Coleman's crew in November 2015 and Morelli's crew in 2016 is head linesman Steve Steljes. Nothing like a conspiracy theory, but a head linesman doesn't make many of the kinds of "illegal contact on receivers" calls to which you refer.
BRYAN STALEY FROM WESLEY CHAPEL, FL:
For how many more years is Ben Roethlisberger under contract to the Steelers?
ANSWER: Ben Roethlisberger's current contract binds him to the Steelers through the 2019 NFL season.
TODD BERARDELLI FROM ORLAND PARK, IL:
Of all the Steelers listed on this year's Hall of Fame ballot (and there are many, as usual), which players do you think have the best chance of being part of the Class of 2017?
ANSWER: Since you phrase the question that way, my answer is: Alan Faneca. In my view, Faneca is the player with a Steelers affiliation to have the best chance to be elected as part of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2017, and I pick Faneca because he already has been a finalist.
JOHN OEHMLER FROM OWENSBORO, KY:
With Ladarius Green on the PUP list, does he still get paid as if he was playing?
ANSWER: Players on injured reserve and physically unable to perform are paid the salaries outlined in their contracts for that year in question.**
TYLER HERNLEY FROM STERLING, VA:
Eli Rogers was returning punts in Washington on Monday. Is that his job now (pending performance of course), or does Antonio Brown still take the high leverage punts?
ANSWER: Eli Rogers and Antonio Brown are listed on the Steelers depth chart as either/or as the No. 1 punt returners. For his career, Brown has a 9.7 yard average with four touchdowns – with those scores coming on returns of 60, 67, 71, and 71 yards. He is too much of a weapon to be replaced, and Brown loves to have the ball in his hands.
MARCUS CAMPBELL FROM LAWRENCEVILLE, GA:
Do the Steelers have more than one option for throwback uniforms? The "bumblebee" uniforms are hard to watch on HDTV.
ANSWER: See the question below.
MARK SAMPLE FROM CHITTENANGO, NY:
Although I was initially anti-bumblebee, the uniqueness of the uniform grew on me. Now I am sad that they will be gone after this year. Any chance for a return of this throwback jersey?
ANSWER: And the debate continues …
TIM GAYDOSH FROM MOUNT AIRY, MD:
Just a comment. I use websites that cover the Steelers to keep up with the team since I'm stuck on the western edge of Ravens country. It's so nice to read online content written by someone who's a writer - who bothers to do things like spell-check, who can express a thought completely, and who can paint a picture with what they write. Too many bloggers don't/can't do that – especially sports bloggers, and sometimes it makes me want to pull my hair out when I try to figure out what they really mean. It's obviously not a craft to them. But writers do all that (and more), and that's why I love reading your stuff. Thanks for keeping me connected to the team I've been a fan of for almost 45 years (since I was 7).
ANSWER: You're welcome. And thanks for noticing.