TODAY'S PAPER
Good Afternoon
Good Afternoon
SportsFootballJets

Jets preparing to not get bottled up by Heinz

Besides squaring off against safety Troy Polamalu and the NFL's fourth-ranked defense come Sunday, the Jets will have to contend with something else.

The slop that is Heinz Field, which other than those thousands of fans waving their Terrible Towels, helps create that huge advantage the Steelers enjoy in their not-so-friendly confines.  

"You never know what you’re going to get with the elements, wind, rain, snow," Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said. "That’s one factor I think. The fans get really loud. That’s another good thing for us. I think the field can always be a home field advantage because you never know what you’re going to get.

"It could be torn up, all mud or all sand, you just can’t be sure. I think unless you’re used to playing on it, it’s a little different." 

The Jets, of course, have one person who's used to playing on it: Santonio Holmes.

The wideout spent the first four seasons of his career in Pittsburgh, so he's well aware of the slop that is Heinz Field. He's made sure to be in the ear of his teammates as much as possible these last few days, just giving them the blow-by-blow of what they can expect. 

"We’ve been constantly talking back and forth, telling the guys how the middle of the field is probably the worst place on that field," Holmes said. "So, you definitely have to be cautious on how you play, but still be aggressive."

Mike Tomlin tried to downplay the Steelers' homefield advantage, though.

"We appreciate our fans," the Steelers coach said. "We believe we have the greatest fans in the world and they provide a hostile environment for us. All of the other things are irrelevant. If the weather is bad, it’s bad for both teams. If it’s raining, it’s raining on both teams. Those are just variables to the game." 

New York Sports