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Arkansas Bengal

Pittsburgh Steelers, Cincinnati Bengals jostling for playoff bid

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[url="http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap1000000113062/article/pittsburgh-steelers-cincinnati-bengals-jostling-for-playoff-bid"]http://www.nfl.com/n...for-playoff-bid[/url]


[b] Pittsburgh Steelers, Cincinnati Bengals jostling for playoff bid[/b]


With two weeks remaining in the regular season, the AFC North is still up for grabs between the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL"]Baltimore Ravens[/url] (9-5), [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Cincinnati Bengals[/url] (8-6) and [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Pittsburgh Steelers[/url] (7-7). The second-place team could have a cushioned landing in the form of the final AFC wild-card slot (though the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]New York Jets[/url] might have something to say about that). So, which AFC North team will be out of the mix come January?[list]
[*][img]http://static.nfl.com/static/content/catch_all/nfl_image/_Rosenthal1-65x90.jpg[/img]
[*]Gregg Rosenthal NFL.com
[*][b] Dalton, Bengals can't be trusted down the stretch[/b]
The [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL"]Baltimore Ravens[/url] will back into the division championship, just like [url="http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap1000000113048/article/afc-playoff-picture-pittsburgh-steelers-on-brink"]they have backed into the playoffs[/url]. I don't trust any of these teams to win in January, but I still trust the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Cincinnati Bengals[/url] least of all.

Cincinnati has yet to prove it can beat Baltimore or the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Pittsburgh Steelers[/url] in a big spot. [url="http://www.nfl.com/player/andydalton/2495143/profile"]Andy Dalton[/url] has played a lot worse for the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url] this season than his numbers indicate, often missing open throws and making poor decisions. The [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL"]Ravens[/url] and [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url] both have problems, but I expect both teams to take care of the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url] over the next two weeks. That would leave Baltimore as the AFC North champ, the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url] as one of the wild-card teams, and the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url] feeling like Charlie Brown when Lucy pulls away his football.
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[*][img]http://static.nfl.com/static/content/photo/2012/02/10/09000d5d826d804a.jpeg[/img]
[*]Charley Casserly NFL.com
[*][b] Bengals bound to miss playoffs[/b]
I believe it will be the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Cincinnati Bengals[/url]. Their defense is good enough, but [url="http://www.nfl.com/player/andydalton/2495143/profile"]Andy Dalton[/url] is too inconsistent as a quarterback when it comes to throwing his deep balls with accuracy.

Despite [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012121611/2012/REG15/steelers@cowboys"]their loss to the Dallas Cowboys[/url], the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Pittsburgh Steelers[/url] showed more life, especially on offense, than they did in Week 14 [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012120902/2012/REG14/chargers@steelers"]against the San Diego Chargers[/url]. [url="http://www.nfl.com/player/benroethlisberger/2506109/profile"]Ben Roethlisberger[/url] played much better. That's the difference between the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url] and [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url] -- the quarterback position.
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[*][img]http://static.nfl.com/static/content/public/photo/2012/08/13/0ap2000000049861.jpg[/img]
[*]Jason Smith NFL.com
[*][b] Bengals? Steelers? Neither will make the postseason[/b]
I think there's going to be [i]two[/i] odd teams out in the AFC North. All the teams in that division are flawed and in varying states of disarray, but the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL"]Baltimore Ravens[/url] are closest to the goal of winning it, so I'll default to them as AFC North champ. But here's the rub: If the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]New York Jets[/url] win out [url="http://www.nfl.com/schedules/2012/REG/Jets"]against three opponents[/url] who are currently mailing in their respective seasons, they'll finish at 9-7. The [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url] and [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url], meanwhile, [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012122303/2012/REG16/bengals@steelers"]play each other next week[/url], and someone must lose. As long as the winner of that game loses in Week 17, New York sneaks in. And that's what will happen.*

I'm down on Pittsburgh, because this is not a good [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url] team. It is extremely flawed and still lacks an offensive identity. [url="http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap1000000113063/article/ben-roethlisberger-questions-steelers-playcalling"]Ben Roethlisberger is now questioning the play-calling[/url]. Even though [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012122303/2012/REG16/bengals@steelers"]the game against the Bengals[/url] is in Pittsburgh, Cincinnati has been playing terrific football -- especially defensively -- over the past month. I see that continuing this Sunday.

So it will come down to the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url] or the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]Jets[/url] for that final spot in Week 17, and the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL"]Ravens[/url] [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012123002/2012/REG17/ravens@bengals"]will beat Cincinnati[/url].

[i]*Though I'm picking the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]Jets[/url], I'd like to leave open the possibility that all of this happens and the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]Jets[/url] somehow [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012123000/2012/REG17/jets@bills"]lose to the Buffalo Bills[/url] in Week 17, because, well, I've seen too many [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]Jets[/url] games in my lifetime to discount that scenario.[/i]
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[*][img]http://static.nfl.com/static/content/photo/2012/08/08/0ap2000000047767.jpg[/img]
[*]Adam Rank NFL.com
[*][b] Roethlisberger, Steelers find a way to win when it matters[/b]
It seems like every time we're ready to bury the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Pittsburgh Steelers[/url] (and trust me, you're tempted, after consecutive losses [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012120902/2012/REG14/chargers@steelers"]to the San Diego Chargers[/url] and [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012121611/2012/REG15/steelers@cowboys"]Dallas Cowboys[/url]), they always seem to find a way to win when it really matters.

As an example, I present to you [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012120210/2012/REG13/steelers@ravens"]Charlie Batch beating the Baltimore Ravens[/url] a few weeks back.

The [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url] will [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012122303/2012/REG16/bengals@steelers"]handle their business[/url] against the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Cincinnati Bengals[/url] in Heinz Field this week, and then [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012123003/2012/REG17/browns@steelers"]take care of the Cleveland Browns[/url] the following week. And the biggest reason to think so is the quarterback. Sure, [url="http://www.nfl.com/player/benroethlisberger/2506109/profile"]Ben Roethlisberger[/url] threw a decisive interception against the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/dallascowboys/profile?team=DAL"]Cowboys[/url], but when it comes to must-win games, he rises to the challenge.

Red Dalton has struggled in recent weeks, with five total touchdowns and five turnovers in his past three games. Teams have put pressure on Dalton, and he's made some mistakes. The [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url] were able to get away with a flat second quarter [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012121300/2012/REG15/bengals@eagles"]against the Philadelphia Eagles[/url] last week, but that kind of play will catch up to them against the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url] on Sunday.
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[*][img]http://static.nfl.com/static/content/catch_all/nfl_image/dave_dameshek-65x90.jpg[/img]
[*]Dave Dameshek NFL.com
[*][b] Bengals will fall short this season ... but take the division in 2013[/b]
The [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL"]Baltimore Ravens[/url] are a mess. As I've been saying for weeks now, they won't win another game in 2012. Whether their next win comes in January or September 2013 has yet to be determined. On the bright side, if it weren't for a bad call on fourth-and-29 [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012112508/2012/REG12/ravens@chargers"]against the San Diego Chargers[/url], or [url="http://www.nfl.com/player/jacobyjones/2495651/profile"]Jacoby Jones[/url]' punt return [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012111811/2012/REG11/ravens@steelers"]versus the Pittsburgh Steelers[/url], or [url="http://www.nfl.com/videos/auto/0ap2000000065313/Belichick-fumed-after-Tucker-s-game-winning-FG"]a very questionable field goal over the upright[/url] against the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE"]New England Patriots[/url], they'd be in third place right now. As it is, they're going to the postseason.

The path is now clear for the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Cincinnati Bengals[/url]: If they can win their last two, they can win the AFC North. They ought to be able to beat the imploding [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL"]Ravens[/url] (who will have lost four straight by the time they arrive in Cincinnati), but it says here they'll lose a ragged game [url="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012122303/2012/REG16/bengals@steelers"]on Sunday at Heinz Field[/url]. Yes, the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url] are a better team than the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT"]Steelers[/url], but in a must-win situation, I'll take Roethlisberger over Dalton ... at least at this point in their respective careers. Sorry, [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/cincinnatibengals/profile?team=CIN"]Bengals[/url]; you're out. Chin up, though. You're a lock to win the division next year.

As for the [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]Jets[/url]? They'll do something [url="http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ"]Jets[/url]y in the next couple of weeks. No playoffs for them.
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The sports experts above just made my point. They expect the Bengals lose. And if we beat the Steelers and Ravens, the above experts will blame it on poor plays from the Steelers and Ravens, not good plays from the Bengals.

Over 90% of the time, the TV sports experts will not give the Bengals credit when they beat the Steelers or Ravens. They always blame it on poor plays from the Steelers or Ravens allowing the Bengals to slip in and take a win away from them. Ben Rothlisberger will blame the loss on his coach, poor play calling from the bench, past injuries, or his shoestrings were untied. He would never blame it on his poor play. He is a future HOF.
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Nobody expects a team or player to do something until they've done it. I don't really care. I just hope the Bengals are posting every scrap of paper that says they will lose on Sunday.

Being doubted and the underdog is always a strong motivator.
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Yep, Peyton Manning couldn't win the big one....until he did. Neither could Steve Young. Until we beat them....we can't. Not surprising.
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[quote name='Rick' timestamp='1355926200' post='1195502']
The sports experts above just made my point. They expect the Bengals lose. And if we beat the Steelers and Ravens, the above experts will blame it on poor plays from the Steelers and Ravens, not good plays from the Bengals.

Over 90% of the time, the TV sports experts will not give the Bengals credit when they beat the Steelers or Ravens. They always blame it on poor plays from the Steelers or Ravens allowing the Bengals to slip in and take a win away from them. Ben Rothlisberger will blame the loss on his coach, poor play calling from the bench, past injuries, or his shoestrings were untied. He would never blame it on his poor play. He is a future HOF.
[/quote]

On Sunday I was watching one of the post game shows and the panel (the one with the chin on it) spent plenty of time explaining the different playoff scenarios. At no point did they even mention that the Bengals were in a prime position to make it to the playoffs. Instead explained what Pittsburgh needed to do to make it and basically assumed they would beat the Bengals at home.

Of course they had to explain everything concerning Dallas, the Jets (before they lost), Pittspuke, NY Giants, Washington, etc... It was like we didn't even exist in the league.
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[quote name='mongo' timestamp='1355927803' post='1195505']
Nobody expects a team or player to do something until they've done it. [/quote]


Pretty much this.
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Yep, listening to national radio shows this week it's like the Bengals don't even exist. They talk more about teams that are eliminated from the playoffs than they do about the Bengals.

I am not even worried about the game on Sunday. The Bengals are simply a better team than the Steelers. They are going to crush them.
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I will say this they're right about Dalton, someone needs to give him a pep-talk, he's been struggling and if he plays like he has the past 2 weeks we're in trouble.
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So does that mean Jason Smith is picking us now?
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[quote name='SF2' timestamp='1355929633' post='1195519']
On Sunday I was watching one of the post game shows and the panel (the one with the chin on it) spent plenty of time explaining the different playoff scenarios. At no point did they even mention that the Bengals were in a prime position to make it to the playoffs. Instead explained what Pittsburgh needed to do to make it and basically assumed they would beat the Bengals at home.

Of course they had to explain everything concerning Dallas, the Jets (before they lost), Pittspuke, NY Giants, Washington, etc... It was like we didn't even exist in the league.
[/quote]

Therein lies the conumdrum.

To the media...we don't exist. We are only in the conversation (barely) because by virtue of where we are, we HAVE to be in the conversation. However, in reality, not one media squawking head believes we are anything more than the Washington Generals for the god-almighty Stealers and Rats to comically beat up upon.

Thing of it is...they always base it on past experience. Maybe that is the only way for them to gauge it, but each season--and game--is its own unique happening.

We just need to prevail in our unique happening on Sunday. Then (and for now actually) piss on these overpaid squawkboxes and their opinions.
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[quote name='Le Tigre' timestamp='1355935298' post='1195557']
Therein lies the conumdrum.

To the media...we don't exist. We are only in the conversation (barely) because by virtue of where we are, we HAVE to be in the conversation. However, in reality, not one media squawking head believes we are anything more than the Washington Generals for the god-almighty Stealers and Rats to comically beat up upon.

Thing of it is...they always base it on past experience. Maybe that is the only way for them to gauge it, but each season--and game--is its own unique happening.

We just need to prevail in our unique happening on Sunday. Then (and for now actually) piss on these overpaid squawkboxes and their opinions.
[/quote]

I don't recall getting added respect in those years when we beat the Ravens three out of four times.
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Oh good, they are all picking against us. I like it like that.
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I have to say out of all the times we lost games we should have won this season that these so called experts said we would win. We should have beat pitt the first time and should have won against dallas. We even had a chance against arguably the best team in football the broncos. I really like where we are right now as a team and truly believe we beat the stealers and then take the division in our last game against the ratbirds. THIS is our year. No more "maybe next year".
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It's the classic to be the Champ you've got to beat the Champ the next two weeks.

The national guys love the Ravens/Steeler rivalry. It was that way when we snuck into it back 09. They aren't going to invite the Bengals to the party, the Bengals will have to knock down the door.

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[quote name='Oldcat' timestamp='1355940376' post='1195573']


I don't recall getting added respect in those years when we beat the Ravens three out of four times.
[/quote]

We swept them in 09. The Bengals dropped the ball in 2010. They had added respect heading into the 2010 season.

Since then it's been in favor of Ravens/Steelers.

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Even if the Bengals win, the story will be "the Steelers are old," or "the Steelers are banged up." It won't be because the Bengals are any good.
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I'm just glad when the team wins, I'm not sure why you guys get so worked up over the opinions of commentators, pickers, writers, etc... I would love it if the Bengals "got lucky" all the way to a super bowl win. I wouldn't care how many outsiders thought they didn't "win" it so much as the other team "lost" it, as long as we had more points at the end. Part of the fun of being a Bengals fan is being the perennial underdog, there's a lot of people out there that like us for that fact alone and absolutely hate the steelers because the media won't shut up about them. let the talkers talk and the haters hate, we know what this team is about and a few more wins and the general public will see the truth instead of what espn tells them. and if they don't no big deal, perception is not reality in this case.
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[quote name='eva4ben-gal' timestamp='1355947347' post='1195612']
I'm just glad when the team wins, I'm not sure why you guys get so worked up over the opinions of commentators, pickers, writers, etc... I would love it if the Bengals "got lucky" all the way to a super bowl win. I wouldn't care how many outsiders thought they didn't "win" it so much as the other team "lost" it, as long as we had more points at the end. Part of the fun of being a Bengals is being the perennial underdog, there's a lot of people out there that like us for that fact alone and absolutely hate the steelers because the media won't shut up about them. let the talkers talk and the haters hate, we know what this team is about and a few more wins and the general public will see the truth instead of what espn tells them. and if they don't no big deal, perception is not reality in this case.
[/quote]

I don't get worked up over it. I do think it gets a little annoying.

The steelers have not been playing well for a while even before Ben's injury. But they been given this golden pass by the media to playoff glory and week after week they flounder.

Meanwhile in the second half of the season the Bengals are 5-1 and by the way a returning playoff team.

So, I hope the Bengals don't let the Steelers off the hook this week like they did back in October.
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[quote name='scharm' timestamp='1355947586' post='1195615']


I don't get worked up over it. I do think it gets a little annoying.

The steelers have not been playing well for a while even before Ben's injury. But they been given this golden pass by the media to playoff glory and week after week they flounder.

Meanwhile in the second half of the season the Bengals are 5-1 and by the way a returning playoff team.

So, I hope the Bengals don't let the Steelers off the hook this week like they did back in October.
[/quote]
One way to look at it is that there will be a lot of steelers fans too depressed to sodomize their sister when the team that the national media told them was so good misses the playoffs.
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[quote name='eva4ben-gal' timestamp='1355947347' post='1195612']
I'm just glad when the team wins, I'm not sure why you guys get so worked up over the opinions of commentators, pickers, writers, etc... I would love it if the Bengals "got lucky" all the way to a super bowl win. I wouldn't care how many outsiders thought they didn't "win" it so much as the other team "lost" it, as long as we had more points at the end. Part of the fun of being a Bengals fan is being the perennial underdog, there's a lot of people out there that like us for that fact alone and absolutely hate the steelers because the media won't shut up about them. let the talkers talk and the haters hate, we know what this team is about and a few more wins and the general public will see the truth instead of what espn tells them. and if they don't no big deal, perception is not reality in this case.
[/quote]

That is a reasoned take.

I suppose I just don't like sports journalism in general. I find the purveyors mostly one-upmanship circus snake oil salesmen (and women). Tell the LIF (Low Information Fan) what they think might get their attention--without a lot of detail or fact-based information--and that seems to work. I suppose if it does for them, they continue to do it.
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[quote name='Le Tigre' timestamp='1355948703' post='1195625']


That is a reasoned take.

I suppose I just don't like sports journalism in general. I find the purveyors mostly one-upmanship circus snake oil salesmen (and women). Tell the LIF (Low Information Fan) what they think might get their attention--without a lot of detail or fact-based information--and that seems to work. I suppose if it does for them, they continue to do it.
[/quote]
Well unfortunately I think a lot of that has to do with the internet and espn. so much attention is paid to the speed in which reports can be gathered and distributed that a lot of substance gets left by the wayside.
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I hear what people say and honestly I don't blame them. Even if we just limit it to the Marvin years, this team has not shown up in the biggest games. I think this team should beat the Steelers on Sunday. But until they do it when it truly counts I can't blame anyone for their doubts. Now it is time to put up or shut up.

I have my concerns. I think Andy has progressed this year from last year, but in some respects he is not playing any better. I do not think Gruden has been all that great either with his in game adjustments. The Philly game was absolutely terrible and not adjusting to the pressure. This team is still a work in progress in my humble opinion, especially on offense. Winning this weekend will be huge in building confidence among the players as they develop and the fan base who truly wants to believe,

Huge huge game! Go Bengals and kick some stealer ass!
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Every day there are MANY Steelers or Ravens ESPN reports scrolling on the left side of the TV. ESPN always talk about them. It is just the way it is. They need to rename ESPN and call it SSPN, STEELERS Sports Network.
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[quote name='Rick' timestamp='1355949594' post='1195635']
Every day there are MANY Steelers or Ravens ESPN reports scrolling on the left side of the TV. ESPN always talk about them. It is just the way it is. They need to rename ESPN and call it SSPN, STEELERS Sports Network.
[/quote]
Or why don't you do what I did and rename it TNINLW, THE NETWORK I NO LONGER WATCH
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