Q: What were you thinking when you saw the conditions of the field in Pittsburgh on Monday night?CP:
It's not going to be much better. In a week, you're really not going to get much improvement. We're expecting it to be probably like it was, if not worse, depending on the rain situation. So we've got to be ready to play in whatever conditions we've got.
Q: What's the worst conditions you've ever played in?CP:
I've played in a lot of rain games. I played in Pittsburgh a number of times when it was pretty bad; they have a tough time growing grass there. But the field that we practice on every day is as slippery. The turf comes up just as bad on our grass field as it does anywhere else I've every played. So we're used to it. We've got to feel that you have to practice in a certain length of cleats or else you're going to slip, and we get plenty of work at it, so we should be fine.
Q: How does the field condition affect you at your position, and does it give an advantage to one side of the ball or the other?CP:
I don't think so. I'm not too worried about it. I'm going to get there before the game and warm up and see how it feels. I'm sure there's going to be a couple of adjustments but as far as my position's concerned, the guys you worry about are receivers and DBs slipping and sliding, running full speed and having to stop and cut in one direction. Those are the guys it's going to be tough on. But we'll make adjustments, we'll be fine and figure it just like we would in any other circumstance.
Q: Do you think the field conditions could limit the downfield passing game?CP:
We have a game plan and we're going in and execute our game plan whether it's raining, snowing, windy, whatever the situation is, because if it's tough on us, it's tough on them. If we have a tough time running the deep route, they have a tough time covering the deep route. So we're just going to go in and execute our game plan and move on.
Q: Do receivers have an advantage on a sloppy field because they know where they're going?CP:
I don't know. There's a couple different fields of thought. Some people think that if the DB doesn't know where he's breaking and the receiver does, the receiver has the advantage. I just think it's more of who's more used to practicing in those circumstances, in that situation. They obviously have a game up playing in it, but like I said we practice on a tough field day-in and day-out all season long. So I think we should be all right
Q: In light of the Sean Taylor incident, how concerned are you about security for yourself?CP:
You think, in a town like this, you really don't have to worry about it too much. We do have a security system, and all that. I'm not sure if Sean had that or not. I know he lived in a gated community. In a town like this, you don't hear much about crime. I'm sure a lot of guys on our team don't really think too much about it. Coach Lewis talked about it today. He talked about always needing to worry about your surroundings, and who you surround yourself with, because you never know.
Q: Was the point of his message, being aware of your surroundings?CP:
Q: Why do you think, every year, the Steelers have a Pro Bowl linebacker? Is it their system, their players, or both?CP:
I think it's both. You can say it's the system, but Joey Porter is a heck of a player no matter what system he's in. James Farrior is a Pro Bowler, wherever he goes. Larry Foote, possibly, wherever he goes. It's part of the system because of the situations their linebackers are put in. They have opportunities to get sacks, and interceptions, and make plays on balls. They do a great job drafting. There aren't many guys that get away with playing there but can't play anywhere else. They do a great job year in year out, drafting all over their defense. They understand defense there.
It's an organization built on defense. I remember the year I came out, they moved up to get Troy (Polamalu), which was one of the best picks of the draft. Of any draft, to make a move to get a guy like him. I think with all the linebackers they have, you can't say it's the system. What (James) Harrison did during the Monday night game a couple of weeks ago was phenomenal. They have phenomenal players with great talent. They're well-groomed in the system. It's hard to say it's just the system, they have a lot of talent there, too.
Q: Do you expect Troy (Polamalu) to play, and is it safe to say that you hope he doesn't?CP:
No question. You hope Troy's not playing. I want to win, and we have a better chance of winning when Troy's not on the field. We're not sure if he's going to play or not. You have to prepare like he is going to play, and be ready for him to play. You just don't know.