Team Spirit author Mark Stewart talks about the OVERTIME web page.

Mark picks his favorite Steelers

What’s new with the Pittsburgh Steelers? That’s what this page is all about.

The Team Spirit OVERTIME website begins where the Team Spirit books end.

That’s because football never stands still … And I can never squeeze everything I want into 48 pages!

Scroll down for team updates, player profiles, and stats you won’t find in the book. Click on the videos to the left to hear me talk about Team Spirit OVERTIME as well as my favorite players. And take a look below at some of the Steelers collectibles I have in my home—pretty cool, right?

Enjoy this site, check back whenever you like, and contact me with any questions or comments.

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Updates

2020 Season

2020 Season Preview: Ben Roethlisberger returns to the huddle after missing all of 2019 with an injury. Receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster is happy to have Big Ben back, and newcomer Eric Ebron should serve as one of Roethlisberger’s prime targets. The Pittsburgh defense was better than the team’s 8–8 record last year, and will improve along with its star lineman, TJ Watt.

2019 Season

2019 Season Roundup: The Steelers struggled without Ben Roethlisberger in uniform but still managed to win half their games. Injuries also kept receivers James Conner and JuJu Smith-Schuster from playing their best. The Pittsburgh defense, led by TJ Watt, Cameron Heyward, and newcomer Minkah Fitzpatrick, was sensational.

September 15, 2019: JuJu Smith-Schuster became the youngest player in history to reach 2,500 receiving yards. He passed this mark at 22 years and 297 days old—13 days earlier than Randy Moss.

2019 Season Preview: The 2018 season unraveled quickly in Pittsburgh, with Ben Roethlisberger the only one of the three Killer B’s on the field when they Steelers needed some late-season magic. James Conner, who replaced holdout Le’Veon Bell, is back again as the #1 runner, while JuJu Smith-Schuster looks to match his incredible receiving numbers as a rookie last year. The team’s pass defense may not be strong enough to stop most opponents, but its front seven—which welcomes #1 pick Devin Bush at linebacker—is good enough to get the job done.

2018 Season

October 28, 2018: Running back James Conner gained 146 yards against the Browns and was named AFC Offensive Player of the Week the second time in a row. Conner was also the Player of the Month for October.

2018 Season Preview: Pittsburgh fans will be disappointed if the Steelers don’t reach the Super Bowl. They are well-balanced on both sides of the ball, and their pass defense should be even better this season than it was in 2017. Ben Roethlisberger, Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown give the Steelers three of the NFL top weapons on offense.

2017 Season

2017 Season Roundup: The Steelers won the AFC North with a 13–3 record but were upset in the playoffs by the Jaguars. Ben Roethlisberger threw for more than 4,00 yards for the fifth time in his career, LeVeon Bell ran for 1,291 yards and was named a first-team All-Pro, and Antonio Brown caught 101 passes and led the NFL with 1,533 receiving yards. Cameron Heyward led the Steel Curtain defense with 12 sacks.

December 10, 2017: Ben Roethlisberger threw for 506 yards in a win against the Ravens. He became the first QB in history to have three 500-yard games in the same season.

2017 Season Preview: Pittsburgh’s offense is a true powerhouse. Ben Roethlisberger, Le’Von Bell, and Antonio Brown will need to make big plays in December and January in order for the Steelers to return to the Super Bowl. The defense, led by Ryan Shazier, will also have to take a big step forward to earn another NFL title.

2016 Season

2016 Season Roundup: The Steelers made the playoffs for the third year in a row with an offense led once again by Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown. After missing much of 2015, Le’Veon Bell recovered to pace the club with 1,268 rushing yards and caught 75 passes. Pittsburgh was just 4–5 after nine games, but won its final six to finish atop the AFC North at 10–6. The Steelers fell short of reaching the Super Bowl, falling to the Patriots 36–17 in the AFC title game.

2016 Season Preview: Is there a better scoring trio than Ben Roethlisberger, Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown? If all three stay healthy, the Steelers should be able to reach 12 or more wins. The defense was a weakness in 2015, but Pittsburgh added some young talent to go with stars James Harrison and Cameron Heyward in 2016.

2015 Season

December 13, 2015: Antonio Brown caught 100 passes for the third year in a row. Only 5 other players in history have had three straight 100-catch seasons.

2015 Season Preview: Pittsburgh’s legendary defense was nowhere to be found in 2014. QB Ben Roethlisberger made up for it with his best season ever. If Big ben can repeat and the team’s young defensive players step up, the Steelers could challenge the Pats and Broncos for the AFC title.

2014 Season

January 31, 2015: Running back Le’Veon Bell was named FedEx Ground Player of the Year and Fantasy Player of the Year.

October 26, 2014: Ben Roethlisberger passed for 522 yards and 6 touchdowns in a victory over the Colts. He is the first player to have two 500-yard passing games and the second to pass for 500 yards and throw for 6 touchdowns in the same game. One week later he threw six more touchdown passes, against the Ravens!

September 2, 2014: The Steelers’ so-so season in 2013 convinced the team to rebuild its defense with veteran Mike Mitchell and rookies Ryan Shazier and Stephon Tuitt. Newcomers LeGarrette Blount and Dri Archer will help Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh offense, which needs big years from receiver Antonio Brown and running back LeVeon Bell.

2013 Season

September 4, 2013: It is not unusual for a successful team like the Steelers to have a year to regroup and rebuild, as they did in 2012. Pittsburgh fans hope that one year is all it takes. If Ben Roethlisberger has anything to say about it, the Steelers should be back in the playoff hunt in 2013. They will also be looking to young players such as Antonio Brown, Jason Worilds, and Jarvis Jones to step up and become team leaders.

2012 Roundup

February 2, 2013: Although their record was just 8–8, it was an exciting season for the Steelers. Six of their 16 games were decided on the final play! Ben Roethlisberger and Heath Miller led the passing attack, but Pittsburgh’s ground game was not up to its usual standards.

Summer, 2012: With Hines Ward retired, receiver Mike Wallace becomes the go-to guy for quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in 2012. The team should be as strong as always on defense, but the Steelers play a tough schedule in a tough division, so they need to be at their best every time they take the field.

More Go-To Guys

I love this old photo of Jack Butler from college. Was he tough, or what? (St. Bonaventure University)

Andy Russell wrote a book about the Steelers of the 1970s. Do we think the mustache is a good call? (The Andy Russell Charitable Foundation)

Greg Lloyd was a dude you didn’t mess around with. It even says so on his practice shirt. (Author’s Collection)

A brilliant author must have written this book. (Grolier/Children’s Press)

  • Jack Butler — Defensive Back
    Born: 11/12/1927
    Played for Team: 1951 to 1959
    Jack Butler grew up in Pittsburgh and rooted for the Steelers. He was thrilled when the team offered him a contract in 1951. So were the fans. Butler played in the Pro Bowl each season from 1955 to 1959. He was also named an All-Pro three times.

  • John Henry Johnson — Running Back
    Born 11/24/1929
    Died: 6/3/2011
    Played for Team: 1960 to 1965
    John Henry Johnson was a fullback known mostly as a blocker when he joined the Steelers in 1960. The team believed he would be more dangerous with the ball in his hands. With Pittsburgh, Johnson rushed for more than 1,000 yards twice and was also a good receiver out of the backfield. He was voted to Pro Bowl each season from 1962 to 1964.

  • Andy Russell — Defensive Back
    Born: 10/29/1941
    Played for Team: 1963 to 1976
    Coming out of college, Andy Russell was overlooked by every team except the Steelers. He rewarded their faith in him. Russell played his entire 14-year career with Pittsburgh. He was always in the right place at right time and had a knack for creating key turnovers. Russell went to the Pro Bowl six times.

  • Franco Harris — Running Back
    Born: 3/7/1950
    Played for Team: 1972 to 1983
    Franco Harris was a big running back who had surprising speed and agility. Despite his great size, he could stop, start, and change direction in the blink of an eye. Harris was the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year in 1972 and the Super Bowl MVP two years later.

  • John Stallworth — Receiver
    Born: 7/15/1952
    Played for Team: 1974 to 1987
    It took John Stallworth three years to become a starter for the Steelers. Once he did, he combined with Lynn Swann to give Pittsburgh one of the most exciting receiving duos in football history. Stallworth was tall, lanky, and fast. His best season came in 1979 when he caught 70 passes for 1,183 yards and was named an All-Pro.

  • Greg Lloyd — Linebacker
    Born: 5/26/1965
    Played for Team: 1988 to 1997
    Greg Lloyd was a great do-it-all linebacker for the Steelers. He could sack the quarterback, step back in pass coverage to intercept a pass, and make hard tackles to stop the opposing running game. Lloyd was an All-Pro three years in a row from 1993 to 1995.

  • Dermontti Dawson — Offensive Lineman
    Born: 6/17/1965
    Played for Team: 1988 to 2000
    Dermontti Dawson was a quick and powerful blocker who anchored Pittsburgh’s offensive line for more than a decade. From 1989 to 1998, he started 160 games in a row. For six of those seasons, Dawson was named an All-Pro.

  • Levon Kirkland — Linebacker
    Born: 2/17/1969
    Played for Team: 1992 to 2000
    Few teams tried to run the ball up the middle when Levon Kirkland was on the field. He was strong enough to push blockers out of the way and quick enough to tackle the fastest running backs. He was voted All-Pro in 1997 after making five sacks, intercepting two passes, and recovering a fumble.

  • Kordell Stewart — Quarterback
    Born: 10/16/1972
    Played for Team: 1995 to 2002
    Kordell Stewart was a threat as a passer, runner, and receiver for the Steelers. In 1996, he ran for an 80-yard touchdown and caught three touchdown passes. The following year, he threw for 21 touchdowns. In 2002, Stewart went to the Pro Bowl after passing for 3,109 yards and rushing for 537 yards.

More Fun Facts

Dermontti Dawson signed this photo before he went to the Hall of Fame. Now he adds “HOF 2012” to his signatures. (Author’s Collection)

  • FRANCO FILE
    Pittsburgh fans scratched their heads in 1972 when the Steelers took Franco Harris before Lydell Mitchell in the NFL draft. In college, Harris had mostly blocked for Mitchell, who was the star running back for Penn State. The fans were cheering once they saw Harris run, however. He gained 1,000 yards eight different times for Pittsburgh. After his football career, Harris teamed up again with Mitchell. They own a bakery that makes healthy snacks for schoolchildren.

  • NICKNAME GAME
    Hall of Famer Dermontti Dawson had two nicknames when he played center for the Steelers in the 1990s. One was “Dirt” for the way he blocked people into the ground during games. He got the other nickname because he was so ridiculously nice off the field: “Flanders.”

  • NEW RULE
    When Mel Blount joined the Steelers in 1970, defensive backs were allowed to smash into receivers as long as the ball wasn’t in the air. Blount was so good at this “bump-and-run” coverage that the NFL made it illegal. Everyone called the new rule the Mel Blount Rule.

League Leaders

After his playing career, Jim Finks ran the Minnesota Vikings in the 1960s. He put together their famous “Purple People Eaters” defense. (Bowman Gum Co.)

I have to admit, I had no idea who Dean Derby was before I wrote this Team Spirit book. He looks like he’s pretty serious about football, though. (Topps, Inc.)

  • RUSHING YARDS
    1938 — Byron “Whizzer” White — 567
    1942 — Bill Dudley — 696

  • RECEIVING YARDS
    1933 — Paul Moss — 283
    1968 — Roy Jefferson — 1,074
    2017 — Antonio Brown — 1,533

  • PASSING YARDS
    1955 — Jim Finks — 2,270
    2018 — Ben Roethlisberger — 5,129

  • RECEPTIONS
    2015 — Antonio Brown — 136

  • RUSHING TDs
    1976 — Franco Harris — 14
    2015 — DeAngelo Williams — 11

  • RECEIVING TDs
    1975 — Lynn Swann — 11 (tied for NFL lead)
    2014 — Antonio Brown — 1,698

  • PASSING TDs
    1978 — Terry Bradshaw — 28
    1982 — Terry Bradshaw — 17 (tied for NFL lead)
    2014 — Ben Roethlisberger 4,952 (tied with another player)

  • POINTS
    No Steeler had led the league in points.

  • INTERCEPTIONS
    1941 — Art Jones — 7 (tied for NFL lead)
    1946 — Bill Dudley — 10 (tied for NFL lead)
    1957 — Jack Butler — 10 (tied for NFL lead)
    1959 — Dean Derby — 7 (tied for NFL lead)
    1973 — Mike Wagner — 8 (tied for NFL lead)
    1975 — Mel Blount — 11

  • SACKS
    1994 — Kevin Greene — 14

Playing for the Championship

SEASON GAME OPPONENT SCORE
1972 AFC Championship Miami Dolphins Lost 21–17
1974 AFC Championship Oakland Raiders Won 24–13
1974 Super Bowl IX Minnesota Vikings Won 16–6
1975 AFC Championship Oakland Raiders Won 16–10
1975 Super Bowl X Dallas Cowboys Won 21–17
1976 AFC Championship Oakland Raiders Lost 24–7
1978 AFC Championship Houston Oilers Won 34–5
1978 Super Bowl XIII Dallas Cowboys Won 35–31
1979 AFC Championship Houston Oilers Won 27–13
1979 Super Bowl XIV Los Angeles Rams Won 31–19
1984 AFC Championship Miami Dolphins Lost 45–28
1994 AFC Championship San Diego Chargers Lost 17–13
1995 AFC Championship Indianapolis Colts Won 20–16
1995 Super Bowl XXX Dallas Cowboys Lost 27–17
1997 AFC Championship Denver Broncos Lost 24–21
2001 AFC Championship New England Patriots Lost 24–17
2004 AFC Championship New England Patriots Lost 41–27
2005 AFC Championship Denver Broncos Won 34–17
2005 Super Bowl XL Seattle Seahawks Won 21–10
2008 AFC Championship Baltimore Ravens Won 23–14
2008 Super Bowl XLIII Arizona Cardinals Won 27–23
2010 AFC Championship New York Jets Won 24–19
2010 Super Bowl XLV Green Bay Packers Lost 31–25
2015 AFC Championship New England Patriots Lost 36–17

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