Steelers try not to lag behind

Steelers try not to lag behind
September 27, 2013, 9:30 am
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With all of the inconveniences of the Steelers’ trip to London to play the Vikings on Sunday, there is the advantage of going to a place where the chatter on sports talk radio would be what’s wrong with Manchester United rather than another guy calling for Todd Haley to be fired.

“It gets us away from everyday hearing about what’s going on,” safety Ryan Clark told ESPN.com. “We can spend some time together, get some of that camaraderie and fellowship that you kind of lose when offense goes into meetings and defense goes into meetings.

“It gives us an opportunity to just play football, try to win a game, and that what’s been our focus this week. And I think the way Coach Tomlin’s handled it has really helped us.”

The winless Steelers chose to travel later in the week, arriving early Friday morning, rather than go the route the Vikings took, getting to England on Tuesday. So Pittsburgh has a compressed period to deal with jet lag brought on by the five-hour time difference.

“The trip is going to be really tough,” safety Troy Polamalu said. “It’s going to be unlike anything we’ve ever experienced. It’s not like going from Oakland to New York. It’s just not the same.”

Clark said: “There’s nothing you can really do to prepare for jet lag. There’s nothing you can really do to prepare for that time change.”

The Steelers did say they would make sure to take on extra fluids because of the dehydrating effect of long air travel. And Clark and others have brought along professionals — paying out of their own pockets — to perform massage and acupuncture to help their bodies be ready for Sunday.

“A lot of us are get our bodies worked on the day before the game, before the game,” defensive end Brett Keisel said. “Those are little adjustments you have to make.”

Plus, there is that thing about how, for at least this weekend, Ben Roethlisberger will be only the second most famous Big Ben in town.