The Pittsburgh Steelers are coming off of a disappointing season and they’re now looking to bounce back with some younger talent spread throughout the roster, but it will be the veteran players in the locker room that make the difference for the team this year. At least that is what safety Ryan Clark says about the team’s potential turnaround for the 2013-14 season.
After all of the concerns about separation in the locker room, Clark says that the Steelers are calling on their veteran players to smooth things over and make sure that the team gets back to their old ways.
“We hate being attached to 8-8. So we’re trying to fix that ourselves, through the leaders, through the guys who have been here, we’re trying to implement the old Steeler Way,” Clark said, via Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “You know, getting along, chemistry, hanging out, working hard on the field but having a good time doing it.”
Clark is leading the charge to rally his teammates and build a sense of camaraderie, but he is not alone. Fellow safety Troy Polamalu is also ready to bring the team closer together.
“I believe the strength of this organization is in its camaraderie and its family atmosphere. We didn’t have those last year,” Polamalu said. “To me, that’s kind of what separates us from most teams, that we’ve had that foundation here. When talent is pretty equal across the board — and it is in the NFL — you’re looking in areas other than schematics to gain an edge. And that was an edge we didn’t have.”
With all of the departures from the Baltimore Ravens following their Super Bowl win, the Steelers are right in the mix in the AFC North.
If they can play like a tightly knit group and stay healthy unlike last season, the “old Steeler way” could mean a return to the top of the division and a playoff berth.