Tomlin: 3 keys as prep for Cardinals begins

  1. Not so fast:* *Mike Vick first picked up the Steelers' playbook at the end of August, learning it gradually while knowing he was a play away from being the team's starting quarterback. Now that he is just that with Ben Roethlisberger still sidelined with a knee injury, that learning process has escalated and his comfort level continues to grow.

But is he at the point where Coach Mike Tomlin can just open the playbook up for the veteran signal caller?

"Absolutely not," said Tomlin. "Ben has been here a long time. Not only has he been here a long time, but in a lot of ways he's been involved in the development, doctoring and alteration of that book. Mike is simply learning it. I am not going to say that is comparable.

"I will say he has enough knowledge and is comfortable enough to play winning football for us. I know he is looking to continue to strengthen that. I imagine he will work in a similar manner this week as he did a week ago."

**

Answering the call:** With linebacker Ryan Shazier missing his third straight game, linebackers Vince Williams and Sean Spence have been called upon to step in and not let the defense miss a beat. They definitely have answered the call.

Spence recorded eight tackles against the Chargers, while Williams had six, and both have been impact players.

"Vince and Sean Spence have done an above the line job," said Tomlin. "We expect those guys too. Those guys are not rookies. They are as experienced of backup players as you are going to come across. We have a great deal of confidence in them." 3.

Steelers Nation takes over: It's nothing unusual, go to a road stadium and Steelers' fans are there. Some travel to the stadiums, while other simply live in the city. And they make their presence known.

Monday night at Qualcomm Stadium Chargers' quarterback Philip Rivers had to use the silent count to counteract the 'visiting fans.' It wasn't the first, and it won't be the last time Steelers' fans take over.

"They energize us," said Tomlin. "I am sure it created issues for them they didn't anticipate to deal with in their home venue. We have got unique support from our fans. We have come to expect it. We don't take it for granted, but we have come to expect it. It's unique and an awesome feeling and venue to be in."


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