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05.10.2018 05:23
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PITTSBURGH -- Landry Jones is a realist. Call it the byproduct of spending the last three-plus years fighting for a job and fending off repeated attempts by the Pittsburgh Steelers to find somebody better to back up Ben Roethlisberger.So in a team meeting Wednesday, with the franchise quarterback resting at home while recovering from left knee surgery and a visit from the New England Patriots awaiting on Sunday, Jones felt it was time to send a message, albeit more than a little tongue in cheek.Dont panic.No, really.Any time THE Landry Jones graces us with his verbal leadership, we appreciate that, linebacker Arthur Moats said with a laugh.In all seriousness ... we understand the `next man up motto doesnt matter. Any position as youve seen this year, weve had those guys have success. Its no different with Landry.Jones gets hes not Roethlisberger. Then again, few are. That hardly means he expects offensive coordinator Todd Haley to delete half the playbook or the Steelers (4-2) to cower at the sight of Tom Brady.From the day the Steelers took him in the fourth round of the 2013 draft, Jones has believed he can be an NFL starting quarterback. That belief hasnt wavered. Now in the final year of his rookie contract, Jones is well aware theres possibly more at stake Sunday than one game in the standings. Theres a very real chance to prove to 31 other teams he can be a difference maker.Yeah, but thats way on the backburner though, Jones said Wednesday. Right now, Im on this team. Im ready to go. I want to play and I want to play well. And I want to win the game. All of that stuff will take care of itself.Maybe, though it often doesnt for second-string quarterbacks when tasked with trying to beat a Hall of Famer. The Patriots have rarely lost to backups on Bradys watch. The list of newbies who have shaken Bradys hand in triumph over the past 16 years is short.Really short.Roethlisberger did it in 2004, though by Week 7 the rookie had already supplanted Tommy Maddox as the starter. Kevin Kolb did it in Week 2 in 2012 as Arizona pulled off an unlikely upset in Foxboro.Brock Osweiler did it while subbing for Peyton Manning last November, a performance that helped swing home-field advantage to the Broncos in the playoffs and Osweiler land a $72 million contract from Houston in the offseason.Otherwise, backup quarterbacks have met the same fate as everyone else caught trying to outsmart Bill Belichick or keep up with Brady.Theyre going to do what they do, but for each team there are little tweaks here and there, Jones said. Im sure theyll have something different for us.Jones, however, hopes the Steelers dont do anything differently with him in the huddle instead of Roethlisberger.The leading passer in Big 12 history during his record-setting career at Oklahoma was intermittently effective in 2015, leading a second-half rally at Arizona and a winning drive against Oakland with Roethlisberger unavailable.Yet Jones also did little in a loss at Kansas City in the one game he started and finished. He looked overmatched when thrown into last Januarys wild-card game in Cincinnati while Roethlisberger was getting his sprained right shoulder worked on, throwing what appeared to be a season-ending pick before the Bengals went into a full meltdown.The Steelers werent exactly impressed, re-signing veteran Bruce Gradkowski to serve as Roethlisbergers understudy in the spring.When Gradkowski went on injured reserve with a torn hamstring in August, Jones survived once again. He was OK if hardly spectacular during the preseason, playing extensively while Roethlisberger rested.Now Roethlisberger is out -- again -- and Jones finds himself with perhaps his last best chance to show he belongs. Make no mistake, hes going out there swinging. And theres proof Pittsburgh can survive without Roethlisbergers familiar No. 7: The Steelers are 11-9 when Roethlisberger hasnt started since 2004.Coach Tomlin said something along the lines of, `gunfighters are going to get shot, Jones said. For me, I have to go out there and cut it loose and play like that. (Rather) than trying to be too careful and try to just go out there and take every check down that I can.Having one of the best running back/receiver tandems in the league in LeVeon Bell and Antonio Brown should help. And Jones teammates insist theyve got his back.Six other quarterbacks have come and gone since the spring of 2013, from the famous (Michael Vick) to the not-so-famous (Brendon Kay). Jones remains. Now he finds himself facing a dude he grew up watching.The gap in inexperience and expectation on Sunday is nearly incalculable. That doesnt mean its impossible to bridge, at least not to Jones.You have to play smart, Jones said. But, you have to take what the defense gives you and try to be cautiously aggressive.Optimistic, too.Game notes RT Marcus Gilbert (ankle), S Shamarko Thomas (groin), WR Markus Wheaton (shoulder) and RB DeAngelo Williams (knee) did not practice. ... S Robert Golden (foot), S Mike Mitchell (knee) and LB Ryan Shazier (knee) were limited.---AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL Rafinha Jersey . The parade and rally were held to celebrate the Saskatchewan Roughriders 45-23 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Sunday in the CFLs championship game. Cheap Barcelona Jerseys Authentic . -- The boos poured down on Tom Brady and the New England Patriots at the end of a horrible first half. http://www.cheapbarcelonajerseys.com/?tag=philippe-coutinho-jersey . But Bourque, who has missed three games with a lower-body injury, wont be in the lineup when the Habs travel to Buffalo to take on the Sabres on Wednesday. Marlon Santos Jersey . Note: The Calgary Flames announced Tuesday that Sean Monahan would not be made available to Canadas World Junior team. Jasper Cillessen Jersey . Bjorn, who had a 36-hole total of 8-under 134, made a testing six-foot putt to save par on the 16th and a birdie on the 17th before bogeying the final hole after a misjudged approach shot. American Kevin Streelman was in second place after shooting a 69. In nine games against AP-ranked opponents since the start of 2015, Chad Kelly leads the FBS with 23 passing touchdowns. 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