Blake: I have a chip on my shoulder'


Of the more than 23,000 tweets that Antwon Blake has posted on his Twitter account, the one that might portray the mindset of the Steelers cornerback the most accurately appeared on his timeline just last week.

At 5-9, 198 pounds, Blake doesn't look like your prototypical football player. But don't doubt for a minute that this guy has all of the physical tools it takes. Add to that the mentality of a prize fighter who doesn't think he can be beaten, and it's a combination that is welcome on the Steelers defense.

"He is tough. He is very determined," said veteran safety Will Allen. "He works very hard and smart. Every year he is getting better and better. I just think with his athleticism he has a lot of upside to be a very, very great player in this league."

Even with the words of praise, even believing in his talents, Blake still knows that at every practice, and every game there is always something to prove, even if he is just proving it to himself.

"Especially in the NFL, but I try to live it in everyday life that you have to prove yourself every day," said Blake. "What I did yesterday or the day before, that doesn't matter for today. I just have to keep on producing.

"I definitely have a chip on my shoulder. It motivates me. It adds fuel to my fire. I always want to be known as a guy that is hard working and gives everything he has."

Blake is in his third season with the Steelers after being claimed off waivers from Jacksonville before the start of the 2013 season. He came in to be a special teams ace, but has done more than that, including finding his way into the starting lineup against the New England Patriots on Thursday night.

"It felt great to get out there. It was a big game," said Blake. "It is a good feeling when you can be a positive contributor to your team. They saw something in me when they brought me in here. It's just a blessing to continue to build off of that.

"It didn't go the way I wanted it to go, the way the team wanted to go. As a professional you have to build off of it and learn from it. We have to do a better job of communicating, being more focused and locked in on our keys and making plays."

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