Pre-Game Sunday Night – Steelers vs. Chiefs

From Arrowhead Stadium

7:00 p.m. CST – Chiefs have advertised this game as starting at 7:20, but that appears unlikely given the timing on the field right now. More like a 7:30 or 7:35 kickoff. We are closing down the pre-game blog, but remember no matter if you stay up all night, or go to bed and pick up things in the morning, we’ll have complete coverage for you. Enjoy the game.

6:50 p.m. CST – As the entire Chiefs team goes through its warm-up period, OT Steve Maneri is not working with the offensive line. Rather, he’s catching passes as a tight end with the skill position players. Maneri played TE at Temple and only moved to the offensive line when he was signed as an undrafted free agent by New England. With Jake O’Connell inactive, Maneri obviously will come in on three tight end sets and he may be a target. 

6:40 p.m. CST – Some 40 minutes before kickoff, a group of Steelers and Chiefs met at the 50-yard line where words were exchanged and one or two shoves between the players were thrown in. It appeared to be the Steelers WRs and Chiefs DBs that were doing most of the talking. Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin was caught in the middle of the scrum as he tried to push his players away. QB Ben Roethlisberger was on the edge and slowly moved away from the brief moment of mayhem. Security officers came on the field and pushed the players away from each other. The game officials led by referee Ed Hochuli were not yet on the field. 

6:35 p.m. CST – Based on the earliy arrivals inside Arrowhead Stadium, there’s a chance tonight will be a home game for the Steelers. There are fans wearing black and gold and twirling Terrible Towels in every level and seemingly every section of the building. Every time a Steelers player comes out of the tunnel, the fans erupt in cheers.

6:30 p.m. CST – Chiefs fans should not be surprised by the decision to place QB Kyle Orton on the inactive list for tonight’s game. Considering Orton did not walk in the door until Friday afternoon and took part in one limited practice made the chances of him contributing anything slim. Expect him to be on the active roster for the Chicago game, but he’ll start only if Tyler Palko blows up and plays poorly.

6:25 p.m. CST – Kicking towards the east goal posts,  Ryan Succop was good from 51 yards, and missed just wide left from 53. The last kick had the distance and would have crawled over the crossbar if it was hit straight.

6:20 p.m. CST – Starting for OLB LaMarr Woodley in the Steelers defense will be second-year man Jason Worilds out of Virginia Tech. Losing Woodley is certainly a bother for the Steelers and an advantage for the Chiefs.

6:15 p.m. CST – Inactive players for the Steelers tonight are LB LaMarr Woodley, QB Dennis Dixon, LB Stevenson Syulvester, DE Al Woods, OT Jamon Meredith, NT Chris Hoke and WR Arnaz Battle.

6:10 p.m. CST – We are still 70 minutes from kickoff but there are very few players on either team on the field right now. Pittsburgh K Shaun Suisham is going through his pre-game session and has been for 15 minutes. Ryan Succop has just walked on the field. Nobody in a hurry to enjoy the cold Kansas City night.

6 p.m. CST – Surprise among the Chiefs inactive players would be TE Jake O’Connell. He’s been running No. 1 or 2 at the position all season. With him down, journeyman Anthony Becht will get alot more playing time than he’s had. Also, notice that all six wide receivers are active for tonight’s game. Could be an indication that offensively they will start the game with a similar scheme as they did Monday night with four and sometimes five wide receivers.

5:55 p.m. CST – Chiefs inactive players tonight are G Ryan Lilja, DE Brandon Bair, QB Kyle Orton, LB Demorrio Williams, TE Jake O’Connell, DB Donald Washington, NT Jerrell Powe.

5:50 p.m. CST – early word out of the Chiefs locker room is that QB Kyle Orton will be among the inactive players tonight.

5:45 p.m. CST – Referee Ed Hochuli and his crew are working the game tonight. This is Hochuli’s first appearance at a Chiefs game since the 2009 season. He did visit the Chiefs in training camp this year. Wonder if he’ll be wearing short-sleeve or long sleeves in the chilly conditions.

 5:35 p.m. CST – Also on the field for the throwing session is head coach Todd Haley, who seems to be closely watching Kyle Orton, and injured QB Matt Cassel, who is bundled up in a heavy coat and would appear to be ready to watch the game from the sidelines and provide help for Palko.

5:30 p.m. CST – The Chiefs quarterbacks and receivers are out for their normal pre-pre-game throwing session and the group includes QB Kyle Orton. He and Ricky Stanzi are taking one throw for every two by starting QB Tyler Palko. All the receivers are talking part, a long with TE Jake O’Connell.

5:20 p.m. CST – Head coach Todd Haley did a taped interview that will be shown tonight on NBC during their broadcast of the game. One of the questions that he was asked by Bob Costas was what it was like growing up around the great Steelers teams of the 1970s, clubs that his father Dick helped build in Pittsburgh. “To be there at the start of what is still going to this day — how they built, how they are going to do things – is still intact almost exactly the same way today, and obviously it works. But to be there as a young kid, I didn’t look any different at Jack Lambert and Terry Bradshaw than I did anybody else. I said that I wish now I had collected a few autographs. My father has always said this to me, which I do kind of tend to believe, ‘By growing up and being able to be around the teams you were able to be around and the players, you know what great is.’ And knowing what great is as a characteristic, or the ability to know what great is, is important to have. A lot of guys haven’t been around great to know what it is.”

5:15 p.m. CST – DE Glenn Dorsey was out early for a workout in front of trainer Dave Price, testing that injured left knee. He missed the Monday night game, but according to the Chiefs he was able to practice all week and was declared questionable for the game. Dorsey was running pretty well, with less of a noticeable limp than when he did the same workout before the game in New England.

5:10 p.m. CST – Good evening from Arrowhead where the parking lots are starting to fill up with plenty of Chiefs fans and an inordinate amount of Steelers fans. Terrible Towels dominated the scene in some of the parking lots; only fans of the Green Bay Packers travel as well as those of the Steelers. It’s a chilly night with a very stiff breeze that appears to be blowing in from the west, northwest. We’ll update the weather a bit later.

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