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Old 01-27-2006, 06:30 PM
TomWilkinson TomWilkinson is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 118
Default 30,000 Fans Send-Off Steelers

An estimated 30,000 people turned out on Friday to wish their Pittsburgh Steelers well.

Jerome Bettis said to the fans, "We carry Pittsburgh in our hearts wherever we go. ... And you better believe, when we come back, we will have one for the thumb,"

Fans were decked out in black and gold with Terrible Towels everywhere.

"Wow, this is amazing. You guys make us go out and play with passion in our hearts each and every Sunday," wide receiver Hines Ward said.

"When we were the sixth seed going into the playoffs, nobody thought we could get it done. But everybody out here and everybody in Pittsburgh, from the bottom of our hearts, all of us on this stage, we want to thank you guys because you are just as much a part of us as everything we do," Bettis said.

Coach Bill Cowher is trying to make sure the Steelers don't lose their momentum with the extra week off. "You work hard to get here," Cowher said. "Now is not the time to lose it. We will keep talking about it and I think the way we prepare has always been reflected in how we play. I want them to be loose, I want them to be confident, but our preparation is going to have to be very good."

Cowher plans to hold one more practice Saturday in Pittsburgh, then give his players Sunday off before flying to Detroit on Monday. The fans in Pittsburgh got a jump on the send-off on Friday with the big pep rally.
Tom Wilkinson
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