Rhythm, a step, no excuse

Each week Steelers' defensive coordinator Keith Butler, offensive coordinator Todd Haley and special teams coordinator Danny Smith share their insight in exclusive interviews that can be heard on SNR every Thursday beginning at 12 noon.

This version of Coordinators Corner will give you a sneak peak of what to expect each week, but this just touches the surface. Read what they have to say, but take my advice, listen every Thursday at 12 noon for the full interviews or check back there later in the day for the archived versions. It will be worth your time.


Stay in rhythm:** The Steelers take on the Browns on Sunday in a game that has no impact on the postseason, but a game that the Steelers want to win to keep the rhythm going headed into the postseason and extend their winning streak to seven.

"I think you try to stay in rhythm as a team," said defensive coordinator Keith Butler. "We'll see how the game goes. We're going to try and win the game. We are not out there just to play the game, we are out there to win the game. We want to make sure we get through the game, win the game, and look forward to next week."

Taking a step: Winning the AFC North meant a lot to everyone in the Steelers' organization, but the bottom line is it's just one step toward the ultimate goal.  

"It means a lot to us as coaches," said offensive coordinator Tood Haley. "It's really what it's all about. It guarantees you a ticket to the playoffs and that is what we are interested in. But to have that North title, we take that with great respect.

"We are pretty single-minded around here. The goal is to get back to the Super Bowl and win it. That is a step in the direction we are trying to go. We are about continuing to improve. The regular season is a process. The teams that are getting better every week are the teams that have a chance. We have to continue improving as a group."

No excuse: Something unusual happened against the Ravens when Chris Boswell had not just one kickoff, but two go out of bounds, giving the Ravens that ball at the 40-yard line to start drives twice. It happened on the opening kickoff and the defense was able to stop the Ravens. It was repeated in the fourth quarter with the Steelers down three, but once again the defense came through and forced a three-and-out.

Special teams coordinator Danny Smith made no excuses for it happening, but said they are already working on correcting what caused it.

"There is no excuse for it," said Smith. "There is nobody that heard more about it than Chris Boswell. Monday morning Boz was in my office early, shut the door and he said let's take a look at those kickoffs. When you are coaching a guy like that, how important it is to him, what it means to him, what it means to this city and his teammates, it's special when a guy does that. We found a little bit of a flaw in a certain kick. We corrected it on the video. He and I will carry it out in practice. You don't want to give the ball on the 40-yard line in any situation to anybody. If you see the reaction of the cover team it upsets a lot of people. That is how they get back. That is their job, is in coverage, and we have a team that likes to cover. It's not a good situation and you can't put the defense in that situation."

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