Notebook: Miller to be named Rookie of Month

PITTSBURGH – Heath Miller will be named the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Month for October by the league on Thursday.

The Steelers' first-round draft pick started three of the team's four games in the month and caught 17 passes for 184 yards and 5 touchdowns.

Last season, the team's total output from the tight end position was 21 receptions, 223 yards and 5 touchdowns.

Miller's production in October also topped the season-long totals of the team's starting tight end – Jerame Tuman – from each of the last two seasons.

Miller now has 19 catches this season for 200 yards and 6 touchdowns this season. He's caught touchdown passes in a team-record (for tight ends) four consecutive games. He caught both of Ben Roethlisberger's touchdown passes Monday night to lead the Steelers past the Baltimore Ravens, 20-19.

"He did a great job getting open the first one," said Roethlisberger. "The second touchdown, I really let loose on it and it was tough. It was above his shoulder to the left. I threw it away from the safety. … I threw that ball so hard, but you'd have thought I just threw a little screen pass to him. He just plucked it."

"I don't know why teams aren't doubling him," said Hines Ward. "He's a great complement to our passing game, especially with the loss of Plaxico (Burress). It's all about opportunities and we're finding ways to get him involved in the passing game, especially down in the red zone. He uses his size and he's got hands like glue."


Steelers reserve linebacker Clint Kriewaldt grew up 20 miles away from Lambeau Field, but he's no fan of the Green Bay Packers. Neither is his father, who told his son not to bother getting him a ticket to Sunday's game. Mr. Kriewaldt is a lifelong Minnesota Vikings fan; his son a former Chicago Bears fan.

The trip Sunday for Kriewaldt will be his fifth appearance as a player at Lambeau. He went twice as a fan.

"I remember going one year. I was 16 and it was my first time," he said. "One of my buddies had tickets, so we went and I had my Bears stuff on and I drove there. The Bears ended up winning, so I get back to the parking lot and I'm waiting and waiting. I'm 16 years old and scared anyway. But pulling out of there, all these guys – 40, 50-year-old guys – blocked me off and were spitting on the car, spitting in the car at me. One guy got in the stance and came running and dove on the hood of the car. They were brutal."

Kriewaldt managed to nudge his car out of the tiny grass lot and pull into a gas station around the corner.

"These two guys saw I had the Bears stuff on. One of them said, hey, ‘I've got a Bear and we need a ride to the airport. I'll pay you. I'll pay you.' Here it was Ron Morris, the wide receiver. He was inactive and he was with his agent, who had a private plane at the airport. So I ended up giving them a ride and they paid me. We dropped them off at the airport and he gave me an autograph."

Did Kriewaldt ever gain revenge against Green Bay during his years with the Detroit Lions?

"I think we lost every time," he said. "That's why I'm hoping this is the time. I would love nothing more than to get a big win against them."


Roethlisberger and Jerome Bettis (quadriceps) are the only Steelers listed as questionable. Listed as probable are: CB Ricardo Colclough (shoulder), LB James Farrior (knee), LB Larry Foote (shoulder), P Chris Gardocki (shoulder), LB Clark Haggans (groin), LB James Harrison (knee), C Jeff Hartings (knee), DE Travis Kirschke (back), RB Willie Parker (toe), LB Joey Porter (knee), WR Antwaan Randle El (foot) and WR Hines Ward (shoulder). S Mike Logan (hamstring) remains out.

The Packers' injury list: WR Robert Ferguson (knee/doubtful), LB Na'il Diggs (knee/questionable), TE David Martin (groin/questionable), LB Robert Thomas (shoulder/questionable), C Mike Flanagan (hernia/probable), TE Bubba Franks (knee/probable) and CB Al Harris (knee/probable).

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