Ready for prime time

The Steelers will play their first of five prime time games when they take on the Colts on Sunday Night Football this week and it's something that doesn't get old for them.

"You are the only game on," said linebacker Stevenson Sylvester. "Any Monday, Thursday, Sunday night it's the history of the league to be a part of that. You get excited for it every year. You look for it when the schedule comes out, how many prime time games do we have? It's special. I think we do get hyped up for it."

Ike Taylor has played in his share of prime time contests, and still has fun.

"Everybody is watching," said Taylor. "You get your Madden ratings up on PlayStation and X-Box if you do good. And then you have Twitter. People are going to tell you how good you are or how bad you are. I don't pay attention to it."

It will be the first go-around for some of the team's rookies and they are ready for it.

"You always wanted to play in this game when you were in grade school and high school," said defensive end Cameron Heyward. "You always wanted to be in that prime time game. It's a great experience."

And like most kids still do today, the players would always lobby their parents to try and stay up a little bit later to watch the game, even though it was a school night.

"My mom always yelled at us about staying up late," said center Maurkice Pouncey. "When we got older they let us do it. It's a part of it."

Defensive end Ziggy Hood was the same way.

"It didn't matter who played," said Hood. "I always liked watching football and staying up watching the prime time games."

It's a play Hines Ward won't ever forget. 2005 AFC Divisional Playoffs with the Steelers leading the Colts 21-18 with just 1:20 on the clock. The Steelers were in control, just trying to run out the clock with 1st-and-goal from the two-yard line.

And then it happened. The normally sure-handed Jerome Bettis had the ball knocked free and Nick Harper picked it up and started for the opposite end zone. Only 19 seconds went off the clock before Harper was brought down by Ben Roethlisberger, but for Ward, it seemed like an eternity.

"It was like Chariots of Fire, all I kept hearing was that slow song going in my head," said Ward. "We had our whole goal line in the game. There were no speed guys. Watching Ben retreat a little bit, lucky for us Ben made a great tackle."

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.