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Ryan Clark: We’re trying to implement the old Steeler way

Ryan Clark AP

In the wake of their 8-8 finish last season, the Steelers had to deal with anonymous members of the team slamming linebacker LaMarr Woodley for getting hurt because he wasn’t in good enough shape.

Safety Ryan Clark said that such comments showed that there was a “fracture” in the team’s locker room and lamented the loss of the close-knit relationships he felt were in place when the previous generation of players were leading the team. Clark said that he and other veterans have taken it upon themselves to bring back the 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 said that their efforts have been successful, saying that this year’s camp has been “leaps and bounds” better in terms of chemistry. His fellow safety Troy Polamalu shares the belief that a closer Steelers team will be a better Steelers team.

“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.”

All the closeness in the world won’t help the Steelers if key players miss time because of injuries or if they fail to get the expected contributions from the new arrivals on the roster, but it certainly won’t hurt them as they try to return to the playoffs and reestablish a line to the past successes of the franchise.

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53 Responses to “Ryan Clark: We’re trying to implement the old Steeler way”
  1. buzzbeaubank says: Aug 12, 2013 8:37 AM

    The Old Steeler Way better work, because the Young Steeler Way is only going to happen if Colbert somehow finds a way to hit on a draft pick, and soon.

  2. Joemontanaflacco says: Aug 12, 2013 8:42 AM

    They have no choice but to implement the old Steeler way. All the Steelers are OLD!

  3. abninf says: Aug 12, 2013 9:06 AM

    The old Steeler way is 41 years without a championship.

  4. trollhammer20 says: Aug 12, 2013 9:14 AM

    Come on Ryan! Go REALLY old-school…like, to the pre-1974 era.

  5. historyisyourfriend says: Aug 12, 2013 9:17 AM

    Long time Steeler fan here myself and I can tell you Mr. Clark that the problems we saw last year were a generation of players for the team who needed to move on. Fortunately we have started that process and the youth movement is now in full swing. I see a better record this year barring injuries, but based off that 1st preseason game there is still a LOT of work to be done to get there.

    So lets forget about all being buddies and work more on cleaning up what we saw Saturday against the Giants. Special teams in particular were horrible. Start there…

  6. tikisays says: Aug 12, 2013 9:24 AM

    I guess being scared to ride on an airplane is part of the old Steeler way!!. Ray-Ray wouldn’t be scared to ride on an airplane or limo. Toughen up Ryan!!

  7. bittersportspills says: Aug 12, 2013 9:26 AM

    Good for Clark and the other veterans trying to implement the old Steeler way. Not a Steelers fan but the outlook of that franchise on football…stop the run, run the football, be the physical aggressor…is timeless. From the looks of their preseason opener, those veterans still have work to do.

  8. jmblosser82 says: Aug 12, 2013 9:31 AM

    The old dogs will be gone/reserves in the next 2-3 years. Meanwhile this team will still be fighting for a playoff spot.

  9. ken49ers says: Aug 12, 2013 9:35 AM

    7-9 for them at best. The team and fans can be as delusional as they’d like.

  10. All-American Voltron says: Aug 12, 2013 9:43 AM

    I’m not Steeler fan, but the fact that so many Steelers see the 8-8 as so embarrassing and unacceptable as a very good sign. So many teams are so content with 8-10 wins, but true elite-minded teams view anything less than a conference championship appearance as a failure.

    I think Polamalu’s health has a lot to do with how much they improve this season, but at least mentally they are there to get back to the upper echelon.

  11. blackngold4life says: Aug 12, 2013 9:55 AM

    Apparently y’all didn’t see the Defence..Starters or backups.Gave up ONE TD on a perfect pass from Eli..basically between 3 players. The SPECIAL TEAMS WAS SLOPPY I due admit.The Run game was almost perfect from the starters..that was the weak spot the last 3 years

  12. cupquest says: Aug 12, 2013 9:57 AM

    The “old” Steeler way… I miss Bubby Brister.

  13. ialwayswantedtobeabanker says: Aug 12, 2013 10:00 AM

    PFT: “In the wake of their 8-8 finish last season, the Steelers had to deal with anonymous members of the team slamming linebacker LaMarr Woodley for getting hurt because he wasn’t in good enough shape.”

    I accept that I could be wrong on this, but I thought the slam on Wood’s conditioning last year came from an anonymous member (singular) — not members (plural).

    If it’s one player, that’s much less alarming. Mendy often had opinions and spoke his mind. Wallace’s priorities were grounded heavily in self-interest. Both those players have new zip codes.

    Was it Mendy? I doubt it, as he has the backbone to attach his name to opinions even more incendiary than the comments on Wood.

    Was it Wallace? I readily concede that I d not know – but he appears to have the highest likelihood of airing a grievance without attaching his name to it.

  14. ilovefoolsball says: Aug 12, 2013 10:08 AM

    Polamalu is done.

  15. wearethechampsandyourenot says: Aug 12, 2013 10:14 AM

    this team lost at the Factory of Sadness last year.

    theres no hope & we will once again own this division

    #champs

  16. baltimoresnativeson says: Aug 12, 2013 10:16 AM

    I love this rivalry,

    Players don’t like each other,
    Fans Hate each other.
    Coaches even get on each others nerves.

    GREATEST RIVALRY IN FOOTBALL. Enjoy it while we are both good.

  17. crownofthenofool says: Aug 12, 2013 10:18 AM

    Hilarious! This is the second article on Steelers going old school. They got nothing else going on so might as well go old school! No proven receivers, no proven tight ends, and they are pinning their hopes on a rookie RB. No wonder Ben’s knee is acting up already.

  18. billhicks666 says: Aug 12, 2013 10:20 AM

    Yeah, good luck with that, Ryan. You can’t implement “the old Steeler way” when your personnel isn’t good enough.

  19. sbchampsagain says: Aug 12, 2013 10:27 AM

    COme on Steelers. I’m still waiting on our Draft picks to perform.

    Looking in your direction, Cam Heyward and Ziggy Hood!

    Colbert’s 2008 effort is why we have a HUGE hole in our team.

    Such stellar players as: Rashard Mendenhall, Limas Sweed, Bruce Davis, Tony Hills, Dennis Dixon, Mike Humpal and King Dunlap.

    A draft like that gets other GMs fired…Colbert missed on that one.

  20. finallythevoiceofreason says: Aug 12, 2013 10:27 AM

    They have no choice but to implement the old Steeler way. All the Steelers are OLD!

    Actually, the Steelers have one of the youngest projected starting offenses in the league right now.

  21. crownofthehelmet says: Aug 12, 2013 10:28 AM

    Show some respect ladies. The leader of last year’s #1 D in the NFL is speaking.

  22. finallythevoiceofreason says: Aug 12, 2013 10:30 AM

    No proven receivers, no proven tight ends, and they are pinning their hopes on a rookie RB. No wonder Ben’s knee is acting up already.

    Hmmmmm….have you ever heard of Antonio Brown (1,000 yards receiving and returning) and Heath Miller (consistent and would have been in the Pro Bowl if not for tearing his ACL)? And they are not pinning their RB hopes on a rookie. They have installed a new run-blocking technique this year that is going to work for them. Stephens-Howling is going to be a dark horse.

  23. mancinibread says: Aug 12, 2013 10:32 AM

    I’ve enjoyed watching Clark essentially grow up over the past few years. He’s a hard worker and is stepping into his new leadership role well, IMO. True, we have secondary issues and the O-line struggles won’t magically be gone overnight, but I was really pleased with what they showed us this first pre-season game. Guys showed up to camp in MUCH better shape this year, so we’re already off to a more productive start.

  24. finallythevoiceofreason says: Aug 12, 2013 10:34 AM

    Apparently y’all didn’t see the Defence..Starters or backups.Gave up ONE TD on a perfect pass from Eli..basically between 3 players. The SPECIAL TEAMS WAS SLOPPY I due admit.The Run game was almost perfect from the starters..that was the weak spot the last 3 years

    It is preseason. You cannot evaluate anything from a preseason game, however, it was William Gay blowing the coverage on the TD pass, true to his form. Plus it is typical for the Steelers to have a 53 yard punt inside the 10 yard line called back on a stupid penalty only to have the re-punt blocked.

  25. finallythevoiceofreason says: Aug 12, 2013 10:37 AM

    I guess being scared to ride on an airplane is part of the old Steeler way!!. Ray-Ray wouldn’t be scared to ride on an airplane or limo. Toughen up Ryan!!

    What? Ryan Clark has a rare disease where he could die in high altitudes. You have got to be kidding with that comment. Ray-Ray is also not scared to kill someone either.

  26. hakunamangata says: Aug 12, 2013 10:44 AM

    Old Steeler way? STEROIDS FOR EVERYONE!

  27. stoolerz says: Aug 12, 2013 10:56 AM

    Old Steeler way, get the roids ready. Mike Webster, rest inpeace.

  28. si1m says: Aug 12, 2013 11:25 AM

    “The Old STeeler Way” – Couldn’t have said it better myself.

    Actually I can: “The AARP Steeler Way” is what its closer to

  29. denverdude7 says: Aug 12, 2013 11:35 AM

    “Family atmosphere” won’t fix old, slow, broken down or lacking talent.

    Steelers are headed for a 3rd place finish in the AFC North. Maybe 4th if “The Factory Sadness” can catch a break or two.

  30. hines86for6 says: Aug 12, 2013 11:38 AM

    6 rings

  31. steelcurtainn says: Aug 12, 2013 11:47 AM

    A true example of what sets the Steelers apart from their other AFC North Division Foes. Most Rings, Most Division titles, Most Playoff appearances in the division. The Steelers Way!!

  32. scoobies05 says: Aug 12, 2013 1:21 PM

    ray ray never killed anyone and clark has an illness that could kill him if he was in high altitude. some of you have serious issues

  33. bobzilla1001 says: Aug 12, 2013 1:28 PM

    Damn near impossible to get back to the “Old Steelers Way” when Goodell and Company have legislated hard-hitting defense out of the league.
    One of the bright spots against the Giants was the fierce play of Jason Worilds, who was flagged twice for personnel fouls.
    But I’ll take aggressive play over passive play anytime. Worilds actually had the look of a guy who wants to start this season. More power to him.
    Jarvis Jones looks a bit “spindly” compared to his predecessor, James Harrison. Worilds, however, actually LOOKS LIKE A STEELERS LINEBACKER.
    Here’s another suggestion for getting back to the “Old Steelers Way”: Rehire Bill Cowher. Tomlin, as engaging and entertaining as he is, allows the inmates to run the asylum. That style of coaching hardly ever works, long term.

  34. scoobies05 says: Aug 12, 2013 2:34 PM

    im with ya bob. we had the same issues here with billick. he had great success and won a superbowl, but when you are a player friendly coach the players are the first to turn on you when things go bad. hope you are well

  35. rockinrodie says: Aug 12, 2013 3:13 PM

    the personnel isn’t there for the power running attack they desire. there’s no Bettis, Hartings, Faneca, Bruener, M Smith, etc…nope, tomlin and Colbert haven’t drafted they type of players needed for that scheme. they have drafted undisciplined so-so big leaguers like W Gay, R Foster, R Mundy, M Spaeth and a host of others not even on the roster today. All that adds up to zero quality depth, which is where they’re at. And if Woodley continues to be a non-factor, look for Jones to move to his spot. week 1 preseason extremely unimpressive.

  36. Nofoolnodrool says: Aug 12, 2013 3:39 PM

    wearethechampsandyourenot says:
    Aug 12, 2013 10:14 AM
    this team lost at the Factory of Sadness last year.

    theres no hope & we will once again own this division

    #champs

    5 29 Hey your royal smugness….the steeler way got you Batched slapped. Being humble prevents you from having to eat too much crow when karma catches your bandwagon ass.
    You aren’t old enough to know or appreciate the steeler way having just recently jumped on the wagon so ssshhh ….. You downfall will come it happens to everyone.

  37. steelerben says: Aug 12, 2013 4:02 PM

    Joemontanaflacco says:
    Aug 12, 2013 8:42 AM
    They have no choice but to implement the old Steeler way. All the Steelers are OLD!

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Listen, I know you aren’t a Steelers fan, but after signing Dallas Clark (34) and Brandon Stokley (37) and clapping Ozzie on the back for his brilliance, you might be a little hypocritical with the “old” comments. I also seem to recall you blasting the Steelers for sticking with “no name, young” players instead of going out and signing veteren players. Can’t have it both ways.

    The point of this article is that the locker room didn’t have chemistry last year and it showed on the field. The team wasn’t able to overcome adversity. By going back to the “old way” they are talking about approaching things as a team, and building relationships as that has brought championships in the past.

    With the talent level across the league more or less even (discounting the Jaguars) wherever you can find an edge can help your team compete.

  38. Nofoolnodrool says: Aug 12, 2013 4:17 PM

    steelerben says:
    Aug 12, 2013 4:02 PM
    Joemontanaflacco says:
    Aug 12, 2013 8:42 AM
    They have no choice but to implement the old Steeler way. All the Steelers are OLD!

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Listen, I know you aren’t a Steelers fan, but after signing Dallas Clark (34) and Brandon Stokley (37) and clapping Ozzie on the back for his brilliance, you might be a little hypocritical with the “old” comments. I also seem to recall you blasting the Steelers for sticking with “no name, young” players instead of going out and signing veteren players. Can’t have it both ways.

    The point of this article is that the locker room didn’t have chemistry last year and it showed on the field. The team wasn’t able to overcome adversity. By going back to the “old way” they are talking about approaching things as a team, and building relationships as that has brought championships in the past.

    With the talent level across the league more or less even (discounting the Jaguars) wherever you can find an edge can help your team compete.

    0 0 SteelerBen by now you should know Joeflaccomontana should not be taken for anything but a troll hiding behind an alias he uses to stay on the boards. He/she is not posting for content just conflict. He thinks the steeler way is the name of a street leading to Heinz field.
    I agree with Clark and you that last team was very un steeler like. My concern is who are the players that need to step up and lead? Something has to change if we are not to repeat last years results.

  39. jtbsteeler says: Aug 12, 2013 4:26 PM

    Bill Cowher lost 4 AFCG at home. No thank you to that heartache. That shouldve been at least another 2 SB’s.

  40. bobzilla1001 says: Aug 12, 2013 4:40 PM

    scoob:
    The thing I enjoy about PFT is that it allows me to vent. Knowing the organization’s (the Rooneys) tendencies as well as I do, I realize Tomlin is not going anywhere, at least not anytime soon. His two Super Bowl appearances and one Super Bowl win (with Cowher’s players) bought him at least a 15-year stay in Pittsburgh, regardless of future records.
    finallythevoiceofreason hit the nail on the head when he pointed out that a stupid penalty erased a great punt and led to the re-kick being blocked. Repeated dumb penalities are on the coach. Plain and simple.
    And when a team’s scoring offense is an inept as the Steelers, there is no margin for error; not from the coach, not from the defense, and not from the special teams.

  41. rockinrodie says: Aug 12, 2013 4:48 PM

    coach bill drafted well up front. yeah he lost 4 championship games, but 2 were with stewart, 1 with O’Donnell and another with a rookie qb. coach bill’s record (look it up) when leading any game by 10 or more pts: 105-1-1. ask us who we’d rather have leading the team today, tomlin or cowher? that’s right, overwhelmingly coach bill. tomlin delivers fluff, fancy talk to cover up his inadequacies as a coach. coach bill was nothing fancy, 10th grade vocabulary, but his players were disciplined and he knew how to draft. pit is in poor hands, we all unfortunately know, with tomlin.

  42. bobzilla1001 says: Aug 12, 2013 4:48 PM

    jtbsteeler:
    Take your Super Bowls and shove ‘em. I’m so tired of you people always talking about Super Bowls. I’ll take a team that’s “always in the hunt” over one that can’t qualify for the playoffs against the weakest schedule in the league. But that’s just me…

  43. rockinrodie says: Aug 12, 2013 4:55 PM

    bobzilla1001, don’t be so sure tomlin’s job is that secure. ARIII runs things differently than his brother. watch another sub par season, followed by excuse laden press conference after conference, and everybody’s, including ARIII, patience will start to wear. just listen to his 2012 sound bytes and it will crack you up. how in the world did this guy get hired? wait, don’t answer that.

  44. Nofoolnodrool says: Aug 12, 2013 5:09 PM

    bobzilla1001 says:
    Aug 12, 2013 4:48 PM
    jtbsteeler:
    Take your Super Bowls and shove ‘em. I’m so tired of you people always talking about Super Bowls. I’ll take a team that’s “always in the hunt” over one that can’t qualify for the playoffs against the weakest schedule in the league. But that’s just me…

    0 0 Relax bobzilla it is after all only a game……I know it is your life’s work to criticize the current team and its quarterback….maybe that is why you can’t find others to talk with or even share the same tv with you. Your constant harping on this team makes me think its time for you to root for some other team or temper your posts on here…..not being said in a mean spirited way but just on the outside looking in. Smile we still love ya!

  45. bobzilla1001 says: Aug 12, 2013 6:32 PM

    rockinrodie:
    I actually “enjoy” Tomlin. He’s extremely personable, and I find his weekly pressers to be mesmerizing. I can see why the Rooneys zeroed in on him…
    As for “ARIII,” who’s that?
    Art Rooney II, Dan’s son, is now in charge of the organization. I’ve never heard of an Art Rooney III.
    I do know that Rooney II was the trigger man on the well-deserved firing of Bruce Arians. I’m sure he won’t be happy with another bottom-10 finish is scoring. While I think Tomlin’s job will be safe, Roethlisberger might be a different story.

  46. antibenapalooza says: Aug 12, 2013 7:04 PM

    The old Steeler Way was without Rottenberger on the team, so I vote yes for the old Steeler Way.

  47. crownofthehelmet says: Aug 12, 2013 9:58 PM

    antibenapalooza says:
    The old Steeler Way was without Rottenberger on the team, so I vote yes for the old Steeler Way.
    ——————————————–
    There’s no doubt that every fan of every other team wishes Roethlisberger wouldn’t play.

  48. whojustme says: Aug 13, 2013 7:11 AM

    Relax Steeler fans. People are going to make fun of you as long as you brag a lot and on the field your team is 8-8. That is just the way it works. It is really not hard to understand. I like Clarks points it will help a younger team and it goes along well with the way the coach seems to be running camp this year. I am not a fan just love football. Enjoy your team and the ups and downs. At least your not a Browns fan not that we can all agree would really stink.

  49. citizenstrange says: Aug 13, 2013 10:26 AM

    “We hate being attached to 8-8.”
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    It would help not to be attached to a quarterback who can’t get a win in a HOME game of playoff-like win or go home importance when the Steeler defense gives up only 6 points to the Bengals.

    It would help to not be attached to a quarterback who could not get ONE SINGLE WIN when the Steeler defense gave up over 17 points.

    It would help to not be attached to a quarterback who could not get the Steelers into the playoffs despite the Steelers having the #1 defense in the entire NFL. Actually being eliminated from playoff contention after 15 games and forced to play a meaningless finale.

  50. cfeeley52 says: Aug 13, 2013 12:19 PM

    After watching Clark cry about not making the Top 100 list i have zero respect for anything he has to say…

  51. cfeeley52 says: Aug 13, 2013 1:45 PM

    Nofoolnodrool says:
    Being humble prevents you from having to eat too much crow when karma catches your bandwagon ass.
    ——————————————
    Something Steelers fans should have learned back in ’05… I agree ravens fans are over the top right now, but it’s only because we can finally make you guys eat crow after a decade of smugness… What goes around comes around, i’m sure we’ll get this thrown back in our face in another decade. Let’s both just hope the browns never actually become relevant…

  52. Nofoolnodrool says: Aug 13, 2013 1:59 PM

    cfeeley52 says:
    Aug 13, 2013 1:45 PM
    Nofoolnodrool says:
    Being humble prevents you from having to eat too much crow when karma catches your bandwagon ass.
    ——————————————
    Something Steelers fans should have learned back in ’05… I agree ravens fans are over the top right now, but it’s only because we can finally make you guys eat crow after a decade of smugness… What goes around comes around, i’m sure we’ll get this thrown back in our face in another decade. Let’s both just hope the browns never actually become relevant…

    0 0
    Report comment. I am not sure what crow you are referring to? Another decade starts this year… But must give you props for recognizing your buddies are beyond over the top. When you have six rings you have the right to be smug….not when you have 1/3 the total. I realize the steelers are in for a tough few years but we have been thru it before and will be back. I love football and if the steelers are good I like it even better, but it doesn’t define my life like so many on here.

  53. guitarkevin says: Aug 14, 2013 10:32 AM

    Is Tomlin going to unleash Hell with the Old School way?

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