Morning Links (and Daily Thread)…

A quick daily look at what’s happening around Steelers Nation. And consider this your open thread for discussing the days events and, well, anything else that comes to mind about the Black and Gold

– And it’s here. The absolute worst day of Super Bowl Week. Media Day.

The day hundreds of people, some of which don’t even regularly watch or write about football, will converge on the two best teams in the NFL and ask them the same questions they’ve been answering all season. It’s a day for manufactured story lines, and since these two teams have provided little in the way of trash talk or newsworthy quotes, the topics of the day will be centered on two things…

For the Packers: Picture-gate 2011 and whether or not IR players should be included. And let’s not forget the exchange between Aaron Rodgers and Nick Barnett (you know, a guy that’s not even playing in the game) on the subject. For the Steelers: Ben Roethlisberger’s story of redemption, which took another twist on Monday thanks to the words of our fearless commissioner, Roger Goodell. Goodell told Peter King that when he spoke to Roethlisberger’s teammates this offseason he didn’t have any come to the quarterback’s defense.

Said Goodell, via King, “I bet two dozen [Steeler] players … Not one, not a single player, went to his defense. It wasn’t personal in a sense, but all kinds of stories like, ‘He won’t sign my jersey.’ ”

So we’ve come to this. And weren’t those conversations supposed to be confidential? James Farrior, for what it’s worth, disputed Goodell’s claim on Monday afternoon, and pointed out that he had plenty of questions for the commish this summer and didn’t get a straight answer on any of them, which seems about right. But here’s the kicker: King issued a clarification Monday night saying that Goodell never specified STEELERS players, and that it was a wrong assumption on his part. Oof.

Whatever, these stories (the Packers team picture and the opinions of Ben Roethlisberger’s teammates) will play no role in the outcome of the game, but they’ll likely be the most talked about items on Tuesday.  That is, until Ines Sainz shows up and starts measuring biceps. Well done, NFL.

– In other news, Ben Muth breaks down the Steelers offensive line against the New York Jets in the AFC Championship game. All hail Jonathan Scott? [Football Outsiders]

– I’m not going to lie: I would have never, ever guessed that Flozell Adams would be the player this Steelers team would be rallying around leading up to a Super Bowl. [D.C. Steeler Nation]

– The latest injury update on Maurkice Pouncey and Aaron Smith. Looking like both guys are out. Unless they’re not. [Post-Gazette]

– And for your random YouTube of the day: Antwaan Randle El to Hines Ward in Super Bowl XL…

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  • Anonymous

    Can’t it just be Sunday already?

  • GlennW

    I commented on this yesterday in FO, but to me the biggest part of Peter King’s Goodell/Roethlisberger story is not whether Goodell’s statements are basically true or not, but Goodell’s betrayal of confidence (actually it wasn’t just with Ben, Goodell also dumped on Tank Johnson, Donte Stallworth and NFL violators in general). Why isn’t a bigger deal being made of this, by the media and/or the NFLPA? Isn’t this a serious breach of professional responsibility on Goodell’s part? After this episode, why would any player want to visit Goodell in New York for one of his heart-to-heart talks? I guess I just expect too much… Goodell appears to have totally sold out for this major suck-up Sports Illustrated column on himself, to be published later this week.

    I think Goodell was right about one thing he told King: “I realized long ago that I’m not the smartest person in the room”. Because Goodell’s actions make absolutely no sense, for professional reasons, business reasons, negotiating reasons, any reasons relating to his job as an overseer of the well-being of the NFL. It’s baffling.

    • ryan

      Glenn W. Great point. In fact, I just posted something about that very issue — and I independently used the same “not the smartest guy in the room” quote (ha!).

    • ncsteelerfan

      I guess the one question I have, is why is Peter King not getting more flack for this? I can’t stand Goodell either, but everybody’s piling on him. Peter King got this quote weeks ago, added the word Steelers to it, then held it until the week of the Super Bowl purely to generate buzz.

  • RoB D

    Can we have Pete Rozelle back