Steelers' Receiver Holmes Proving to Be Quite Threat in Passing Game

By Harris, John | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 23, 2007 | Go to article overview

Steelers' Receiver Holmes Proving to Be Quite Threat in Passing Game


Harris, John, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


Santonio Holmes isn't even the fastest receiver on the Steelers.

But today, when the Steelers host the San Francisco 49ers at Heinz Field, it doesn't matter who runs a 4.3 for the stopwatch.

Holmes is playing football, not running track.

Holmes has game speed. Coming out of his breaks, he has sprinter's speed.

After two games, Holmes has five catches for a team-high 108 yards. His 21.6-yard average also leads the team and tops AFC receivers who have a minimum of five catches.

Three of his catches were on third down, good for a healthy 17.7 yard average.

"It probably is overrated," Holmes said about the speed vs. quickness debate. "I'm aggressive to the ball. That describes my speed. When the ball's in the air, I'm going to adjust my speed to get the ball."

In the first quarter of the season opener against Cleveland, Holmes sold the Browns on a corner route, then beat two defenders on a post in catching a 40-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

Lightning struck twice in the first quarter.

On the Steelers' second series last week against Buffalo, Roethlisberger went deep again to Holmes, throwing into the teeth of double-team coverage but was intercepted.

Holmes can't wait to hook up with Roethlisberger on another long pass.

"We're not going to change what we do just because we threw an interception," Holmes said. "You've just got to make the play next time. …

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