Were you worried a flag might appear?
You're always worried about a flag on a deep ball. I was looking
back at the ball, so I think that had something to do with it. A lot
times, guys don't look back at the ball on those plays and that's
where they get the interference call. I just played my technique
and then laid out for the ball and came up with it.
Do you think they didn't call it because you were looking back?
I don't know. But that was my technique. You're always
supposed to look back for the ball on those deep plays when the
receiver looks back.
They came out and hit us with that kickoff and we were like, 'Here
we go.' That really got their side into it. Once they did that we
knew it was going to be a long day. It was an exciting ballgame
for the people who watched it. For us to find a way to win on the
road was big.
How did you hurt your hip?
My first play, Ben (Roethlisberger) threw it up high on a corner
route and I mistimed it and jumped too early. That turf field, that's
real turf out there. I came in and took a shot in my hip and got
back out there.
You weren't going to miss any time?
I've gotta play. Our offense couldn't stand not having me and
Plaxico (Burress) out there. It would have been a long day.
Have you been in too many of these games lately for your own
We learn so much from games like this. These games are what propel you into the playoffs. We're going back and forth and can
you answer blow for blow? They went down and scored and we
came back and scored. We learn a lot from that. I think Ben
learned a lot from that. Coming back in Jacksonville and playing
in a game like this builds his confidence overall. Everybody
keeps saying we're struggling, but we believe in ourselves.
How much do you need to get healthy?
Oh, we do. You're taking the guys who are hurt and their backups
become starters. Then you have to take them off special teams.
Consequently, special teams get hurt a little bit because they're
missing guys. We really need the bye week. Home field is nice,
but we really do need all of these guys healthy.
500 catches for you, what does that mean?
That's big. It's my seventh year in the league. Obtaining 500
catches is a big accomplishment, but there's no time to reflect
on that because we're still in the middle of the season. My job is
to try to help win ball games.
Did you anticipate this would be a shootout?
No. We knew we had confidence in ourselves to do that, but we
didn't think we'd need to. Tim Lewis over there knows our
offense and he piled up to stop the run, but we didn't abandon it
and we mixed it up all day.
Antwaan Randle El
When was the last time you threw a TD pass?
You'd have to go back to college. I threw a two-point conversion
in my rookie year to Jerame Tuman, but not a touchdown. It was
a very exciting game today. I had the opportunity. The Giants got
to the point where they weren't going to let us run. They were
putting everybody up in the box and Ben was able to come up
with some big plays. They wanted to see if Ben could beat them
and they gave us some opportunities to make some plays.
What did you like better, the TD pass or all the yards?
The yards and the touchdown are sweet, but at the same time, to
be able to throw that pass to Verron (Haynes) - that was a play
we've been working on for four or five weeks - Ken (Whisenhunt)
called a great game and he made a great call for that one right
there because it was open.
It looked like a basketball play, you made like a touch pass on
Yeah that's basically what it is. That was the fastest we've done
it. We had it in practice a couple of times and Joey (Porter) would
come off the edge, but that defensive end was smoking, coming
right for me. We run that toss sweep sometimes and we run that
play off of it. I didn't have it in my hands a good second. That's
the way it works, I just flash the ball to him and get it to Verron
quick as I can.
Did you prove anything today?
It goes back to opportunity. Anybody out there who thought I
couldn't do it, I just try to go out every time like I have something
to prove. I always take that with me. Most guys who are
competitive keep that chip on their shoulder when it comes to
Are you still learning as a receiver?
I think I got over that edge. I think a lot of that comes from my
rookie year. A lot of you guys probably didn't see it, but I had a
struggle of being in the right spot for the QB. But Hines (Ward)
was there for me and Terance Mathis played a big role. And even
now, I talk to Hines. But now I know how to run different routes
and where to be at. I think I got over that. Now I can just run
routes and be free and not think about it.
The way you're running the ball does it feel like the mid-'90s?
It feels good to go out there and get some good yards, but more
importantly help the team win. It feels special.
You're a guy that people don't like to tackle as the game goes
on. On a cold day like today, you're not a guy those defensive
backs wanted to see.
Even when it's warm, they don't want to see me. Trust me. I try to
make it as difficult as possible and as painful as possible every
time they tackle me. Late in the game in the fourth quarter, that's
when you start getting those big runs because they don't want to
come up and tackle you. But these guys played their hearts out
and we scrapped for a win.
Does it mean a lot to you to pass Franco (Harris) for 100-yard
Yeah. That's probably one of my biggest accomplishments to go
past Franco Harris in 100-yard games for a career because he
was clearly the best running back in Steelers history. That's
Is this the most fun you're having in your career?
It is fun because the main reason I stayed was for an opportunity to win. It's especially satisfying to be contributing the way I am.
You said in the Spring that you felt you had football left and you'd
know when you were done. Did you know you had this much left?
I knew what I had. This level is the same level I've always played
at. It's just the guys up front giving me an opportunity and these
guys have been great all year long, not only with myself, but with
Duce (Staley) as well. When you're given the opportunity, that's
when your true ability can come out. I've always had the ability, I
just didn't always have the opportunity.
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