Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Steelers Shine under Monday Spotlight

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Steelers Shine under Monday Spotlight

Article excerpt

For one play, Andre Hastings resembled Lynn Swann - he even wears Swann's old No. 88 - by climbing between two Oilers to make an exceptional 46-yard catch.

For one night, Kevin Greene resembled Mean Joe Greene, sacking and attacking the Oilers' offense, recovering two fumbles and sidelining a quarterback. About the one Mean Joe-like mannerism he didn't copy was flipping his jersey to a fan.

Neil O'Donnell set up his running game with deep, downfield throws - can you say Terry Bradshaw? - and Barry Foster did his best Franco Harris imitation with 115 yards and a touchdown in 2 1/2 quarters.

In daytime, they're an average National Football League team with a just-above .500 record since 1992 under coach Bill Cowher. Turn on the bright lights and showcase them nationally, and they're again the super Steelers.

A week after being embarrassed by the Seattle Seahawks 30-13, the Steelers (3-2) tore into the Houston Oilers (1-4) on Monday night, leading 20-0 after 13 1/2 minutes and 30-0 in the third quarter. Final score: Steelers 30, Oilers 14.

Greene, from Granite City, recovered two fumbles, had two sacks and made seven tackles.

"You know, I was telling the offensive linemen how we were going to win this game before it even started," he said. "And that was by keeping their offense on the bench."

What makes them only come out at night? Why are the Steelers 5-0 on Monday night since 1992, but only 18-14 on Sundays? Why is prime time the only time they consistently rise above the ordinary?

"We always play like this on Monday," Hastings said. "We're tough on Mondays. If every game were on Monday, we'd go to the Super Bowl."

Monday, Monday, so good to thee.

Maybe it's because the emotional Cowher always seems more pumped, more primed on Mondays. Maybe it's because Foster, the AFC rushing leader, takes center stage to argue he belongs in the elite class of runners with Emmitt Smith or Barry Sanders. …

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