PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Steelers’ new weight room is so sprawling that it’s basically broken up into suburbs.
Better believe the team’s strength and conditioning staff has named them.
“If you go to Shake City, you know you’re going to the power plates,” strength and conditioning coordinator Garrett Giemont said. “If you go to Machine Alley, you know where you’re headed. If you go to Rack Row, if you go to Speed City, you know where it’s at.”
Keiser weights with air-resistant training.
I’ve made a ton of predictions this preseason, and while the odds say it’s unlikely all of them will come true, they are steeped in research, scouting and facts that suggest they are much more likely to happen than not.
So the idea for this column is not to nail low-percentage outrageous predictions, but rather to highlight players I have strong feelings about, one way or the other. These are scenarios that are not likely to happen, but they aren’t impossible, either.
For the past two years, after Michael Brown’s killing in Ferguson gave rise to a volatile America divided by police and protest, the sports machine — rooted in the structure of black player/white media/white ticket buyer/white owner — was largely silent. Some prominent black players expressed support for the protesters; virtually no white male players did. With the exception of the Baltimore Orioles, teams have ignored the grief of their large black fan bases and abandoned their historical neutrality on social issues in favor of hero worship of police at the ballpark, supported by a white mainstream that is rarely the target of police aggression.
Kaepernick protested, and the reaction was predictable. White athletes and the predominantly white media, once largely silent, finally spoke but said very little about the substance of his dissent. They opted for intimidation by pile-on. Athletes and pundits were canvassed, leaving the likes of Drew Brees and Boomer Esiason — who have no record of scholarship, interest or knowledge regarding police brutality — to distort Kaepernick’s position into a lazy, pseudo-erudite conversation about patriotism. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson said something while saying nothing. “I understand and respect the cause … but I love the flag,” he said, only adding to a false argument designed to reinforce the foundation of the establishment.