Steelers' Ike Taylor has Holmes in his sights
Ike Taylor helped fill the void created by the lack of bravado coming out of New York Jets headquarters.
The Steelers cornerback did not back away from comments that he planned to light up Santonio Holmes, his former teammate, if given the opportunity Sunday.
"Friends off the field, yes," Taylor said Thursday. "But in between them lines, it's about that time, it's about business."
Holmes helped the Jets reach the AFC Championship Game by making a touchdown catch reminiscent of the grab that helped the Steelers win the Super Bowl two years ago. That meant he and Taylor will line up opposite each other for the second time this season.
The close friends regularly competed during training camp from 2006-09, but they probably never envisioned playing against each other this much this soon.
The Steelers traded Holmes in April, a move that Taylor said "shocked" him but didn't affect their friendship. The two work out together during the offseason in Florida and talk on a regular basis.
They have spoken this week, and Taylor said he expects Holmes to unload on him Sunday if given the opportunity, such as on a block.
"But," Taylor said, "just know that it's a two-way street."
The Holmes-Taylor matchup isn't the only one generating intrigue. Steelers receiver Mike Wallace has been fielding questions all week about whether he expects to see more of Darrelle Revis in the teams' second meeting. Antonio Cromartie primarily covered Wallace when the Jets beat the Steelers on Dec. 19 at Heinz Field.
"It's going to be a long day," Wallace said, "for whoever checks me."
"There isn't anyone in the league that can cover space like Troy can. There isn't anyone that has a feel for the game, I don't think, like Troy has."
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By the numbers
1: Coach — Joe Gibbs — who made the Super Bowl in two of his first four seasons on the job. Mike Tomlin could become the second.
16: Times the Steelers blitzed on 29 pass attempts by Mark Sanchez when the teams met in December.