Stewart not only brought a wealth of knowledge and ability to the table, but also a fierce, hard-hitting approach to the free safety position. In tandem with T.J. Ward, Stewart patrolled the back end of the Denver defense, striking fear into the opposition.
But that's just what former Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Ike Taylor did, not long ago, on NFL Network. Taylor is employed by NFLN as an analyst and recently, ranked the Broncos secondary No. 2 behind—you guessed it—the Steelers as the hardest hitting unit in the league. Darian Stewart takes exception to that.
“They must not have watched the film," Stewart said Wednesday. "If you look who said it, like I said, he was a Steeler. For him to the say the Steelers are No. 1, that was bad. He shouldn’t even be on TV. He remembered D.T. [Demaryius Thomas] well.”
It's hard to wade into a subjective topic like this one, while maintaining credibility. Suffice to say, however, you can argue that Seattle's secondary is more physical and hits harder than Denver's. That would be a close call.
But Pittsburgh? Yeesh, Ike. One Mike Mitchell doesn't equal four 'No Fly Zone' thumpers. Stewart was clearly incensed over Taylor's rankings, especially since Taylor is paid to be an objective "analyst", and even went so far as to throw some shade in his direction with regard to one Demaryius Thomas. Remember this?
That corner Thomas burned? The one with the stiff-arm in his face, getting burned down the right sideline? None other than Ike Taylor. Considering that it was the Broncos that knocked Taylor's compatriots out of the playoffs this past January, the guy might have an ax to grind.
As for Stewart, he still doesn't think the Broncos defense is receiving the credit they deserve for their 2015 successes. He and his teammates are resigned to use it as fuel.
“Like I said, we still have to go out there and play and keep proving them wrong," Stewart said. "It is what it is. Everybody is titled to their opinions. We’re just going to keep working and keep getting better. This is our second year together. It’s going to be hell for teams this year.”
The opinions Stewart cherishes most are the people's closest to him and his city's.
“That’s all that matters. As long as my city loves me and my family, I’m good.”
Chad Jensen is the Publisher of Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ChadNJensen.
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