Thursday Notes

The signing of Erik Totten to the active roster took a back seat to the kicking of Jeff Reed at the Steelers' South Side practice facility Thursday.<p> Two days after kicking at the wider high school goal posts in awful conditions at Heinz Field, Reed impressed his new teammates by making the most of his kicks on the comparatively smooth practice field Thursday. <p>

Moving back with each kick as per the team's Thursday routine, Reed finished his performance to a rousing ovation from his new teammates by kicking a 48-yarder high, long, and right through the middle of the uprights.

Not that Reed impressed everyone. While warming up for the scrimmage, prior to kicking for his teammates, Reed had trouble reaching the back of the end zone from 45 yards away.

The Steelers signed Totten from their practice squad and released defensive tackle Chris Hoke. It's expected that the two players will reverse roles when the injured defensive backs return to active duty.

As for uniform numbers, Totten will continue to wear No. 39. Mike Jones, who wore 51 last year, will wear Greg Lloyd's 95. Reed will wear Kris Brown's old No. 3 jersey because Reed's idol is San Diego's No. 3, John Carney.

Be back tomorrow for what shapes up as an oustanding Answer Man column. Issues to be discussed include the upcoming opponent, Chad Scott's possible move to safety next year, Bill Cowher's Marty-like approach in fourth quarters, and much, much more.

-- Jim Wexell

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