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Steelers' bye-week practices more physical than usual

» Normally, a bye week constitutes a couple of walkthrough-like practices, with many of the over-30 players sitting and watching. A lot of the veterans have watched the first two days of practice during the Steelers' bye week, but the sessions have been anything but walkthrough-like. "Mike T crushed us a little bit because, if we would have won, we would have been two games up in the division," linebacker Larry Foote said, referring to coach Mike Tomlin and Sunday's loss to Baltimore. "But I'm OK with where we're at and the way we're flying around. We're (going) in the right direction. God willing, we stay injury-free." The Steelers are slated to practice today, then won't have to report to the South Side practice facility until Monday.

» With the trade of Randy Moss from the Patriots to the Vikings a hot topic in the Steelers' locker room, Ben Roethlisberger was asked for his thoughts. "A guy like Moss is a weapon, so I am sure (Vikings quarterback Brett Favre) is loving it and had something to do with it," he said. More interesting was the comment from a teammate across the room: "Worst trade ever," the voice boomed out.

» Rashard Mendenhall is second in the NFL with 89 carries through four games; he is on pace for 356. No Steelers running back has had that workload since Jerome Bettis, who carried the ball 375 times in 1997. "Whatever I am asked to do," Mendenhall said. "Every game is going to be different. Every situation is different." Mendenhall had 261 carries in his first two years combined. The most he had at Illinois was 262 during his breakout junior year.

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