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Thursday, June 04, 2009

Camp to start July 31

Mike Tomlin will open his third training camp at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Friday, July 31.

The first open practice will be the next day. I can only imagine the kind of crowd the defending Super Bowl champions will draw for their first practice. It's the first time their first practice has been on a Saturday that I can remember in my 17 years of covering the team.

© Not surprisingly, Ben Roethlisberger was back at practice today showing no ill effects of an injury to his left knee that had him walking around like Festus Wednesday.

And people wonder why he's considered a drama queen.

© Stefan Logan has the most lateral quickness I've seen since Antwaan Randle El. I would be concerned about his size and ability to take a hit - he's only 5-6 - but he has the skill to play in the NFL.

© I got a copy of the Steelers' Super Bowl commemorative book Wednesday and got a chance to go through it last night.

Steelers Digest editor Bob Labriola did an excellent job with it and the photography by Mike Fabus is excellent.

It's a good look at the season that was for the Steelers.


Anonymous said...

i think you mean Tomlin's 3rd training camp.

Ben said...

People can call Ben a drama queen as much as they want. It's a very easy thing to do when you don't have 270LB+ linemen slamming you on your head.

How many times has he been sacked in the past 3 years? How do you think Marsha Brady would respond to that many hits?

Is Roethlisberger a particularly tough football player? Nah, guys like Harrison and Smith put him to shame. Is he a tough quarterback? In my opinion, there are none tougher. He has proven he is willing to risk his body to make a play where most QBs would throw the ball away. When the guy gets sacked 40+ times a season, I'm willing to look the other way when he limps a little bit.

Blount Trauma said...

I would say Ben is tough as nails, and I'd put him up against Smith and Harrison in that respect. Don't forget that those guys get to do most of the hitting, Ben gets to do most of the getting hit.

But I think that is a separate issue from the drama. His drama has nothing to do with toughness. He's not crying or trying to get sympathy or get out of playing. It's just a personality quirk. It's an attention thing. He's a bit of a flake. Personally, I don't know how you can play that well under all that pressure without having a little bit of that in you. Bradshaw was/is a flake, too. Moreso, I think most would say. I enjoy that about them.

Patrick said...

Ben and his injury complaints are a non issue to me. If you followed every player around with a camera during the game you'd hear some "ows" and "ahs". Ben is Ben so he gets the attention. But he also had the phantom broken toes his rookie year and the mysterious hand thing.

Regardless, I'd rather him complain about it, rather than pull a Sepulveda and find out in training camp that he tore an ACL.

And yes on the field, Ben is about as tough as they come for a QB.

Dale Lolley said...

Yeah, this is my 17th training camp. They all start to run together.

Steeler fan from the 70s said...

Bradshaw supposedly was kind of the same way, going by his own admission in interviews and also by what former teammates have said. (This is all after Bradshaw's career ended.)

That said, I remember him taking some vicious hits during his career (qb took more punishment back then) and his career did end prematurely (who knew he only had 3 seasons left in him after the 79 Super Bowl?) due to a failing elbow, one which supposedly required cortisone shots every week during the 1982 season (which the public was not aware of at the time I believe) and then he was sidelined for all of 1983, only to come back against the Jets in the 2nd to last game of the season to secure a playoff spot that was rapidly slipping away (the team had lost 3 in a row to very average teams). He lasted about 2 quarters against the Jets before his elbow gave out and that was the last time he ever played.

In short, what I'm trying to say is that no matter what Bradshaw or his former teammates may have said about his "overacting" at times, I still view Bradshaw as being tough when it really mattered. And he also generally played well when the chips were down in big games, which also requires courage, fortitude and fearlessness, which is basically a different sort of toughness.

Anyone notice any similarities between Terry and Ben?

By the way, I'm embarassed to admit that I don't understand the Festus reference.

Anonymous said...

Difference between Terry and Ben?

Terry left with supposed injuries and came back the next half to the roar of a deafening crowd. Ben missed a series or two this entire spring and some tool passing as a reporter calls him a drama queen.

Yes, he's quirky, but the drama queens are the reporters in this case. In fact, didn't you say this was a foot injury?

Kyle said...

way to be an anonymous jackass. would you feel better if he said "ben sometimes exaggerates injuries?" then he wouldn't have called your hero a drama queen. ben exaggerates injuries. he did it as a rookie, he does it as a superbowl champion. and no, dale didn't say it was a foot injury. what is the point of coming to a blog to spout nonsense in the comments?

Joe said...

Keep the SB rings coming Ben & let us fans worry about the "drama"!!! As long as he gets the job done, who cares! Seriously. Fact is we have nothing better to do right now than sit around & wait for training camp to begin so we can start worrying about potential injuries & hold outs.

On a side note, I enjoyed seeing him chair dancing to "Welcome to the Jungle" on Versus last night during the Pens game. How old was he when that song came out? My guess is around 6 or 7.

Dale Lolley said...

I said he got his foot stepped on as he threw.

In fact, I was the only reporter who was there and saw it happen. Everybody else came in later.

And if you'd have seen him limping, you'd have thought he needed surgery.

As for the Festus reference, he was Marshall Dillon's limping sidekick on Gunsmoke.

Steeler fan from the 70s said...

Thanks for explaining the Festus reference. Looks like it was just before my time (I was probably watching cartoons still).

As a funny aside about being a drama queen, I hurt my back by essentially taking a charge playing basketball on the playground one summer. I believe it was the summer after my junior year and a full sized adult basically ran into me and managed to step on my foot at the same time. So I couldn't get my foot out and it acted as a hinge and both are body weights came crashing down on me. I was in severe pain and was bedridden for about 2 days and eventually went to the doctor to make sure nothing was fractured. So of course, I had to call in to my summer job and say that I had hurt my back.

The end result is that once I did come back to work, nobody genuinely believed that I really hurt my back that badly, considering that I was 16-17 years old and they never let me live that down the rest of the summer.

It's kind of amusing looking back on it (probably doesn't come across in print).

Cajunyankee said...

It was reported that Ben hurt his Knee by contact with Timmons. Fast Willie has come out and said that Ben hurt his knee when the two of them "bumped" knees on a play. Anyone who has ever hit their knee just right knows it can hurt like...hell... so I wouldn't call Ben a Drama Queen this time though he has shown glimpses of it in the past.
Dale, any mores news on Sepulveda. I've read he's back punting,,,how rusty does he look?

hobo pete said...

Thanks for Explaining Festus!

I thought it was a mis-spelled festivus reference of over-exertion during feats of strength.

Anonymous said...

Some players won't talk about their injuries at all . . like not one word. Ben enjoys talking about his injuries.. . and he is extremely demonstrative when he feels pain. Why? who knows? I know he takes a beating during the season, but that is football.

Blount Trauma said...


Jim Wexell commented on FA wide receiver Foster's exceptional quickness. Has he caught your eye at all?

Anonymous said...

Typical Lolley blog post. He attacks our franchise QB, and then sings the praises of a hugely undersized guy that has no chance of making the team.

This reminds me of last year when you said that the Steelers would have to find a way to fit a 5-8 225 LB DIII defensive end onto the roster.

Blount Trauma said...

Dale, I must say that I have to agree with anonymous above. It's bad enough that you're not 100% accurate in your analysis and that you occasionally post opinions that some of us disagree with, but here it is a full year later and you continue to force this obviously dissatisfied customer to read your blog. FOR GOD SAKE, MAN, GIVE THE POOR SOUL HIS FREEDOM!

Anonymous said...

I have a love-hate relationship with Lolley. I appreciate the insight nonetheless, and I always congratulate him when he does a fine job. Sometimes I disagree, but again, since this is a blog, I was under the impression that I was allowed to have an opinion as well. Perhaps more than one person can voice their opinions...and maybe, just maybe we can all discuss our opinions together. Is that not the case Blount? If so, you cant explain your new rules to me. How exactly does the world work?

Thanks in advance.

Dale Lolley said...

I can say without at doubt that I never said any 5-8 225-pound linebacker was going to make this team's roster. Didn't happen. Nice selective memory though moron.

As for Ben, yes, I've banged knees before and it hurts. Doesn't hurt enough that I'm still limping like I'm going to die an hour and a half later, though.

Ben's a great quarterback. One of the top five now playing in the NFL. But he plays up even the slightest of injuries like he's on death's door. I'm not ripping him because of it. But it bears pointing out in a town where every time the quarterback stubs his toe it leads the nightly news - if they don't break into regularly scheduled programming.

Anonymous said...

dissatisfied customer? this is a FREE blog!!

as for ben, anyone who follows the steelers closely knows ben exaggerated his injuries. That undeniable

now, if someone has a problem with ben doing it that's a whole other thing, and I don't believe Dale said he had a problem with it, he just stated the truth- ben exaggerates injuries

Dale Lolley said...

And Sepulveda looks like he'll be fine. It was his plant leg that he had the problem with.

Anonymous said...

Dale, you said he the Steelers "should find a spot for him" because he had 23 sacks in college. It was around the same time you said James Harrison went to Akron, and confused Nick Eason for Lawrence Timmons in a camp fight with Willie Colon..

Also, very impressed with you ability to stay classy under pressure. That's a key attribute to most respected reporters *cough* bloggers *cough*. That's why they pay you the big bucks Dale. Or at least the leftover Cheeze-its.

Patrick said...

you know if you disagree with Dale, post it, please. I'd like to think we all encourage that. I do it all the time.

But I do it respectfully. Dale does what he does, and you coming on and acting like you're above him does nothing.

Bottom line, if you have an opinion, express it. Personal attacks are unnecessary. Grow up. You can't get practice reports like this from anywhere else (see the Wildcat fiasco of February for evidence).

Kyle said...

and for the record (is this a record) he didn't confuse anybody, bouchette said it was one guy and dale said it was another. you believed bouchette and the outlets that ran with his version. bully for you.

Anonymous said...

Patrick...I believe I was pretty respectful before being called a moron. I believe it was Dale who brought it to a juvenile, grade school name-calling level. Which he has a history of doing.

ch3 said...


I heard that Ratliff is lining up at Safety sometimes in practice. Is this true, and if so do you see him making the team with all the CBs we drafted this year?

Dale Lolley said...

Tomlin believes in position flexibility. And yes, Ratliff has done some safety work.
That's another reason I don't think Tyrone Carter makes this team.

As for Anonymous and his attacks. He's making his own case against himself. You come onto my blog and make a feeble attempt to rip me. If me calling you a moron - which you apparently are - offends. So be it.
But I do appreciate the traffic.
As for my pay, I'm getting paid to do something you'd give your left arm to do. Sorry that makes you jealous while you stock your shelves at the local five and dime.

Also, for those who don't care about this moron's rantings, I do have one correction.
While Festus was Marshall Dillon's sidekick on Gunsmoke, he wasn't the guy with the limp. That was Chester, another of James Arness' sidekicks on the long-running show.
See, I can admit when I'm wrong.

Unknown said...

Yikes. Drama.

I don't agree with Dale about his opinions every time either, but I can at least appreciate the easily accessible and free information I get from someone who attends practice and talks to players while I am at work in another time zone. I am sure 99% of other readers feel the same way. Thanks, Dale.

Dale Lolley said...

That's what I'm here for. If you don't like what I have to offer, you don't have to come here. I appreciate those who do.
And believe me, I know people are going to disagree sometimes. That's fine.
But when you come in here with lies and half-truths, expect to be called on it.

Anonymous said...

"That's another reason I don't think Tyrone Carter makes this team."

Has Carter been to any of the OTA's? Is he injured? Asked to stay away? Personal crisis? Seems every time I read an OTA report, he's been absent. I seriously doubt he's staying away because he wants more money.

Dale Lolley said...

Carter was here for the first couple of weeks, but has been gone since.
His wife is in a wheelchair, paralyzed - I believe - from the waist down. It could have something to do with that - but I'm just guessing there.