AFC North Hot News

While we look at them with the same basic regard one holds for roadkill, it is still good to occasionally check in on some of the teams which infest our AFC North. Here is some recent Hot News on the Steelers and Ratbirds, gathered together in one handy article for your reading convenience.

Baltimore Ravens Hot News

Randy Hymes: Continues to impress
by Vincent Ottone of, August 24, 2003 at 11:29pm ET

Randy Hymes Profile

The Ravens had a very ugly effort on Saturday night losing to the Redskins 24-3, but wideout Randy Hymes continued to make strides. In his second season out of Grambling, Hymes saw action in the first half with the starting unit and proved to be rookie Kyle Boller's go-to guy. He finished with three catches for 38 yards, each one for a first down. "It felt good having the opportunity to run with the first group," Hymes said.

Kyle Boller: Struggles in first start

by Vincent Ottone of, August 24, 2003 at 11:22pm ET

Kyle Boller Profile

Kyle Boller made his first start on Saturday night and the Ravens 1st round pick looked like a rookie who's been in training camp less than a month rather then a NFL starter. In his first five possessions, Boller completed seven of his first 13 passes for just 42 yards. The 19th overall pick in April's draft was often caught staring down receivers and was jittery at times, throwing a simple swing pass into the dirt. "I'd be lying if I said I weren't a little bit nervous," Boller said. "But those are routine throws that I've got to be able to make. I can make those throws with my eyes closed. Those are the things you've got to complete to be successful in this league." Boller did bounce back on his last drive, hitting on all 7 of his pass attempts in leading the Ravens to a field goal. For the night, Boller finished 14-for-20 for 101 yards. Boller got little help from his running game, as Jamal Lewis and Chester Taylor combined for just 7 yards on six carries in the first half. If there's any consolation for Boller it's that the man who's his competition for the starting quarterback job, Chris Redman, struggled himself in the second half.

Chris Redman: States case for job
by Staff of, August 24, 2003 at 4:28pm ET

Chris Redman Profile

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Chris Redman laid his claim to be the best option at quarterback for the Ravens to start the season. Playing the entire second half, Redman completed 17 of 28 passes for 163 yards and an interception, was sacked twice for 14 yards.

Mike McCrary: Officially calls it a career
by Vincent Ottone of, August 21, 2003 at 8:41pm ET

Michael McCrary Profile

Surrounded by teammates, coaches and his family, a melancholy yet graceful Michael McCrary officially retired in an emotional press conference on Thursday. "As a player, you don't realize how much fun you are having and how much you realize it is a family and how much love you have for one another until it is over with," McCrary said. "I can't even watch a game, to be honest with you, because I still have that fire in me. I still want to go out there and play." McCrary who played the final 6 years of his ten year career with the Ravens, was praised by teammates, coaches and front office staff for not only his play on the field, but for his leadership and tireless work ethic off it. "You know as a friend, what you did to go through it all, just to fight with us," linebacker Ray Lewis said. "I've got you, for life. I always told you that. Not just that, but man, you are a part of what we've started and what we can keep going. Michael McCrary will never die in Baltimore. He'll definitely never die in my heart." The most emotional moment of the press conference occurred when defensive line coach Rex Ryan couldn't fight back the tears when it was time for him to speak. McCrary, who had participants of the Special Olympics (to which he volunteers a significant amount of time for) on stage with him, plans to stay in the Baltimore area and may consider returning to football as a coach at some point. For now, though, he'll focus his attention on his newest business venture: his restaurant, Mac's Bagels. "As long as Goose [Tony Siragusa] is up here commentating, I know I'll stay in business," McCrary said. "I plan on staying here. I'll be more active in the community, spending more time with my foundation doing more things here in Baltimore."

Pittsburgh Steelers Hot News

Glenn Pakulak: Gets Punted
by SCS of, August 22, 2003 at 1:17pm ET

Glenn Pakulak Profile

13 players released by the Steelers, defensive tackle Roy Attieh, linebacker Dantonio Burnette, offensive tackle Jack Fadule, safety Rashad Faison, quarterback Tim Levcik, fullback Wes Ours, punter Glenn Pakulak, tight end Casey Poppinga, kicker Jonathan Ruffin, wide receiver Lamar Slade, wide receiver Leonard Scott and quarterback Phil Stambaugh.

Nashville Dyer: Doesnt make past first cut
by SCS of, August 22, 2003 at 1:08pm ET

Nashville Dyer Profile

The first cuts are in, and the only minor surprise is the release of cornerback Nashville Dyer. The free agent from Kent State is still eligible to be placed on the five-man practice squad after 4 p.m. on Sept. 1.

Jay Riemersma: Off-Season Pickup Pays Dividends
by Staff of, August 20, 2003 at 2:12pm ET

Jay Riemersma Profile

At a news conference today, Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Bill Cowher announced that Jay Riemersma will be the team's starting tight-end.

Amos Zereoue: Named The Starter
by Staff of, August 20, 2003 at 2:10pm ET

Amos Zereoue Profile

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Bill Cowher said Amos Zereoue would start the season as the team's starting running back today at a news conference.

"We will use (RB) Jerome (Bettis) and Amos a lot. Both of them will play, and hopefully we'll be able to keep them fresh all year. But we don't have any preconceived notions. Whoever is running the best will play," Cowher said. "I just made a gut decision. It wasn't a case where one guy outplayed the other. Both guys will play. This position is not like quarterback. You can alternate running backs."

The OBR Top Stories