Hines vs. The Divas is no contest

After the Steelers' previous win over the Cincinnati Bengals, Hines Ward explained the difference between stats and teamwork. Mike Prisuta spells it out for T.O. and Chad.

It wouldn't be Cincinnati week if we didn't get around to addressing Terrell Owens and Chad Johnson (I refuse to call him Chad Ochocinco) and their impact on the 2-10 Bengals.

I could take a shot at both of them, but why bother? Hines Ward said all that needed to be said on the subject a couple of days after the Steelers' 27-21 victory over the Bengals on Nov. 8 in Cincinnati.

Speaking on his weekly radio show -- "Steelers Huddle with Hines Ward and Tunch Ilkin," for you our-of-market subscribers -- Ward offered perspective on the following:

* The circus atmosphere Chad Johnson can and does create: "After the game, hearing from the defensive guys, how they heard Chad was getting all into it with the other players. They said, ‘Man, he's cussing the coaches out, cussing Carson (Palmer) out. T.O. tried to talk to him; he turned his back to him. That's what comes along."

* The value of an Owens-Johnson tandem at wide receiver: "The funny thing about last year, they were so dominant and they didn't really have an explosive receiving corps. (Cedric) Benson was running crazy and they swept our whole division.

"Then you add in T.O. and everybody's expectations say, ‘OK, you're supposed to win the Super Bowl.' But everywhere T.O.'s gone there's always been something with that. When you sign him you gotta expect something to come along with that.

"I knew it was going to go bad if they started losing games."

* The Steelers' attitude among pass-catchers: "Mike Tomlin, he doesn't want us to be a distraction to the team; put your egos aside don't come in here with the bull crap. We come in here for one reason and that's to win the Super Bowl.

"If I get two catches, three catches, if that was my opportunity then be happy. Do something else in the game to make an impact. And that's what I try to teach the younger guys. We all want the ball. Mike (Wallace) is our deep guy. The more he's successful the more it's going to open up things for Heath (Miller) and I underneath.

"Everybody has to understand their role and know it and when your number's called come up and make the play. That's the reason why we've been successful here. One of the reporters asked me, ‘You don't get the recognition like T.O. and Chad.' I don't care for that. I'm not that type of ‘Diva' wideout. I try to teach the younger guys, don't look in the stats, don't look in anything. They measure people by championship rings and what you do in the playoffs. But if you don't even go to the playoffs then all that talk and mess doesn't even matter."

* His initial response to the Bengals adding Owens: "When they signed T.O. I just prayed for Carson. I mean, we as wide receivers always want the ball but you have to look at the big picture. This is not just about you, it's about the team. That's why I look at those guys, they're very talented. T.O.'s a top 10, a top 5, whatever, statistically. But he hasn't won a super bowl. Chad's the same way, but he hasn't won a Super Bowl. There's a reason why they haven't won a Super Bowl. When you have that drama on the field it's not good for anyone."

* His approach at this stage of his career: "I'm glad we don't have an issue with that (drama). I think the quarterback already has enough problems than to hear two whiny receivers telling him to throw the ball. Heath doesn't really care. I don't really care. I'm on the downside of my career. I want to win championships. I don't care for that stat stuff. I don't want to be the troublemaker on the team, the drama queen. I don't want be that guy. I want to win, whatever it takes to win ballgames. That's what I want to do."

That about sums things up for the Bengals and the Steelers, don't you think?

Then again, so do the standings.


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