1. Steelers hope to sign DE Tuitt to extension-As All-Pro RB Le’Veon Bell continues to hold out, the Pittsburgh Steelers aim to sign DE Stephen Tuitt to a contract extension before the season starts, Per team President Art Rooney II. When the Steelers are this intent on signing someone, 98% of the time, they get it done. I’ll give it until the final week in August.
  2. K Chris Boswell too-They found this man in a kicking tryout in 2015 and all he’s done was kick game-winners and set the NFL playoff postseason record with 6 field goals, so it’s a no-brainer that the Steelers want to lock Boswell up as well. He deserves it.
  3. Kevin Colbert Extension-Meanwhile, Rooney says that there’s no timetable on when they will sign GM Kevin Colbert to a contract extension. It was expected that it would come after they signed Head Coach Mike Tomlin to his extension, but nothing yet. I believe that this deal will happen before the season starts too.
  4. LeVeon Bell’s Status-And then there’s this guy who continues to hold out because he didn’t get a long-term deal. I have great respect for this kid, but I don’t respect his actions, which are selfish right now. Bell knows he has to play for the $12 million Franchise Tag, so why not come to camp and get ready for 2017? My guess is that he will wait until the Steelers leave Latrobe and start practices on the South Side to show up, kind of like how WR Mike Wallace did it.
  5. Sammie Coates returns to practice-Glad to hear that this young man is back. Fresh off a season in which he had some highs (435 yards, 2 TDS) and lows (5 drops and injuries) Coates is certainly hoping 2017 will be a year of redemption. He did his best to fill in for the suspended Martavis Bryant but as we found out, he’s no He just needs to focus on being Sammie.
  6. Other Steelers Receivers-It’s a crowded crew, that’s for sure. I believe that they’ll keep 6: Antonio Brown, Bryant, Coates, JuJu Smith-Shuster, Eli Rogers, but who will be the 6th? Cobi Hamilton, Justin Hunter, Darius Heyward-Bey, Marcus Tucker?? It will truly be a tough decision for Tomlin and OC Todd Haley. I would truly pick Hamilton because he’s starting to impress me more, but the Steelers love Heyward-Bey. We shall see.
  7. Speaking of Bryant-As we know, he was officially reinstated to practice, which he began on Sunday and he’s impressing many of his teammates, including QB Ben Roethlisberger. As we know, there aren’t any concerns about Bryant’s on-field issues, so he’ll be fine. He’s not expected to play Sunday vs. Atlanta.
  8. Steelers Defense-Even though it’s preseason, the Steelers defense made quite the impression in their 20-12 win vs. the NY Giants. They had 5 sacks (3 from LB Arthur Moats) and 2 from rookie TJ Watt. They displayed an aggressiveness that I hadn’t seen in years. Hopefully, this will carry over into the regular season.
  9. Possible NFL Work Stoppage in 2021? According to NFL Player Rep DeMaurice Smith, it is very You would think that after their 132-day lockout in 2011 that the players and owners unions would stay far away from another stoppage, but like Smith said, there hasn’t been much labor peace. Well, they still have 4 years to go, so hopefully, they can prevent another one.
  10. NFL Players not standing during National Anthem-In support of what’s been going on in the country and also for un-signed QB Colin Kaepernick, several NFL players chose to protest the national anthem by either kneeling or sitting. Oakland Raiders RB Marshawn is the only player who sat, and he refused to explain, to no surprize.
  11. Are the players justified? Whether you agree or not, yes they are, just as much as any American has a right to express their views. They are making a statement and they want to be heard.
  12. Pirates-Well, they’ve teased us for the past few weeks, but I honestly feel like this team isn’t good enough to win the NL Central Division, because the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals are good enough and more talented and resilient than the Pirates. I would also include the Milwaukee Brewers too, but they don’t look like the team who led the division in the first half of the season.
  13. What has been the Pirates problem? Besides their ownership (I sound like a broken record), it’s been inconsistent pitching. Starters Gerrit Cole and Ivan Nova haven’t been as good as they’ve been, Jameson Tallion missed starts due to cancer and has fought back, and rookies Chad Kuhl and Trevor Williams lack of experience have hurt this team. Plus, the offense has been up and down and have been wounded due to the loss of 3B Jung-Ho Kang and the 80-game suspension of LF Starling Marte. It is what it is.
  14. Neil Walker is a brewer that’s what’s disappointing about the Pirates Front Office. They don’t take enough The 2013 team would’ve traded for Walker, who was actually on the team that year. But this team and front office are truly delusional and GM Neal Huntington continues to talk about ‘Financial Flexibility’ Give me a break. Anyway, kudos to the Brewers for adding Walker for the fight for the division.
  15. LA Dodgers-This team truly has the best record in baseball with over 80 wins. There’s talk on whether they can best the Cubs and Seattle Mariners 1916 and 2001 season record of 116 wins, but the Dodgers aren’t talking about it. Why would they? They’re trying to lock up the NL West and aim for a World Series title, something they haven’t done since 1988.
  16. Other Division Leaders-In addition to Central (Cubs) and West (Dodgers) leaders, Washington leads the NL East and in the AL it’s Boston (East), Cleveland (Central) and Houston (West) and the Wild Card leaders are NL: Colorado and Arizona and in the AL: The NY Yankees and LA Angels.
  17. Dwyane Wade may seek buyout with Bulls-So much for coming home. Apparently, it didn’t work out so well with Wade who went home to Chicago to play with the Bulls last season, because of this buyout news. But it’s just speculation at this point. But if Wade is bought out, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cleveland Cavaliers are on his wish-list.
  18. Kyrie Irving-Speaking of the Cavs, apparently there’s still news about Irving wanting out of Cleveland and I guess the Cavs are looking into possible deals, but once again it’s just speculation and yet again, the NBA is acting like a soap opera.
  19. Pitt Football-Apparently the team will have a James Conner bobblehead giveaway during the 2017 season. I think he deserves it after his record-setting college career.
  20. Narduzzi wants Duquesne and Robert Morris-The Pitt HC sure did say that, but not for a regular season game, but a preseason game (which they don’t have in college football) or scrimmage. That would be interesting.

 

 

Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

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