The North Shore Drive Sports Podcast

     

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July 18, 2024 Steelers training camp: Will Russell Wilson make QB chatter fade? Is defensive line under the radar?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to look ahead to Steelers training camp. Who oft-discussed storyline will fade once practices begin? Will it be the QB competition between Russell Wilson and Justin Fields, which draws a lot of national attention? Or is it the trade discussions around San Francisco 49ers receiver Brandon Aiyuk? And what under-the-radar storyline will take center stage? Will it be the inexperience of the offensive line, with young players Broderick Jones, Troy Fautanu and Zach Frazier all in line to start? Or is it defensive line depth behind Keeanu Benton, which includes the aging Cam Heyward and underachievers including DeMarvin Leal and Isaiahh Loudermilk?

Our duo tackles those topics, plus Rob King replacing Bill Hillgrove in the Steelers broadcast booth; Tyler Matakevich signing here on a one-year deal; the Pirates MLB trade deadline options; Jeff Capel getting a contract extension with Pitt bassketball; Penn State choosing Washington over Ohio State for its White Out game; and reports that the Big Ten and SEC are uninterested in Florida State in conference realignment.

July 18, 2024 MLB trade deadline: Should Pirates grab Taylor Ward, J.J. Bleday? Could Aroldis Chapman be dealt?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey poses six questions the Pirates must answer in the second half of the season. Will we see innings limits for Jared Jones and Paul Skenes? Will young pitchers including Luis Ortiz, Quinn Priester and Mike Burrows play key roles down the stretch? And what will GM Ben Cherington do at the MLB trade deadline at the end of the month? Why do names like the Los Angeles Angels Taylor Ward and the Oakland Athletics make the most sense as targets? And is there a chance Aroldis Chapman and his hefty contract could be sent out of town, even if the Pirates add with the intention of fighting for a playoff spot?

Jason tackles those questions and more. Then later, he offers thoughts on whether Derek Shelton has been a good manager for the club; what Jeff Capel's extension should mean for Pitt basketball; and the latest in the Brandon Aiyuk trade drama with the San Francisco 49ers.

July 17, 2024 NFL trade rumors: Will Steelers finally pounce with Brandon Aiyuk after reported request for a deal?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, guest host Adam Bittner welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brain Batko to discuss the latest news about Brandon Aiyuk. Will GM Omar Khan finally make a deal for the San Francisco 49ers wide receiver now that he's reportedly requested a trade after failing to reach a long-term contract extension? How does the Aiyuk trade possibility impact extension talks with internal candidates including Najee Harris, Pat Freiermuth and Cam Heyward? And how does Aiyuk fit with incumbent No. 1 receiver George Pickens, who posted about Aiyuk on his Instagram this week?

Our duo tackles those questions, the impact of planned joint training camp practices with the Buffalo Bills and a reporter that new OC Arthur Smith is designing red zone packages for QB Justin Fields as he competes with Russell Wilson for the starting job.

July 17, 2024 MLB All-Star game: Pirates' Paul Skenes dominates his one inning? What will second half bring?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey welcomes Pirates insider Andrew Destin to recap the MLB All-Star game Tuesday night in Arlington, Texas. Specifically, the recap Paul Skenes' performance in which he dominated the American League's Steven Kwan, Gunnar Henderson and Aaron Judge despite walking Juan Soto. What did LSU gymnast, social media sensation and Skenes' girlfriend Livvy Dunne have to say about the experience of living in Pittsburgh this summer on the All-Star red carpet? And what were Andrew's favorite moments of his first All-Star game on the beat?

Our duo tackles those topics, looks ahead to what the second half may hold for the Pirates and offers more analysis of the club's MLB draft class, completed Tuesday after the selection of high school shortstop Konnor Griffin at No. 9 overall on Sunday evening.

July 16, 2024 Steelers training camp countdown: Could early games vs. Falcons, Chargers decide the season's fate?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes WPXI-TV's Jenna Harner to analyze the biggest games on the team's 2024 schedule with training camp looming next week. Are early matchups with the Kirk Cousins and the Atlanta Falcons and Justin Herbert and the Los Angeles Chargers the types of games the season could hinge on? Can the Steelers measure up with elite teams like Jalen Hurts and Philadelphia Eagles and Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs? And how do divisional rivalries against Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals, Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens and Myles Garrett and the Cleveland Browns factor into the equation? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

July 16, 2024 MLB All-Star game: Pirates' Paul Skenes handling spotlight well? Will he give the game a boost?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reports from the MLB All-Star game in Arlington, Texas. He explains why he feels MLB made the right call in having the Pirates' Paul Skenes start for the National League and how Skenes has handled the national spotlight. He also explains the development differences between Skenes and fellow NL All-Star and former Pirates Tyler Glasnow. Then later, he offers more reaction to the selection of Konnor Griffin in the first round of the MLB draft.

July 16, 2024 Pitt mailbag: Where does Nate Yarnell rank among ACC QBs? | How is Bub Carrington doing?

On their weekly Pitt mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Stephen Thompson answer reader questions. Among them: Where does the Panthers' Nate Yarnell rank among ACC quarterbacks? How does Pitt stack up in the new "College Football 25" video game from EA Sports? And how is former Pitt guard Bub Carrington faring in his first NBA Summer League after being drafted No. 14 overall by the Washington Wizards?

July 15, 2024 Will Steelers get leadership they need from Russell Wilson? | Cam Heyward upset about 'Hard Knocks'?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter and Adam Bittner discuss Russell Wilson's role as a leader for the Steelers. Can he fill the void on offense left by Ben Roethlisberger, David DeCastro and Maurkice Pouncey? Can he help young players like Broderick Jones, Pat Freiermuth and others emerge as leaders in their own right? And can he silence some of the doubts about his leadership from his Denver days for legacy purposes? Our duo tackles those questions.

Then later, Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins Christopher to talk about the Pirates at the MLB All-Star break. How will Bryan Reynolds and Paul Skenes look in the Midsummer Classic on Tuesday? And how did the team's sweep of the Chicago White Sox over the weekend set them up for the second half?

July 15, 2024 MLB draft: Did Pirates get it right with Konnor Griffin, Levi Sterling and Wyatt Sanford?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey recaps the MLB draft. Was Konnor Griffin the right pick for the Pirates at No. 9 overall? What about Levi Sterling in the compensatory round? Or Wyatt Sanford in the second round? And what awaits Mars High School product J.J. Wetherholt with the St. Louis Cardinals and Mt. Lebanon product David Shields with the Kansas City Royals?

Jason tackles those questions, previews the week at the All-Star game for Pirates representatives Paul Skenes and Bryan Reynolds and reacts to the weekend sweep of the White Sox in Chicago.

July 12, 2024 Who are Steelers' best new Pro Bowl, All-Pro candidates? Watch Broderick Jones, Keeanu Benton?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter and Adam Bittner weigh the Steelers' best candidates to earn their first Pro Bowl and All-Pro selections in 2024. Do Joey Porter Jr. or Keeanu Benton have better odds on the defensive side of the ball? What about George Pickens, Broderick Jones and Pat Freiermuth in Arthur Smith's run-heavy offense? How do rookies Troy Fautanu and Zach Frazier fit into the equation? And do Najee Harris and Patrick Queen have the best chance to take the next step from Pro Bowl to All-Pro caliber?

Our duo tackles those questions. Then later, Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Andrew Destin to discuss Paul Skenes' seven no-hit innings against the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday. Did manager Derek Shelton make the right call to pull him early? And where do things stand with Skenes heading into the MLB All-Star game?

July 12, 2024 Pirates' Paul Skenes the favorite to start MLB All-Star game for NL? Is it time to talk extension?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reaction to Arizona Diamondbacks and National League manager Torey Lovullo's comments about Pirates star Paul Skenes. Is Lovullo hinting that Skenes is the obvious choice to start for the NL in the MLB All-Star game? Who are the other possible candidates? And how much should the hype around Skenes league-wide influence the decision?

Jason tackles those topics, plus the question of whether it's already time for owner Bob Nutting and GM Ben Cherington to consider giving Skenes and extension. Then he analyzes the potential for Penguins defensemen Erik Karlsson and Ryan Graves to bounce back after difficult first years wit the club.

July 11, 2024 Steelers over/unders: Will George Pickens clear 1,000 yards? Is 775 too low for Najee Harris?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise offers his thoughts on some Steelers over/under prop bets available at some sports books. Should George Pickens be a safe bet to go over 1,000 yards? Or will Arthur Smith's run-heavy offense hold him back? Is 775.5 rushing yards too low a number for Najee Harris? Or will Jaylen Warren eat into his numbers this year? And will Pat Freiermuth stay healthy enough to go over 50.5 catches?

Our duo tackles those questions, then Ben Cherington's options ahead of the MLB trade deadline. What's the latest on Paul's report connecting the Los Angeles Angels' Taylor Ward to Pittsburgh? If the Pirates don't get closer to .500, could names like Aroldis Chapman, Rowdy Tellez and others be on the way out? And what are the chances Mitch Keller is moved with his salary set to increase significantly in the coming years?

July 11, 2024 Will Pirates' maddening inconsistency ever end? Can politicians force change on Bob Nutting?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the latest frustrating Pirates loss in Milwaukee. Will manager Derek Shelton's team ever put a winning streak together this season? Or is .500-ball the best fans can ask for with this offense? Where does Martin Perez stand after his latest mediocre start? And what should we make of reports that some Pennsylvania politicians are looking to impose change on owner Bob Nutting, using the team's expiring lease as a leverage point?

Jason tackles those topics and also gives his thoughts on the culmination of Penguins development camp at their Cranberry facility.

July 10, 2024 Steelers training camp: Trust Darius Rush, Beanie Bishop and Cory Trice amid Cam Sutton suspension?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter and Adam Bittner weigh the Steelers' options at quarterback amid the NFL's eight-game suspension of Cam Sutton. Are Joey Porter Jr. and Donte Jackson good enough as a 1-2 punch? Can depth pieces like Darius Rush, Beanie Bishop and Cory Trice Jr. step up to play prominent roles in Sutton's absence? Or will GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin need to make a move for another veteran cornerback like Chandon Sullivan? And how do the Steelers match up with the tough passing threats on their schedule including the Eagles' A.J. Brown, the Chiefs' Travis Kelce, the Browns' Amari Cooper and the Bengals' Ja'Marr Chase? Our duo tackles those topics.

Then Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins Christopher to react to the team's 12-2 beating of the Brewers on Tuesday night in Milwaukee. Has Rowdy Tellez turned the corner for good? And is Quinn Priester proving he can be an MLB-caliber starter?

July 10, 2024 Pirates-Brewers reaction: Is Quinn Priester putting it together? Should we see more of Joey Bart?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' 12-2 thumping of the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday. Why does this offense perform so inconsistently? And can it put things together in time for a run before the MLB All-Star break? What should we make of Quinn Priester's strong outing? Is he finally starting to show why he was a first-round pick? Or does he still have a lot to prove? And does Joey Bart deserve more playing time after his grand slam and amid struggles by Yasmani Grandal and Henry Davis? Jason tackles those questions and also offers some things to watch for as the Penguins wrap up their development camp with a scrimmage in Cranberry.

July 09, 2024 Steelers news: Impact of Cam Sutton's suspension by NFL? | Pirates' Mitch Keller proving his worth?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' win against the New York Mets on Monday, in which Mitch Keller played a key role. How is the starter proving he was worth a lucrative extension in spring training? How important was the win for the club's postseason hopes ahead of the MLB All-Star game? And what kind of energy is Joshua Palacios bringing to the roster after returning from the minors?

Jason tackles those questions, then reacts to the NFL's suspension of cornerback Cam Sutton and what it means for the Steelers' secondary behind Joey Porter Jr. and Donte Jackson.He ends the show by analyzing Penguins coach Mike Sullivan's comments about goalie Tristan Jarry. For more sports, visit post-gazette.com

July 09, 2024 Pitt football: Is Donovan McMillon the Panthers' next top NFL draft prospect? All-ACC candidates?

On their weekly Pitt mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Stephen Thompson answer reader questions. Among them: Could Donovan McMillon be the Panthers' next top NFL draft prospect amid his preseason buzz? Who are some off-the-radar candidates to be All-ACC selections for coach Pat Narduzzi by the end of this season? Does Blake Hinson have a chance to make the Los Angeles Lakers' roster thanks to strong NBA Summer League performance? Or will Bronny James snatch his roster spot? And what Bobby Grier, who recently passed, mean in Pitt football history?

July 08, 2024 AFC North rankings: Put Steelers' Russell Wilson ahead of Browns Deshaun Watson? Are LBs No. 1?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette assistant sports editor Adam Bittner to rank the Steelers' position groups against their AFC North foes. Does Russell Wilson deserve the nod over the Browns' Deshaun Watson, with the Bengals Joe Burrow and Ravens' Lamar Jackson at Nos. 1 and 2? How do Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren stack up against the Ravens' Derrick Henry? Are the Steelers the worst at receiver even with George Pickens? And how does the defensive line led by Keeanu Benton and Cam Heyward stack up with Myles Garrett and the Browns? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

Then later, Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins with his latest thoughts on GM Ben Cherington's options ahead of the MLB trade deadline.

July 08, 2024 Can Pirates' rotation overcome Jared Jones, Bailey Falter injuries? Paul Skenes an All-Star starter?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' weekend series against the New York Mets and the announcement of MLB All-Star selections. Does Paul Skenes deserve to start the game despite only pitching in 10 games so far as a rookie? Did the Pirates deserve any any additional All-Stars beyond Skenes and Bryan Reynolds? And is the rotation prepared to weather injuries to Jared Jones and Bailey Falter with depth options like Luis Ortiz, Martin Perez and Marco Gonzales? Jason tackles those topics then gets into the Penguins. He recaps his exclusive interview with Mike Sullivan over the weekend, the need for GM Kyle Dubas to make the roster younger and faster and his level of faith in goalie Tristan Jarry.

July 07, 2024 Paul Skenes All-Star reaction: Should Pirates rookie actually start?

Pirates insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin react to Paul Skenes' selection for the 2024 MLB All-Star Game. Should the rookie phenom actually start the game? Is there a bigger story than Skenes in Texas?

July 05, 2024 Steelers have plenty of cap space, so will they go all-in for 2024?

On the Friday edition of The North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike’s Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Steelers insider Brian Batko discuss whether GM Omar Khan is saving his team’s salary cap space for a big trade or will roll it over into next season. Would wide receivers Brandon Aiyuk and CeeDee Lamb be the best use of that money, or should they extend their own players? And later Pirates insider Andrew Destin joins the show to talk about a crucial set of series ahead of the All-Star break.

July 05, 2024 MLB trade deadline: Pirates running out of time to make serious move

On today's edition of First 10, Jason Mackey talks about time running short on the Pirates adding some pop, the look of the starting rotation with Jared Jones hurt, what to do with Aroldis Chapman if there are offers and whether Paul Skenes should go to the All-Star Game.

July 03, 2024 Steelers training camp countdown: Are T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith better than James Harrison, LaMarr Woodley?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko analyze the team's linebacker core heading into training camp later this month. Are T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith already better than Steelers LB legends James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley? Which current Steelers also have the best shot at making the hall of fame?

Our duo tackles those topics and more.

Later, Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Noah Hiles to discuss Noah's 1-on-1 with Pirates pitching coach Oscar Marin. Noah also breaks down the Pirates' Joshua Palacios situation and what to make of the team putting his promotion on pause after Tuesday's loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.

July 03, 2024 How long is Pirates' leash on Jack Suwinski, Yasmani Grandal?

On today's episode of First 10, Jason Mackey discusses what the Pirates need to see out of Jack Suwinski after Tuesday night's performance, why they continue to play Yasmani Grandal, and where he'd like to see them go with the catching situation. Mackey also touches on the Penguins adding Sebastian Aho, needing to get a winger and what looks to be a daunting schedule.

July 02, 2024 Steelers training camp countdown: Are Keeanu Benton, Joey Porter Jr. most likely breakout players?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes 93.7 The Fan's "Donny Football" Chedrick to pick the most likely -- or necessary -- breakout players for the team this season. Why does Keenau Benton seem like the most likely to take a major step after an encouraging rookie year? Can Joey Porter Jr. build on strong analytics to become a true shutdown cornerback? Can Pat Freiermuth still surprise people within new OC Arthur Smith's offense despite entering his fourth year in the league? Will George Pickens solidify his place as one of the league's best receivers? And why are names including DeShon Elliott, Nick Herbig, Darius Rush, Calvin Austin III, Broderick Jones and Darnell Washington among others to watch? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

July 02, 2024 Penguins' NHL free agency moves uninspiring? What will Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin think?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Penguins moves -- or lack thereof -- on the first day of NHL free agency. Do additions including Blake Lizotte, Matt Grzelcyk and Anthony Beauvillier make GM Kyle Dubas' roster significantly better? Will Reilly Smith be missed after he was traded to the New York Rangers? What will the core of veteran stars including Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang thing about the lack of splashy moves? And elsewhere, what should we make of former Penguins Jake Guentzel's nine-year deal with the Tampa Bay Lightning?

Jason tackles those questions, then previews the Pirates' series against the St. Louis Cardinals at PNC Park.

July 02, 2024 Pitt basketball: Does Bub Carrington being picked in the first round of the NBA draft REALLY help?

On their weekly Pitt mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Stephen Thompson answer reader questions. Among them: Does Bub Carrington's selection in the first round of the NBA draft as a one-and-done actually help the Panthers' program? Will Blake Hinson actually get a chance to play for the Lakers and with LeBron James? And should we be excited about Mason Alexander, a cornerback and Pat Narduzzi's first four-star recruit in the Class of 2025? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

July 01, 2024 Steelers training camp countdown: T.J. Watt, OLBs the best position group? Are WRs the worst?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko rank the team's position groups from best to worst. Can any group challenge the depth and quality of T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith, Nick Herbig and the outside linebackers? Are the receivers the worst group despite the presence of George Pickens? Where do Russell Wilson, Justin Fields and the QBs stack up? What about the defensive line with an aging Cam Heyward but an ascending talent in Keeanu Benton? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

Then later, Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Noah Hiles to react to the weekend series with the Atlanta Braves and ponder GM Ben Cherington's options to make a deal ahead of the MLB trade deadline at the end of the month.

July 01, 2024 NHL free agency: Penguins' options limited? Can Kevin Hayes really help Kyle Dubas' roster?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey previews NHL free agency for GM Kyle Dubas and the Penguins. What should we make of the Kevin Hayes trade with the St. Louis Blues over the weekend? And what should we expect as free agents begin signing with teams officially on Monday? Is there anything Dubas can do to meaningfully upgrade the roster around Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang? Or are his options limited?

Then later, Jason reacts to the Pirates' series loss against the Atlanta Braves over the weekend. Does the June surge by Rowdy Tellez eliminate the need for a first baseman ahead of the MLB trade deadline at the end of the month? Can Oneil Cruz start to show more consistency after a clutch homer Sunday? And how can GM Ben Cherington improve the offense beyond those guys?

June 30, 2024 Pirates at halfway mark: Can glaring holes be filled for playoff push?

Pirates insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin discuss how the series against the Atlanta Braves showed the team’s strengths (Paul Skenes, Aroldis Chapman) and weaknesses (Ke'Bryan Hayes, Jared Triolo) and where improvement can be found.

June 28, 2024 Steelers contracts: Omar Khan poised to let James Daniels go? Smart to prioritize OT over IOL?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze GM Omar Khan's strategy with the offensive line. Is Khan signaling an intent to move on from James Daniels with moves including his selection of Mason McCormick in the NFL draft? Will Daniels make big money with another team, much as Kevin Dotson has with the Los Angeles Rams? What's the plan after Isaac Seumalo's contract expires after last season? And has Khan been smart to prioritize OT with Broderick Jones and Troy Fautanu over the interior offensive line?

Our duo tackles those questions and more. Then later, Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins Chris to discuss how the club will manage innings for Paul Skenes and Jared Jones while also making a push for the MLB postseason.

June 28, 2024 Do Derek Shelton's Pirates lineups show a lack of urgency? Any solutions for Jack Suwinski?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey answers reader questions. Among them: Why would Starling Marte be a member of the Pirates' 2015 team who'd be an ideal fit with today's? Do manager Derek Shelton's getaway day lineups reveal a lack of urgency about making the postseason? Are there any obvious solutions for Jack Suwinski's prolonged struggles this season? And who's the team's most likely All-Star from the group of Paul Skenes, Mitch Keller and Bryan Reynolds?

Jason tackles those questions and also a couple from the Penguins realm. Including: Will GM Kyle Dubas look to make the team's defense better in NHL free agency? Or rely on bouce-back years from Ryan Graves and Erik Karlsson? And what could the potential return be in a Tristan Jarry trade?

June 27, 2024 Steelers offseason: Kenny Pickett camp still has sour grapes? | Should Pirates deal Termarr Johnson?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to react to Kenny Pickett's camp attempting to shoot down negative narratives that surrounded his exit from the Steelers. Do comments by his high school coach and private QB coach to NJ.com amount to sour grapes about the way last season ended with Mason Rudolph taking the starting job? Or about the Steelers signing Russell Wilson? Or are any of the gripes from Pickett's people legit? Should any of the rumors about his strong offseason behind Jalen Hurts with the Philadelphia Eagles be believed? And will Pickett ever achieve redemption as a Steelers pariah like Le'Veon Bell has in recent years?

Then on the Pirates front, our duo ponders GM Ben Cherington's options at the MLB trade deadline. Should every prospect be on the table as an option to move in exchange for a solid bat? Even names like Termarr Johnson and Bubba Chandler? And should the success Roansy Contreras has had with the Los Angeles Angels concern anyone yet?

Our duo tackles those questions and also offers thoughts on Pitt's Bub Carrington being selected in the NBA draft and moves Penguins GM Kyle Dubas should consider ahead of NHL free agency on July 1.

June 27, 2024 Penguins trade rumors: Should they move Reilly Smith, Rickard Rakell? Add Max Domi, Tyler Bertuzzi?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey ponders moves Penguins GM Kyle Dubas should -- or should not -- consider with NHL free agency approaching on July 1. Should names including Reilly Smith and Rickard Rakell be on the trading block as the team searches for more speed alongside Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang? And why do targets including Max Domi, Tyler Bertuzzi and Jake DeBrusk make sense in free agency?

Jason tackles those question. Later, he ponders what it means for Jeff Capel and Pitt basketball that Bub Carrington is set to go to the Washington Wizards with the No. 14 pick in the NBA draft; reacts to the Pirates taking two out of three games from the Cincinnati Reds this week; and offers his thoughts on whether Luis Ortiz has earned a rotation spot.

June 26, 2024 Pirates-Reds reaction: Did Luis Ortiz earn rotation spot? How long can Bryan Reynolds carry offense?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin react to the club's series win against the Cincinnati Reds this week, with Andrew reporting from Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. Did Luis Ortiz earn a spot in the rotation after his excellent start on Wednesday? Is Bailey Falter's spectacular start to the season running out of gas? How long can Bryan Reynolds carry the Pirates offense? And is this the version of Rowdy Tellez fans will see for the rest of the season? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

June 26, 2024 Steelers training camp countdown: Will Arthur Smith use TEs Darnell Washington, Connor Heyward more?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze the team's tight end group. Will Pat Freiermuth have an elevated role in new OC Arthur Smith's gameplan? Will Darnell Washington and Connor Heyward also get more looks from QBs Russell Wilson and Justin Fields? And how much can the group as a whole make up for the roster's current lack of a proven No. 2 receiver behind George Pickens? Our duo tackles those questions.

In the second segment, Christopher welcomes NBA draft analysts Leif Thulin and James Barlowe to preview the event from a Pitt perspective. Will the Panthers' Bub Carrington slide into the first round after leading coach Jeff Capel's team to the verge of the NCAA tournament? And will Blake Hinson be selected after his standout career that included All-ACC honors?

Then later, Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins to react to the club's Tuesday night victory against the Cincinnati Reds, which included another strong start from Mitch Keller. Is his success going under the radar amid the rise of Paul Skenes and Jared Jones?

June 26, 2024 MLB playoff race: Are Pirates stuck in neutral? | Time for Henry Davis to prove himself?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts the Pirates' victory against the Reds on Tuesday in Cincinnati. Can they use it as a springboard to a winning streak that would help them greatly in their MLB playoff race for an NL wild card spot? Or will the inconsistency of players like Yasmani Grandal and Michael A. Taylor prevent that? Did Mitch Keller prove that he's just fine after some slips from his dominant May? And can Henry Davis finally prove he belongs at the MLB level as he starts a minor league rehab assignment with the Altoona Curve?

Jason tackles those questions, offers his thoughts on an ESPN article that ranks the Steelers' starters 18th in the NFL and reacts to the announcement of the next Hockey Hall of Fame class.

June 25, 2024 Steelers minicamp: Justin Fields accuracy concerns being exaggerated? What's a sensible extension?

On Brian Batko's weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, the Post-Gazette's Adam Bittner and Jason Mackey fill in and offer their thoughts on Justin Fields' performance during Steelers OTAs and minicamp. Have concerns the backup QB been exaggerated after PG insider Ray Fittipaldo reported that his accuracy was a bit of an issue during the offseason program? Why has Fields been such a flashpoint within the fanbase and national media since being traded to Pittsburgh from the Chicago Bears? And what should GM Omar Khan do with him contractually as both Fields and Russell Wilson are set to play on expiring contracts in 2024? Should he get an extension in the mold of Jordan Love's in his last season as Aaron Rodgers backup with the Green Bay Packers? Or should Fields get a contract closer to what Mitch Trubisky signed with the Steelers in 2022? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

June 25, 2024 Pirates-Reds reaction: Is Bailey Falter losing his magic? Pitching depth an becoming an issue?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' 11-5 loss to the Cincinnati Reds on Monday night. Are Bailey Falter's June struggles a sign of what's to come from him? Or can he turn them around? And does the bullpen have enough depth behind David Bednar, Aroldis Chapman and Colin Holderman?

Jason tackles those topics, recaps his column about Willie Mays' Pittsburgh ties and reacts to the Florida Panthers winning the Stanley Cup, but the Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid winning the Conn Smythe trophy as playoffs MVP.

June 25, 2024 Pitt basketball: Assessing NBA draft stock of Bub Carrington, Blake Hinson

On their weekly Pitt mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: How high is Bub Carrington's stock ahead of the NBA draft? Does Blake Hinson have a chance to be selected? And what do recent Pitt football commits including Synkwan Smith, Shawn Lee Jr. and Akram Elnagm bring to coach Pat Narduzzi's program?

June 24, 2024 Steelers contracts: Rhamondre Stevenson deal a bad signal for Najee Harris staying long-term?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to ponder the future for Najee Harris in Pittsburgh. Can a contract extension still be worked out with the running back entering his fourth season? Or does the New England Patriots' recent deal with Rhamondre Stevenson show such a move might be too costly considering GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin have already declined the fifth-year option on Harris' rookie contract? And if Harris is allowed to leave in free agency, how does that impact the Steelers' needs next offseason? Will they stick with Jaylen Warren as the starter? Look to add in the NFL draft? Or hope to get lucky in finding another undrafted free agent gem like Warren?

Our duo tackles those topic, then also explains changes to Steelers training camp in Latrobe. Then later, Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins to react to a frustrating series for the Pirates against the Tampa Bay Rays, in which their offense wasted a strong start by Paul Skenes.

June 24, 2024 Are Omar Khan's Steelers better at almost every spot? Will Pirates listen to Bob Nutting?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey analyzes the Steelers' offseason. Has GM Omar Khan improved the team at almost every spot through the acquisitions of free agents such as Russell Wilson and Patrick Queen? And NFL draft picks including Troy Fautanu, Roman Wilson, Payton Wilson and Zach Frazier? Is receiver the only place where they look worse on paper amid the loss of Diontae Johnson in a trade with the Carolina Panthers for Donte Jackson? And what should that mean for the win-loss record in 2024?

Jason tackles those topics, then gets into some baseball and hockey. What are his thoughts on the Pirates' series loss to the Tampa Bay Rays? Will GM Ben Cherington heed owner Bob Nutting's call to improve the offense? And should Penguins GM Kyle Dubas and coach Mike Sullivan consider hiring an assistant dedicated to the power play -- as the Toronto Maple Leafs did recently with Marc Savard -- to get more out of elite talents including Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang?

June 24, 2024 Pirates-Rays reaction: Offense sinking playoff hopes with wasted Paul Skenes gem?

On their Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Noah Hiles react to club's series loss against the Tampa Bay Rays this past weekend at PNC Park. How much longer can manager Derek Shelton's team survive in the MLB playoff race if it keeps wasting stellar pitching performances like Paul Skenes' on Sunday? What's clicking for Bryan Reynolds at the plate amid his long hitting streak? Could the Pirates deal pending free agents Martin Perez or Marco Gonzales at the MLB trade deadline? And what kind of depth issues will the bullpen face with David Bednar hitting the injured list? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

June 21, 2024 Steelers special teams: How much better do Cordarrelle Patterson, Cameron Johnston make them?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze the special teams unit. Is position coach Danny Smith ready for all the changes to the NFL kickoff rules, having just turned 70? Does Cordarrelle Patterson have the kick returning job locked down? Or will there be some competition? Will Cameron Johnston be an upgrade over Pressley Harvin III at punter? And how much will he need to adapt to AFC North weather conditions after playing in a dome with the Houston Texans?

Our duo tackles those topics, then ponders GM Omar Khan's moves to cut WR Denzel Mims and S Trenton Thompson a little more than a month before training camp. And later, sports columnist Jason Mackey joins to weigh in on potential trade options for GM Ben Cherington and the Pirates as he looks to bolster the offense in support of standout pitchers Paul Skenes, Mitch Keller and Jared Jones ahead of the MLB trade deadline.

June 21, 2024 Penguins trade options: Martin Necas or Patrik Laine a better fit? Meaning of Alex Nedeljkovic deal?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey answers reader questions. Among them: Who's the better fit among potential Penguins trade options for GM Kyle Dubas? The Carolina Hurricanes' Martin Necas? Or the Columbus Blue Jackets' Patrik Laine? What does the Alex Nedeljkovic extension mean for Tristan Jarry's future here? And why are Sidney Crosby and Kris Letang Jason's favorite Penguins to interview? He tackles those hockey questions, plus some about the Pirates. Could Vince Velasquez return to bolster the club's pitching depth, especially as manager Derek Shelton and GM Ben Cherington look to limit innings for Paul Skenes and Jared Jones? Will the team every re-brand to more of a 1970s look? And when will Cherington try to make a move to improve the club between now and the MLB trade deadline?

June 19, 2024 Pirates-Reds reaction: Can Paul Skenes, Mitch Keller stay hot? How can club's offense get going?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin react to the club's series win against the Cincinnati Reds this week at PNC Park. How did the club's starting pitching trio of Paul Skenes, Bailey Falter and Mitch Keller have so much success against the Reds, allowing only three runs all series? And how can that be a catalyst for the pitching staff moving forward? On the other end of the spectrum, how can the Pirates offense, which only mustered six runs in those three games, improve? Is it time for general manager Ben Cherington to make a trade to add a bat? And how important will David Bednar and Colin Holderman be out of the bullpen? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

June 19, 2024 Steelers QBs: National media getting Russell Wilson, Justin Fields dynamic wrong?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to break down the team's QB competition between Russell Wilson and Justin Fields. Why does national media perceive the battle to be a 50-50 proposition, when locally it's clear that Wilson has the starting job comfortably heading into training camp? What should we make of Fields' demeanor about his current role as the backup? And is coach Mike Tomlin handling the competition correctly by giving Wilson such a comfortable pole position?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and also ponders Najee Harris' buy-in as he's set to inherit such a large role in Arthur Smith's new offense. Then later, Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Andrew Destin to react to Paul Skenes' latest start against the Cincinnati Reds, as well as a 2-1 loss to the same opponent on Tuesday night.

 

Note: This Steelers segment was meant to be posted Monday, but was not in error. We hope you enjoy it now.

June 19, 2024 Penguins trades options: Can Patrik Laine be had at a discount? | Remembering WIllie Mays

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the passing of San Francisco Giants and MLB legend Willie Mays through a Pittsburgh lens, as well as the Pirates' latest loss to the Cincinnati Reds. He also gets into some hockey topics. Among them: Could the Penguins acquire Columbus Blue Jackets standout Patrik Laine at a discount in a trade this offseason? And does the comeback bid by Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers in the Stanley Cup Final have legs?

June 18, 2024 Will Steelers miss Diontae Johnson more than expected? | How much would Brandon Aiyuk trade help?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider welcomes ESPN analytics guru Seth Walder. The duo tackles the team's upcoming appearance on HBO's Hard Knocks as well as GM Omar Khan's offseason moves so far -- an possibly moves to come. What do the analytics say about the trade for Justin Fields and the signing of Russell Wilson to make up the team's quarterbacks room? Will Diontae Johnson be missed more than expected after he was traded to the Carolina Panthers for Donte Jackson? Could a trade for the San Francisco 49ers Brandon Aiyuk that fans have long clamored for actually make this team a contender? What are realistic expectations for rookie offensive linemen Zach Frazier and Troy Fautanu? And where does this team fit in the division with the Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals statistically?

June 18, 2024 Pirates' Paul Skenes proving he can adjust on the fly? Does Bryan Reynolds deserve more credit?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to Paul Skenes' latest victory on the mound for the Pirates against the Cincinnati Reds on Monday at PNC Park. How important was it that Skenes showed he can adjust on the fly? And what does that mean for the rest of his rookie season with his club fighting for an NL wildcard postseason berth?

 

Jason tackles those questions and also praises progress at the plate from Bryan Reynolds and Rowdy Tellez. Then later, he gives his thoughts on the Steelers appearing on HBO's "Hard Knocks" series alongside AFC North division foes including the Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns.

June 18, 2024 Pitt mailbag: Does Meleek Thomas' transfer hurt the Panthers' chances to sign him?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: How does Meleek Thomas leaving Lincoln Park High School in Pittsburgh to join Overtime Elite in Atlanta affect Jeff Capel's chances of recruiting him? How are Pitt athletes doing at the swimming and diving Olympic trials? And how does coach Dan Hurley's decision to stay at UConn affect Pitt and the rest of the college sports world? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

June 17, 2024 Steelers minicamp: Is Russell Wilson vs. Justin Fields a repeat of Kenny Pickett vs. Mitch Trubisky?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze the team's situation at quarterback. What should we make of Justin Fields' demeanor in his competition with Russell Wilson? How does the dynamic between the two echo the 2022 QB competition between Mitch Trubisky and Kenny Pickett? And should Fields be getting more first-team reps, even if he is expected to the be the backup?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and more. Among them: What's Najee Harris' level of buy-in as the focal point of this offense? Especially after he didn't speak to the media much during offseason workouts?

 

Then later, Pirates insider Andrew Destin joins to discuss whether GM Ben Cherington will make a significant move to upgrade the team before the MLB trade deadline.

June 17, 2024 MLB trade deadline: Pirates need deals? Or better fundamentals? A.J. Burnett loving young aces?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey explains why he feels better fundamental baseball from manager Derek Shelton's Pirates is as important to their chances as what GM Ben Cherington can add to the roster via deals before the MLB trade deadline. He also gets former Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett's thoughts on young aces Paul Skenes and Jared Jones; reacts to Mt. Lebanon native Neal Shipley's weekend at the U.S. Open; and offers his view of the NHL's Stanley Cup final and the NBA Finals both being underdiscussed in Pittsburgh.

June 16, 2024 Steelers minicamp: DC Teryl Austin excited to have Patrick Queen, Cam Sutton & others join unit

Steelers defensive coordinator Teryl Austin speaks to reporters during the team's minicamp this past week on the South Side. He explains how the secondary is coming together with new faces such as DeShon Elliott and Donte Jackson joining familiar ones like Cam Sutton, Joey Porter Jr. and Minkah Fitzpatrick; how Patrick Queen and rookie Payton Wilson fit into the unit at MLB; how Cor[y Trice Jr. is coming back from his training camp injury a year ago; and Keeanu Benton's ability to grow in 2024.

June 14, 2024 Steelers minicamp: What lessons has Teryl Austin learned from 2023? | George Pickens in the slot?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to react to DC Teryl Austin's news conference this week. What lessons did Austin learn from 2023 that he's applying to 2024, specifically in deploying safeties Minkah Fitzpatrick and Damontae Kazee? How have the acquisitions of free agents and draftees including DeShon Elliott, Patrick Queen, Payton Wilson, Cam Sutton and others all helped free Fitzpatrick up to better play a centerfield role? And what kind of chemistry will Queen and Elliott bring to this defense collectively after moving here from the Baltimore Ravens?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, then discusses the receivers. How much might new OC Arthur Smith use George Pickens in the slot this season? Why does receivers coach Zach Azzanni believe Calvin Austin III is ready to make a big leap? And is there still a chance that GM Omar Khan may make a move for a bonafide No. 2 receiver like Brandon Aiyuk or Deebo Samuel from the San Francisco 49ers?

 

Finally, Andrew Destin joins the show to recap the Pirates' series loss against the St. Louis Cardinals and preview their weekend series against the Colorado Rockies.

June 14, 2024 MLB trade deadline: If not Pete Alonso or Vladimir Guerreo Jr., how can Pirates upgrade 1B, offense

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey answers reader questions. Among them: Will GM Ben Cherington make a significant move to improve the offense by the trade deadline? If names including the Toronto Blue Jays' Vladimir Guerrero Jr. or the New York Mets' Pete Alonso are unrealistic, what other options does he have to upgrade on Connor Joe and Rowdy Tellez? Could outfield be an area to watch, too, amid the struggles of Michael A. Taylor and Jack Suwinski? What happened with Jose Hernandez before he was sent to the Los Angeles Dodgers this week?

 

Jason tackles those topics and gets into a little Steelers, too. Specifically, what will the run/pass balance be in Arthur Smith's offense as it looks to get bother Russell Wilson at QB and RBs Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris going?

June 13, 2024 Are the Steelers or Pirates better positioned or playoff success? | Buying the Arthur Smith hype?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss whether the Pirates or Steelers are closer to experiencing playoff success. Do dominant pitchers Paul Skenes, Mitch Keller and Jared Jones make the Pirates an immediate threat if they can get to the postseason? Or are Mike Tomlin, Russell Wilson and the Steelers the better bet because of their consistency?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, then weighs some minicamp topics. Is the excitement around new OC Arthur Smith's offense deserved after his widely praised media comments this week? And how seriously does Cordarrelle Patterson figure into the backfield that already include Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren.

 

Finally, Adam and Paul wrap the show with some Pirates questions. Does Jones deserve an MLB All-Star nod ahead of Skenes? Can Bailey Falter continue to be a solid No. 4 in those rotation? And should the Toronto Blue Jays' Vlad Guerrero Jr. be a trade target if he's available at the MLB trade deadline?

June 13, 2024 Do Pirates' hopes rest on Henry Daivs, Kyle Nicolas improving? What's wrong with Ke'Bryan Hayes?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday night. Are Henry Davis and Kyle Nicholas showing signs of shaking of season-long funks? How much does the club's success rest on them figuring things out? And what is wrong with Ke'Bryan Hayes, and how much more does manager Derek Shelton need to see from him in the coming weeks?

 

Jason tackles those topics as well as the Penguins' hiring of David Quinn to replace Todd Reirden; the Steelers need to deploy Minkah Fitzpatrick more effectively this season; and George Pickens' potential to make some contributions in the slot.

June 12, 2024 Steelers minicamp: Arthur Smith showing his command of team history, culture and strengths?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to react to new OC Arthur Smith's comments Tuesday at the team's minicamp. Specifically, they explain the ways Smith is showing his understanding of the team's history and identity and looking to re-establish its culture created by influences including Ken Whisenhunt, Mike Vrabel and Dick LeBeau. They also ponder which players could see more touches in this offense. Will it be running backs like Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris? Tight ends including Pat Freiermuth? Or will it be off-the-radar names including Scotty Miller and Cordarrelle Patterson?

 

Then later, Pirates insider Andrew Destin joins Christopher to discuss Paul Skenes' latest dominant start for the Pirates in a win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday night.

June 12, 2024 Paul Skenes proving Pirates right for managing his innings? Shows new tricks in beating Cardinals?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to Paul Skenes' latest dominant start for the Pirates on Tuesday night against the St. Louis Cardinals. What new tricks did Skenes show that we hadn't seen at the MLB level previously? Are his lengthening outings proving GM Ben Cherington right for managing his innings early in the season? And can Skenes and fellow rotation members Mitch Keller, Jared Jones and Bailey Falter lead this team to the postseason in a muddled National League Central division?

 

Jason tackles those topics, then reacts to Day 1 of Steelers minicamp. Why were players including Pat Freiermuth reacting so positively to coach Mike Tomlin's extension? And how are young linemen including Troy Fautanu, Broderick Jones and Zach Frazier coming along?

June 11, 2024 Steelers minicamp: Bryant McFadden believes Mike Tomlin's team building will pay off amid changes

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes former Super Bowl champion cornerback Bryant McFadden to discuss Steelers minicamp and coach Mike Tomlin's three-year extension. Is there a major difference between OTAs and minicamp? What makes signing Tomlin long-term a good move for GM Omar Khan and owner Art Rooney II? And why is Tomlin uniquely suited to coaching a team with many new faces including OC Arthur Smith, QBs Russel Wilson and Justin Fields and linemen Zach Frazier and Troy Fautanu?

June 11, 2024 Steelers minicamp: Arthur Smith praises Russell Wilson, Justin Fields for options they give him

Steelers offensive coordinator Arthur Smith speaks with reporters during minicamp Tuesday at the team's South Side facility. He explains how the installation of his new offense is going with names like George Pickens at receiver; Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren at running back; Russell Wilson and Justin Fields at QB; and young standouts up front including Troy Fautanu, Zach Fraizer and Broderick Jones.

June 10, 2024 Steelers news: Reacting to Mike Tomlin's 3-year deal. How tied is his fate to Arthur Smith, QBs?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider and columnist Jason Mackey join host Adam Bittner to react to coach Mike Tomlin's three-year contract extension, announced by the team on Monday. Is the length of the deal a surprise, or business as usual for owner Art Rooney II and GM Omar Khan? How tied is Tomlin's fate to the success of new OC Arthur Smith, coming off of Matt Canada's disastrous tenure? Can Tomlin find and develop a quarterback of the future, be it Justin Fields or someone else eventually taking the reigns from Russell Wilson? And are the any benchmarks of success Tomlin will have to hit to avoid the hot seat? Our trio tackles those questions and more.

June 10, 2024 Should Pirates keep struggling youngsters like Henry Davis, Jack Suwinski in minors longer?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey ponders the struggles of young Pirates including Henry Davis, Jack Suwinski and Jared Triolo. Is GM Ben Cherington doing something wrong with their development? How do their struggles fit into MLB-wide trends with names like the Detroit Tigers' Spencer Torkelson, the Baltimore Orioles' Jackson Holliday and the Texas Rangers' Wyatt Langford? And do those struggles suggest more time in the minors with Class AAA Indianapolis could be beneficial, as it was for Andrew McCutchen?

 

Jason offers his thoughts on those questions as well as the series victory against the Minnesota Twins. Then he looks ahead to Steelers minicamp storylines to watch, including how Cam Sutton fits in the secondary and what becomes of Najee Harris.

June 10, 2024 Steelers minicamp: Russell Wilson the face of the offense? What about Najee Harris, George Pickens?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to preview Steelers mincamp this week. Is Russell Wilson the face of the team's offense? Or are names like Najee Harris or George Pickens also contenders? What about the offensive line and names like Broderick Jones, Troy Fautanu and Zach Frazier in new OC Arthur Smith's run-heavy offense? And on the defensive side, are DBs Cam Sutton and Donte Jackson in better positions to succeed in Pittsburgh than they were with the Detroit Lions and Carolina Panthers, respectively?

 

Our duo tackles those questions. Then later, Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Andrew Destin to ponder whether the club is a legit wild-card contender after consecutive series victories against the Los Angeles Dodgers and Minnesota Twins.

June 10, 2024 Pirates-Twins reaction: Is Rowdy Tellez really coming around? Jack Suwinski, Henry Davis not ready?

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Andrew Destin and sports columnist Jason Mackey react to the club's series victory against the Minnesota Twins at PNC Park over the weekend. Among the topics: Is Rowdy Tellez truly out of his season-long slump after a strong start to June? Why are Henry Davis and Jack Suwinski continuing to struggle? What is working for Nick Gonzales right now? And what are the big storylines in the bullpen? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

June 07, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Where does Cam Sutton fit? Can Minkah Fitzpatrick get back to forcing turnovers?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko for the latest from OTAs. How does NFL free agent signing Cam Sutton fit in the Steelers' current defense? Will he play outside cornerback across from Joey Porter Jr.? Or will he play the slot while Donte Jackson takes outside duty? And do the additions of free agents like Patrick Queen and DeShon Elliott plus draft picks like Payton Wilson give Minkah Fitzpatrick the ability to return to the playmaking role he used to hold in this defense?

 

Our duo tackles those questions. Then Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Noah Hiles to react to the team's series victory against the Los Angeles Dodgers in which rookies Paul Skenes and Jared Jones shined. And they preview the weekend series against the Minnesota Twins at PNC Park.

June 07, 2024 MLB trade deadline: Will Pirates upgrade amid pitching dominance? Is Paul Skenes an All-Star?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey answers reader questions. Among them: Will Pirates GM Ben Cherington make significant moves to improve before the MLB trade deadline, in hopes of winning an NL wild-card spot? Could starters Paul Skenes, Mitch Keller and Jared Jones all make the MLB All-Star team? Is Nick Gonzales a darkhorse All-Star candidate? What's the situation with pitching prospect Mike Burrows? Could Oneil Cruz be moved to the outfield? And how are the Pirates assessing Henry Davis amid his return to MLB?

June 06, 2024 Pirates getting new swagger from Paul Skenes, Jared Jones? Is Nick Gonzales for real?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' latest win against the Los Angeles Dodgers, led by a strong start from Paul Skenes. Are he and fellow rookie pitcher Jared Jones bringing a new winning swagger to this team? How legit is the recent tear by Nick Gonzales that has given the offense a boost? And should Edward Olivares see more playing time as he's continued to produce?

 

Jason tackles those topics, then reacts to the Steelers' signing of Cam Sutton and recaps his feature on the Perfect Pitch camp.

June 06, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Are Russell Wilson, Broderick Jones & Joey Porter Jr. under the most pressure?

Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to ponder pressure facing the Steelers in 2024. Is Arthur Smith's new-look defense the unit under the most? Or will the star-laden defense with T.J. Watt, Patrick Queen, Minkah Fitzpatrick and Cam Heyward face the most scrutiny? Why are names like Russell Wilson, Joey Porter Jr. and Broderick Jones under the most individual pressure? And who needs to perform best if this team is going to take down the big names on its tough schedule, including the Kansas City Chiefs, Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, then gets into the Pirates. Can they contend for the playoffs with their potent rotation of Mitch Keller, Paul Skenes and Jared Jones, especially considering the San Diego Padres currently hold the final berth with a sub-.500 record? Is it time to believe in Nick Gonzales yet? And will Jack Suwinski and Henry Davis really be better after short stints in the minors? The finally, Paul gives his picks for the NBA Finals between the Dallas Mavericks and Boston Celtics, plus the Stanley Cup final between the Edmonton Oilers and Florida Panthers.

June 05, 2024 Steelers free agency: Reacting to Cam Sutton's return at CB. Omar Khan still making big moves?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to react to the latest from Steelers OTAs. What should we make of Cam Heyward's return for the final week amid his contract dispute with the team? Will he get a news deal by training camp? Or is it possible he could end his career with another team?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, then reacts to the mid-show return of Cam Sutton to the team's secondary. How does he bolster a unit that currently includes Joey Porter Jr., Donte Jackson and reserves like Darius Rush and Cory Trice Jr.? What kind of impact could his 2023 arrest in Florida have on his return? And does this move rule out the return of Patrick Peterson?

 

Then later, Noah Hiles joins Christopher to react to Jared Jones' strong start in a 1-0 Pirates win against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday at PNC Park.

June 05, 2024 Pirates' Jared Jones silences creeping doubts vs. Dodgers? Aroldis Chapman, bullpen turning corner?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' 1-0 win against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday at PNC Park. How did Jared Jones silence doubts coming off a rough start against Detroit with dominance against the likes of Dodgers starts Shohei Ohtani and Freddie Freeman? How dangerous could a rotation of Jones, Paul Skenes and Mitch Keller be if it can reach the MLB postseason? Is the bullpen turning a corner after Colin Holderman, Aroldis Chapman and David Bednar slammed the door to preserve a shutout? And how did the clubhouse react to the lifetime ban of former teammate Tucupita Marcano for betting on baseball?

 

Jason tackles those topics, plus Cam Heyward's return to Steelers OTAs.

June 04, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Cam Heyward addresses absence, contract and future

Steelers defensive captain Cam Heyward speaks to reporters during OTAs on the South Side on Tuesday. He explains why he stayed away for the first couple of weeks amid his contract negotiations; where those negotiations stand now; how much he was communicating with coach Mike Tomlin and his teammates; how he's feeling after being limited by a groin injury last season; and his thoughts on QB Russell Wilson joining the team to lead the offense.

June 04, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Arthur Smith bringing accountability on offense? Excitement for Najee Harris builds?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Shelby Cassesse of WPXI-TV sports to react to the latest from Steelers OTAs. Why does Shelby feel excitement building around the offense, specifically running back Najee Harris in new OC Arthur Smith's run-heavy approach? How much has changed for the unit now that Smith has brought more accountability to it? And how would our duo compare Steelers players including Russell Wilson, Justin Fields, T.J. Watt and Cam Heyward to Kennywood rides following their trip to the theme park during OTAs this week? They tackle those topics and more.

June 04, 2024 Are Pirates' Paul Skenes, Jared Jones ready for challenge of Dodgers, Shohei Ohtani?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey previews the Pirates' series against Shohei Ohtani and the Los Angeles Dodgers at PNC Park. Are young stars Jared Jones and Paul Skenes ready for the challenge of pitching against one of MLB's best lineups and one of their hometown teams growing up? Will they be starstruck at all going against Shohei Ohtani specifically? And what could the promotion of Henry Davis mean for the team and the series?

Jason tackles those questions, then gets into former Pirate Tucupita Marcano' possible ban from baseball for betting, plus Justin Jefferson's new contract with the Minnesota Vikings and what it could mean for the Steelers with George Pickens and their possible pursuit of a No. 2 wideout like the 49ers' Brandon Aiyuk or Deebo Samuel via trade.

June 04, 2024 Pitt mailbag: How does Jorge Diaz Graham's injury affect Jeff Capel's Panthers?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: How does Jorge Diaz Graham's latest injury impact the Panthers men's basketball team? How does new transfer defensive lineman Anthony Johnson impact the football team's roster? And how has women's basketball coach Tory Verdi done in the transfer portal so far? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

June 03, 2024 Why is Pirates' Ben Cherington touting improvement as losses pile up? A Steelers WR is stepping up?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist reacts to Pirates GM Ben Cherington saying his team is better in 2024 despite multiple signs of statistical regression and a worse record so far. What is Cherington seeing that we're not? Is the performance of the rotation with Paul Skenes, Mitch Keller, Jared Jones and Bailey Falter the reason for optimism? Or is there something else?

 

Jason tackles those questions, then gets into some Steelers topics. Is there really a competition at tackle? Or are Troy Fautanu and Broderick Jones the obvious starters despite offseason coach speak? And does Van Jefferson have a narrow edge on names like Quez Watkins and Scotty Miller for playing time in this WR room?

June 03, 2024 Steelers OTAs: How much better are Donte Jackson, DeShon Elliott making the secondary?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider to analyze the team's secondary. Is it underrated with names like DeShon Elliott and Donte Jackson joining Joey Poter Jr. and Minkah Fitzpatrick? And will the addition of solid coverage linebackers like Patrick Queen and Payton Wilson free up players like Fitzpatrick to generate more turnovers? Our duo tackles those topics and explains why names including Broderick Jones seem to be stepping up as leaders in the early going at OTAs.

Then later, Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins to give his report card for how the team performed in May.

June 03, 2024 Pirates-Blue Jays recap: Is Ke'Bryan Hayes figuring something out? Can Mitch Keller be stopped?

On their Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin recap the weekend series against the Toronto Blue Jays. Did Ke'Bryan Hayes show some signs that he might be figuring some things out offensively after his return from injury? Can Mitch Keller keep his May momentum going in June? Is Bailey Falter pitching like an All-Star with his spot in the rotation? Is the bullpen becoming a bit more steady after faltering the last couple of weeks? And can Rowdy Tellez parlay a strong outing Sunday into more consistency at the plate? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

June 01, 2024 Does MLB Negro Leagues stats move properly honor Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige? Or soften history?

In this clip from the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette sports columnists Paul Zeise and Jason Mackey to debate MLB's decision to include Negro League stats in its official record book. Is it the proper move by commissioner Rob Manfred to honor legends like the Homestead Grays' Josh Gibson and the Pittsburgh Crawfords' Satchel Paige? Or does it soften this history of those players' exclusion from MLB under segregation? And to what degree is the incomplete nature of the stats being included relevant in the conversation? Our trio tackles those topics and more.

May 31, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Broderick Jones on how he's mentoring Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier on adapting as rookies

Steelers tackle Broderick Jones speaks with reporters during the teams OTAs on the South Side this week. Among the topics: His ability to switch between the left and right tackle spots; then competition with Troy Fautanu and Dan Moore Jr. for starting roles; the ways he's tried to help Fautanu, Zach Frazier and Mason McCormick adapt as rookies, given his own experience as a first-year player in 2023; and the growing relationships with QBs Russell Wilson and Justin Fields within OC Arthur Smith's new offense.

May 31, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Broderick Jones among players embracing Arthur Smith's offensive identity?

In this clip from the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss the team's offensive identity as the second week of OTAs comes to a close. Is OC Arthur Smith ahead of where Matt Canada was last year in creating an offensive identity? Why do players led by Broderick Jones seem to be embracing that identity so much more? Can a run-first offense led by linemen like Troy Fautanu and Zach Frazier, backs like Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren and QB Russell Wilson find success in what's become a pass-first league? And can the Steelers win like they did in the Killer B's era with Ben Roethlisberger, Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown? Our duo tackles those topics and more. 

May 31, 2024 Does Pirates GM Ben Cherington lack urgency to win? How does Rowdy Tellez keep surviving?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey takes reader questions. Among them: How much does the bullpen miss Ryan Borucki this season? Does GM Ben Cherington have any urgency to upgrade this MLB roster via a trade, perhaps involving a key prospect or two? Why does Rowdy Tellez still have a roster spot despite showing no signs of improvement? What is Endy Rodriguez's future at catcher with Henry Davis and Joey Bart also manning that position? And should manager Derek Shelton be starting Jared Jones and Paul Skenes in consecutive outings?

May 30, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Is Najee Harris worth much in a trade? Should offense have a Justin Fields package?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to weigh Najee Harris' value to the Steelers in 2024 after GM Omar Khan declined his fifth-year option. Should Khan consider trading him instead of letting him walk for nothing at the end of the year? Would other teams actually value him enough to get a deal for a top wideout like Brandon Aiyuk or Deebo Samuel done? Or is Harris simply most valuable playing out the final year of his contract in Pittsburgh?


Our duo tackles those questions and more. Among them: Should new OC Arthur Smith develop a package of plays for backup QB Justin Fields? Especially after starter Russell Wilson endorsed the idea? Is Pat Freiermuth really going to take a next step in Smith's offense considering Kyle Pitts failed to become an elite TE for him in Atlanta? And is there anything Pirates GM Ben Cherington has done better than predecessor Neal Huntington as he nears the five-year mark in his tenure?

May 30, 2024 Is Pirates' Paul Skenes better than expected so far? Did MLB get Negro Leagues stats call right?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey gives his thoughts on MLB's decision to incorporate Negro Leagues stats into the official statistical record. Was it the right call? He also ponders where Paul Skenes' development stands after another successful outing Wednesday against the Detroit Tigers. Is the Pirates' rookie even better than advertised?


Then later, Jason ponders Pittsburgh native Vincent Trocheck's outstanding Stanley Cup playoffs run for the New York Rangers and why it might have been a mistake for GM Kyle Dubas and Penguins not to bring him home last offseason.

May 29, 2024 Steelers OTAs: How has Arthur Smith already put the offense ahead of where it was under Matt Canada?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss the latest from Steelers OTAs, specifically Arthur Smith's offense. Why could Pat Freiermuth's expanded role help him rise the ranks to join the elite tight ends in the NFL? Will Darnell Washington, Connor Heyward and Rodney Williams all see expanded roles as well? What has Smith already done in OTAs that puts him ahead of where the offense was under Matt Canada the past couple of years? And what role has QB Russell Wilson's leadership played in that?


Our duo tackles those questions. Then later, Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Noah Hiles to break down the Pirates' doubleheader against the Detroit Tigers and how Jared Jones and Paul Skenes may fair starting on the same day. 

May 29, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Pat Freiermuth looks ready to take next step? Justin Fields dismisses kickoff role?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey has the latest on Steelers OTAs. Why is Pat Friermuth looking ready to take the next step and become one of the top tight ends in the NFL? How will Arthur Smith's offense showcase him more than Matt Canada's did? And what were QB Justin Fields' thoughts on the suggestions that he could return kickoffs while serving as Russell Wilson's backup this season?


Jason answers those questions, then gets into some Pirates and baseball topics. What can the club do to help Ke'Bryan Hayes with his chronically ailing back? And what's the significance of MLB's move to include Negro League stats in its official record books? Particularly for Homestead Grays star Josh Gibson?

May 29, 2024 Will NCAA settlement help or hurt Pitt football and basketball compete with top programs?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: What are the details of the confusing NCAA settlement that paves the way for players to be paid for the first time? Will it help or hurt Pat Narduzzi and the football program or Jeff Capel and the basketball program? Especially in recruiting? Will players be under contract in the new ecosystem? And what are the Title IX implications for women's sports? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

May 28, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Russell Wilson proving why he's No. 1? Players grasping Arthur Smith's offense?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey recaps the first week of Steelers OTAs with five storylines he's watching. Among them: Why did Russell Wilson look like the obvious No. 1 QB over Justin Fields? And how long will coach Mike Tomlin stick with him if he struggles? Why do players seem to be grasping Arthur Smith's offense and embracing it more than they ever did under Matt Canada? Why is Jason still not confident in the team's options at No. 2 WR behind George Pickens? And why does he believe Troy Fautanu and Broderick Jones should be named the starting tackles sooner than later? He gets into those questions and more.


Then later, Jason previews an important road trip through Detroit and Toronto for the Pirates this week. Could we see Henry Davis with Joey Bart injured? And what were Jason's thoughts on the 1979 World Series reunion this past weekend?

May 24, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Patrick Queen, Payton Wilson impressing at LB? Darius Rush stepping up at CB?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to react to the latest from OTAs. How are LBs Patrick Queen and Payton Wilson making strong first impressions? Why has Darius Rush been the name to watch at CB? And how is George Pickens handling his transition to the No. 1 WR role? Our duo tackles those questions and much more.

May 24, 2024 Should Pirates' Derek Shelton be on the hot seat? Why hasn't Rowdy Tellez been DFA'd?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey answers reader questions. Among them: Does the Pirates' Dave Parker belong in the Baseball Hall of Fame? Should manager Derek Shelton be on the hot seat after back-to-back ugly losses that included big blown leads? Should GM Ben Cherington consider a trade for a first baseman amid recent struggles by Rowdy Tellez and Connor Joe? And why hasn't Tellez been DFA'd yet?


Jason tackles those questions, plus more on other fronts. Including: When will Penguins GM Kyle Dubas make his first trade of the offseason? Would it be a disappointment if the Steelers start worse than 3-0? And Can West Virginia's Beanie Bishop win the slot cornerback role as an undrafted free agent?

May 23, 2024 Pirates-Giants reaction: Can bullpen be fixed after wasting outings from Jared Jones, Paul Skenes?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin react from PNC Park to the club's series loss against the San Francisco Giants this week. What went wrong for the Pirates? Is their bullpen fixable after imploding and giving up big leads in two straight games? How did rookie sensations Jared Jones and Paul Skenes fare in their outings this week? Is it time for Ben Cherington to make a move and say goodbye to Rowdy Tellez? Was Aroldis Chapman a wasted signing? And how can Jack Suwinski re-find his form after being demoted to Triple-A Indianapolis? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

May 23, 2024 Steelers OTAs: Is the Justin Fields hype train being rushed by desire for a franchise QB?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to react to Steelers OTAs. Is the hype for QB Justin Fields coming from some fans and media a reflection of his actual talent level? Or is it being rushed by a yearning for him to bring stability at the position after years of uncertainty amid the transition away from Ben Roethlisberger? Should the Steelers have sought a clearer long-term option this offseason? Or was adding Fields and Wilson at bargain rates still the right play?

Our duo tackles those questions and also ponders the expiring contracts of Najee Harris and Cam Heyward. Then later, Paul explains why he thinks the Pirates' 1-2-3 rotation combination of Paul Skenes, Jared Jones and Mitch Keller could be enough to get the club to the postseason if names like Oneil Cruz and Bryan Reynolds can find ways to hit just a little better.



May 23, 2024 Penguins offseason: Does Mike Sullivan's Team USA Olympics appointment proves his worth?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey weighs in on Penguins coach Mike Sullivan's appointment to lead Team USA in the upcoming 2026 Olympics. Does the selection prove his value as a coach, even as some fans worry his message has gotten stale? Does his reputation around hockey put pressure on his Penguins players to be the solution to the team's two-year streak of missing the Stanley Cup playoffs? And what should we make of Sheldon Keefe joining the New Jersey Devils after some rumors tied him to the Penguins organization?


Jason tackles those questions, then gets into the Pirates. Specifically the struggles of the bullpen and free agents Rowdy Tellez and Aroldis Chapman. He also offers his thoughts on Pittsburgh serving as host for the 2026 NFL draft and the potential for the league to move to an 18-game schedule.

May 22, 2024 Steelers OTA: Is there an actual QB battle between Russell Wilson, Justin Fields? Or is it all talk?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to recap the first day of OTAs on the South Side. Is there an actual competition between Justin Fields and Russell Wilson for the No. 1 QB job? Or just a lot of talk about it? What kind of pressure is on George Pickens as he becomes the top wideout and how is he handling it? How did new receivers including Quez Watkins, Van Jefferson and Scotty Miller look on Day 1? And did we gain any clarity on how things might be working out at tackle between Dan Moore Jr., Troy Fautanu and Broderick Jones? Why can names like Dean Lowry, Isaiahh Loudermilk and DeMarvin Leal potentially take advantage of Cam Heyward's absence amid his contract dispute? And what other questions does this team need to answer before training camp? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

May 22, 2024 Has Pirates' Oneil Cruz turned a corner with clutch hits? Steelers' George Pickens showing maturity?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' comeback win against the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday night at PNC Park, in which Nick Gonzales and Oneil Cruz played key roles. Is Cruz turning a corner with clutch hits and more frequent displays of his raw power? What can Ji Hwan Bae do now that he's been promoted back to the MLB roster after a sizzling stint with Class Triple-A Indianapolis? Could Henry Davis be returning after his own power surge with the Indians? And what are Jason's reactions to Barry Bonds, Jim Leyland and Manny Sanguillen being selected to the team's Hall of Fame?


Jason answers those questions, then talks a little Steelers OTAs. How is George Pickens showing signs of maturity already? And what should we make of the contrasting ways Najee Harris and Cam Heyward are handling their contract situations?

May 21, 2024 Steelers OTAs: How does Najee Harris feel about contract? How much will Cam Heyward be missed?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Wes Uhler of the Steelers Radio Network and former linebacker Arthur Moats to discuss hot topics around the team as OTAs begin this week. How will Najee Harris react to having the fifth-year option on his rookie declined, and what are his thoughts about his future in Pittsburgh? Will Cam Heyward's absence amid contract negotiations be noticeable? What will quarterback Russell Wilson have to say about the trade with the Chicago Bears for likely backups Justin Fields? And what are the best road venues the Steelers will visit after the NFL's schedule release last week? Our trio tackles those topics and more.

May 21, 2024 Pirates-Cubs reaction: Did controversial call at home echo Jerry Meals? Michael McKenry weighs in

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey welcomes former Pirates catcher and Sportsnet Pittsburgh analyst Michael McKenry to react to the controversial call involving Cody Bellinger and Joey Bart at home plate against the Chicago Cubs on Saturday at Wrigley Field. What did Michael think of the call as a former catcher? And did it remind him of umpire Jerry Meals' missed call at home plate in Atlanta in 2011, one that proved pivotal in the club's season?


Our duo tackles those topics, then takes a wider lens on issue around the team. Is the recent rotation success of Paul Skenes, Jared Jones, Bailey Falter and Mitch Keller built to last? How has Michael been helping Andrew McCutchen lately? And what kind of challenges do recent struggles from Rowdy Tellez pose for manager Derek Shelton in making lineup decisions?

May 21, 2024 Pitt basketball: Can Amsal Delalic, Cam Corhen, other new faces get Panthers to NCAA tournament?

One their weekly Pitt sports mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: Do the additions of players including Amsal Delalic, Cam Corhen and Damian Dunn give basketball coach Jeff Capel and NCAA Tournament-caliber roster? What will the starting lineup look like next season with names including Jaland Lowe and Ishmael Leggett set to return? And what will recent football commit Elijah Dotson bring to coach Pat Narduzzi's team?

May 20, 2024 Steelers OTAs: What will Russell Wilson, Justin Fields dynamic be? Top position battles to watch?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to preview the teams OTAs this week. What will the dynamic between Russell Wilson and Justin Fields be as they compete for the starting QB job? What will Fields have to say about leaving the Chicago Bears in a trade as part of their plan to take Caleb Williams with the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL draft? And how will Wilson's leadership look up close. 


Our duo tackles those topics and also looks at other position battles to watch. Will any of the receivers including Roman Wilson, Van Jefferson, Quez Watkins or Scotty Miller prove they can be a serviceable No. 2? How will the cornerback room look with Donte Jackson arriving via the Diontae Johnson trade and Ryan Watts joining a young group that also includes Cory Trice Jr. and Darius Rush? And how does the absence of Cam Heyward loom over the proceedings? 


Then later, sports columnist Jason Mackey joins to offer his thoughts on the weekend series against the Chicago Cubs in which rotation members Jared Jones, Paul Skenes, Bailey Falter and Mitch Keller all pitched well. 

May 20, 2024 Can Pirates rotation keep dominating with Jared Jones, Paul Skenes, Bailey Falter & Mitch Keller?

On their Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Noah Hiles react to a dominant series victory against the Chicago Cubs this past weekend at Wrigley Field. Can the club's rotation continue its recent domination with names including Jared Jones, Paul Skenes, Bailey Falter and Mitch Keller all pitching well? Is Nick Gonzales beginning to lay claim to the second base job after hitting over .300 on the road trip against the Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers? What should we make of Andrew McCutchen making his first start in right field over the weekend? And how much longer can GM Ben Cherington and manager Derek Shelton continue to give 1B Rowdy Tellez a roster spot? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

May 17, 2024 Pirates' Nick Gonzales, Edward Olivares show more aggression at plate? | Paul Skenes encore?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' 5-4 win against the Cubs on Thursday night in Chicago. Was the aggression we saw at the plate from players including Nick Gonzales and Edward Olivares a reflection of a changing approach to hitting amid a team-wide slump? Or just a coincidence? How did Jared Jones pitch a solid game despite not having his best stuff? And looking ahead to Friday, what will Paul Skenes do in his second MLB start? 


Jason tackles those questions, gives his thoughts on the Steelers' Najee Harris coming to offseason workouts motivated and encourages the Penguins not to trade defenseman Marcus Pettersson this offseason. 

May 17, 2024 Will Steelers' Cam Heyward hold out? What's the latest on his contract? | Najee Harris drops weight?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Christopher Carter to discuss the latest news surrounding defensive captain Cam Heyward. Why is he expected to skip offseason workouts with the team? Will his holdout persist into training camp? Or will he be able to reach a new contract with the team?


Our duo tackles those topics and ponders what it means that running back Najee Harris has dropped some weight ahead of Steelers OTAs and minicamp. Then later, Pirates insider Andrew Destin joins Christopher to look ahead to Paul Skenes' second MLB start Friday against the Cubs at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

May 16, 2024 When will Pirates' Bob Nutting lose patience with GM Ben Cherington, manager Derek Shelton?

On his weekly First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey takes stock of where the Pirates stand after 44 games, on a 70-win pace. How fair would it be for owner Bob Nutting to be losing patience with GM Ben Cherington and manager Derek Shelton, as young hitters including Henry Davis, Jack Suwinski and Nick Gonzales continue to struggle and young pitchers like Quinn Priester and Roansy Contreras are being shipped out via DFA and the minors? And what happened to the "player-centric" development model Cherington promised, as the club seems to be imposing a cookie-cutter approach on hitters offensively?


Jason tackles those questions, then reacts to the Steelers schedule, released Wednesday, that includes four primetime games as well as a Christmas Day matchup with Patrick Mahomes, Taylor Swift, Travis Kelce and the Kansas City Chiefs at Acrisure Stadium.

May 16, 2024 Reacting to Steelers' 2024 NFL schedule: Is Christmas vs. Patrick Mahomes, Chiefs really so bad?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to react to the Steelers' 2024 NFL schedule release. Is the Christmas Day matchup with the Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce, Taylor Swift and the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs on Netflix a good thing or a bad thing? Will playing three of the first four games on the road hinder the offense's ability to gel with new faces Russell Wilson, Troy Fautanu and Zach Frazier among others joining the fold? How will this team hold up against a tough second half of the slate that includes all six division games with the Bengals, Ravens and Browns. Plus dates with Super Bowl contenders including the Chiefs and Eagles? And is the home opener against Jim Harbaugh, Justin Herbert and the Chargers a sneaky tough one?


Our duo tackles those questions and more, then gets into the Pirates. What should we make of the short-lived six man rotation and the decisions to DFA Roansy Contreras and option Quinn Priester back to the minors. Does the coaching staff's failure with those players portend bad things for Jared Jones and Paul Skenes? Was Nick Gonzales' success with Triple-A Indianapolis overhyped? And when will Ben Cherington get some real heat for how this team is performing?

May 15, 2024 Can Steelers' Roman Wilson be their No. 2 WR in Arthur Smith's offense? NFL schedule predictions?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze third-round NFL draft pick Roman Wilson's role in new OC Arthur Smith's offense. How much potential does Wilson have to be a No. 2 behind George Pickens and ahead of names like Van Jefferson, Scotty Miller and Quez Watkins? Can he handle a high volume of targets after not seeing the ball a ton in his college offense at Michigan? Or are the Steelers going to need to trade for a proven No. 2 like Courtland Sutton, Brandon Aiyuk or Deebo Samuel?


Our duo tackles those questions and more. They also ponder what the Steelers can expect in the NFL schedule release Wednesday night. And later, Pirates insider Andrew Destin joins Christopher to break down the team's series against the Brewers in Milwaukee.

May 15, 2024 What is ex-Pirates sideline reporter Robby Incmikoski up to? What are his best Pittsburgh memories?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey checks in with former AT&T SportsNet Pittsburgh Pirates sideline reporter Robby Incmikoski to see what he's been up to since leaving the network last fall. How are things in his new role with Bally Sports Southwest, covering the World Series champion Texas Rangers? And what are some of his favorite memories of working with the Pirates in a tenure that spanned the playoff years with Andrew McCutchen, Gerrit Cole and Neil Walker to more recent struggles under GM Ben Cherington and manager Derek Shelton? Our duo tackles those topics and more. 

May 14, 2024 Steelers offseason: Is a Pat Freiermuth extension worth it? Should they have drafted a CB over OT?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko answers reader questions. Among them: Is a Pat Freiermuth extension really worthwhile for GM Omar Khan considering the tight ends injuries and uninspiring production? Should the team have selected a top NFL draft corner like Quinyon Mitchell, Terrion Arnold, Nate Wiggins or Cooper DeJean instead of the sixth tackle off the board in Troy Fautanu? Could QB Justin Fields be an option at another position like WR or KR if he fails to beat out Russell Wilson for the top QB job? What about undrafted free agent John Rhys Plumlee? And how quickly can Arthur Smith assemble all of his pieces on offense before the unit hits its stride?

May 14, 2024 Time to give Pirates' Oneil Cruz credit? Clock ticking on Rowdy Tellez? Wrong move with Roansy?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the club's 8-6 victory against the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday night. Is it time to give shortstop Oneil Cruz credit for emerging from his early-season slump? How much longer can general manager Ben Cherington let Rowdy Tellez struggle at first base?  And will the Pirates cum to regret designating Roansy Contreras for assignment to make room for Paul Skenes on the MLB roster? 


Jason tackles those questions, then explains why he prefers the Steelers' QB situation with Russell Wilson and Justin Fields to the $212 million contract that the Detroit Lions just gave to Jared Goff.

May 14, 2024 Pitt football: How can new transfer portal commits Chief Borders and Josh McCarty help Pat Narduzzi?

On their weekly Pitt mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: What can Chris and Abby tell us about new Pitt transfer portal commits Chief Borders and Josh McCarty? How is Pat Narduzzi's 2025 recruiting class coming along? What are Blake Hinson's NBA chances after an impressive showing at G League camp? And what is the financial situation like for the Atlantic Coast Conference?

May 13, 2024 Steelers rookie camp recap: Troy Fautanu works out at RT? Beanie Bishop a slot CB option?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo joins host Christopher Carter to react to the team's rookie minicamp over the weekend. Should we read anything into Troy Fautanu working out at RT as opposed to LT? Is undrafted rookie Beanie Bishop an option at slot corner? Who is Anthony Averett, the veteran CB signed after a tryout during rookie camp? And how did new faces including Zach Frazier, Roman Wilson and Payton Wilson look on their first weekend as Steelers?


Our duo tackles those topics and more on the football front. Then Christopher welcomes Pirates insider Noah Hiles to react to Paul Skenes' MLB debut against the Chicago Cubs on Saturday at PNC Park. And another series loss for the team.

May 13, 2024 How much better can Pirates' Paul Skenes be after MLB debut? Can GM Ben Cherington fix this roster?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to Paul Skenes' MLB debut for the Pirates over the weekend. What was the atmosphere at PNC Park like for the win against the Chicago Cubs? What can Skenes improve before his next start against the same team at Wrigley Field this week? And what moves does GM Ben Cherington need to make now to improve a roster that lost yet another series? Could names like Rowdy Tellez be in jeopardy of losing playing time?


Jason offers his thoughts on those questions, then turns his attention to Steelers rookie minicamp, where NFL draft choices including Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier and Roman Wilson got their first chance to impress while wearing the team's uniforms over the weekend.

May 10, 2024 Steelers rookie camp: Will Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier & Roman Wilson impress? Bud Dupree returning?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to preview the team's rookie minicamp. What will the NFL draft class that includes Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier, Roman Wilson, Payton Wilson, Mason McCormick, Ryan Watts and Logan Lee show in their first workouts with the team? Do any of these players have a chance to start Week 1 -- or at least early in their rookie seasons?


Our duo tackles those questions, plus reports that former linebacker Bud Dupree has been in contact with the Steelers about a possible return. Then later, Pirates insider Noah Hiles joins Chris to preview Paul Skenes' MLB debut against the Chicago Cubs on Saturday at PNC Park.

May 10, 2024 What should Pirates fans expect from Paul Skenes in MLB debut? How much can Nick Gonzales help?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey tackles reasonable expectations for former No. 1 overall MLB draft pick Paul Skenes' MLB debut, scheduled for Saturday against the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park. He also explains why GM Ben Cherington and the front office kept word of Skenes' promotion a tightly held secret and what the promotion of Nick Gonzales could mean for the club's struggling offense.


Later, he analyzes the Steelers' signing of veteran WR Scotty Miller, arguing the receivers room needs more talent behind Georgie Pickens as the No. 1.

May 09, 2024 Parenting tips from Charlotte Heyward-Wesley, mom to 2 Steelers

Charlotte Heyward-Wesley, mother of Steelers Cameron and Connor, talks with Post-Gazette Health reporter Abby Mackey about raising a houseful of children — all of whom she instilled with a respect for others and a drive to do good.  


Check out the Post-Gazette's newly launched 412 Kids parenting podcast for more conversations like these: https://newsinteractive.post-gazette.com/412-kids-parenting-podcast/

May 09, 2024 Steelers free agency: Does Arthur Smith's offense require a good No. 2 WR? Does Scotty Miller fit?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to react to the Steelers' NFL free agency signing of WR Scotty Miller, who most recently played under new offensive coordinator Arthur Smith with the Atlanta Falcons. Could Miller be useful? Or is he just the latest in a slew of uninspiring free agent signings that includes Van Jefferson and Quez Watkins? Does Smith's offense really require a strong No. 2 receiver across from George Pickens? Or is the emphasis on the running game with Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren all that really matters? And is there still a chance GM Omar Khan gives quarterbacks Russell Wilson and Justin Fields a bigger-name weapon between now and the start of the season?


Our duo tackles those questions, then gets into some Pirates topics. Can Paul Skenes really help the team's results much as the offense continues to scuffle? How long will GM Ben Cherington allow 1B Rowdy Tellez to scuffle before giving his roster spot to minor league standouts like Nick Gonzales, Jake Lamb and Ji Hwan Bae? And are Oneil Cruz's early struggles more related to his 2023 injury? Or the Pirates clear issue with developing hitters overall?

May 09, 2024 What makes Pirates' Paul Skenes special as MLB debut looms? LSU baseball coach Jay Johnson explains

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey welcomes LSU baseball coach Jay Johnson to talk about Paul Skenes ahead of his MLB debut, scheduled for Saturday against the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park. What makes the former No. 1 overall MLB draft pick special? How did the Tigers' run to a College World Series title last season prepare him for success at the sport's top level? And how does he compare to former Washington Nationals ace Stephen Strasburg, whom Johnson coached against when Strasburg was in college at San Diego State? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

May 08, 2024 Reacting to Pirates promoting Paul Skenes to MLB: What can we expect from former No. 1 pick?

The Pirates are calling up No. 1 prospect Paul Skenes, who will make his major-league debut Saturday against the Cubs. What does this mean for Jared Jones and the Pirates, who lost 5-4 on Wednesday afternoon to drop a winnable series to the visiting Los Angeles Angels at PNC Park? Will Skenes be on a pitch count? Does it even matter if the Pirates can't hit? Our duo discusses those topics and more.



May 08, 2024 Should Steelers stay patient in No. 2 WR search? Or target Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Hunter Renfrow?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Bee Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo discuss the team's options in finding a No. 2 receiver behind George Pickens. Should GM Omar Khan continue to remain patient and see how internal options like Van Jefferson, Quez Watkins and Roman Wilson look during spring workouts? Should he target remaining free agents like Hunter Renfrow, Marquez Valdes-Scantling or Michael Thomas? Or could a trade for a name like Courtland Sutton, Deebo Samuel or Brandon Aiyuk still make the most sense at some point between now and the start of the 2024 NFL season? At what other spots could they look to add? And is Cam Sutton still a possibility at corner?


Our duo tackles those questions and more. Then later, Chris welcomes Post-Gazette Pirates insider Noah Hiles to discuss the team's series against the Los Angeles Angels and the chances we could see former No. 1 overall pick Paul Skenes in MLB this weekend.

May 07, 2024 Pitt basketball: Next move after Adou Thiero picks John Calipari, Arkansas over Jeff Capel?

On their weekly Pitt mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them? What is basketball coach Jeff Capel's next recruiting move now that Kentucky transfer Adou Thiero has picked John Calipari and Arkansas over the Panthers? And why didn't Blake Hinson receive an NBA draft combine invite after his superb season in the ACC?


Then on the football side, are Anthony Johnson and Jacob Bostick potential recruiting targets in the transfer portal? And does Pat Narduzzi need to emphasize Pitt's success in the NFL draft more frequently on the recruiting trail?

May 07, 2024 Will Pirates promote Paul Skenes for his MLB debut soon, despite Derek Shelton' lukewarm comments?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to Pirates manager Derek Shelton's Monday comments on Paul Skenes' pending MLB debut. Why would Shelton say last year's No. 1 overall MLB draft pick is "scheduled to pitch" in the minors this weekend, despite many signs that point toward him being promoted? Why does the club's schedule make a debut soon unfavorable if it's not this weekend? And what's the likely timeline if a promotion is still coming this week?


Jason tackles those questions, reacts to Mitch Keller's complete game win against the Los Angeles Angeles on Monday at PNC Park and gives his thoughts on former first-round pick Cole Tucker's return to Pittsburgh with the Angels.

May 07, 2024 Interview: Does Steelers UDFA John Rhys Plumlee have Taysom Hill-like 'slash' potential?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes undrafted free agent QB John Rhys Plumlee to talk about his signing with the team. How did the deal come together at the conclusion of the NFL draft last month? Why does he see himself as a QB despite some teams wishing to see him work out at WR during the draft process? Could he mimic the New Orleans Saints' Taysom Hill or former QB Kordell Stewart and play a "slash" type roll for the Steelers, switching off between positions? And why does he see himself in presumptive starting quarterback Russell Wilson? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

May 06, 2024 Steelers likely to let Najee Harris go, roll with Jaylen Warren after 2024? Would that be a mistake? May 06, 2024 Will Penguins' firing of Todd Reirden actually change much? Could Pirates promote Paul Skenes soon?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey weighs in on the Penguins' firing of assistant Todd Reirden from coach Mike Sullivan's staff. Can a fresh voice actually get the team's powerplay led by stars including Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang to click? Or is Reirden being scapgoated for that group's resistance to chance?


Jason tackles those questions, recaps his weekend at the Pittsburgh Marathon and ponders what's next for the Pirates after a series victory against the Colorado Rockies over the weekend. Could Paul Skenes be promoted from Class Triple-A Indianapolis this week? Or will fans have to wait longer? And what needs to carry over into the next series against the Los Angeles Angels that begins Monday evening at PNC Park?

May 05, 2024 Pirates-Rockies reaction: Oneil Cruz starting to put it together? Can Henry Davis be fixed?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin react to the club's series victory against the Colorado Rockies this weekend. Is Oneil Cruz showing signs of coming around after smacking a pair of homers in the three-game set? Is Jared Jones becoming a stopper in this rotation? Is Bailey Falter regressing? And what's next for Henry Davis now that he's been demoted to Class Triple-A Indianapolis amid Yasmani Grandal's activation from the injured list? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

May 03, 2024 Pirates livestream: Jason Mackey and Noah Hiles talk Henry Davis, Yasmani Grandal, Oneil Cruz & more

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Noah Hiles and columnist Jason Mackey chat live about hot topics around the team. What does it mean that GM Ben Cherington has demoted Henry Davis in favor of Yasmani Grandal? How should manager Derek Shelton handle the struggling Oneil Cruz? How important is this upcoming homestand against the Colorado Rockies, Los Angeles Angels and Chicago Cubs to this team's hopes? And should we be surprised that names including Nick Gonzales, Ji Hwan Bae and Jake Lamb haven't been called up from the minor leagues.

May 03, 2024 Steelers, Omar Khan right to decline Najee Harris' 5th-year option? Justin Fields a kick returner?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Steelers' decision to decline their fifth-year option on RB Najee Harris' rookie contract. Was it the right move by GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin to wait until the end of the 2024 season to decide how to move forward with their running backs? Was the option just too expensive for a back who's put up ordinary numbers in today's NFL? Will Jaylen Warren simply be a cheaper alternative in 2025?


Jason tackles those questions, plus Warren's suggestion that new QB Justin Fields could return kicks should he stay in the No. 2 role behind Russell Wilson. He then talks Pirates and how the upcoming series against the Colorado Rockies is pivotal if the team is going to get back on track offensively.

May 03, 2024 Steelers NFL draft: Will Troy Fautanu start at LT or RT? Beanie Bishop among UDFAs to watch?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko continue to sort through the aftermath of the NFL draft. Will Troy Fautanu start at right tackle and replace Dan Moore Jr. in the lineup when he's ready, as many fans expect? Or could he win the left tackle spot over Broderick Jones, last year's first-round pick?


Our duo tackles those questions, then explains why UCF's John Rhys Plumlee and West Virginia's Beanie Bishop are among undrafted free agents to watch as rookie minicamp looms for GM Omar Khan, coach Mike Tomlin and Co. And in the final segment, they discuss whether young DBs Darius Rush, Ryan Watts and Corey Trice Jr. will find their respective niches in the Steelers defense this season.

May 02, 2024 How quickly can Steelers rookies Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier mature, make offensive line better?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss Steelers draft picks Troy Fautanu and Zach Frazier. How quickly can they be upgrades on 2023 offensive line starters Dan Moore Jr. and Mason Cole? How long after that will they mature into the stalwart pieces of the line that the Steelers hope they can be? And where does fourth-round pick Mason McCormick fit into this conversation?


Our duo tackles those questions, the latest on WR trade rumors involving names like the Commanders' Terry McLaurin and the possibility of Cam Sutton returning to Pittsburgh. Then they get into the Pirates' recent offensive struggles. Has hitting coach Andy Haines become a scapegoat for GM Ben Cherington's systemic development failures? Does Cherington deserve to keep his job through the entire season if names including Henry Davis, Oneil Cruz and Jack Suwinski continue to sputter? And why does Paul think it's time to bring up names like Nick Gonzales, Ji Hwan Bae, Jake Lamb and Paul Skenes from the minors, then cut underperformers like Rowdy Tellez loose?

May 01, 2024 Steelers trade rumors: Courtland Sutton a cheaper WR option than Brandon Aiyuk? Is a deal imminent?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to tackle swirling trade rumors at the WR position. Could GM Omar Khan swing a trade for a No. 2 option across from George Pickens soon, as pundits including Bryant McFadden have suggested? Or might the process take longer to play out? Is Denver's Courtland Sutton a potentially cheaper option than Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel, San Francisco 49ers standouts the Steelers have been connected to for weeks? And how do names including third-round pick Roman Wilson, former fourth-rounder Calvin Austin and free agent pickups Van Jefferson and Quez Watkins figure into the receiver conversation?


Our duo tackles those topics, then ponders whether Najee Harris could get a contract extension or see his fifth-year option exercised this week. Then Pirates insider Andrew Destin stops by to analyze Paul Skenes' latest strong start in the minors and his potential to join the club's rotation sooner or later amid profound struggles for the offense. 

May 01, 2024 Is Pirates' young core of Jack Suwinski, Oneil Cruz, etc. going backwards in its development?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' latest punchless loss, a 5-2 defeat Tuesday against the Oakland Athletics. Is the club's strategy overseen by manager Derek Shelton and GM Ben Cherington of trying to see a lot of pitches flawed? Have key young players including Jack Suwinski and Oneil Cruz gotten worse compared to where they were one and two years ago? What is this club's offensive identity? Jason tackles those questions, reacts to Paul Skenes' latest strong start in the minors and highlights the importance of development successes like Drew O'Connor to the Penguins' future.

May 01, 2024 Penn State NFL draft recap: Solid landing spots for Olu Fashanu, Chop Robinson, Adisa Isaac & more?

On his weekly Penn State football podcast, Post-Gazette Penn State insider Seth Engle welcomes former Nittany Lions linebacker Jason Cabinda to recap the NFL draft for this year's crop of prospects in Happy Valley. Will Olu Fashanu thrive protecting Aaron Rodgers with the New York Jets? What kind of impact can Chop Robinson make for the Miami Dolphins? Was Caedan Wallace's third-round selection by the New England Patriots a mild surprise? And was Adisa Isaac drafted a bit lower than expectations?


Our duo tackles those topics and ponders the landing spots of other Penn State NFL hopefuls including Hunter Nourzad, Daequan Hardy, Kalen King and Theo Johnson. Then Jason explains his own undrafted free agent grind, recalls the fun of the 2016 Big Ten championship run and outlines his plans for the year ahead as he looks for his next NFL home.

April 30, 2024 Steelers NFL draft class: Analytics world sees Troy Fautanu, Payton Wilson as potential steals?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Tej Seth of SumerSports.com to get an analytics-based review of the Steelers' 2024 NFL draft class. Why do numbers gurus see first-round pick Troy Fautanu and third-rounder Payton Wilson as potential steals? Why is third-rounder Roman Wilson's potential range of outcomes a bit more murky? Why are second-round pick Zach Frazier and fourth-rounder Mason McCormick getting solid reviews as well? And how does the analytics community regard Steelers GM Omar Khan's moves, generally speaking? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 30, 2024 Do Pirates' offensive failures run deeper than Andy Haines? Time for Nick Gonzales, Ji Hawn Bae?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Jason Mackey reacts to the Pirates' latest loss to the Oakland Athletics, in which their offense struggled mightily once again. Is it fair to just blame hitting coach Andy Haines for the struggles of young players including Oneil Cruz and Jack Suwinski? Or do the team's problems run deeper? What can or should manager Derek Shelton change? And is it time minor-league options like Nick Gonzales and Ji Hwan Bae get opportunities in this lineup?


Jason tackles those topics, then talks about the changes the Penguins and Steelers need to make in their respective offseasons.

April 30, 2024 Pitt football: How can Jaremiah Anglin Jr. help Pat Narduzzi amid transfers?

On their weekly Pitt football mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: How will Kentucky transfer Jaremiah Anglin Jr. help coach Pat Narduzzi's defense amid transfers by prominent names including Dayon Hayes and Solomon DeShields? What other plays is Pitt targeting in the transfer portal? Will Marquis Williams get a chance in the NFL after not receiving a free agent offer in the immediate aftermath of the NFL draft? What is Jeff Capel's ideal next addition on the basketball side? And which player will be the next to step up in a headline grabbing way for the women's volleyball team?

April 29, 2024 Steelers NFL draft recap: Mike Tomlin's influence apparent on popular class?

On his daily Frist 10 podcast, Post-Gazette columnist Jason Mackey weighs in on the Steelers' draft class. How can coach Mike Tomlin's influence be seen in GM Omar Khan's choices? And what are the biggest questions facing top picks Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier, Roman Wilson and Payton Wilson?


Jason tackles those topics, then talks Pirates. Can this offense be fixed? Or will it keep wasting strong starts by the likes of Martin Perez, Jared Jones and even Quinn Priester over the weekend? And how much are bullpen struggles by names including David Bednar and Aroldis Chapman hurting this team's chances of making a run at a playoff spot?

April 29, 2024 Steelers NFL draft grades: Will Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier make instant impacts? Cam Sutton reunion?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo react to the Steelers' NFL draft haul. Are first-round pick Troy Fautanu and second-round Zach Frazier likely to slide right into starting roles along the offensive line? What grades do GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin deserve for the class that also includes WR Roman Wilson, LB Payton Wilson, G Mason McCormick, DT Logan Lee and DB Ryan Watts? And is a reunion with Cam Sutton possible amid reports that he's met with the team since his release by the Detroit Lions? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 29, 2024 Will Pirates' offensive woes sink them? | Encouraging signs from Rowdy Tellez, Quinn Priester?

On their Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin recap the weekend series against the San Francisco Giants and look ahead to the upcoming set against the Oakland Athletics. Can manager Derek Shelton's offense turn around its profound struggles that resulted in just three runs in regulation in three games? How much pressure is on Ke'Bryan Hayes, Bryan Reynolds and Oneil Cruz to be part of the solution? Is a demotion for former first-overall pick Henry Davis inevitable now? Is Rowdy Tellez breaking out of his season-long individual slump? How surprising was Quinn Priester's efficient start Friday night? And is there still reason for concern about closer David Bednar? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

April 27, 2024 Steelers NFL draft Day 3 recap: Can Mason McCormick, Logan Lee & Ryan Watts become useful pieces?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to react to the team's picks on Day 3 of the NFL draft. Could fourth-round pick Mason McCormick eventually start at guard if GM Omar Khan decides to move on from James Daniels and Isaac Seumalo in the next couple of years? Does sixth-rounder Logan Lee have the physical tools to become a rotation player on the defensive line alongside Cam Heyward and Keeanu Benton? And where does fellow sixth-rounder Ryan Watts fit into the secondary moving forward?


Our duo tackles those questions, and Brian adds thoughts on Day 2 picks Roman Wilson and Payton Wilson, who followed popular choices of Troy Fautanu and Zach Frazier at the top of the draft.

April 27, 2024 Steelers NFL draft Day 2 recap: Zach Frazier, Roman Wilson and Payton Wilson a best-case haul?

Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to recap the Steelers' picks on Day 2 of the NFL draft after they took Washington OT Troy Fautanu on Day 1. What kind of impact can second-round pick Zach Frazier make from Day 1 at the center position? Is third-rounder Roman Wilson ready to be the No. 2 opposite of George Pickens in new coordinator Arthur Smith's offense? What can fellow third-round pick Payton Wilson add to coach Mike Tomlin's linebacker corps alongside Patrick Queen, Elandon Roberts and possibly a healthy Cole Holcomb? And how much credit does GM Omar Khan deserve for waiting for these players to fall instead of trading up to get them? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

April 26, 2024 Steelers NFL draft reaction: Is Troy Fautanu a Day 1 starter at RT? Watch Roman Wilson on Day 2?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo joins assistant sports editor Adam Bittner to react to the Steelers' selection of Washington OT Troy Fautanu on Day 1 of the NFL draft. Will he start from Day 1 at right tackle? Or will he need time to develop like Broderick Jones did a year ago? How soon will Fautanu's selection allow Jones to work from the left side? And where does Dan Moore Jr. fit in this mix? Was Fautanu the tackle GM Omar Khan and Mike Tomlin had their eye on from the start? Or were names like JC Latham, Taliese Fuaga and Amarius Mims higher on their big board?


Our duo tackles those questions, then gets into the team's Day 2 needs. Could the Steelers trade up in the second round for a center prospect like Jackson Powers-Johnson or Zach Frazier? Does the run on projected Day 2 receivers like Ricky Pearsall and Xavier Legette add pressure to select guys like Roman Wilson and Malachi Corley while they're available? And are there any other Day 2 names Ray is watching?

April 26, 2024 NFL draft: Did Steelers nail it with Troy Fautanu? Time to get Jackson Powers-Johnson, Zach Frazier?

In his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to the Steelers' selection of Washington OT Troy Fautanu in the first round of the NFL draft Thursday night in Detroit. Was tackle the right position to target, given all of the team's other needs -- particularly at center? How big of an asset will it be to have to first-round tackles in Fautanu and 2023 top pick Broderick Jones? And how important is it for GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin to grab a center like Jackson Powers-Johnson or Zach Frazier in the second round Friday?


Jason tackles all of those questions and more, then gets into the Pirates. Specifically, he ponders free agent additions Aroldis Chapman and Rowdy Tellez and the reasons why they're off to such slow starts with their new team.

April 25, 2024 Pirates frustrations: Can free-agent signings Aroldis Chapman, Rowdy Tellez turn it around?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Andrew Destin and Noah Hiles react to the club's 7-5 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday afternoon, which gave the Pirates a 2-2 split over the four-game series. What is wrong with Aroldis Chapman? Can he find his footing again and become the dominant reliever we saw at the beginning of the year? What does Rowdy Tellez need to do to break out of this slump? Has Oneil Cruz started to gain some momentum? And was Mitch Keller's lack of command a cause for concern? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

April 25, 2024 NFL draft: Steelers might want an OT, but NEED a C like Graham Barton, Jackson Powers-Johnson?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey gives his thoughts on the Steelers' wants vs. needs in the NFL draft. Is the hole at center one that simply must be filled by a player like Jackson Powers-Johnson or Graham Barton? Or could this draft class still be a successful one of a less glaring need like tackle is addressed with names like JC Latham, Amarius Mims, Taliese Fuaga or Troy Fautanu?


Jason tackles those questions, then pivots to Pirates. Is Paul Skenes' MLB debut creeping forward a bit, possibly to as soon as next weekend? Are changes coming with young players who aren't performing, including Jack Suwinski and Henry Davis? And could we see the return of Nick Gonzales sooner than later, now that he's tearing up Class Triple-A pitching with the Indianapolis Indians?

April 24, 2024 Steelers NFL mock drafts: OTs Taliese Fuaga, Amarius Mims are final picks for NSD crew?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko issue their final NFL mock draft picks ahead of the first round Thursday night in Detroit. Why does Chris think Oregon State OT Taliese Fuaga will still be available when the Steelers pick at No. 20? Might Amarius Mims be the one of the only impact OTs left at that spot, as Brian projects? Why did both of the guys pass on trendy Steelers mock picks like Graham Barton, Jackson Powers-Johnson, and Cooper DeJean? And how do they see the rest of the draft shaking out, from quarterbacks including Caleb Williams, Jayden Daniels and Drake Maye to receivers including Marvin Harrison Jr., Malik Nabers and Rome Oduze? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

April 24, 2024 Penn State NFL draft preview: Can Olu Fashanu prove late critics wrong? Chop Robinson rising?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle preview the NFL draft for Nittany Lions prospects. Can Olu Fashanu shake of some late whispers from critics about his readiness to earn a top 10 selection? Has Chop Robinson done enough at the NFL combine and Nittany Lions pro day to assuage concerns about his production in college? Is Adisa Isaac underrated? What do the later rounds hold for names like Theo Johnson, Hunter Nourzad, Caedan Wallace, Curtis Jacobs and Daequan Hardy? And did Kalen King and Johnny Dixon make mistakes by skipping the Peach Bowl and leaving college early? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

April 23, 2024 Why do Steelers' NFL draft strategies work? Will top OTs like Olu Fashanu, Amarius Mims all be gone?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Andy Phillips, author of "Round Zero: Inside the NFL Draft," to preview this year's event. Why do the Steelers' strategies of finding receivers in middle rounds, Hall of Fame centers and consistently great EDGE rushers stand the test of time? How is the draft process changing, and how do the Steelers, coach Mike Tomlin and GM Omar Khan fit into that? And how many of the Steelers' top potential targets will be available at No. 20? Will the likes of Tailese Fuaga, JC Latham, Troy Fautanu and Olu Fashanu all be gone? Will that level them with Georgia OT Amarius Mims? Or could they be forced to draft a center like Jackson Powers-Johnson or Graham Barton? And should Steelers fans root for QB names like Michael Penix Jr., J.J. McCarthy and Bo Nix to go early to avoid that fate? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

April 23, 2024 Pitt football: Will Pat Narduzzi replace Dayon Hayes, Solomon DeShields via transfer portal?

On their weekly Pitt football mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: Will coach Pat Narduzzi replace the departed Dayon Hayes and Solomon DeShields via the transfer portal? How can the Panthers hold off programs capable of offering their players better NIL offers? And on the basketball front, how much can transfer additions Cam Corhen and Damian Dunn help Jeff Capel's squad?

April 23, 2024 What's made Pirates' No. 1 MLB draft pick Paul Skenes so dominant in minors?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey welcomes Indianapolis Indians communications director Cheyne Reiter to analyze the dominant start that Pirates No. 1 overall MLB draft pick Paul Skenes is off to in the minor leagues. What's made him so effective in his early starts? And how is he interacting with fans and teammates in the Indians clubhouse? Our duo tackles those topics and more as Pirates fans await his pending MLB debut.

April 22, 2024 NFL draft: Will Steelers trade 20th pick? Or stay put? Top questions for Omar Khan, Mike Tomlin?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss the Steelers' trade options in the NFL draft. Could they trade up for names like Washington OT Troy Fautanu or Oregon State OT Tailese Fuaga? Or trade back from No. 20 overall in the first round, depending upon which of their targets they feel will still be available? Could they move their top pick for a player like San Francisco 49ers receivers Brandon Aiyuk or Deebo Samuel? Or Minnesota Vikings receiver Justin Jefferson? What are the top questions facing GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin heading into the draft? And what surprises could they have in store on Day 2? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 22, 2024 Pirates spiraling: Is offense fixable? Could Henry Davis lose roster spot to Yasmani Grandal?

In his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey breaks down an ugly weekend for the Pirates against the Boston Red Sox and their current six-game losing streak. What issues are fixable offensively? And which are more lasting red flags? How can SS Oneil Cruz get back on track? What about OF Jack Suwinski? And is C Henry Davis in danger of being option to the minor leagues when Yasmani Grandal is activated from the injured list?


Jason tackles those questions, then talks a little Penguins. What did he make of GM Kyle Dubas' season-ending comments Friday? Why don't Dubas and coach Mike Sullivan appear predisposed to make any major changes despite missing the Stanley Cup Playoffs? And why do Sullivan and Dubas seem to be on different pages regarding goalies Tristan Jarry and Alex Nedeljkovic?

April 21, 2024 Red Sox sweep Pirates: What's wrong with Oneil Cruz? | Rowdy Tellez a bust so far?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Andrew Destin and Noah Hiles react to the club's 6-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox on Sunday that culminated a three-game sweep for the visitors. What's wrong with shortstop Oneil Cruz, whose OPS has slipped below the .600 mark? What's the reason for the club's general lack of power at the plate? What's caused 1B Rowdy Tellez to get off to such a slow start after he was signed in MLB free agency? Can anyone other than Bryan Reynolds and Connor Joe get momentum at the plate? And is Quinn Priester's ugly start Friday a cause for concern? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

April 20, 2024 Steelers mock drafts: National pundits too focused on guard as a need, Graham Barton as solution?

The Post-Gazette's Adam Bittner, Christopher Carter and Brian Batko react to the week in Steelers mock drafts, specifically numerous projections that GM Omar Khan will select Duke's Graham Barton as his first-round pick because of his versatility to play guard and center. Why are national pundits so focused on guard as a need while James Daniels and Isaac Seumalo are both under contract? What are the chances Barton would play any other position than center here? And hat are the chances we could see the Steelers chase a guard like TCU's Brandon Coleman in the later rounds?


Our duo tackles those questions, then dives into mock draft selections at other positions. Why is so much consensus building around Michigan WR Roman Wilson as a potential Day 2 fit? Is there any chance Penn State OT Olu Fashanu could fall to the Steelers at No. 20? Why are we seeing numerous mock picks for EDGE players like Washington's Bralen Trice even as the Steelers have T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith and Nick Herbig in the fold? And are the guys interested in secondary options like Auburn's D.J. James, Wake Forest's Caelen Carson, Louisville's Jarvis Brownlee Jr. and Utah's Cole Bishop?

April 19, 2024 NFL draft: Is Amarius Mims on top of the Steelers' board?

On a special Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, Christopher Carter and Steelers insider Brian Batko record live from Mike's Beer Bar to preview the upcoming NFL draft. Who is the best player among those to visit Pittsburgh during the pre-draft period? And what is the worst-case scenario for the Steelers? 

Be sure to join us LIVE during Rounds 1 and 2 of the NFL draft on April 25 and 26th, as the Post-Gazette's team of experts give you the ultimate second-screen experience. 


April 19, 2024 When will Pirates call up Paul Skenes? What about Nick Gonzales? Liover Peguero? Ji Hwan Bae?

In his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey answers reader questions. Among them: When will the Pirates call up Paul Skenes to see his first Major League action? And when will former call-ups including Nick Gonzales, Liover Peguero and Ji Hawn Bae get their next chances now that they're hitting well in the minors?


He also gets into season-ending Penguins questions. Which players from the current lineup should be sent packing after the team missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs this week? Is there any chance that GM Kyle Dubas moves on from core players including Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Erik Karlsson?


And on the Steelers front, who's the most likely first round pick heading into next week's NFL draft? Is it Oregon's Jackson Powers-Johnson? And what are the odds GM Omar Khan finishes a deal for reported trade target Brandon Aiyuk of the San Francisco 49ers?

April 18, 2024 Are the Pirates being too cautious with Jared Jones? | Previewing Red Sox series

On this week's Pirates podcast, insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin break down the good and the bad from the Mets series and look ahead to the Red Sox. Plus, are they playing it too safe with Jared Jones' innings limit?

April 18, 2024 Steelers win totals: Russell Wilson, others not moving needle? How much could solid NFL draft help?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the Steelers' low win total projections -- right around 8.5 at most major sports books. Is the betting world underrating GM Omar Khan's highly praised moves for players like Russell Wilson, Justin Fields and Patrick Queen? How much could a trade for a solid, veteran No. 2 receiver like Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel or Justin Jefferson boost the total? What about a solid NFL draft class that mimics last year's success stories with Broderick Jones, Joey Porter Jr. and Keeanu Benton? 


Our duo tackles those questions, then talks some Penguins and Pirates. Is it time to worry about young core pieces like Oneil Cruz, Jack Suwinski, Jared Triolo and Henry Davis, with all of them hitting .234 or worse? And is it time for Penguins GM Kyle Dubas to blow up the team's core of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang after missing the playoffs? 

April 18, 2024 Steelers NFL draft: Jackson Powers-Johnson a chance to correct mistakes with Creed Humphrey, others?

On his daily First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey weighs in on hot topics in Pittsburgh sports.


Is it time for Penguins GM Kyle Dubas to make a bold move and trade G Tristan Jarry after Alex Nedeljkovic dominated the team's net down the stretch of the season, which ended Wednesday without a Stanley Cup Playoffs berth?


On the Steelers and NFL draft front, should Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson be viewed as a chance for GM Omar Khan to correct the mistakes of missing on past center prospects like the Kansas City Chiefs' Creed Humphrey and the Baltimore Ravens' Tyler Linderbaum?


And what must change for the Pirates against the Boston Red Sox this weekend after dropping a road series to the New York Mets? Can names like Oneil Cruz and Henry Davis get back on track? Jason tackles those questions and more.

April 17, 2024 How have Steelers' T.J. Watt, Cam Heyward carried leadership tradition ahead? Ryan Shazier weighs in

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes former Steelers Pro Bowl linebacker Ryan Shazier to discuss the team's tradition of defensive leadership. How was it passed down to him from Super Bowl champions like coach Mike Tomlin, and cornerbacks William Gay and Will Allen? How have stars like T.J. Watt and Cam Heyward carried the tradition forward in recent years? And how does a young standout like Joey Porter Jr. fit into it having grown up around the team? Our duo tackles those topics.


Then later, Christopher welcomes Noah Hiles to discuss the state of Pitt football amid names including Dayon Hayes, Christian Veilleux and Solomon DeShields entering the transfer portal. And Matt Vensel stops by to analyze what comes next for the Penguins after they were eliminated from Stanley Cup Playoffs contention on Tuesday night.

April 17, 2024 Penguins eliminated: Is Mike Sullivan safe? Could Erik Karlsson, Tristan Jarry be dealt?

On Jason Mackey's First 10 podcast, the Post-Gazette sports columnist reacts to the Penguins being eliminated from Stanley Cup playoffs contention and ponders what comes next for the club. Is coach Mike Sullivan safe despite not winning a playoff series with the core of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang in six years? Could defenseman Erik Karlsson be moved by GM Kyle Dubas over the offseason? What about goalie Tristan Jarry after he was benched in favor of Alex Nedeljkovic over the final weeks of the regular season?


Jason tackles those questions and more, including: Was Pirates manager Derek Shelton correct to pull starter Jared Jones after five innings in a loss to the New York Mets on Tuesday? What's happened to the club's offense? And how has South Fayette prospect Justin Watson found himself in so many Super Bowls lately?

April 17, 2024 Is Penn State football's WR room good enough without KeAndre Lambert-Smith? Plus Blue-White reaction

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle react to Saturday's Blue-White game at Beaver Stadium, and news that WR KeAndre Lambert-Smith is entering the transfer portal. What went wrong in that relationship? Is Tre Wallace ready to be a dependable option in his place? Will coach James Franklin need to dip into the transfer portal again for talent? Or does he have enough with names like Ohio State transfer Julian Fleming, Omari Evans, Liam Clifford and Kaden Saunders in the fold?


Our duo tackles those topics and questions across the roster. How did quarterbacks Drew Allar, Beau Pribula and Ethan Grunkemeyer look in their first game action under new OC Andy Kotelnicki? Is there room in the backfield behind Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen for Blue-White standouts including Cam Wallace and Quinton Martin Jr.? Is A.J. Harris ready to make an impact in the secondary after transferring from Georgia? And what does the commitment of 4-star Alabama running back Alvin Henderson mean for Penn State recruiting in SEC territory?

April 16, 2024 Penguins playoff push: What lessons should GM Kyle Dubas learn from season-ending hot streak?

Post-Gazette Penguins insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin give their thoughts on how the team's late-season hot streak and push for an improbably Stanley Cup playoffs berth should inform GM Kyle Dubas' decisions in the offseason. Should Alex Nedeljokovic be brought back as the starting goalie? Does that open the door for a trade of Tristan Jarry? Has Sidney Crosby proven he can still be the foundation of a Cup-contending team with his dominance down the stretch? Have players including Drew O'Connor and Jack St. Ivany established themselves as building blocks for the future? And what are the chances the Penguins get the help they need with Detroit Red Wings and Washington Capitals losses on Tuesday night? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 16, 2024 Steelers NFL draft scouting: Is WR Keon Coleman an underrated fit? Cooper DeJean still intriguing?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Emory Hunt of Football Gameplan and CBS Sports to analyze best fits for the Steelers in the NFL draft. Why does Emory like Florida State's Keon Coleman as an off-the-radar choice at WR? How would Florida's Ricky Pearsall pair as the No. 2 to George Pickens? Could Iowa CB Cooper DeJean still make sense despite the needs along the offensive line? And where does Washington's Troy Fautanu belong in the tackle conversation for GM Omar Khan after he became one of the latest to visit the Steelers this week? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 16, 2024 What does Penguins, Mike Sullivan choosing Alex Nedeljkovic over Tristan Jarry mean for the future?

On his First 10 podcast, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey weighs in on the Penguins' goalie situation after a 4-2 win against the Nashville Predators on Monday night. Specifically, what does Mike Sullivan's choice of Alex Nedeljkovic over Tristan Jarry mean for the future? Does the team view Nedeljkovic simply as a hot hand to help its Stanley Cup playoff push? Or has he made Jarry and his lucrative contract expendable come the offseason?


Then later, Jason gets into some Pirates and Pitt topics. Is it too soon to worry about SS Oneil Cruz and his slow start to the season at the plate? And what does it mean for the Panthers that Dayon Hayes has entered the transfer portal?

April 16, 2024 Pitt basketball: What does Cam Corhen offer Pitt? Damian Dunn next portal addition?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: Can Florida State transfer Cam Corhen be a legit start for coach Jeff Capel's squad at center? Will Houston transfer Damian Dunn be the next addition via the portal? Which other prospects could follow?


And on the football side, how innovative did new coordinator Kade Bell's offense look in the Blue-Gold game Saturday at Acrisure Stadium? Did it live up to the hype or disappoint?

April 15, 2024 Steelers NFL draft visits: Will Terrion Arnold, Kool-Aid McKinstry, Graham Barton make appearances?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes a trio of Post-Gazette insiders to talk all things Steelers, Penguins and Pirates. 


Steelers beat writer Ray Fittipaldo is first to stop by to analyze the final week of NFL draft visits by top prospects. Could Alabama's Terrion Arnold and Kool-Aid McKinstry plus Duke's Graham Barton be among those who stop in Pittsburgh this week? Do names including Clemson's Nate Wiggins and Georgia's Amarius Mims have an edge after meeting with the Steelers at their facility, the NFL combine and their respective pro days? And how could Michigan's J.J. McCarthy and Washington's Michael Penix Jr. be relevant to GM Omar Khan's draft plans, even if he has no plans to select them? 


Later, Noah Hiles stops by with insight on a busy weekend for the Pirates, which included strong pitching from names like Jared Jones, Mitch Keller and Bailey Falter, plus the 300th home run of Andrew McCutchen's storied career. And Matt Vensel previews a do-or-die game for the Penguins on Monday night against the Nashville Predators. 

April 15, 2024 Is Pirates' Jack Suwinski back on track after HR vs. Phillies? Jared Jones, rotation show potential?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Andrew Destin and Noah Hiles react to the club's weekend series against the Philadelphia Phillies and look ahead to this week's series against the New York Mets. Was Jack Suwinski's home run off Zack Wheeler on Sunday a sign that he's breaking out of his season-opening funk? Is closer David Bednar figuring things out after blowing a handful of save opportunities to open 2024? Is the rotation showing its potential after strong starts by Bailey Falter, Mitch Keller and Jared Jones over the weekend? And how will the pitching staff deal with the loss of Marco Gonzales to an injury? Should GM Ben Cherington promote a prospect like Quinn Priester or Paul Skenes? Or are bullpen games the best option? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 15, 2024 Penguins too flawed to win, even if they make Stanley Cup playoffs? | Pitt Blue-Gold reactions?

On his First 10 podcast for Monday, April 15, Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey reacts to a busy weekend in Pittsburgh sports. Did the Penguins' Saturday night loss to the Boston Bruins prove they are fatally flawed, even if Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Co. find a way to slip into the Stanley Cup playoff field? And should coach Mike Sullivan go with Tristan Jarry or Alex Nedeljkovic in net for Monday's pivotal contest against the Nashville Predators?


On the Pirates front, what's the significance of Andrew McCutchen's 300th career home run on Sunday against the Philadelphia Phillies? And could Marco Gonzales' injury mean we'll see Quinn Priester or Paul Skenes in the rotation next?


Then Jason closes the episode with thoughts on Pitt's Blue-Gold spring game. How did new OC Kade Bell's offense look in his Acrisure Stadium debut? And how does he feel about coach Pat Narduzzi naming Nate Yarnell the starting QB over Alabama transfer Eli Holstein?

April 13, 2024 Steelers NFL mock drafts: Graham Barton soars in popularity? Blake Fisher a serious Day 2 OT option?

On their weekly Steelers NFL mock draft tracker video, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette insider Ray Fittipaldo react to the week in projected selections for the team from around the Internet. Why is Duke's Graham Barton becoming a very trendy pick, notably for ESPN analyst Mel Kiper Jr.? Is he really in the conversation of best center available with Oregon's Jackson Powers-Johnson? Is Notre Dame's Blake Fisher a Day 2 tackle option who could both represent an upgrade over Dan Moore Jr. and give GM Omar Khan more flexibility with his first-round pick? And how plug-and-play ready is Georgia's Sedrick Van Pran-Granger?


Our duo tackles those question along the offensive line, then gets into some other positions. Are the Steelers better off attempting to draft a No. 2 receiver? Or trading for a veteran like Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel or Justin Jefferson? Is Washington's Jalen McMillarn -- Kiper's pick for the Steelers in the second round -- a good option at No. 51? What about Georgia's Ladd McConkey? Could there be a fit with the Steelers for Pitt's M.J. Devonshire? And is Florida State Jordan Travis a solid options as a development QB behind Russell Wilson and Justin Fields?

April 12, 2024 NFL draft: What are Steelers' best-case 1st-round scenarios? | Give Najee Harris an extension?

On the Friday, April 12 episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to break down ideal first-round scenarios for the team in the NFL draft. How do things need to fall for GM Omar Khan to get his choice of ideal fits including Oregon State's Tailese Fuaga, Alabama's JC Latham, Iowa's Cooper DeJean, Georgia's Amarius Mims, Alabama's Terrion Arnold and Oregon's Jackson Powers-Johnson? And if all of those names are available, could Khan opt to trade back and add Day 2 draft capital to his arsenal? 


Our duo tackles those questions and more. Including: Should Najee Harris get an extension with a decision on his fifth-year option looming? And why does Brian Have Adonai Mitchell of Texas, Ladd McConkey of Georgia, Roman Wilson of Michigan and Ricky Pearsall of Florida at the top of his list of realistic receiver options for the Steelers?

April 12, 2024 NHL playoff race: Sidney Crosby is outdoing himself during Penguins' miracle run

In this episode of Jason Mackey's First 10, we take a look at the legendary performance from Penguins star Sidney Crosby as he's willed his team back into playoff contention. Plus, how the Pirates must improve and Derek Shelton's surprising comments about David Bednar.


April 11, 2024 Steelers free agency: Was GM Omar Khan aggressive enough? Or did he leave too many NFL draft needs?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze the Steelers' moves in NFL free agency. Was GM Omar Khan's early flurry of moves to acquire Russell Wilson, Justin Fields, Patrick Queen and Donte Jackson via the Diontae Johnson trade enough heading into the NFL draft? Or should he have done more to address needs at tackle, center, receiver and cornerback to give the draft plan more flexibility? Did he box himself into needing to pick a right tackle like Amarius Mims, Tailese Fuaga or JC Latham in the first round? Or is he quietly more confident than the public about internal options like Dan Moore Jr., Darius Rush, Cory Trice and Nate Herbig?


Our duo tackles those questions and more, including: How should manager Derek Shelton handle his closer situation with David Bednar struggling and Aroldis Chapman throwing well? How important is it for the club to get Jack Suwinski on track? What should we make of Andrew McCutchen's early struggles? And do we really need to see this Penguins team in the playoffs after a full season of depth players failing to meaningfully help stars including Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin?

April 11, 2024 Penguins playoff push: How have Evgeni Malkin and Michael Bunting contributed to the recent surge?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin break down the hottest topics around the team. Among them: How has Evgeni Malkin found another gear during the team's recent playoff push? How has Michael Bunting and his aggressive style given the Penguins a much needed jolt of energy? What does it mean for the Penguins to get contributions from players not named Sidney Crosby? And is Alex Nedeljkovic here to stay in the Penguins' net? Our duo discusses those topics and more.

April 11, 2024 Penn State football Blue-White preview: What to expect from Drew Allar, Julian Fleming & more?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle preview the Blue-White spring game Saturday at Beaver Stadium. They tackle questions including:


-How will Drew Allar look in his first on-field action under new offensive coordinator Andy Kotelnicki?


-Is there pressure on No. 2 QB Beau Pribula with true freshman Ethan Grunkemeyer generating buzz?


-What can we expect from Julian Fleming in his Nittany Lions debut? And will returning wideouts including KeAndre Lambert-Smith, Harrison Wallace, Omari Evans, Malik McClain, Liam Clifford and Kaden Saunders show improvement?


-How will Abdul Carter look in his switch from linebacker to defensive end?


-How is the corner group shaping up now that corners A.J. Harris and Jalen Kimber have been added to the mix since the Peach Bowl?


-What's the state of the offensive line with numerous competitions unfolding there?


-And what should we make of data science projections that have Penn State at No. 2 in the Big Ten heading into 2024, just behind new conference member Oregon, led by Dillon Gabriel?

April 10, 2024 Did Pirates' David Bednar deserve the boos? When should Penguins turn to Tristan Jarry in net?

Post-Gazette sports columnist Jason Mackey weighs in on the hottest topics in Pittsburgh sports. Did Pirates closer David Bednar deserve to be booed at PNC Park after blowing his third save in four chances to open 2024 in a 5-3 loss to the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday? Why does starter Martin Perez remind Jason of former Pirates Francisco Cervelli and Francisco Liriano? Does Edward Olivares deserve playing time over Jack Suwinski? Should Aroldis Chapman get a look at closer if Bednar continues to struggle?


And on the hockey front, when should Penguins coach Mike Sullivan look to get Tristan Jarry a start over Alex Nedeljkovic? Has Michael Bunting been the linemate Evgeni Malkin has needed? And what are this team's chances of slipping into the Stanley Cup Playoffs with four regular season games to go. Jason tackles those topics and more.

April 10, 2024 Is Steelers' Russell Wilson 'washed," or just 'meh'? Does Arthur Smith's offense fit in modern NFL?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Aaron Schatz, FTN Fantasy's chief analytics officer, to break down the Steelers' advanced metrics. What do they say about whether Russell Wilson and/or Justin Fields can be upgrades at QB over what the team had with Kenny Pickett, Mason Rudolph and Mitch Trubisky? Is Wilson washed up at 35? Or just more ordinary than earlier in his career? And is the run-based offense he'll be running under new coordinator Arthur Smith a proper fit with the pass-heaviness of the modern NFL?


Our duo tackles those topics, then breaks down whether the defense's additions of LB Patrick Queen, S DeShon Elliott and CB Donte Jackson in NFL free agency and trades will be enough to keep the unit ranked in the top 10 this coming season.

April 09, 2024 Can Steelers' Dan Moore hold off NFL draft prospects at OT? Lessons learned from Kendrick Green?

Warning: This episode includes strong language at times.


On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes OL Masterminds' Duke Manyweather to get his insight on Pittsburgh offensive linemen he's worked with -- past and present -- and NFL draft prospects GM Omar Khan may be looking to select at the end of this month. Does Dan Moore Jr. have any chance of holding onto a starting tackle job this offseason? Why didn't Kendrick Green and Kevin Dotson last here before finding success with the Texans and Rams, respectively? And what was Mason Cole's undoing at center?


Our duo tackles those topics. Then Duke offers thoughts on NFL draft prospects including Jackson Powers-Johnson, Graham Barton, Zach Frazier, Dominick Puni and more.

April 09, 2024 Pitt basketball: What does Bub Carrington's departure for NBA draft mean for Jeff Capel's program?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: What does Bub Carrington's departure for the NBA draft mean for coach Jeff Capel and his basketball program? How does Carrington's departure change the Pitt recruiting strategy in the NCAA transfer portal? Who are the key football players to watch in the Blue-Gold game, in which new offensive coordinator Kade Bell will get his first chance to call plays with quarterbacks Nate Yarnell and Eli Holstein? And what were Abby's thoughts on the women's Final Four in Cleveland, where South Carolina defeated Caitlin Clark and Iowa for the national championship?

April 08, 2024 Are Pirates role players Connor Joe, Michael A. Taylor & Joey Bart keys to building on hot start?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Andrew Destin and Noah Hiles break down the team's series victory against the Baltimore Orioles and preview the upcoming series against the Detroit Tigers. Are continued contributions from depth players including Connor Joe, Michael A. Taylor and Joey Bart necessary for manager Derek Shelton's club to build on its 8-2 start? Are starters Bailey Falter and Marco Gonzales showing signs that they can be better than expected? And is Jack Suwinski in danger of losing a regular role in the lineup to players like Edward Olivares amid his slow start at the plate? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 08, 2024 Steelers NFL draft big board: Jackson Powers-Johnson falling to Day 2? Tailese Fuaga favorite at OT?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to break down the latest updates to the offensive line section of their NFL draft big board for the team. Is Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson falling into the Day 2 range? What has Duke's Graham Barton surpassed West Virginia's Zach Frazier as the No. 2 center in the class? And do the Steelers like Oregon State's Tailese Fuaga best among realistic tackle options, ahead of names like Alabama's JC Latham, Georgia's Amarius Mims and Oklahoma's Tyler Guyton?


Our duo tackles those questions. Then Chris welcomes Pirates insider Noah Hiles to react to the team's hot start to 2024. Is the success built to last? Or could manager Derek Shelton's group collapse again like it did in 2023, when it posted a 20-8 record in April? And when are we going to see the next wave of prospects including names like Paul Skenes?

April 08, 2024 Can Pirates get even better after 8-2 start to season?

Post-Gazette columnist Jason Mackey breaks down the Pirates' series win over the Orioles in dramatic fashion. They have started the season 8-2 and done so without playing their best baseball. Could the Pirates get even better as the season goes on?


Plus a quick look at the incredible resurgence of the Penguins as they are now firmly in playoff contention.

April 06, 2024 Steelers NFL mock drafts: Give Tailese Fuaga another look? Graham Barton too athletic to ignore?

On their weekly Steelers NFL mock draft podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette insider Brian Batko analyze the week in projected picks for the team from around the internet. Does Tailese Fuaga deserve another look as a tackle option given his experience level compared to less polished prospects like Amarius Mims and Tyler Guyton? Is Graham Barton a rising option alongside Jackson Powers-Johnson at center despite playing most of his college career at tackle? Are Keon Coleman and Brenden Rice names worth knowing at receiver? And how do they compare to frequent Steelers mock targets like Malachi Corley, Roman Wilson and Xavier Leggette? Is Blake Fisher toward the top of the list if the Steelers wait until Day 2 to address tackle? Should GM Omar Khan have any interest in Kansas EDGE Austin Booker as an inexperienced prospect with potential? And is there any room in the draft plan for Iowa star Tory Taylor following the signing of Cameron Johnston? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 05, 2024 Steelers offseason: Could Mason Cole, Patrick Peterson return after NFL draft?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Christopher Carter and Brian Batko consider the idea that the Steelers could re-sign center Mason Cole and Patrick Peterson if the NFL draft doesn't shake out the way they'd like. Will the Steelers wait to draft a center, as many mocks have them doing? Plus, what's the deal with all the former Falcons signing? 


April 05, 2024 Pirates home opener: Red-hot start to season, but are there Henry Davis concerns?

Pirates insiders Noah Hiles and Andrew Destin break down a hot 6-1 start to the season as the team heads home to face the mighty Orioles. Is Michael A. Taylor a diamond find in free agency? And should we be worried about Henry Davis' slow start? 


April 04, 2024 Penn State football recruiting: How damaging is loss of 4-star QB Matt Zollers for James Franklin?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle discuss the recruiting loss of Royersford, Pa., QB prospect Matt Zollers -- rated four stars and ranked the No. 1 in the state -- to Missouri. What does the news say about coach James Franklin's ability to retain in-state talent and attract impact players at the most important position? Is this a natural result of the struggles the offense showed last season under fired coordinator Mike Yurcich? And could Zollers be a player Penn State circles back to in the transfer portal later, as it did with Julian Fleming and Nolan Rucci this offseason?


Our duo tackles those questions, then reacts to the latest from spring practice. How is Fleming fitting in with his new team and handling the pressure of improving Penn State's production at receiver? What's different about QB Drew Allar's game under new coordinator Andy Kotelnicki? And how is new coordinator Tom Allen looking to deploy his depth at safety on the defensive side with Jaylen Reed, Zakee Wheatley and K.J. Winston?

April 04, 2024 Are Joey Porter Jr., George Pickens the Steelers under most pressure? Justin Fields close behind?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze which Steelers are under the most pressure in 2024. Is Russell Wilson the obvious choice as the presumptive starting quarterback? Do depth issues put players like Joey Porter Jr. and George Pickens squarely in the spotlight? Does Justin Fields need to impress quickly to justify a contract extension? Is it time to expect turnovers from Minkah Fitzpatrick now that DeShon Elliott and Patrick Queen look poised to fill holes in run defense? And does Queen's big free agent deal immediately bring scrutiny with it?


Our duo explores those topics and more. Among them: Is the Pirates' 5-1 start another mirage amid issues with the starting rotation? Or can Mitch Keller, Martin Perez, Bailey Falter, Marco Gonzales and Jared Jones turn things around enough to fight for a playoff berth. And over at Pitt, is criticism of Bub Carrington's NBA draft announcement warranted? Or is it what coach Jeff Capel needed to do to see his program to top prospects as a viable path to the pros?

April 03, 2024 Ray Fittipaldo's Steelers NFL mock draft 3.0: Amarius Mims gets close looks? Watch Sedrick Van Pran?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze his third seven-round NFL mock draft of the offseason. Is Amarius Mims starting to look like the tackle who makes the most sense after his pre-draft visit with the team? Is Sedrick Van Pran, Mims' teammate at Georgia, the best value at center as a projected late Day 2 pick? Would Western Kentucky's Malachi Corley be a good fit for OC Arthur Smith's new offensive, given his versatility? And why are Rutgers CB Max Melton, LSU DL Maason Smith, Texas ILB Jaylan Ford and Texas A&M S Demani Richardson among names to watch in the later rounds? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 02, 2024 Steelers PFF grades: Are Russell Wilson's analytics really that much stronger than Kenny Pickett's?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes assistant sports editor Adam Bittner to analyze the PFF grades of the team's recent free agent and trade acquisitions. Is Russell Wilson really that much better analytically than Kenny Pickett, the guy he's replacing? Where does Justin Fields need to improve to present a serious challenge to Wilson as the starter? Does Patrick Queen's stat profile show impact despite an average overall grade? Can DeShon Elliott unlock Minkah Fitzpatrick's playmaking ability with his own proven talent for stepping up against the run? And are fans and media sleeping on Donte Jackson's ability to help the secondary considering he posted the same exact PFF score as Joey Porter Jr. in 2023? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

April 02, 2024 Can Pitt basketball NIL afford to keep Jaland Lowe, Bub Carrington AND add more key pieces?

On their weekly Pitt basketball mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: What does coach Jeff Capel have to do to take the next step of having his team compete for national championships? Does Pitt have enough in it's NIL budgets to keep top talent including Jaland Lowe, Bub Carrington and Ishmael Leggett, plus add legit pieces around them? What are the chances Capel can land East Carolina's Brandon Johnson and/or Louisville's Brandon Huntley-Hatfield via the NCAA transfer portal? And how does Blake Hinson rank on the list of Pitt's best players over the last 25 years?

April 01, 2024 Penguins goalie battle: How hard is Alex Nedeljkovic pushing Tristan Jarry for stars?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin break down the hottest topics around the team. Among them: Reactions to Jake Guentzel's return to the PPG Paints Arena ice with the Carolina Hurricanes; analysis of the state of the goaltending tandem now that Alex Nedeljkovic has started four consecutive games in place of Tristan Jarry; first impressions of prospect Sam Poulin after he finally received the call to the NHL; and thoughts on Kris Letang after a rotten month for the star defenseman.

April 01, 2024 Credit Andy Haines for Pirates' hot offensive start? Bad signs from Martin Perez, Bailey Falter?

Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Andrew Destin and Noah Hiles discuss the team's 4-0 start after a weekend sweep of the Miami Marlins. Is it time for hitting coach Andy Haines to get some credit with players like Bryan Reynolds, Ke'Bryan Hayes, Oneil Cruz and Michael A. Taylor hitting the ball well? Is there reason for concern about the rotation after sketchy starts by Mitch Keller, Martin Perez and Bailey Falter? And can the bullpen including David Bednar and Aroldis Chapman continue to pick up the slack? Our duo tackles those topics and looks ahead to the next series against the Washington Nationals.

April 01, 2024 Steelers NFL draft: Does trade up or down make more sense? Will Roman Wilson, JC Latham visit?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to ponder the team's trade options ahead of the NFL draft. Does it make sense for GM Omar Khan to move up or down, based on the team's needs on the offensive line and at receiver and cornerback? Or should they stay put? And what type of trade is more likely if one happens?


Our duo tackles those topics, then moves on to pre-draft visits. What should we make of names who've already stopped by like Malachi Corley and Darius Robinson? Should we expect other prospects Roman Wilson, JC Latham and Jackson Powers-Johnson to join those guys on the list of visitors soon? And which positions do the Steelers least need to invest draft capital?

March 30, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: WRs like Xavier Legette, Malachi Corley dominate projections?

On their weekly Steelers NFL mock draft tracker podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette insider Ray Fittipaldo recap the week in projected picks for the team from around the Internet. Are signs pointing toward a Day 2 wide receiver pick as selections at that position begin to dominate mocks. If so, why are names including Western Kentucky's Malachi Corley, South Carolina's Xavier Legette, Texas' Adonai Mitchell and Michigan's Roman Wilson coming up frequently? And is the lack of depth in the tackle market pointing toward a Day 1 pick of top options including Alabama's JC Latham and Georgia's Amarius Mims.

 

Our duo tackles those questions and more. Including: Is Florida State's Renardo Green a perfect Day 2 fit with the Steelers' needs at cornerback? Could a guard like Kansas State's Dominick Puni make sense even though the roster appears set at those spots for 2024? And is there room for a safety like Kamren Kinchens after the signing of DeShon Elliott in NFL free agency?

March 29, 2024 Steelers trade options: Could DeMarvin Leal, Larry Ogunjobi & others be moved for NFL draft capital?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Brian Batko discuss the Steelers' options in the trade market ahead of the NFL draft. Could the team's depth on the defensive line allow GM Omar Khan to trade a player like DeMarvin Leal or Larry Ogunjobi for some extra draft capital? And Does Nick Herbig's emergence at EDGE rusher potentially make a player like Alex Highsmith expendable and an attractive piece to move for an early pick?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, looks back at how draft busts including Kenny Pickett, Devin Bush, Terrell Edmunds impacted the current roster, and ponders whether coach Mike Tomlin has been too loyal or not loyal enough to certain players.

March 29, 2024 Pirates opening day reaction: Oneil Cruz's late homer vs. Marlins a sign he can be clutch?

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Noah Hiles and assistant sports editor Adam Bittner react to the Pirates' opening day win against the Miami Marlins. Was Oneil Cruz's late homer a sign that he can be a clutch hitter for this team? Is there reason for concern about Mitch Keller, who pitched inefficiently, or David Bednar, who was unavailable to serve as the closer late in the game? And did the bullpen's strong first outing prove what an asset players like Aroldis Chapman can be this season? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

March 29, 2024 Steelers free agency: Could Dak Prescott be 2025 QB option if Justin Fields, Russell Wilson falter?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bitner ponder the Steelers' QB situation in 2025 and beyond. Could the Dallas Cowboys' Dak Prescott be an option for GM Omar Khan if Russell Wilson and Justin Fields struggle in their one-year stints with the Steelers? Or would he cost too much money on a team with numerous big contracts? What's the threshold for success Wilson and Fields will need to meet to stay in Pittsburgh past this season? And could we see a short extension for Fields sooner than later?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and more. Among them: Was it wise for Khan to pass on trading for former Chiefs cornerback L'Jarius Sneed? Does Josh Reynolds' signing with Denver put more pressure on signing former Pitt standout Tyler Boyd?

 

Then later, Paul and Adam look ahead to Pirates opening day. What's Paul's pick for a win total? What's his level of belief in the rotation of Mitch Keller, Bailey Falter, Marco Gonzales, Jared Jones and Martin Perez? What are reasonable expectations for offensive hopes Oneil Cruz, Henry Davis and Ke'Bryan Hayes? And what win threshold do GM Ben Cherington and manager Derek Shelton need to hit to keep their jobs for 2025?

March 27, 2024 Pirates season preview: Did Ben Cherington do enough for the rotation? When will Paul Skenes arrive?

On the Pitching In baseball podcast, Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner the preview the club's 2024 season ahead of opening day Thursday against the Miami Marlins. What grade does GM Ben Cherington deserve for this offseason, in which he acquired starters Marco Gonzales and Martin Perez but still has a rotation that lacks depth behind them and Mitch Keller? Why was the club comfortable breaking camp with No. 3 rated prospect Jared Jones on the roster but not No. 1 overall MLB draft pick Paul Skenes? And when will Skenes arrive in the big leagues?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, the offense's potential to be productive with a healthy Oneil Cruz back in the lineup and predictions for win totals, placement in the National League Central division and wild-card races, etc.

March 27, 2024 Steelers free agency: Omar Khan setting up big move after adding Cordarrelle Patterson, others?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss NFL free agency and react to news from the league's owners meetings. Is GM Omar Khan setting up a bigger move with depth signings like Cordarrelle Patterson, Quez Watkins and Dean Lowry? What does the teams list of Top 30 prospect visits -- which includes names like Ricky Pearsall, Darius Robinson, Xavier Legette, Taliese Fuaga and Malachi Corley so far -- tell us about Khan's NFL draft plans? And what is the impact of the NFL's rule changes on the Steelers? Does Patterson give them a chance to excel in the world of the revamped kickoff? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 26, 2024 Pitt basketball: Jeff Capel's transfer portal plan after losing Federiko Federiko, Will Jeffress?

In his weekly Pitt basketball mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insider Christopher Carter answers reader questions. Among them: What's coach Jeff Capel's transfer portal plan following the loss of Federiko Federiko and Will Jeffress? Why has the team been less busy in landing portal talent than last year? Can Capel keep top players like Jaland Lowe and Bub Carrington in Pittsburgh without a big NIL push? And will the ACC's March Madness success help conference teams like Pitt to avoid snubs next season?

March 26, 2024 Steelers free agency: Can Quez Watkins bolster WR depth? Philly embracing Kenny Pickett?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider welcomes the Philadelphia Inquirer's EJ Smith to analyze the NFL offseason. How much can the Monday signing of former Eagles wideout Quez Watkins bolster the Steelers' depth at that position? What does Watkins have to offer? And does GM Omar Khan need to make another move to add to the group?

 

Later, they discuss the reaction to the Kenny Pickett trade on the eastern side of the state. Why did Eagles fans initially not love the move for their team? Would they have preferred to see their team acquire Justin Fields to back up Jalen Hurts? And has Pickett become a more popular backup in the days since the trade? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 25, 2024 What can Penguins GM Kyle Dubas learn about his team now that Stanley Cup playoff hopes are toast?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel ponder what GM Kyle Dubas can learn about his team in its remaining games this season now that Stanley Cup playoff hopes look slim. Which prospects could get promoted from the minors for looks at the NHL level? Which have a chance to stick on the roster alongside stars like Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Erik Karlsson? Will 2019 draft pick Sam Poulin finally get a chance? And to what degree will coach Mike Sullivan focus on continuing to win games?

March 25, 2024 Steelers QBs: Will Justin Fields get a real chance to compete with Russell Wilson?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze coach Mike Tomlin's comments at the NFL owners' meetings over the weekend. Will Justin Fields really get a chance to compete with Russell Wilson for the starting QB role? Or would Wilson have to perform horribly in spring workouts and training camp to lose the job?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and more. Including: What are the team's remaining options at center a couple of weeks into NFL free agency? Could they still sign a veteran? Or are draft options like Oregon's Jackson Powers-Johnson and West Virginia's Zach Frazier more likely? And what should we make of Tomlin's comments about the motivations for the Diontae Johnson trade?

March 23, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: Would Brian Thomas Jr. be a good No. 2 WR next to George Pickens?

Host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette insider Brian Batko recap the week in Steelers NFL mock drafts. Are top wideout prospects like LSU's Brian Thomas Jr. plus Adonai Mitchell and Xavier Worthy of Texas good fits as No. 2 receivers across from George Pickens, especially if GM Omar Khan doesn't make a move on rumored interest in names like Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel and Justin Jefferson on the trade market? Or are projected later-round options like Florida's Ricky Pearsall and Alabama's Jermaine Burton better fits with what the team is trying to do in first-year Arthur Smith's new offense?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and more. Would drafting Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson in the first round limit the Steelers to find impact at other positions of need too much, especially when names like West Virginia's Zach Frazier could be available later? Or has center been a weakness for too long not to address in a major way in 2024? Do names like South Carolina's Spencer Rattler, Florida State's Jordan Travis and Tennessee's Joe Milton make sense as later-round QB options? And has cornerback faded as a need to be addressed in the first round?

March 22, 2024 Do Steelers have issues developing quarterbacks after Kenny Pickett failure?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Steelers insider Brian Batko joins Christopher Carter to take a closer look at the quarterback issues. After Kenny Pickett flamed out, is it fair to question if the team is bad at developing quarterbacks? And who could they have taken instead of Pickett in the 2022 draft?

March 21, 2024 Steelers trade rumors: Would Brandon Aiyuk deal amount to A+ NFL free agency period for Omar Khan?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss trade rumors surrounding Brandon Aiyuk joining the Steelers in a sign-and-trade deal. Post-Gazette insider Gerry Dulace reporters there's "a chance" the move could happen. If it does, would it earn GM Omar Khan an A+ grade for his work in NFL free agency and the trade market? What if he acquired other rumored names including Deebo Samuel and Justin Jefferson? How should draft options including Brian Thomas Jr., Adonai Mitchell and Xavier Worthy impact Khan's decision making at the position? And what other moves should Khan consider making before the draft.

 

Our duo tackles those topics as well as Kenny Pickett's exit amid moves for Russell Wilson and Justin Fields. Has all of the criticism of Pickett been fair? Or have some begun to pile on and make it too personal on the way out? Then later, Adam and Paul get into Pitt's NCAA snub. Does coach Jeff Capel deserve more criticism for the poor out-of-conference schedule that cost his team? And does his decision to kill the City Game rivalry with Duquesne reflect poorly in that context?

March 20, 2024 March Madness preview: Can Duquesne upset BYU? Final Four picks and predictions?

On their weekly college basketball show, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable preview the March Madness of the NCAA tournament from a Pittsburgh perspective. What are the odds coach Keith Dambrot and stars Dae Dae Grant and Jimmy Clark can lead 11th-seeded Duquesne to an upset of BYU in this year's bracket? What will happen in the Pittsburgh matchups of Creighton vs. Akron, Kentucky vs. Oakland, N.C. State vs. Texas Tech and Oregon vs. South Carolina? And what are Noah and Abby's picks to reach the Final Four? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

March 20, 2024 Steelers free agency: How much better do Patrick Queen, DeShon Elliott make Mike Tomlin's defense?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Kevin Oestrecher of Ravens Wire and Locked On Ravens to analyze the NFL free agency signings of Patrick Queen and DeShon Elliott. Just how good can Queen be on his own at MLB, without a star like Roquan Smith next to him? Can he prove that he's one of the best in the league in coach Mike Tomlin's defense? What will Elliott bring to the secondary alongside Minkah Fitzpatrick in his safety spot?

 

And which AFC North team has made the biggest free agency splash? Is it the Ravens with RB Derrick Henry? The Browns with WR Jerry Jeudy? The Bengals with OT Trent Brown? Or is it the Steelers with GM Omar Khan's moves at quarterback with Russell Wilson, Justin Fields and Kenny Pickett? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 19, 2024 Steelers trade fallout: Does Justin Fields fit in backup role to Russell Wilson? What can he learn?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Sean Hammond of Shaw Local/Bears Insider to give his perspective on the Justin Fields trade. Is Fields prepared to be a backup after starting for Chicago the last few seasons? What can he learn under the wing of presumed starter Russell Wilson, signed last week in NFL free agency? What kind of presence will he be in coach Mike Tomlin's locker room? And is the conditional sixth-round pick the Bears accepted in form GM Omar Khan exchange for him reflective of the talent Fields has to offer? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 19, 2024 Pitt basketball: Was Panthers' March Madness snub a surprise? Will Bub Carrington really be back?

In their weekly Pitt basketball mailbag, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Noah Hiles answer reader questions. Among them: Was it a surprise that coach Jeff Capel and Co. were snubbed by the NCAA tournament selection committee for a March Madness berth? Was Capel wrong for declining an NIT invitation? Is Pitt's season a success despite missing the bracket? Will freshman Bub Carrington actually follow through on his promise to return to Pitt next season? And what are coach Jeff Capel's top priorities in recruiting and the NCAA transfer portal as he's set to lose important pieces including Blake Hinson?

March 18, 2024 Can Penguins really still make the NHL playoffs without Jake Guentzel? Impact of Michael Bunting?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel analyze the team's chances to make the Stanley Cup playoffs. Are Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang Erik Karlsson and Co. a real threat to steal a wild-card spot now that they've pulled within five points? Or will the loss of Jake Guentzel at the NHL trade deadline and a recent spate of bad defensive play be too much to overcome? What kind of impact is Michael Bunting having on the race after joining the team in the Guentzel trade? And will top prospect Sam Poulin be promoted from the minor leagues any time soon? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 18, 2024 Steelers free agency: Will Omar Khan's aggression with Justin Fields, Russell Wilson pay off?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze GM Omar Khan's aggressive new approach to NFL free agency and trades. Did the fast overhaul of the quarterback room -- with Russell Wilson and Justin Fields coming in from the Denver Broncos and Chicago Bears and Kenny Pickett and Mason Rudolph going out -- show needed risk tolerance this franchise has lacked? Or is a new willingness to acknowledge and correct mistakes the bigger change with so much of previous GM Kevin Colbert's roster already turned over?

 

Later, our duo dissects the QB moves more. Does the Wilson/Fields tandem give the Steelers a chance at continuity? And how important is the tone Wilson is already setting compared to Pickett's actions late last season? Then finally, Chris and Ray address the future of the defense with Patrick Queen and DeShon Elliott in the fold. Does this unit have a chance to be the Steelers' most complete in years?

March 16, 2024 Steelers trade reaction: Justin Fields arrives from Bears. How does he fit with Russel Wilson?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittpaldo joins host Adam Bittner to react to the Steelers' trade with the Chicago Bears for QB and former first-round pick Justin Fields. How does he fit in the remade quarterback room with Russell Wilson now, and in the future? How was GM Omar Khan able to acquire a player of Fields' pedigree for just a conditional sixth-round pick? Will Fields or Kenny Pickett -- traded to the Eagles on Friday -- end up having the better career? And will Khan look to acquire a third QB in NFL free agency or the NFL draft? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

March 15, 2024 Steelers trade bombshell: Kenny Pickett goes to Eagles for very little. Why now? What's next at QB?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to react to the Steelers decision Friday to trade QB Kenny Pickett to the Philadelphia Eagles following the signing of free agent Russell Wilson. Why did the team make this move now? What should we make of the light return of a pick swap into the third round and two 2025 seventh-round picks? Where will general manager Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin go from here at quarterback? Are NFL draft options like J.J. McCarthy, Bo Nix and Michael Penix Jr. now priorities? Will they sign another veteran like Ryan Tannehill? Or could they still trade with the Chicago Bears for Justin Fields? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 15, 2024 Pirate spring training: Will Ben Cherington add to rotation? Or could Jared Jones break through?

On the Pitching In podcast this week, Post-Gazette insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to break down all the biggest storylines from Pirates spring training in Bradenton, Fla. Will GM Ben Cherington add to this rotation in meaningful ways before the season begins? Or will names like Chase Anderson and Jared Jones be the most likely to join the likes of Mitch Keller, Marco Gonzales and Martin Perez on the opening day staff? Are prospects like Roansy Contreras and Quinn Priester squandering their opportunities? And how did guys like Paul Skenes look in the MLB Breakout game against the Orioles?

 

Our duo tackles those topics as well as some lineup questions. How seriously should we take strong springs from Henry Davis and Oneil Cruz? Is a quiet spring from Rowdy Tellez and concern? How are things shaping up in right field? What about the second base competition between Liover Peguero, Jared Triolo and others? And is this team poised to go over or under the Vegas win total of 74.5 wins?

March 15, 2024 Biggest Steelers free agency surprise? Russell Wilson, Patrick Queen, Diontae Johnson or TBD?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to talk about the team's moves in NFL free agency so far. Which has been the biggest surprise? The signing of Russell Wilson to possibly replace Kenny Pickett? Trading Diontae Johnson for Donte Jackson? Giving Patrick Queen a substantial deal at ILB? Or is it a move the team has yet to make?

 

Later, they discuss the future at wide receiver with Johnson out of the picture. What does Khan need to add alongside George Pickens? And how has free agency shifted NFL draft priorities for coach Mike Tomlin's teams? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

March 14, 2024 How have Steelers' NFL free agency moves affected draft needs? Should Brock Bowers, TEs be options?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the Steelers' moves in free agency so far and how they impact the team's NFL draft needs. Does GM Omar Khan still need to draft a receiver early, even if he makes a move for free agent WRs like Tyler Boyd or Josh Reynolds following the Diontae Johnson trade? Should QBs like Bo Nix and Michael Penix Jr. be options to compete with Kenny Pickett next year even after the Russell Wilson signing? Is tight end an area of focus after new OC Arthur Smith spoke to Brock Bowers at Georgia's pro day? Especially in light of uncertainty around Pat Freiermuth and Darnell Washington? How does the cornerback group look after the acquisition of Donte Jackson? And what are Paul's reactions to moves around the division, including Baltimore's signing of Derrick Henry and Bengals WR Tee Higgins' request for a trade?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and more, including: Did Penn State's James Franklin get himself in hot water over comments about the Eagles' Saquon Barkley? Is Pitt's March Madness resume better than bracketology experts like ESPN's Joe Lunardi give them credit for? Will strong springs from Pirates including Henry Davis, Oneil Cruz and Chase Anderson extend into the season? And did Penguins GM Kyle Dubas do enough at the NHL trade deadline in moving Jake Guentzel and a few other minor pieces?

March 13, 2024 Penn State football: What do Drew Allar, Abdul Carter, Julian Fleming & WRs need to show this spring?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle preview spring practice for coach James Franklin's team. Are the Nittany Lions talented enough at wide receiver with the addition of Julian Fleming from Ohio State? What does Drew Allar have to do to take the next step at QB in his second season as a starter? How is Abdul Carter's transition from linebacker to defensive end going? And how are new coordinators Tom Allen on defense and Andy Kotelnicki implementing their visions?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and more in the football realm, including Saquon Barkley's NFL free agent deal with the Philadelphia Eagles, then gets into some basketball topics. What grade does Mike Rhoades deserve for his first reason after replacing Micah Shrewsberry as men's coach? And what kind of heat should coach Carolyn Kieger face after her Lady Lions' collapse that will likely cost them a March Madness bid?

March 13, 2024 Steelers free agency: Concerns from Russell Wilson's Denver tenure? What went wrong?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Cody Roark from Mile High Sports and the Locked On Broncos podcast to discuss new Steelers QB Russell Wilson's tumultuous tenure in Denver. What went wrong for him under coach Sean Payton? Were there problems in the locker room? What are Wilson's biggest strengths and weaknesses at this stage of his career? And how will he fit in a quarterbacks room with Kenny Pickett? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 12, 2024 Steelers trade reaction: Diontae Johnson goes to Panthers for Donte Jackson. Was it a good move?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to the Steelers' decision to trade WR Diontae Johnson to the Carolina Panthers in exchange for CB Donte Jackson on Tuesday night. Did GM Omar Khan make the right move to ship out the disgruntled receiver? What will the impact on new coordinator Arthur Smith's offense be? And George Pickens ready to be the unquestioned No. 1 receiver?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and also analyzes Jackson's impact on the team's secondary. Can he be a No. 2 to Joey Porter Jr.? Or is he more of a depth piece than anything else given his recent injury history? Should his presence affect the team's NFL draft plans? And how does he stack up with internal options like Cory Trice and Darius Rush?

March 12, 2024 Pitt basketball bracketology: What do Jeff Capel, Panthers need to accomplish at ACC tournament?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: Would the Panthers have been better off as a No. 5 seed in the ACC tournament with a chance to win an extra game to boost their March Madness resume? Will making the ACC championship be enough to impress bracketology experts like ESPN's Joe Lunardi? How will coach Jeff Capel use his two open scholarships next season to replace players like star Blake Hinson? How will Pitt defend Wake Forest if that's the team it ends up facing in its first ACC tournament game? And which Pitt players were snubbed this year in the All-ACC selections?

March 11, 2024 Steelers free agency: Reacting to Russell Wilson's 1-year deal, Kenny Pickett's fate

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to react to Russell Wilson's 1-year deal with the team ahead of NFL free agency. How much does Wilson have left after a tumultuous tenure with the Denver Broncos? What's next for Kenny Pickett and Mason Rudolph now that GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin appear to prefer the nine-time Pro Bowler at QB? And how will Wilson fit in new coordinator Arthur Smith's offense? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

March 10, 2024 Steelers free agency: Does Russell Wilson actually fit Arthur Smith's offense? Other names to watch?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to preview the beginning of legal tampering ahead NFL free agency opening this week. How serious is the team's interest in Russell Wilson after his meeting with the team Friday? And how does the former Pro Bowler and Super Bowl champion fit in new coordinator Arthur Smith's offense? Especially compared to what the team already has in Kenny Pickett?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, then pivots to free agency in general. What should GM Omar Khan's top priorities be, and how do they compare to what will be available on the market? How much money will he have to spend to improve coach Mike Tomlin's roster? And why are names like Chidobe Awuzie, Adoree Jackson and L'Jarius Sneed among those to watch?

March 09, 2024 Steelers NFL mock drafts: Ray Fittipaldo's latest picks. More value in Zach Frazier, Day 2 Cs?

On their weekly Steelers mock draft tracker video, host Adam Bittner welcomes Post-Gazette insider Ray Fittipaldo to break down projected NFL draft selections for the team from across the Internet this week. Ray also explains his pick in his latest seven-round mock draft on post-gazette.com.

 

Is the lack of impact depth at positions of need like corner and tackle a concern if GM Omar Khan targets a player like Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson on Day 1? Would Day 2 center options like Georgia's Sedrick Van Pran or West Virginia's Zach Frazier offer similar value while allowing Khan to address other needs earlier on? Or are names like BYU OT Kingsley Suamataia, Penn State CB Kalen King, Iowa State CB T.J. Tampa and Florida State CB Kenardo Green Day 2 options who could still be helpful?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, reacts to the NFL combine performance of several other top prospects. What should we make of Clemson CB Nate Wiggins' speedy 40-yard dash time? Why does Alabama CB Terrion Arnold's stock seem to be slipping a bit? Did Washington's Troy Fautanu prove he can belong at offensive tackle? And why does Ray like projected later round options including Rutgers CB Max Melton, Rice WR Luke McCaffrey, Temple ILB Jordan Magee, Georgia S Tykee Smith and Iowa P Tory Taylor?

March 08, 2024 NHL trade deadline analysis: Was the Penguins' return for Jake Guentzel underwhelming?

Post-Gazette Penguins insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin join to discuss the team's trade deadline moves. Was the Jake Guentzel return from the Carolina Hurricanes underwhelming? What can Michael Bunting do for the Penguins and their struggling power play? Is the Chad Ruhwedel trade significant? What can we learn from the moves Kyle Dubas didn't make? And what do all of these moves say about Sidney Crosby and the future of the franchise? Our duo discusses those topics and more.

 

 

March 08, 2024 Steelers free agency: Reacting to Russell Wilson's meeting with Omar Khan's front office

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss the latest on free agent QB Russell Wilson's meeting with the team Friday. Is general manager Omar Khan serious about the potential move to bring the nine-time Pro Bowl QB in to possibly replace Kenny Pickett as the starter? And if so, how would he fit in new coordinator Arthur Smith's offense with weapons including George Pickens, Najee Harris and Diontae Johnson?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and also reacts to the release of cornerback Patrick Peterson. Will the Steelers miss his veteran presence? And could any other moves be coming before free agency?

March 07, 2024 Pitt basketball: Are bracketologists overlooking Blake Hinson, Panthers' March Madness resume?

On their weekly college basketball podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable ponder Pitt's March Madness resume. Are the Panthers really undeserving of being safely in the NCAA tournament field as things stand? Or are bracketology projections like Joe Lunardi's overlooking the good work that coach Jeff Capel's team has done in getting to the 20-win mark for a second-straight season?

 

Later, our duo highlights Blake Hinson's sparkling senior year that's already seen him become the program's single-season record holder for 3-pointers. And they ponder where Panthers including Jaland Lowe and Bub Carrington could land on the list of ACC honorees.

March 07, 2024 Steelers NFL draft scouting: Which CBs, OTs could slip to the Steelers in the first round?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes The Draft Network's Damian Parson to discuss all things NFL draft. Which top cornerbacks and offensive tackles could slip to the Steelers at pick No. 23. Which position is deeper in the 2024 draft class? And which picks at wide receiver, quarterback or linebacker make sense in the later rounds? Our duo discusses those topics and more.

March 07, 2024 Pros and cons of Steelers trading Diontae Johnson? Sick of Russell Wilson, Justin Fields rumors yet?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins Steelers insider Brian Batko to discuss the team's options with receiver Diontae Johnson. Does it make sense to trade him this offseason if GM Omar Khan doesn't believe an extension can be reached? Or is the team too thin in its current receivers room to consider moving on from the veteran?

 

Later, our duo gets into QB talk. Which unlikely option to replace Kenny Pickett are they most sick of talking about? Russell Wilson, Justin Fields or someone else? Then Brian and Paul tackle a range of other Pittsburgh sports topics. What does a successful trade deadline for the Penguins look like if they move on from names including Jake Guentzel? How dangerous will Pitt be in March Madness if it can actually make the NCAA tournament? And what should we make of Paul Skenes getting demoted to the minors down at Pirates spring training?

March 05, 2024 Steelers legend Troy Polamalu talks Resilience Bowl, life after football, locker room leadership

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Pro Football Hall of Famer Troy Polamalu to discuss his work with the Resilience Bowl, a flag football event scheduled for May 21 at Acrisure Stadium benefitting the Neighborhood Resilience Project, which helps people and communities heal from trauma. Check out the Sunday Post-Gazette for more information.

 

The duo also tackles some football topics. Among them: Troy's involvement with the game since his retirement, which has included mentoring some NFL draft prospects; Cam Heyward's growth from a rookie with Super Bowl-era Steelers teams to a pillar of the locker room and community; T.J. Watt and Minkah Fitzpatrick, and how they'd fit in great Steelers teams of the past; and Mike Tomlin's qualities as the Steelers' long-time coach.

March 05, 2024 Pitt basketball: How many ACC tournament wins will it take to reach March Madness?

In their weekly Pitt sports mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: How many ACC tournament wins will the Panthers need to make it into the March Madness field of 68? What scenarios could lead coach Jeff Capel and Co. to be left out even with a NET ranking of 37 or better? Can Pitt land Lincoln Park standout Meleek Thomas in recruiting? What would that mean for names like Bub Carrington and Jaland Lowe? And on the football side, will Gavin Bartholomew be a focus of new coordinator Kade Bell's offense in 2024? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 04, 2024 Steelers NFL draft scouting: Omar Khan shows interest in top CBs Nate Wiggins, Quinyon Mitchell?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to react to this weekend's NFL combine. Do GM Omar Khan's meetings with top CBs including Nate Wiggins in Quinyon Mitchell signal interest in attacking that position in Round 1, despite needs on the offensive line? Should top WRs like Michigan's Roman Wilson, and Texas' Adonai Mitchell be on the radar as options to pair with George Pickens if Diontae Johnson can't be re-signed? And how do those needs balance with offensive tackle and center? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

March 02, 2024 Steelers NFL mock drafts: J.J. McCarthy too similar to Kenny Pickett? Jackson Powers-Johnson surges?

On their weekly Steelers NFL mock draft tracker podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko recap the week in projected picks for the team from around the Internet. Should general manager Omar Khan take notice of Michigan QB J.J. McCarthy's rising stock? Or is he too similar to Kenny Pickett to warrant first-round selection. Are mock drafters overreacting to the release of Mason Cole with a surge of Jackson Powers-Johnson picks? Or is he now the odds-on favorite for coach Mike Tomlin's team to select at No. 20 overall? Why does Georgia's Amarius Mims seem to stand out from the rest of the tackles in mock drafts? Is Clemson's Nate Wiggins the Steelers best fit at cornerback? And how do likely Day 2 and 3 picks like Florida State CB Renardo Green, Washington State S Jaden Hicks and Alabama IDL Justin Eboigbe fill the team's needs? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

March 01, 2024 NFL combine: Reacting to Steelers GM Omar Khan's support for Kenny Pickett. | O-line plan revealed?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to react to GM Omar Khan's comments at the NFL combine on Thursday in Indianapolis. Does the team really believe in Kenny Pickett as its QB1? Or did he leave room for the team to pursue possible replacements in the NFL draft, free agency or trades for rumored targets like Justin Fields and Russell Wilson? Will the team pick up the fifth-year option on running back Najee Harris? And when is an extension coming for coach Mike Tomlin?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, then tackles offensive line and linebacker topics. Did Khan signal an intent to draft or sign a starting center via free agency? Or does he believe in internal options like James Daniels and Nate Herbig? Is tackle still an option for the team's No. 1 draft pick? Will Broderick Jones move to left tackle? And does Cole Holcomb's injury status make middle linebacker a major priority for this offseason?

February 29, 2024 Pirates spring training: Is Paul Skenes rotation material after sparkling Grapefruit League debut?

Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Jason Mackey react to Paul Skenes' first Grapefruit League start of Pirates spring training against the Baltimore Orioles in Sarasota, Fla. How did the No. 1 overall pick look against MLB hitters? Does he belong in the team's rotation alongside names like Mitch Keller, Marco Gonzales and Martin Perez right now? And if the Pirates choose not to sign or trade for another starting pitcher between now and opening day, is keeping Skenes and Henry Davis on the roster a move that could ease fans' anger about a quiet offseason from GM Ben Cherington? Our duo tackles those questions and more. Then later in the video, Skenes speaks about the start in his own words.

February 29, 2024 Does Pitt basketball's March Madness path leave any margin for error? Are ACC schedules lacking?

In their weekly college basketball podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable ponder Pitt's March Madness path after a costly loss to Clemson. Can coach Jeff Capel's squad afford any more losses between now and NCAA tournament Selection Sunday? Or will Jaland Lowe, Blake Hinson, Ishmael Leggett and Bub Carrington need to lead the Panthers to an ACC tournament championship?

 

Later, they analyze Clemson coach Brad Brownell's critiques of the NET rankings and how he feels they favor the Big 12 over the ACC. And our duo wraps the show by looking ahead to the Panthers' three remaining regular season games.

February 29, 2024 Reacting to Steelers, Art Rooney II's ugly grades in NFLPA survey. Should he get more heat?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise and host Adam Bittner react to scathing reviews of the Steelers organization and owner Art Rooney II in the latest NFLPA survey on how players rank their teams in facilities and quality-of-life issues. Are these perceptions a barrier in attracting talent or getting the most from players on the existing roster? Does Rooney deserve more heat despite his family's rich history with the team. And should positive reviews of coach Mike Tomlin change perceptions of his role in the Steelers' recent mediocrity?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and more from around the Pittsburgh sports scene. Should we take growing roar of rumors tying the Steelers to QBs including Justin Fields, Mason Rudolph and Russell Wilson as replacements for Kenny Pickett any more seriously than we have in the last couple of weeks. Are Pitt's March Madness hopes toast after a costly loss to Clemson? Can trading players like Jake Guentzel and Tristan Jarry really help the Penguins in the short term? And how loud will calls from Pirates fans to see Paul Skenes in the opening day rotation get if he pitches well in spring training and GM Ben Cherington fails to add another pitcher?

February 28, 2024 NFL combine: Should Steelers strongly consider DLs like Byron Murphy? LBs like Payton Wilson?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss defensive line and linebacker workouts at the NFL combine in Indianapolis. Why should you be watching DL names including Jer'Zhan Newton of Illinois, Byron Murphy of Texas and Darius Robinson of Missouri? Can Florida State's Braden Fiske maintain momentum after a strong effort at the Senior Bowl? Why is North Carolina State LB Payton Wilson shooting up many scouts' big boards? And could prospects including Junior Colson of Michigan, Edgerrin Cooper of Texas A&M and Jeremiah Trotter Jr. of Clemson fit what the Steelers need on defense?

 

Our duo tackles all of those questions and explains why it's important for coach Mike Tomlin's defense to get younger this offseason.

February 27, 2024 Steelers NFL draft scouting: Which Georgia prospects could follow George Pickens, Broderick Jones?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Sarah K. Spencer of the Atlanta-Journal Constitution to get the scoop on some NFL draft prospects from Georgia, a school coach Mike Tomlin's team has mined for talent frequently the past couple of years. Could Amarius Mims make sense for general manager Omar Khan as an option to play across from former teammate Broderick Jones at tackle? Could receivers Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint or Ladd McConkey follow in the footsteps of former Bulldogs receiver George Pickens and make an impact at the NFL level? And what is Sarah's scouting report on center Sedrick Van Pran, who could fill a position of need for the Steelers after the cut Mason Cole last week? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

February 27, 2024 Pitt basketball: Should Blake Hinson be ACC's player of the year? Time to ban court storming?

On their weekly Pitt basketball mailbag, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Abby Schnable answer reader questions. Among them: Does Blake Hinson deserve to win the ACC's player of the year award? Should college basketball ban court storming after this weekend's incident with Duke forward Kyle Filipowski at Wake Forest? Will coach Jeff Capel and AD Heather Lyke accept an NIT bid if Pitt misses the March Madness of the NCAA tournament? And will Jaland Lowe, Ishmael Leggett and Bub Carrington all return to the roster next season?

 

Then later, our duo pivots to football questions. What are reasonable expectations for Rodney Hammond out of coach Pat Narduzzi's backfield in 2024?

February 26, 2024 Steelers free agency: How will NFL's salary cap boost impact Omar Khan's plan? NFL combine thoughts?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to react to the NFL's salary cap boost of more than $30 million for 2024. Will general manager Omar Khan use the extra space to add to coach Mike Tomlin's roster? Or will it help him keep veterans including Patrick Peterson, Cam Heyward and others more easily?

 

Later, our duo reacts to center Mason Cole being cut over the weekend. What are the Steelers' options to replace him in NFL free agency? Or does this make finding a center in the NFL draft a higher priority? Our duo tackles those questions and also poses some questions for Khan ahead of the NFL combine, which begins this week in Indianapolis.

February 24, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: Watch OT Troy Fautanu? Cooper DeJean's stock as hot as ever?

On their weekly NFL mock draft tracker video, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko discuss the week's most interesting projected picks for the team from around the Internet. This week they get into some offensive line talk. Could the undersized Troy Fautanu of Washington use his athleticism to win a tackle spot in Arthur Smith's offense that's heavily geared toward zone run concepts? Or is NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah off in projecting him to the Steelers. Could Duke's Graham Barton or Arkansas' Beaux Limmer fill the need at center? Or is their lack of history at the position a concern there?

 

Later, they give their thoughts on Iowa CB Cooper DeJean's status as a red-hot pick for the Steelers. Does he need to show his speed at Pro Day after likely skipping testing at the NFL combine? Or does he have enough solid tape for the GM Omar Khan to trust him as this draft's Brian Branch, now of Detroit? And how do mock draft picks this week including Ohio State's Michael Hall Jr., Iowa State's T.J. Tampa and Maryland's Beau Brade fit with coach Mike Tomlin's needs? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

February 23, 2024 Steelers free agency: Why a big splash to replace Kenny Pickett at QB seems so unlikely

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze the team's QB situation. Why do general manager Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin's actions suggest a big move to replace Kenny Pickett as the starter in new OC Arthur Smith's offense is unlikely? Why can't we rule out a move for big names including Justin Fields and Russell Wilson despite those actions? And what impact does the incomplete state of the roster ahead of NFL free agency and the NFL draft have on the conversation? Our duo tackles those questions. Then later, they weigh the Steelers' defensive priorities in the NFL draft and which players already on the roster can take the biggest steps in 2024.

February 22, 2024 Pitt basketball: How devastating was Wake Forest loss to March Madness resume for Jeff Capel & Co.?

On their weekly college basketball podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable recap a busy week for Pitt and Duquesne. How damaging was the Tuesday night loss to Wake Forest for the Panthers' March Madness resume? Can Jeff Capel's squad of players including Jaland Lowe, Blake Hinson and Bub Carrington recover from here? What did the Dukes show in their victory against St. Louis? And can Dae Dae Grant stay hot for coach Keith Dambrot after pouring in 31 against the Billikens? And where will both teams land in the ACC and Atlantic-10 conference tournament brackets, respectively? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

February 22, 2024 NHL trade deadline: Could Jake Guentzel deal help Penguins GM Kyle Dubas make his team younger?

On their weekly hockey podcast, Post-Gazette Penguins insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel recap GM Kyle Dubas' comments amid the team's recent losing skid. What does the future hold for trade candidates including Jake Guentzel if the on-ice situation doesn't improve? Why shouldn't fans expect big changes with core players including Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang as well as coach Mike Sullivan? And why is it a priority for Dubas to make the team younger ahead of the NHL trade deadline? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

February 22, 2024 Dream Steelers free agent targets: Are Chris Jones, Mike Evans, L'Jarius Sneed worth a gamble?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss dream NFL free agency targets for the Steelers. Players who are unlikely to sign here but who could fill major positions of need if GM Omar Khan is willing to take an all-in type of gamble. Does Post-Gazette insider Gerry Dulac's pick of Chiefs standout Chris Jones make the most sense if he avoid the franchise tag? What about other front-seven options like Leonard Williams, Christian Wilkins, Josh Allen, Jonathan Greenard, Patrick Queen, Chase Young and Za’Darius Smith?

 

Would it be a successful offseason if corners including Jaylon Johnson, Brian Burns, Kendall Fuller, L'Jarius Sneed or Jeff Okudah were the only major acquisitions? Or could the offense use the boost of a receiver like Mike Evans or a center like Andre James?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, as well as Diontae Johnson's trade value; coach Mike Sullivan's job security amid the Penguins' recent futility; Pitt basketball's March Madness chances after a blowout loss to Wake Forest; Penn State trustees' attempts to name the field at Beaver Stadium after Joe Paterno; and the Pirates' lackluster development regime under GM Ben Cherington.

February 21, 2024 Steelers free agency rumors: Russell Wilson heat building again? J.J. McCarthy an NFL draft option?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze the latest rumors tying Broncos QB Russell Wilson to Pittsburgh. Do national pundits including Peter King and Chad Johnson right to see him as an upgrade over Kenny Pickett? Or are his years competing seriously for Super Bowls over at age 35?

 

Later, our duo ponders the fit of NFL draft QB options such as Michigan's J.J. McCarthy, Washington's Michael Penix Jr. and Oregon's Bo Nix with the Steelers' QB room. They also weigh what the Steelers should do if top options at each of their positions of need are available at No. 20 overall. Who's most desirable from the group of Alabama OT JC Latham, Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson, Illinois DL Jer'Zhan Newton, Alabama CB Terrion Arnold and Toledo CB Quinyon Mitchell?

February 21, 2024 PSU football: Abdul Carter making the right move? Does JoePa tribute push harm on-field progress?

On their weekly Penn State sports podcast, host Adam Bittner and Daily Collegian/Post-Gazette insider Seth Engle analyze a busy week of news around the football and men's basketball programs. Does Abdul Carter's move from linebacker to defensive end help his NFL draft stock as he looks to follow in the footsteps of Micah Parsons? Is new coordinator Tom Allen's unit now better positioned to replace NFL draft prospects Chop Robinson and Adisa Isaac on the defensive line? And are young players including Tony Rojas ready to step into Carter's place?

 

Later, our duo tackles the push by some university trustees to rename the Beaver Stadium field after Joe Paterno. Does it show a lack of focus on helping James Franklin's current program? And would the energy be better spent on bolstering NIL efforts to level the playing field with Michigan and Ohio State. Then to end the show, Adam and Seth weigh in on leading scorer Kanye Clary's dismissal from the basketball program. Is it a net positive for first-year coach Mike Rhoades' program as it looks to figure out its identity? Or would it have been better off figuring out how to use Clary and Ace Baldwin Jr. in the same back court?

February 20, 2024 Steelers NFL draft profile: Could Pitt's M.J. Devonshire fill the need at CB?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes former Pitt standout M.J. Devonshire to discuss all things NFL draft. How have Devonshire's preparations gone so far with the NFL combine looming next week? Does Devonshire see himself as a fit with the Steelers, who have needs at cornerback? How does he plan to see himself in upcoming meetings with other NFL teams? And what impact has Panthers position coach Archie Collins had on his career? The duo tackles those topics and more.

February 20, 2024 Pitt basketball: Can Jeff Capel keep Jaland Lowe, Bub Carrington around as key pieces for long-term?

In their weekly Pitt sports mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them, can coach Jeff Capel and Pitt basketball keep rising stars including Jaland Lowe and Bub Carrington on future rosters in the age of the transfer portal and NIL? How many players can Capel add to next year's team via recruiting? On the football side, what grade does coach Pat Narduzzi deserve after adding a decent recruiting class and a revamped staff of assistants led by OC Kade Bell? And what is the athletic department as a whole doing to keep athletic director Heather Lyke around?

February 19, 2024 Steelers free agency: What's Diontae Johnson's future? Could Tyler Boyd, Kendrick Bourne help at WR?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze the team's situation at wide receiver. Will general manager Omar Khan look to add a veteran like Allen Robinson via NFL free agency? A fresh rookie face from the NFL draft? Or could the answer to be yes to both? How much does Diontae Johnson's uncertain future in Pittsburgh loom over this offseason's decisions? Why are names including Tyler Boyd, Kendrick Boure and Quez Watkins among those to watch when free agency opens? And can Khan and assistant GM Andy Weidl's front office keep up the success Kevin Colbert's regime had at finding contributors through the draft? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

February 17, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: Bo Nix just another Kenny Pickett? Quinyon Mitchell a CB to watch?

On their weekly Steelers NFL mock draft tracker podcast, the Post-Gazette's Adam Bittner and Christopher Carter recap the week in projected picks for the team from pundits around the Internet. Does Oregon QB Bo Nix have any higher ceiling that what the Steelers already have in Kenny Pickett? Should he be under serious first-round consideration? Or did ESPN's Field Yates over value him? And what are the Steelers' realistic options at the position in this draft?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and gives a long look at corner. Why is Toledo's Quinyon Mitchell a fast-rising Steelers choice for many mock drafters? Is Clemson's Nate Wiggins a prototypical fit in this Steelers defense? And is Iowa State's T.J. Tampa a name who could make sense in later rounds? Plus, they give their thoughts on Kentucky's Trevin Wallace as a potential target at linebacker.

February 16, 2024 Steelers free agency: Impact of Omar Khan's front office changes? Best NFL draft QB options?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze the changes GM Omar Khan and assistant GM Andy Weidl have made to the team's front office and how they could impact upcoming moves in NFL free agency and the NFL draft. Later, they discuss Brian's contributions to the Post-Gazette Steelers big board and why he likes options including Jayden Daniels and Taulia Tagovailoa at quarterback. And they finish the show by giving their take on the latest Justin Fields trade rumors and whether the Bears QB makes sense as competition for Kenny Pickett within OC Arthur Smith's new offense.

February 16, 2024 Pirates spring training: Does Yasmani Grandal really help? Is Edward Cabrera still the SP to watch?

On this week's edition of the Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Jason Mackey react to the first week of Pirates spring training. Does this signing of Yasmani Grandal actually help the team's iffy catching situation? Or is he past his prime? And how does former No. 1 overall MLB draft pick Henry Davis fit into the catching plans?

 

Later, they also discuss the latest developments in the pitching market. Is the Marlins' Edward Cabrera still the starting pitcher who makes the most sense as a potential trade target? And where do things stand with free agents including Domingo German, Noah Syndergaard, Michael Lorenzen and Trevor Bauer? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

February 15, 2024 Upside potential of Pitt's Jaland Lowe, Ishmael Leggett & Bub Carrington's in 3-guard lineup?

On their weekly college hoops podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable analyze the forces behind Pitt basketball's hot streak of six wins in the Panthers' past seven games. Specifically, the ponder the upside of the three-guard lineup of Jaland Lowe, Bub Carrington and Ishmael Leggett. Is it enough to carry coach Jeff Capel and Co. to a March Madness berth? Or will the frontcourt continue to be a concern?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and analyzes the team's remaining schedule through the lens of capturing an at-large berth in the NCAA tournament.

February 15, 2024 NFL trade rumors: Steelers' Mike Tomlin a 'big fan' of Justin Fields? Or are national pundits off?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnists Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the latest rumors connecting Chicago Bears QB Justin Fields to the Steelers. Is coach Mike Tomlin really a "big fan" of Fields, as reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter? What price would make sense for the Steelers to pay as they eye competition for Kenny Pickett? Or are they not in the market for a new starter at all, as the Post-Gazette's Gerry Dulac has reported.

 

Our duo tackles those topics and more. Among them: Did an NFL mock draft tying Bo Nix to the Steelers make any sense? Are C Yasmani Grandal and P Josh Fleming good additions for the Pirates? Is Pitt basketball back in the mix for March Madness after beating Virginia? And how crucial is the next six-game stretch for the Penguins ahead of the NHL trade deadline?

February 14, 2024 Penn State football: Are James Franklin's NIL/transfer portal gripes legit? Julian Fleming's impact?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian Nittany Lions insider Seth Engle analyze coach James Franklin's Tuesday comments about the state of college football. Are his gripes with the changes NIL and the transfer portal have wrought legit? Or is Penn State benefitting from them in important ways? And shouldn't coaches have to work harder to run programs as they command higher and higher salaries?

 

Later, our duo reacts to Franklin's comments about transfer portal additions Julian Fleming, A.J. Harris and Nolan Rucci; former PSU safety Ji'Ayir Brown's big effort for the 49ers in the Super Bowl, which included an interception of Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes; the basketball team's March Madness and NIT chances; and big changes at Ohio State the included the departure of Bill O'Brien as OC and the addition of Chip Kelly in the same role.

February 14, 2024 Steelers NFL draft busts: How much do Kevin Colbert's misses on Devin Bush & others hurt?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo with discuss the Steelers lackluster draft history in the latter years of former GM Kevin Colbert's career. How much are busts like Devin Bush in 2019 and Chase Claypool in 2020 hurting the current roster? What about misses on depth picks? And how much pressure does that put on current GM Omar Khan in NFL free agency and this year's NFL draft?

 

Later, they get into the Post-Gazette's interactive Steelers NFL draft big board of top prospects that fit the team's needs. Why are Jackson Powers-Johnson and Zach Frazier the top picks at center? What about JC Latham and Amarius Mims at offensive tackle and Terrion Arnold and Quinyon Mitchell at corner? Then they wrap the show by analyzing the team's first cuts ahead of free agency, including QB Mitch Trubisky, P Pressley Harvin III and OT Chuks Okorafor.

February 13, 2024 Steelers cuts: What now that Mitch Trubisky, Chuks Okorafor and Pressley Harvin III are gone?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes 93.7 The Fan's Jeff Hathhorn to analyze the team's early offseason cuts of QB Mitch Trubisky, OT Chuks Okorafor and P Pressley Harvin III. How does Trubisky's departure change the team's plan at the position, if at all? Will the Steelers get another tackle through the NFL draft or NFL free agency to create some depth with Broderick Jones and Dan Moore Jr.? And how will the team replace Harvin after three inconsistent years here?

February 13, 2024 Are Pat Narduzzi, Pitt football in trouble after Tiquan Underwood's departure for New England?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Christopher Carter and Noah Hiles answer reader questions. Among them: Was receivers coach Tiquan Underwood's departure to join the New England Patriots coaching staff a surprise? Is this the latest sign that coach Pat Narduzzi's program is in serious trouble following a lackluster 3-9 record? Did Narduzzi make a mistake in naming Nate Yarnell the starting quarterback before spring football even begins? And on the basketball side, who has the Panthers' most important player been as it's won five of its past six contests? Chris makes his argument for Jaland Lowe while Noah credits Ishmael Leggett before previewing Tuesday night's crucial game vs. Virginia.

February 12, 2024 Are Penguins' Stanley Cup playoff hopes in serious peril? How banged is struggling Evgeni Malkin?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel discuss a costly week for the team that included damaging losses against the Minnesota Wild and Winnipeg Jets. Are this club's Stanley Cup playoff hopes now in serious jeopardy? And what do they need to do to get back in the Metropolitan Division and Eastern Conference mix?

 

Our duo tackles those topics as well as Evgeni Malkin's recent struggles and what injuries could have to do with them; Kris Letang's early departure from a recent practice; and the upcoming retirement of team legend Jaromir Jagr's No. 68 jersey.

February 12, 2024 NFL free agency: Should Steelers sign Mason Rudolph or Ryan Tannehill to compete with Kenny Pickett?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to weight the team's options at quarterback in NFL free agency. Should GM Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin bring back Mason Rudolph to compete with Kenny Pickett after Rudolph found chemistry with receivers George Pickens and Diontae Johnson late in the season? Or is the Titans' Ryan Tannehill a better fit for new OC Arthur Smith's offense?

 

Later, they weigh the team's biggest needs on the defensive side of the ball with an eye toward the NFL draft. Should they take a cornerback like Iowa's Cooper DeJean to pair with Joey Porter Jr.? Or look toward the defensive line? And what free agent signing or signings do they most need to get right? Could it be middle linebacker after injuries to Kwon Alexander, Cole Holcomb and Elandon Roberts ravaged that position group last season? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

February 10, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: Is Jer'Zhan Newton the right fit? Darius Robinson a name to know?

In his weekly Steelers mock draft tracker video, host Adam Bittner welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze the week in NFL draft predictions for the team from across the web. How does Illinois DT Jer'Zahn Newton fit with coach Mike Tomlin's defense as one of the few defensive linemen expected to go in the first round? Is MIssouri's Darius Robinson a potential Day 2 option? Will the Steelers value Alabama CB Kool-Aid McKinstry's profile the way they valued Joey Porter Jr.'s last year? And is Michigan CB Mike Sainristil a Day 2 corner who could fill a need on the inside? And is NC State's Payton Wilson a linebacker to watch?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, and studies the center market as well. Is Jackson Powers-Johnson now a bonafide Day 1 pick? If he is, could the Steelers possibly trade back and still pick him? What's the scouting report on West Virginia's Zach Frazier as a potential Day 2 center?

February 09, 2024 Pirates spring training: What makes Bradenton lifestyle unique? Mistake not to sign Gary Sanchez?

On this week's episode of the Pitching In Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insider Jason Mackey welcomes wife and Post-Gazette health writer Abby Mackey to discuss the spring training lifestyle, its uniqueness to baseball and what they love about it. Abby shares some key points from her recent Post-Gazette story about things to do for families visiting Bradenton, Fla., with the club. Jason shares from his column on restaurant rankings. And both recall previous trips to Bradenton/Sarasota/Anna Maria Island and what makes that area so special.

 

Jason also gets into some baseball topics. What should we make of the Pirates missing out on Gary Sanchez, the catcher who signed with the Brewers this week? How they should help their starting rotation, either through trades for names like Edward Cabrera or Bryan Woo or free agents like Trever Bauer, Michael Lorenzen, Domingo German or Noah Syndergaard? And what does the loss of Canaan Smith-Njigba, as well as the signing Brett Honeywell to a minor league deal mean for the 2024 team?

February 09, 2024 Reacting to Steelers' coaching hires: Can Tom Arth help Kenny Pickett? Can Zach Azzanni unleash WRs?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko react to coach Mike Tomlin's hiring of Zach Azzanni as receivers coach and Tom Arth as quarterbacks coach. Can Arth help Kenny Pickett's development more than predecessor Mike Sullivan did? What knowledge can he bring to the Steelers after working with Justin Herbert with the Los Angeles Chargers? What does the duo's experience tell us about new OC Arthur Smith's priorities? And what can Azzanni teach the Steelers' George Pickens and Diontae Johnson after working with names including Garrett Wilson from the New York Jets and Courtland Sutton from the Denver Broncos? Our duo tackles those topics, reacts to T.J. Watt's snub as defensive player of the year and ponders what the Steelers can learn from the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers, this year's Super Bowl participants.

February 08, 2024 Is Pitt basketball back on March Madness bubble? Keith Dambrot calls out Duquesne's key players?

On their weekly college basketball show, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable analyze an eventful week for the local teams. Are coach Jeff Capel and Pitt back on the March Madness bubble after its key win against N.C. State? How high can the Panthers push their seed for the ACC tournament? And why is coach Keith Dabrot calling out key players including Jimmy Clark and DaeDae Grant, and giving them less playing time? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

February 08, 2024 NFL trade news: Steelers' Art Rooney II open to QB deal. Could Bears' Justin Fields be an option?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to react to Steelers owner Art Rooney II's openness to a QB trade despite Kenny Pickett's presence on the roster. Could the Bears' Justin Fields be a fit as that team eyes USC's Caleb Williams in April's NFL draft? Does Fields or Pickett fit new OC Arthur Smith's offense better? What about possible veteran free agent targets including Russell Wilson, Ryan Tannehill and Kirk Cousins? And how far could Kenny Pickett have helped the Super Bowl-bound 49ers advance had he switched places with their current signal caller, Brock Purdy?

 

Our duo tackles those questions as well as the future at wide receiver. Does Hines Ward make sense as a potential position coach? Could former Pitt and Clairton standout Tyler Boyd be a fit in free agency? And what should GM Omar Khan be looking for in a draft WR? Plus, Adam and Paul get into the Pirates' reported interest in C Gary Sanchez and their options at starting pitcher.

February 07, 2024 Steelers NFL mock drafts: Is Jackson Powers-Johnson worth a first-round pick? Biggest need, C or CB?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze colleague Ray Fittipaldo's first seven-round Steelers mock draft of the evaluation season and to offer picks of their own. Should general manager Omar Khan use a first-round pick on Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson, who plays a position typically devalued in the draft? Should they instead chase a cornerback like Iowa's Cooper DeJean? Could West Virginia's Zach Frazier be an option as a later-round center? And could Clemson's Jeremiah Trotter Jr. or N.C. State's Payton Wilson be the help this team needs at linebacker? Our duo tackles those questions and how the team's overall needs stack up ahead of free agency and the draft.

February 07, 2024 Can anything stop James Franklin, Penn State football's recruiting dominance of Pitt in WPIAL?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle analyze the Nittany Lions' latest recruiting win, the commitment of Latrobe linebacker Alex Tatsch of Latrobe. He joins a slew of top WPIAL talent -- including Belle Vernon's Quinton Martine, Aliquippa's Tiqwai Hayes and Central Catholic's duo of Peter Gonzalez and Anthony Speca -- to spurn coach Pat Narduzzi and Pitt in recent cycles. Is there anything the Panthers can do to slow the dominance of coach James Franklin and assistant Terry Smith? And is this a case of the ACC's problems in conference realignment manifesting on the recruiting trail?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and a handful of others. Why did Penn State NFL draft prospects Adisa Isaac and Kalen King stand out at the Senior Bowl for good and bad reasons? Does it help Penn State that Bill O'Brien appears poised to leave his Ohio State OC job to take the coaching job at Boston College? What should we make of the basketball team's road wins at Indiana and Rutgers, with Ace Baldwin Jr. playing well in the absence of Kanye Clary? And can Makenna Marisa and the Lady Lions give their resurgent season a huge boost with an upset of Caitlin Clark and Iowa?

February 06, 2024 Pitt football: Impact of Charlie Partridge's departure? How will Pat Narduzzi replace him?

On their weekly Pitt football mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: What impact will the departure of defensive line coach Charlie Partridge have after a successful stint that saw him help players such as Calijah Kancey, Jaylen Twyman and Rashad Weaver reach the NFL dreaft? And how will coach Pat Narduzzi replace him?

February 05, 2024 NHL All-Star game: Can Penguins' Sidney Crosby keep this up? Will Reilly Smith return to form?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel reflect on an eventful NHL All-Star weekend for captain Sidney Crosby. How did he look skating with All-Star teammates Nate MacKinnon, Cale Makar and others? And can he keep up his elite production in the second half of the season?

 

They also analyze potential difference makers on the roster: Could Reilly Smith be one in his return from injury? What about Jesse Puljujarvi after signing a two-year contract with the club over the weekend? And they check in on former goalie Patrick Lalime as part of the "Where Yinz Now" series.

February 05, 2024 NFL draft: Are Steelers, GM Omar Khan locked into OL pick after Senior Bowl? Did they miss out on Eric Bieniemy

In this clip from the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to recap his trip to scout top NFL draft prospects at the Senior Bowl this past weekend in Mobile, Ala. Are general manager Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin locked into taking an offensive lineman like Oklahoma OT Tyler Guyton or Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson? Could the depth of the receiver class yield a promising later-round pick? Could they look to grab a corner like Toledo's Quinyon Mitchell? Is Powers-Johnson playing his way into a first-round selection despite center typically being a devalued position in the draft? And could the Steelers address the center position with internal candidates like Nate Herbig?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, then covers whether the Steelers should have targeted former Chiefs OC Eric Bieniemy over Arthur Smith in their own OC search, as well as ways they can add to their QB room this offseason.

February 03, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: Could JC Latham fall to No. 20? CBs fading after Arthur Smith hire?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to react to the latest mock draft picks for the team from around the web. Could big, athletic Alabama OT JC Latham fall all the way to GM Omar Khan's No. 20 overall drafting position? Is Oklahoma's Tyler Guyton -- whom coach Mike Tomlin scouted this week at the Senior Bowl -- a viable option at the position on Day 2? Would Khan ever consider Miami safety Kamren Kinchens in the first round with Minkah Fitzpatrick already on the roster?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and reacts to later-round mock picks like Auburn CB D.J. James, Rutgers CB Max Melton, Georgia C Sedrick Van Pran and Florida WR Ricky Pearsall. Could any of them be good fits in Pittsburgh? And how does the hiring of Arthur Smith as offensive coordinator change the NFL draft math for Khan and Tomlin?

 

February 02, 2024 How will Pirates' Henry Davis, Paul Skenes factor into 2024 improvement? Where has roster regressed?

On their weekly Pitching In Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Jason Mackey tackle some hot offseason topics. Where has general manager Ben Cherington made the team better this offseason than where it ended 2023, following acquisitions of names including Rowdy Tellez, Aroldis Chapman, Marco Gonzales and Martin Perez? And where is the team possibly worse? What roles will former No. 1 overall draft picks Henry Davis and Paul Skenes fill if the team takes a noticeable step forward? Will the signing of Chapman give the Pirates a major advantage in the bullpen? And should fans be excited about the signing this week of former Brewers standout Wily Peralta? Our duo tackles those questions and much more.

February 02, 2024 NFL draft: Steelers' Mike Tomlin scouts Jackson Powers-Johnson, Patrick Paul closely at Senior Bowl?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss his observations from Senior Bowl practices this week in Mobile, Ala. Who has stood out in drills, especially at the Steelers' positions of need in the NFL draft that include offensive tackle and center? Why did coach Mike Tomlin appear to scout players including Oregon C Jackson Powers-Johnson, Oklahoma OT Tyler Guyton and Houston OT Patrick Paul most closely? Are Toledo CB Quinyon Mitchell and Michigan WR Roman Wilson skill players to watch after their interactions with Tomlin? And is quarterback a realistic position that the Steelers could target? Or are second-tier names like Oregon's Bo Nix and Washington's Michael Penix Jr. simply not clear upgrades on what the Steelers have in Kenny Pickett? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

February 01, 2024 Why has Steelers' Arthur Smith hiring been unpopular? What moves does his offense require?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the negative reaction to the Steelers' hiring of Arthur Smith as OC. Why have many fans reacted negatively to him? Were expectations for a young, innovative playcaller like the Texans' Jerrod Johnson or the Rams' Zac Robinson always off the mark? What does Smith's hiring mean for key offensive personnel including Najee Harris, George Pickens, Kenny Pickett, Pat Freiermuth and Diontae Johnson? And what moves will making his offense work require of coach Mike Tomlin and GM Omar Khan?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, plus the Pirates' latest big prospect bust and the sorry state of affairs of ACC basketball as Pitt looks to make a late push toward March Madness.

February 01, 2024 Grading Pitt basketball in January - Is Jeff Capel's team doing enough? What's working for Duquesne?

On their weekly college basketball show, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable give Pitt a report card for January. Did coach Jeff Capel's Panthers do enough? Or will they have to have a nearly perfect February and early March to make the NCAA Tournament? They also discuss the things that have worked for coach Keith Dambrot during Duquesne's three-game winning streak. And predict how many ACC teams will reach March Madness.

January 31, 2024 NFL draft: Can Penn State stars like Adisa Isaac use Senior Bowl, Shrine Bowl to surge their stock?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle preview the Senior Bowl and East-West Shrine Bowl for former Penn State stars with eyes on the NFL draft. Can players like Adisa Isaac and Kalen King impress scouts enough to become early Day 2 picks? Could off-the-radar players like Caedan Wallace and Hunter Nourzad play their way into Day 3 selections? Is safety Daequan Hardy be a wild-card?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and more, including Jim Harbaugh's defection from Michigan to the Los Angeles Chargers; Penn State's ability under coach James Franklin to compete with Harbaugh replacement Sherrone Moore; the James Franklin coaching tree showdown next season between former DCs Manny Diaz of Duke and Brent Pry of Virginia Tech; and the basketball team's recent struggles under coach Mike Rhoades.

January 31, 2024 Can Steelers OC Arthur Smith get most from Kenny Pickett, George Pickens, Najee Harris & core stars?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to react to coach Mike Tomlin's hiring of former Falcons coach Arthur Smith as offensive coordinator. Will running backs including Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris shine in his news system? How will things look in the passing game for names including Kenny Pickett at QB and receivers George Pickens and Diontae Johnson? And what does the future hold for names including former play caller Mike Sullivan and interim coordinator Eddie Faulkner? Will they be retained on Smith's offensive staff? Or could shakeups be coming? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 30, 2024 Reacting to Steelers hiring Arthur Smith as OC. Did Mike Tomlin get it right? Can he help Pickett?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to react to the Steelers' hiring of former Atlanta Falcons head coach and Arthur Smith as offensive coordinator. Why did Smith make sense, given coach Mike Tomlin's stated criteria that included experience in the role? Did the criteria itself make sense? Or should the Steelers have chosen a less experienced candidate like the Texans' Jerrod Johnson or the Rams' Zac Robinson because of their connection to innovative Sean McVay and Kyle Shanahan coaching trees? What went wrong for Smith in Atlanta, where he was fired? Why does his stint as OC with the Titans possibly make him a good fit for the Steelers' personnel including Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren? And perhaps most importantly, how can he help the development of QB Kenny Pickett in a way that former OC Matt Canada could not? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

January 30, 2024 Is Steelers' Art Rooney II getting impatient with playoff failure? Needs more from Kenny Pickett?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes ESPN's Brooke Pryor to analyze owner Art Rooney II's season-ending news conference. Is he starting to feel the fans' frustration at seven seasons without a playoff win? Or is he still satisfied fielding a team that can at least be in the mix every year? What did he have to say about coach Mike Tomlin and his freedom to choose his own offensive coordinator? And how does he size up the quarterbacks with Kenny Pickett heading into Year 3 and Mason Rudolph hitting free agency? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 30, 2024 Pitt football: Is Pat Narduzzi micromanaging OC Kade Bell already in naming Nate Yarnell his QB?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: How would coach Pat Narduzzi have handled the fourth down decisions that the Lions' Dan Campbell faced in the NFC championship against the 49ers? Is Narduzzi already micromanaging new offensive coordinator Kade Bell by naming Nate Yarnell to be the starting quarterback, despite bringing in Alabama transfer Eli Holstein to compete? Why did Narduzzi say he "couldn't mention" things he learned from his team's 3-9 season?

 

And on the basketball front, when does coach Jeff Capel's team have to show more than "good effort?" And which of Pitt's forward provide the most long-term value to the lineup?

January 29, 2024 Can Penguins fix struggling Evgeni Malkin? Did this week change Kyle Dubas' NHL trade deadline plan?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin analyze a trying week for the team that included an embarrassing own-goal by Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin in a loss at Arizona. What has to change for this team to make the Stanley Cup playoffs? Will GM Kyle Dubas make a decision about buying or selling at the NHL trade deadline by the All-Star break? And what can coach Mike Sullivan do to get Malkin back on track? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 29, 2024 Steelers OC search: Would Arthur Smith be a good choice? Plus, Senior Bowl preview

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss the team's OC search and the candidacy of former Falcons head coach Arthur Smith. How does he compare to previously named candidates including the Texans' Jarrod Johnson and former Panthers OC Thomas Brown? How could his success under Mike Vrabel in Tennessee translate to Pittsburgh? And how many of coach Mike Tomlin's boxes does he check?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, previews the Senior Bowl ahead of Ray's trip to scout NFL draft prospects there this wee and recaps the weekend's conference championship games. Did the Ravens' Lamar Jackson come up small in the big moment? Or did teammates including Zay Flowers let him down in the loss to Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs? And what was the Lions' Dan Campbell thinking with some of his decisions late in the NFC title game against the 49ers with a Super Bowl bid on the line?

January 27, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: Lots of buzz for Amarius Mims? Jerrod Johnson latest OC candidate?

On the Post-Gazette's weekly Steelers mock draft tracker video, Christopher Carter joins Adam Bittner to analyze the latest batch of picks for coach Mike Tomlin's team from around the Internet. Why are so many mocks pointing toward Georgia OT Amarius Mims early in the process? Should a name like Oregon State's Taliese Fuaga be on the radar as well? Why don't many mocks see defensive line as a weakness despite the uncertain futures of Cam Heyward and Larry Ogunjobi? Does Georgia's Kamari Lassiter have a lot in common with Joey Porter Jr., who the Steelers drafted at corner last season? And could a corner as solid as Alabama's Terrion Arnold fall all the way to the Steelers at No. 20 in the first round?

 

Our duo tackles question and also analyzes the latest Post-Gazette reporting that Texans quarterback coach Jerrod Johnson is interviewing for the Steelers' OC role after mentoring C.J. Stroud during his impressive rookie season in Houston.

January 26, 2024 NFL coaching news: Were Steelers right to keep Teryl Austin? Thomas Brown an underrated OC option?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to discuss a range of issues on the team's coaching front. Were general manager Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin right to give DC Teryl Austin a two-year extension this week? Is Panthers OC Thomas Brown an underrated candidate for the Steelers' OC job despite a lackluster year with QB Bryce Young in Carolina? They also look ahead to the AFC championship between Patrick Mahomes' Chiefs and Lamar Jackson's Ravens. As well as the NFC title game between Jared Goff's Lions and Brock Purdy's 49ers.

January 25, 2024 NFL free agency: Should Steelers try to get Russell Wilson cheap? Which vets make sense?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to react to suggestions from Peter King, Ed Bouchette, Joe Starkey and others that the Steelers could pursue veteran QB Russell Wilson in NFL free agency if he's cut by the Broncos. Would Wilson's presence put too much pressure on Kenny Pickett's development within a new offense? Does Wilson have much left to offer at age 35? Is Mason Rudolph a preferable option to pair with Pickett? What about options like Justin Fields, Kirk Cousins and Jacoby Brissett?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, the latest in the Steelers' OC search and Cam Heyward's future with the team. They also analyze the Pirates' deal with Aroldis Chapman; the Penguins recent struggles; and Pitt, Penn State and West Virginia's college basketball upsets this past week.

January 24, 2024 Steelers OC search: Are Zac Robinson, Kliff Kingsbury interviews good signs? Grading Joey Porter Jr.

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes former Steelers and Penn State standout Justin King to break down the Steelers' OC search so far. Are interviews by the Rams' Zac Robinson and former Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury good signs? Which would be the better choice between the two? And which other possible candidate deserve interviews?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and also looks at the team's secondary. What grade does Joey Porter Jr. deserve for his rookie campaign? What pieces should remain around him? And where should the Steelers look to add from the outside?

January 24, 2024 Penn State football report card: What grades do James Franklin, Drew Allar & others deserve?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Daily Collegian/Post-Gazette insider Seth Engle issue grades in their 2023 season report card. What mark does James Franklin deserve for an offense that failed under coordinator Mike Yurcich but a defense that soared under DC Manny Diaz? How did QB Drew Allar fare in his first season as a starter? What credit do running backs Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen for finishing the season strong after a slow start? And did linebacker Abdul Carter live up to expectations?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, reacts to receiver Julian Fleming's new NIL ad; analyzes former PSU coach Bill O'Brien's move to Ohio State as offensive coordinator; and offers some thoughts on the basketball program after an upset of No. 11 Wisconsin but an ugly road loss to the Buckeyes.

January 23, 2024 Reacting to Pirates' signing of Aroldis Chapman in MLB free agency. Is it setting up another move?

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to react to the Pirates' signing of Aroldis Chapman in MLB free agency. How much can he help manager Derek Shelton's bullpen at this stage of his career? Does the signing signal that relievers including David Bednar and Colin Holderman could be on the trading block? Or is it setting up a deal by GM Ben Cherington for possible starting pitching options including the Marlins' Braxton Garrett or Edward Cabrera? And should there be any concern about his clubhouse fit after his beanball wars with now-teammate Andrew McCutchen and domestic violence accusations from 2015? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 23, 2024 Can Steelers salvage Kenny Pickett with new OC? Is Mike Tomlin's hiring criteria too narrow?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Andy Benoit of the 33rd Team to discuss the team's offensive coordinator search. Can whomever the Steelers hire salvage Kenny Pickett's career? Could Mason Rudolph be an effective starter in the right system over the long-term? What are Andy's final thoughts on Matt Canada's tenure as OC? And is coach Mike Tomlin's stated criteria for his next OC too narrow and limiting? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 23, 2024 Pitt basketball: March Madness still in play after Duke upset? Where does Jaland Lowe fit?

In their weekly Pitt sports mailbag, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: How many games does Pitt have win to reach the NCAA tournament after upsetting No. 7 Duke over the weekend? Could coach Jeff Capel use more three-guard lineups with Bub Carrington, Jaland Lowe and Ishmael Leggett now that they're all showing progress? What does the football coaching staff really know about transfer portal additions? And what roles does Tiquan Underwood fill on Kade Bell's offensive staff? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 22, 2024 MLB trade rumors: Pirates owner Bob Nutting pushing for more moves? Is Edward Cabrera an option?

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to discuss his trip to the club's facility in the Dominican Republic and his exclusive interview with owner Bob Nutting. Does Nutting expect more moves on the pitching from from general manager Ben Cherington in MLB free agency or on the trade market? Why are the Marlins' Braxton Garrett and Edward Cabrera ideal trade targets? What are Nutting's feelings on controversial free agents like Domingo German and Trevoe Bauer? And what the Shoehei Ohtani contract means for small-market clubs like the Pirates? Our duo tackles those topics as well as Jason's thoughts on the Dominican academy and how close it is to producing results for the club.

January 22, 2024 NHL trade deadline: Could Penguins deal Jake Guentzel? Will GM Kyle Dubas buy or sell?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel analyze midseason decisions looming for general manager Kyle Dubas. Will the team hold onto to Jake Guentzel, who's in the final year of his contract? Or could he be dealt to bring some talent to the roster? What are the team's biggest needs ahead of the trade deadline? And are they on track to be buyers or sellers? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

January 22, 2024 Could Steelers give Najee Harris, Pat Freiermuth extensions? Will Patrick Peterson be cut?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss moves the team can make with its own roster. Could RB Najee Harris and TE Pat Freiermuth be in line for extensions as they near the end of their rookie contracts? Why are names including Chuks Okorafor and Patrick Peterson at the top of list of potential cuts? And what are the team's biggest needs as NFL free agency and the NFL draft approach? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 20, 2024 Steelers NFL mock draft tracker: Does Michael Penix Jr. make sense as a first-round target?

In the first NFL mock draft tracker podcast of the offseason, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo analyze the most interesting team draft pundits made for the team this week. Is Washington's Michael Penix Jr. a realistic first-round option for this team as it ponders its options beyond Kenny Pickett? Would Iowa's Cooper DeJean pair well with Joey Porter Jr. at cornerback? Could Georgia's Amarius Mims be a target to play opposite former teammate Broderick Jones at the tackle spots? And should linebackers like Jeremiah Trotter Jr. be on general manager Omar Khan's radar after piecing together solid options through free agency and trades this past offseason? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

January 19, 2024 How far will Steelers' Mike Tomlin search for new OC? Are Kliff Kingsbury, Eric Bieniemy options?

On the Friday episode on the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko break down some hot topics around the team. The duo gives their take on the quarterback situation with Kenny Pickett and Mason Rudolph, then gets into the search for a new offensive coordinator. How far outside Steelers circles will coach Mike Tomlin look? Could a total outsider like former Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury be an option? What about Eric Bieniemy, former Commanders coach and Chiefs OC with Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes? The conversation wraps up by looking at which players could be leaders for the offense next season.

January 18, 2024 Will Steelers' Kenny Pickett face real competition? Will Mike Tomlin's OC hire be a true outsider?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze headlines from Steelers coach Mike Tomlin's end-of-season news conference. Will Tomlin truly make Kenny Pickett compete to be the starting quarterback in 2024? Or will it realistically be his job to lose during the season? Will the offensive coordinator hire truly come from the outside? Or will the new coordinator have some connection to the Steelers or local colleges like Pitt and Penn State?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and also offseason topics to watch identified by Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko. Will defensive coordinator Teryl Austin and special teams coordinator Danny Smith return? Will players entering contract years including Najee Harris, Pat Freiermuth, James Daniels and Diontae Johnson get new deals? Would the team be better off with Cam Heyward back? Or spending his large cap hit on multiple other players to fill needs? And should veterans like Patrick Peterson and Minkah Fitzpatrick be trade candidates in hopes of gaining NFL draft capital?

January 18, 2024 Hot seat rankings: Is Pitt's Jeff Capel, Duquesne's Keith Dambrot, RMU's Andy Toole in most danger?

On their weekly college basketball podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable discuss the fading March Madness dreams of Pitt, Duquesne and Robert Morris basketball. What do the Panthers and Dukes still have to play for if it's not postseason berths? And whose job is most in jeopardy if situations don't improve from the group of Pitt's Jeff Capel, Duquesne's Keith Dambrot and RMU's Andy Toole?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and also reacts to Penn State's upset of No. 11 Wisconsin this week, led by key players including Kanye Clary and Ace Baldwin Jr.

January 17, 2024 What changes will Steelers' Mike Tomlin make now that he's staying for 2024? OC search progress?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo. The two react to news from colleague Gerry Dulac that coach Mike Tomlin will return in 2024 following the team's NFL wild card playoff loss to the Buffalo Bills on Monday.

 

What changes will he look to make, assuming a contract extension is coming? Could he move on from defensive coordinator Teryl Austin? Or do injuries to key players including T.J. Watt, Cam Heyward and Minkah Fitzpatrick give the unit a bright future if Austin returns? What will Tomlin look for in hiring an offensive coordinator to replace Matt Canada? And how will he handle the quarterback situation between Mason Rudolph and Kenny Pickett after Rudolph proved a solid replacement for Pickett with the season on the line? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 17, 2024 Penn State football: How much can A.J. Harris - former five-star CB - help James Franklin?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle break down some major transfer portal additions in the past week. Is Georgia transfer A.J. Harris -- a former five-star prospect -- the No. 1 cornerback the Nittany Lions need? How much does Florida transfer Jalen Kimber's experience help the CB room? Will D-III commit Logan Cunningham make any kind of impact with the receivers? And where should coach James Franklin still be looking to add?

 

Our duo tackles those topics as well as coaching and personnel changes around the Big Ten. What does Kalen DeBoer's departure from Washington to replace Nick Saban at Alabama do to the Huskies? How much will Michigan miss core players like J.J. McCarthy, Blake Corum and Roman Wilson after their NFL draft declarations? And will Jim Harbaugh leave for the NFL?

January 16, 2024 Penguins midseason grades: Sidney Crosby, Jake Guentzel get A's, but others missing the mark?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel discuss Matt's midseason report card for the team. Why did players including Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel gets A's? Why have blue liners including Ryan Graves and Pierre-Olivier Joseph marked as disappointments? How did goalies Tristan Jarry and Alex Nedeljkovic fare? And what have the team's biggest surprises been so far? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

January 16, 2024 Steelers-Bills: Ed Bouchette reacts to Mike Tomlin's storm-off, defense's latest playoff meltdown

Long-time Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ed Bocuhette joins host Adam Bittner on the weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast to react to the Steelers' NFL wild card playoff loss to the Buffalo Bills on Monday at Highmark Stadium.

 

What should we make of the rumors swirling around coach Mike Tomlin after he stormed out of his post-game news conference when asked about his future? Will this defense led by Minkah Fitzpatrick, T.J. Watt and Cam Heyward ever be great like the Super Bowl defenses of the 1970s and 2000s after yet another playoff meltdown? Or is that core coming to the end of its prime years? Where should general manager Omar Khan focus in the NFL draft with so many clear holes on defense? Does the team have its guy at QB in Kenny Pickett or Mason Rudolph? Or should it add to its mix through the NFL draft or free agency? And do the Steelers have enough at the skill positions with names including Najee Harris, Jaylen Warren, Diontae Johnson, George Pickens or Pat Freiermuth? Or are more weapons needed? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 15, 2024 NFL Wild Card playoffs: Steelers vs. Bills reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner, Christopher Carter and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' NFL Wild Card playoff matchup with the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium.

 

What impact did the wild Western New York weather have on the contest? Did Mason Rudolph, Najee Harris, George Pickens and the offense maintain momentum, or go out with a whimper? How did the absence of T.J. Watt impact the defense? And how did the return of Minkah Fitzpatrick and Damontae Kazee help?

January 14, 2024 Steelers-Bills: Is weather delay really a disadvantage for Mike Tomlin's team? Will snow still fall?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze the impact the winter weather postponement will have on the team's NFL wild card playoff game against the Buffalo Bills on Monday in Orchard Park, N.Y. Will the improved weather conditions help Josh Allen and the Bills as heavy favorites against Mike Tomlin's team? Or does the chance of snow still help Mason Rudolph, Najee Harris and the Steelers offense? And what matchups might we have overlooked in the leadup to this game?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and analyzes results from the rest of the AFC playoffs. Was the Browns' blowout loss to the Texans a surprise? Can C.J. Stroud and Houston be real threats for the AFC title? Or are the Chiefs still the team to beat? And should the Steelers draw hope from the seventh-seeded Packers' domination of the second-seeded Cowboys on Sunday?

January 12, 2024 Pirates offseason: How did Ben Cherington, Travis Williams handle questions? Is Oneil Cruz healthy?

On the weekly Pitching In Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Jason Mackey and Andrew Destin share their thoughts from a busy Piratesfest weekend at the David L. Lawrence convention center. Did president Travis Williams, general manager Ben Cherington and manager Derek Shelton have good answers for fans during the Q and A session? What's the latest on the catching journey of former first overall MLB draft pick Henry Davis? Is shortstop Oneil Cruz going to be fully healthy in time for the start of the season? And what does Andrew McCutchen's return mean for the team in 2024?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and explain their preferred Opening Day lineups with spring training only a few weeks away.

January 12, 2024 Steelers-Bills: Does potential blizzard help or hurt Mason Rudolph, Najee Harris & the offense?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko preview the team's NFL wild card playoff game against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday in Orchard Park, N.Y. They analyze the way a weather forecast packed with snow and especially wind could impact the game; whether the return of Minkah Fitzpatrick from injury can help offset the loss of T.J. Watt; and Joey Porter Jr.'s ability to shut down the connection between Buffalo stars Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs.

January 11, 2024 Steelers-Bills: Would Mike Tomlin really leave Pittsburgh? Is Kenny Pickett being coddled?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss a range of hot Steelers topics. Could coach Mike Tomlin really leave the team to take time off or possibly move onto another gig in 2025, as reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter and FOX's Jay Glazer? Is he just looking for leverage in contract negotiations? Is Tomlin babying Kenny Pickett by keeping him at No. 1 on the depth chart despite starting Mason Rudolph in this week's NFL wild card playoff game against the Buffalo Bills? And should Mike Sullivan get consideration for the full-time offensive coordinator job after the unit's late-season success?

 

Our duo tackles those topics, reacts to Michigan's College Football Playoff national championship victory and grades transfer portal additions including QB Eli Holstein for Pitt and Julian Fleming and Nolan Rucci for Penn State football.

January 11, 2024 Does Pitt have any chance of making the NCAA tournament? Can the week off act as a reset?

On their weekly college basketball show, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable talk about the disappointing season so far for college hoops in Pittsburgh. Does Pitt have any chance of returning to the NCAA tournament? Will the bye week help or hurt them? And should we be surprised that Duquesne and Robert Morris are performing below expectations? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 10, 2024 Steelers playoffs: Are Bills toughest test on improbable Super Bowl path? Is Joey Porter Jr. ready?

On the Wednesday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Adam Bittner welcomes former Steelers and Penn State cornerback Justin King to discuss the team's Super Bowl chances. Are there any parallels with the 2005 team that won the championship as the final seed in the AFC playoffs? Are the Bills the toughest team the Steelers might see on the AFC side of the bracket? How hard would it be to beat the Ravens for a third time this season? And which team among the Browns, Texans, Chiefs and Dolphins would be the ideal AFC championship opponent.

 

Our duo tackles those topics, breaks down the matchup between Steelers rookie Joey Porter Jr. and Bills star Stefon Diggs; studies coach Mike Tomlin's options in the secondary this week; and analyzes a report from ESPN's Adam Schefter that Tomlin may want to take some time off and eventually join another team.

January 10, 2024 How did James Franklin & Penn State fall so far behind Jim Harbaugh & Michigan? Big recruiting wins?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Daily Collegian/Post-Gazette insider Seth Engle discuss Michigan's College Football Playoff national championship victory over Washington in the context of coach James Franklin's Nittany Lions program. How did Franklin fall so far behind Michigan's Jim Harbaugh after beating him in three out of four years from 2017-2020? What lessons should Penn State learn from the Wolverines' ascent, particularly from their continuity in the form of players like J.J. McCarthy, Roman Wilson and Blake Corum. And what did their domination of Michael Penix Jr. and the Huskies signal about the future of the Big Ten wen Washington, USC, UCLA and Oregon join in 2024?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and also checks in on recruiting news with the commitments of receiver Julian Fleming and Nolan Rucci over the past week. Plus, the possible looming pledge of Georgia cornerback transfer A.J. Harris.

January 09, 2024 Steelers-Bills: Louis Riddick analyzes Mason Rudolph's long-term future, T.J. Watt's DPOY chances

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes ESPN NFL analyst Louis Riddick to discuss some hot topics ahead of the team's wild card playoff game against the Bills on Sunday in Buffalo. Should T.J. Watt be named defensive player of the year over foes like the Browns' Myles Garrett and the Cowboys' Micah Parsons after leading the league in sacks for a third time? Does Mason Rudolph have a long-term future in Pittsburgh after leading the team to the playoffs amid Kenny Pickett's injury? Could the Steelers look for another quarterback in the NFL draft? And do the Steelers have a real chance to upset Josh Allen and the Bills? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 09, 2024 Pitt football: Is Eli Holstein the new favorite at QB? Can he be better than Slovis, Jurkovec?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: Is Alabama transfer Eli Holstein the new favorite to start for the Panthers at quarterback? Can he have more success than past transfer portal additions such as Phil Jurkovec and Kedon Slovis? And how will the offensive coaching staff change after assistants Tim Salem (tight ends), Andre Powell (running backs and special teams) and Dave Borbely (offensive line) were let go? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 08, 2024 Penguins getting hot: What have they learned? What's Jake Guentzel's future in Pittsburgh?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin analyze some hot topics around the team. Among them: What worked for the team in December as it closed 2023 on a hot streak? Is the goalie situation more of a tandem now with Tristan Jarry and Alex Nedeljkovic? What is Jake Guentzel's future in Pittsburgh after he offered little clarity in an interview with SiriusXM? And how will coach Mike Sullivan and general manager Kyle Dubas handle Ryan Graves' slow start after giving him a lucrative free agent contract in the offseason?

January 08, 2024 Can this Steelers team shock the world in AFC playoffs?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo joins Christopher Carter to preview the AFC playoffs. Can Pittsburgh shock the world against the Bills and make a serious run? And how will Mason Rudolph fare against Bills Mafia and a talented defense?

January 07, 2024 Steelers clinch playoff berth: Should they want to face Chiefs or Bills? Good news for T.J. Watt?

The Post-Gazette's Adam Bittner and Christopher Carter react as the Steelers clinch a berth in the AFC playoffs with the Jaguars' NFL Week 18 loss to the Titans in Tennessee. Now that they're in, which team should they hope to face in the wild-card round? The Kansas City Chiefs or Buffalo Bills? How could good news about T.J. Watt's MCL injury impact the team's playoff run? What will it mean for the organization's big picture if Mason Rudolph gets the start over Kenny Pickett at quarterback? And how much credit does coach Mike Tomlin deserve for getting the team to rally after falling to 7-7? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 06, 2024 NFL Week 18: Steelers vs. Ravens reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Christopher Carter react live after the Steelers' NFL Week 18 matchup with the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium.

 

Did Mason Rudolph stay hot after seizing the starting quarterback job from Kenny Pickett? Did Cam Heyward and T.J. Watt find a way to slow a Ravens offense that was missing Lamar Jackson? Did George Pickens yet another big outing? And did Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren keep rolling after dominating the Seahawks.

January 05, 2024 Pirates free agency: Could Trevor Bauer, Madison Bumgarner be targets?

On the latest episode of the Pitching In podcast, Pirates insiders Jason Mackey and Michael McKenry take a look a couple of big-name pitching targets still available: Trevor Bauer and Madison Bumgarner. Plus more thoughts on their offseason in totality, which has been distressingly quiet.

 

January 05, 2024 How badly do the Ravens want to eliminate the Steelers? Is AFC North their biggest obstacle?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by the Acrisure Fan Advantage, host Christopher Carter welcomes Ravens Vault podcast host Sarah Ellison to break down her team's NFL Week 18 matchup with the Steelers. Does Baltimore have anything to play for despite locking up the AFC's No. 1 seed last week with a win against the Miami Dolphins? Are AFC North foes like the Steelers and Cleveland Browns the Ravens' biggest obstacles on their path to the Super Bowl? And what matchup's will Sarah be looking at most closely with Lamar Jackson and possibly other key starters like Gus Edwards, Zay Flowers and Odell Beckham Jr. getting rested for the first round of the playoffs? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 04, 2024 Can Steelers take advantage of Lamar Jackson absence? Is Mason Rudolph getting enough praise?

On a special Thursday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to preview their NFL Week 18 matchup with the Baltimore Ravens. How much will QB Lamar Jackson's absence impact the matchup? How many other Ravens starters might sit with the No. 1 seed clinched? Does the list include Gus Edwards, Zay Flowers, Kyle Hamilton or Odell Beckham Jr.?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, ponders whether Mason Rudolph is getting enough praise from inside the locker room and previews the other games relevant to the Steelers playoff hopes, Bills-Dolphins, Jaguars-Titans and Texans-Colts among them.

January 04, 2024 Does Pitt basketball need more from Blake Hinson? What is Panthers' identity?

On their weekly college basketball show, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Abby Schnable analyze Pitt's uneven start to the season and conference play. Do the Panthers need more from Blake Hinson, even as he's their leading scorer? What identity is coach Jeff Capel's team taking on? And why is West Virginia's RaeQuan Battle having one of the more interesting seasons in college basketball? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

January 04, 2024 Steelers playoff push: Is Travis Kelce right to defend Mike Tomlin? Could QB choices doom season?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnists Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce's recent defense of Steelers coach Mike Tomlin. Does Kelce have a point in praising Tomlin for his non-losing seasons streak? Or do national observers like him not see the full picture? Is Mike Tomlin's decision to use Mitch Trubisky as Kenny Pickett's backup over Mason Rudolph going to cost the Steelers a playoff berth? And if it does, will he deserve the criticism he receivers?

Our duo tackles those topics; analyzes Penn State's Peach Bowl loss to Ole Miss and what it means for James Franklin's program; and also reacts to wins by Michigan and Washington at the end of a bowl season plagued by opt-outs from NFL-bound players.

January 03, 2024 Peach Bowl reaction: Was Penn State's defense overrated? Could KeAndre Lambert-Smith leave?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle analyze the Nittany Lions' ugly loss to Ole Miss in the Peach Bowl. Did the Rebels' 540 yards of offense prove that departed coordinator Manny Diaz's unit was overrated with rankings inflated by putrid Big Ten competition? Or were the opt-outs of NFL-bound players including Johnny Dixon, Chop Robinson and Kalen King determining factors? And can new coordinator Tom Allen get this group ready to compete with top offenses outside the Big Ten, assuming Penn State is able to make the College Football Playoff next season?

 

Our duo tackles those topics and a range of others on offense. Will KeAndre Lambert-Smith be back with the receivers last season after disappearing late in the 2023 season? Is the starting QB job Drew Allar's to lose? Or could Beau Pribula make a push for playing time? And have Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen gotten back on track after their explosiveness was diminished for much of the year?

January 03, 2024 Steelers-Ravens: Did Kenny Pickett's response to rumors make sense? Mason Rudolph a balancing force?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo react to quarterback Kenny Pickett's response to rumors that he refused to serve as the team's backup quarterback during the NFL Week 17 win against the Bengals. They also analyze the way Mason Rudolph's presence has helped the entire offense find balance. And they weigh in on the Steelers' rookie class that includes Broderick Jones, Joey Porter Jr. and Keeanu Benton and how it has lived up to the hype.

January 02, 2024 Pitt basketball: How much down Panthers miss Jamarius Burton? Should Jaland Love start at PG?

In their weekly Pitt basketball mailbag, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Amon them: Which members of last year's NCAA tournament team do the Panthers most miss? Is Jamarius Burton at the top of that list? When will Jaland Love get a chance to start at point guard for coach Jeff Capel's team? Should Capel be on the hot seat if this team has a losing season? And how many games does Pitt need to win in January to stay in the mix for another March Madness bid?

January 02, 2024 Steelers playoff push: Did Kenny Pickett refuse No. 2 QB role? Where does he go from here?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to discuss Kenny Pickett and the quarterback situation heading into NFL Week 18 against the Baltimore Ravens. Did Pickett refuse the backup role to Mason Rudolph last week at Seattle as some media have reported? Where does he go from here now that coach Mike Tomlin has chosen Rudolph instead for a must-win game for the team's playoff hopes? And how do Pickett's teammates regard him in the locker room?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and also ponders which players the Ravens will rest, having already clinched the No. 1 seed. Will Lamar Jackson play at all? And if not, will other key names including Zay Flowers, Odell Beckham Jr. and Kyle Hamilton join him on the bench?

January 01, 2024 Steelers-Seahawks aftermath: How has Mason Rudolph made offense look suddenly efficient?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers' insider to break down the team's NFL Week 17 victory against the Seahawks in Seattle. Why did the game plan by offensive coordinator Eddie Faulkner and play caller Mike Sullivan work so well for playmakers including Najee Harris, Jaylen Warren, George Pickens and Diontae Johnson? Did Mason Rudolph prove his success was not a fluke playing in place of the injured Kenny Pickett? And how does the Steelers' playoff path look as they jockey for position with the Jacksonville Jaguars, Buffalo Bills, Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 31, 2023 NFL Week 17: Steelers vs. Seahawks reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' NFL Week 17 matchup with the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field.

 

Did Mason Rudolph maintain his momentum from his first start against the Bengals in place of the injured Kenny Pickett? Were Cam Heyward and T.J. Watt able to keep the banged up defense on course? Did George Pickens have another huge effort? And did Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren find holes in the running game?

 

The live stream will begin 10-15 minutes after the conclusion of the game on FOX. A replay of the show will be available immediately after the live show ends.

December 28, 2023 Steelers playoff push: Should 2024 matter to how Mike Tomlin is handling Kenny Pickett?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the Steelers QB situation heading into their NFL Week 17 matchup with the Seattle Seahawks. Should coach Mike Tomlin be considering next season at all when choosing between Kenny Pickett and Mason Rudolph for this game? How much could Pickett realistically change perceptions by getting healthy and playing well in the last two games? And is Mason Rudolph possibly playing for a job as the No. 2 QB next season?

 

Our duo tackles those questions, sizes up the Steelers' place in the AFC playoff race, previews Penn State's matchup with Ole Miss in the Peach Bowl and ponders all of the opt-outs across college football this bowl season.

December 27, 2023 Peach Bowl preview: Does Penn State's Lane Kiffin or Ole Miss' Lane Kiffin need this win more?

On their weekly Penn Stare football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle preview the Peach Bowl matchup with Ole Miss in Atlanta. Who needs this game more to shed their reputation for coming up small in big games? The Nittany Lions' James Franklin or the Rebels' Lane Kiffin? Will we see players with NFL aspirations like Theo Johnson, Olu Fashanu, Kalen King and Johnny Dixon? And if so, how much? Do Drew Allar, Nick Singleton, Kaytron Allen and the offense need to show explosiveness like they did at Michigan State to build confidence for next season? And does this defense need a dominant effort to prove it's one of the best defenses in Penn State history?

 

Our duo tackles those questions and some bowl season developments. Is Penn State on the verge of landing former Ohio State receiver Julian Fleming in the transfer portal? What first impressions did new defensive coordinator Tom Allen give in his introductory news conference? And what does Tyler Warren's return mean for the tight end room and the offense as a whole?

December 27, 2023 Are the Steelers handling their QB situation with Mason Rudolph and Kenny Pickett the right way?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes insider and former Steelers offensive lineman Trai Essex to break down the state of the franchise heading into Week 17. Is Mike Tomlin handling the team’s quarterback situation with Mason Rudolph and Kenny Pickett the right way? Also, Trai gives his insights on the progress and needs of the Steelers’ offensive line.

Later, the duo discusses how Pittsburgh’s has defense maintained with all of the injuries this season, especially to their linebacker corps. The guys look ahead to the Steelers' NFL Week 17 matchup on the road at the Seattle Seahawks as well, another game that may well again decide their playoff fate.

For more sports, visit post-gazette.com.

December 26, 2023 Will Steelers' Mike Tomlin keep his QB situation murky, especially if Mason Rudolph is his choice?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Adam Bittner to analyze the team's quarterback situation heading into NFL Week 17 against the Seattle Seahawks. Will Kenny Pickett be healthy enough to play this weeK? Or will Mason Rudolph continue to get starter's reps all week? Is it possible that Tomlin will keep Pickett's status murky in the event he wants to use Rudolph this week, so as not to create any more controversy? Or will he declare Rudolph his preference if both are healthy enough to play?

Our duo tackles those questions, the injury status of Minkah Fitzpatrick and Elandon Roberts and the Steelers' playoff chances in a loaded AFC that still has the Texans, Jaguars, Colts and Bills all in the hunt for the conference's final playoff spots.

December 26, 2023 Pitt sports year in review: Is Blake Hinson the top athlete? Will Backyard Brawl loss haunt most?

In their weekly Pitt mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter look back that the year that was in 2023. What was the Panthers' biggest win of 2023? Was the Backyard Brawl loss to West Virginia in football their worst loss? Is Blake Hinson the athlete of the year for helping coach Jeff Capel and the basketball team get back to March Madness? And what accolades do the top ranked women's volleyball and soccer teams earn? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 24, 2023 Steelers-Bengals reaction: Should Mason Rudolph keep the starting QB job? How did defense persevere?

On a special Sunday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo break down the team's NFL Week 16 victory against the Cincinnati Bengals at Acrisure Stadium. Should Mason Rudolph's performance allow him to keep the starting quarterback job even if Kenny Pickett is healthy? How did the defense hold the Bengals to 11 point despite the absences of key playmakers including Minkah Fitzpatrick, Damontae Kazee, Elandon Roberts, Cole Holcomb and Kwon Alexander? And has speculation that coach Mike Tomlin has lost the locker room been overblown amid effort issues with players including George Pickens in recent weeks? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

December 23, 2023 NFL Week 16: Steelers vs. Bengals reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' NFL Week 16 matchup with the Cincinnati Bengals at Acrisure Stadium.

 

How did Mason Rudolph fare in his first start this season, a possible last chance to prove he can lead an offense? How did the defense look without Damontae Kazee and Minkah Fitzpatrick in the secondary? How did George Pickens respond to a tumultuous week filled with questions about his effort level? And did Mike Tomlin quiet any of his growing number of critics?

 

The live stream will begin 10-15 minutes after the conclusion of the game on NBC. A replay of the show will be available immediately after the live show ends.

December 22, 2023 Time to bench George Pickens and Diontae Johnson? | Week 16 fantasy football preview

Post-Gazette sports editor and fantasy football columnist Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers-Bengals for Saturday’s 4:30 p.m. game, as well as talk about their top fantasy football players to start, sit and stream for Week 16 on our new "Steel City Sleepers" show.

Can Pat Freiermuth be trusted in starting lineups after having his best game of the season against Cincinnati in Week 12?

Is the Steelers’ ground game due for another big game against a below-average Bengals run defense?

And will the Seahawks D/ST be a worthy top-10 defense to stash for Week 17 vs. the Steelers?

Visit the fantasy football page on our Post-Gazette website for all of Chris' weekly content, including his 'Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' flagship column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and his ‘Fantasy Fallout’ waiver wire strategy column, published every Tuesday.

If you haven’t already, subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our sports reporters, columnists and their special guests.

December 22, 2023 What are the Pirates getting with the re-signing of Andrew McCutchen? Also, top favorite offseason moves so far

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to break down the Pirates re-signing outfielder Andrew McCutchen and what it means for the franchise.


Also, who will the team feature at catcher in 2024? And what type of starting pitcher should the Pirates add for next season?


Our duo also breaks down their favorite moves so far this offseason and discusses who will end up seeing time in right field.


If you haven’t already, subscribe to the sports department’s YouTube channel so you don’t miss a video with our reporters, columnists and their special guests.


For more sports, visit post-gazette.com.

December 21, 2023 Steelers dysfunction: How much blame do GMs Kevin Colbert, Omar Khan deserve for poor roster?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the roles of current general manager Omar Khan and former GM Kevin Colbert in the Steelers' recent struggles. Should they share some blame with coach Mike Tomlin? Should three years of ugly NFL draft results from 2020-22 stain Colbert's legacy in Pittsburgh? Did Khan do as well in free agency this year as many people believed? And was it ever reasonable to expect a roster with only few contributors from three years worth of drafts -- a small group that includes Alex Highsmith, George Pickens and Kenny Pickett -- to be of playoff caliber?


Our duo tackles those topics as well as the Pirates signings of Martin Perez and Andrew McCutchen; Penn State coach James Franklin's hiring of former Indiana coach Tom Allen as defensive coordinator; and Riverhounds SC's prominent role in the growing fissures between MLS and the USL Championship regarding the future of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.

December 20, 2023 Steelers turmoil: Will George Pickens' maturity, effort always be an issue after latest rant?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze receiver George Pickens' controversial comments to reporters Tuesday. Is Pickens capable of maturing and taking accountability for valid questions about his effort? Or do the comments prove that his attitude will always be an issue for the Steelers and coach Mike Tomlin?


Later, the duo reacts to T.J. Watt's comments about how the team is practicing, breaks down the fairness of the Damontae Kazee suspension after the NFL banned him for the rest of the year after his hit on the Indianapolis Colts' Michael Pittman Jr. on Saturday. And the guys look ahead to the Steelers' NFL Week 16 matchup with the division rival Cincinnati Bengals at Acrisure Stadium, a game that may well decide their postseason fate.

December 20, 2023 Did Penn State's James Franklin get it right hiring Tom Allen as DC? Is WR recruiting a concern?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle react to coach James Franklin's hiring of former Indiana coach Tom Allen as defensive coordinator. Is he the right guy to maintain the momentum Manny Diaz had built for the unit? ANd are there valid concerns with how his Hoosier defenses have played in recent years?


Our duo tackles those questions, the official introduction of Andy Kotelnicki as offensive coordinator, the NFL draft prospect of Penn State players including Olu Fashanu, Kalen King and Theo Johnson, plus the recruiting class that Franklin's program will sign this week. Is the 17th-ranked group good enough to help the Nittany Lions get over the top? And is it a concern that their incoming receivers are ranked fairly low after Penn State struggled at the position this past season?

December 19, 2023 Reacting to Pirates Andrew McCutchen, Martin Perez signings. Is something bigger coming?

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to break down the Pirates signings of outfielder Andrew McCutchen and Martin Perez in the last 24 hours. Can McCutchen still produce over a whole season? How long might his second act with the club last? And how does Perez fit into the rotation alongside the recently acquired Marco Gonzales?


Our duo tackles those questions and also looks ahead to what's next. Could there and should there be another move for a starting pitcher coming? Is it reasonable to expect such a pitcher to be a No. 2 behind Mitch Keller? And how do young players including Roansy Contreras, Quinn Priester and Paul Skenes fit into pitch plans for the years ahead?

December 19, 2023 How is Sidney Crosby's new role helping the Penguins' power play? Can success continue?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel break down hot topics around the team. How has Sidney Crosby's new role on the left flank helped the power play? What should we make of Valtteri Puustinen's first extended look in the NHL? And should we be concerned about Ryan Graves' slow start? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 19, 2023 Steelers OC search: Why Devin McCourty wants Mike Tomlin to leave his 'comfort zone' with hire

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes NBC Sports analyst Devin McCourty to discuss hot topics around the team. How will Mason Rudolph look with his latest chance at quarterback if Kenny Pickett remains too injured to play? What direction should Mike Tomlin go with his next offensive coordinator hire and why does McCourty believe it needs to be outside his "comfort zone"? And did the NFL go too far in suspending safety Damontae Kazee for the season after his illegal hit in the loss Saturday against the Colts? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 18, 2023 Pitt football: Grading Pat Narduzzi's incoming recruiting class. Can it help Panthers bounce back?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: What grade should coach Pat Narduzzi get from his incoming recruiting class, and what kind of impact is reasonable to expect? Which players will have a chance to see the field most often in 2024? Could there be any late additions to the class? And how have Pitt's early efforts in the transfer portal gone? Considering they've added names including Kansas State's Nate Matlack and Indiana's Nick James as well as Western Carolina's Desmond Reid and CJ Lee, who both worked with new offensive coordinator Kade Bell.

December 18, 2023 Steelers turmoil: Is firing Mike Tomlin a real possibility for Art Rooney II if losing continues?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss Mike Tomlin's standing in the organization after a third consecutive loss in NFL Week 15 against Indianapolis. Is the veteran coach safe no matter what because of the way owner Art Rooney II values stability? Could an 0-3 finish to the season actually change Rooney's perspective? And how does effort level from important pieces like George Pickens and Diontae Johnson factor into the decision?


Our duo tackles those topics, the team's awful quarterback play with Mitch Trubisky in the absence of injured starter Kenny Pickett and the defense's many injuries that may prove too much for the unit to overcome.

December 16, 2023 NFL Week 15: Steelers vs. Colts reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' NFL Week 15 matchup with the Indianapolis Colts.


Is this team essentially out of playoff contention? What should Mike Tomlin's future with the franchise be? And should defensive stars like Cam Heyward, T.J. Watt and Minkah Fitzpatrick face scrutiny for their unit's recent failures.


The live stream will begin 10-15 minutes after the conclusion of the game on NFL Network. A replay of the show will be available immediately after the live show ends.

December 16, 2023 No trust left for the Steelers? | Week 15 fantasy football preview

Post-Gazette sports editor and fantasy football columnist Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers-Colts for Saturday’s 4:30 p.m. game, as well as talk about their top fantasy football players to start, sit and stream for Week 15 on our new "Steel City Sleepers" show.


The guys discuss whether any Steelers are worth starting — let alone rostering — in the fantasy playoffs.


Can George Pickens or Diontae Johnson be trusted in any fantasy lineups this weekend?


Is the Pittsburgh Steelers defense better off “sabotage-dropping” to the waiver wire?


And will Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris ever bounce back statistically in 2023?


Visit the fantasy football page on our Post-Gazette website for all of Chris' weekly content, including his 'Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' flagship column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and his ‘Fantasy Fallout’ waiver wire strategy column, published every Tuesday.


If you haven’t already, also subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our sports reporters, columnists and their special guests.


Chris Dell: cdell@post-gazette.com and Twitter @maddjournalist

December 15, 2023 Steelers-Colts: Will the atmosphere feel like a playoff game? Can Pittsburgh handle that?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by the Acrisure Fan Advantage, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter welcomes Colts radio voice Matt Taylor to preview Saturday's Steelers-Colts matchup. Will this game have the feel of a playoff matchup, with both teams needing a win to stay in the wild card race? Where can the Colts hurt the Steelers? And what are our final predictions for Saturday’s tilt? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 15, 2023 Pirates offseason: Henry Davis at catcher? What's next?

In the latest episode of Pitching In presented by North Shore Tavern, Pirates insiders Jason Mackey and Michael McKenry discuss the situation at catcher following Endy Rodriguez's season-ending injury. The job has to be No. 1 pick Henry Davis', right? Or is there a signing to be made? Plus they discuss the latest TV deal and Robby Incmikoski not being retained.

December 14, 2023 Should Steelers consider drafting Heisman winner Jayden Daniels? Should Justin Fields be an option?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze the Steelers' quarterback situation going into 2024. Should they consider trying to draft Heisman Trophy-winning LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels if he's available, as P-G sports columnist Joe Starkey and CBS Sports' Emory Jones have suggested? Should they be in on Justin Fields if the Chicago Bears look to move him in anticipation of drafting Caleb Williams or Drake Maye? Does Kenny Pickett deserve another year to prove himself in an offense not led by fired coordinator Matt Canada? And could veterans like Kirk Cousins or Jameis Winston make sense as backups who could become starters if Pickett struggles?


Our duo tackles those topics, then gets into some Pirates and college football talk. Is the club's new TV deal with SportsNet Pittsburgh a good one? What should we make of the trade for pitcher Marco Gonzales and the signing of first baseman Rowdy Tellez? And are Pitt and Penn State better off with the hiring of offensive coordinators Kade Bell and Andy Kotelnicki, respectively?

December 13, 2023 Is Pirates' new TV deal good or bad? Impact of Endy Rodriguez injury, Rowdy Tellez signing?

On a special Pirates podcast, Post-Gazette insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to analyze a wave of breaking news from the club. What should we make of the new television deal with SportsNet Pittsburgh and he partnership with the Penguins and Boston Red Sox by extension? Could a new streaming option for both the Pirates and Penguins offset some revenue lost on the cable side? What details did team president Travis Williams share about the deal? And did the Pirates give anything up by passing on using MLB's distribution model?


Later, our duo analyzes catcher Endy Rodriguez's injury that will cost him the entire 2024 season. Did the club err in allowing him to play winter ball, putting him in a position to get injured in the first place? What is the plan at catcher now that Rodriguez is injured? Is former No. 1 overall pick Henry Davis prepared to carry the load? And what happens if he's not? Our duo tackles those questions and wraps with some analysis of the Rowdy Tellez signing at first base in MLB free agency.

December 13, 2023 Who SHOULD Steelers' offensive leader be? | Should Mason Rudolph get a chance at QB?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze the team's struggling offense. Who should the unit's leader be in the absence of injured QB Kenny Pickett and fired coordinator Matt Canada? Why have names including Najee Harris, Diontae Johnson and Pat Freiermuth failed to pick up that mantle?


They also get into the QB situation. Could it be Mason Rudolph's moment this week if Mitch Trubisky struggles again against the Colts? And what are Brian's predictions for the NFL Week 15 showdown? Our duo tackles all of those topics and more.

December 13, 2023 Penn State DC search: Do Tom Allen, Anthony Poindexter make sense as Manny Diaz replacements?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle analyze possible candidates to replace Manny Diaz as Nittany Lions defensive coordinator after he took the head coaching job at Duke last week. Do internal candidates including linebackers coach Anthony Poindexter and Rob Smith make the most sense for coach James Franklin from a continuity perspective? Do recently fired head coaches including Tom Allen and Zach Arnett hold appeal as experienced options? Could Missouri's Blake Baker pick up where Diaz left off as his former DC at Miami? And do names including D'Anton Lynn, Tony Gibson and Jim Leonhard merit any consideration? Our duo tackles those topics and offers perspective on Penn State's recruiting efforts in the transfer portal so far.

December 12, 2023 Steelers struggles: Why do national media still love Mike Tomlin? | Are AFC North hopes finished?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes the NFL Network's Jamie Erdhal to tackle some hot topics surrounding the team. Can Kenny Pickett still find another gear to his game when he returns from injury? Why do national media still love Steelers coach Mike Tomlin despite heavy criticism within the fan base? Could Mason Rudolph replace Mitch Trubisky as the No. 2 QB if Trubisky struggles this in NFL Week 15 against the Indianapolis Colts? And how do the Steelers fit in the AFC North division right now? Is a last-place finish behind the Ravens, Bengals and Browns still possible?

December 12, 2023 Pitt football: What's different about new OC Kade Bell? Was he Pat Narduzzi's top choice?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: What makes newly hired offensive coordinator Kade Bell different from predecessors including Frank Cignetti Jr. and Mark Whipple? Was Bell coach Pat Narduzzi's top choice for the job? And will there be any more changes on the coaching staff this offseason? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 11, 2023 How does Penguins ownership feel about early impact of Kyle Dubas?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel discuss Matt's exclusive interview with Tom Werner, chairman of the Fenway Sports Group that owns the team. What were his thoughts on roster construction as the team has struggled this season around big names like Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Erik Karlsson? How involved is FSG in day to day management of hockey operations? And how much confidence does ownership have in general manager Kyle Dubas as he looks to correct mistakes made by previous GM Ron Hextall? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 11, 2023 Steelers turmoil: Should Mike Tomlin be traded? | Mitch Trubisky or Mason Rudolph at QB?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss coach Mike Tomlin's future. What does he have to do in the remaining weeks of the season to prove he belongs in the team's future? And could owner Art Rooney II and general manager Omar Khan look to trade him in the offseason if things don't turn around?


Our duo tackles those questions and also ponders whether Mitch Trubisky or Mason Rudolph should start at quarterback while No. 1 signal caller Kenny Pickett remains out with an injury.

December 09, 2023 Drop the Steelers defense? | Week 14 Fantasy Football Preview

Post-Gazette sports editor Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers-Patriots, as well as their top fantasy football players to start and sit for Week 14 on our new "Steel City Sleepers" show.

The guys discuss which Steelers players are worth dropping after their second straight loss to a 2-10 team. They also break down their top five sleepers and busts at each position, including top defensive (D/ST) streamers and kickers for the fantasy playoffs.

Are Diontae Johnson and George Pickens better off on your opponents' rosters?

Is the Steelers' fantasy D/ST worth dropping after flopping against the Patriots?

And is there any fantasy hope for Pittsburgh for the rest of the 2023 season?

Visit the fantasy football page on our Post-Gazette website for all of Chris' weekly content, including his 'Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' flagship column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper), and subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our reporters, columnists and guests.

December 08, 2023 Pirates offseason: Is there a plan at first base?

On the latest episode of Pitching In presented by North Shore Tavern, Pirates insiders Jason Mackey and Michael McKenry take a look at the moves (and non-moves) at the Winter Meetings. What makes Marco Gonzales a fit in the starting rotation? And who will ultimately play first base in 2024? 


December 08, 2023 Steelers fallout: Is the Mike Tomlin era nearing its end?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Steelers insider Brian Batko joins Christopher Carter to sort through the rubble of Thursday's loss to the Patriots. Is the team now resigned to being a bad football team? And what does the future hold for Mike Tomlin after a historically bad stretch? 


December 07, 2023 NFL Week 14: Steelers vs. Patriots reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' Week 14 matchup with the New England Patriots on Thursday Night Football.


How did Mitch Trubisky perform playing in place of injured quarterback Kenny Pickett? Did Najee Harris, Jaylen Warren and the running game maintain their recent momentum? Were receivers Diontae Johnson and George Pickens more involved in the passing game? And how did the defense look navigating nagging injuries to key players including T.J. Watt and Elandon Roberts? Our duo tackles those questions and more.


The live stream will begin 10-15 minutes after the conclusion of the game on Amazon Prime and KDKA-TV locally. A replay of the show will be available immediately after the live show ends.

December 06, 2023 MLB trade news: Reacting to Pirates deal with Braves for Marco Gonzales

Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey joins host Adam Bittner to break down the club's trade with the Atlanta Braves for lefty starter Marco Gonzales at the MLB winter meetings on Tuesday in Nashville. What does Gonzales add to a rotation with few other proven options? Could general manager Ben Cherington make another significant move to upgrade the rotation? Or is this it? Could a top three of Gonzales, Mitch Keller and Paul Skenes be competitive in the NL Central? Or do the Pirates need names like Roansy Contreras, Quinn Priester and others to step up? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 06, 2023 Do Penn State, James Franklin have early edge on Ohio State, Ryan Day in transfer portal moves?

On their weekly Penn State sports podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle discuss the early days of transfer portal moves across college football. Is the Nittany Lions' lack of losses so far an endorsement by players of James Franklin's hiring of Andy Kotelnicki as offensive coordinator? Is Ohio State's loss of Kyle McCord and Julian Fleming to the portal a sign of turmoil in that program after a third straight loss to Michigan? And could Penn State rekindle its relationship with Fleming to bring him to Happy Valley.


Our duo tackles those topics and also gets into some bowl talk. Were Lane Kiffin and Ole Miss the best opponents the Lions could hope to draw in the Peach Bowl? Did Penn State deserve its slot in the New Year's Six over programs like Oklahoma? And what does this year's New Year's Six field tell us about next season's first 12-team college football playoff?

December 06, 2023 Steelers-Patriots: Can Mitch Trubisky handle this New England defense? | Bill Belichick on hot seat?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Patriots insider Greg Bedard to preview the Steelers' matchup with their AFC East rival on Thursday Night Football. Is this Patriots defense as tough as the stats indicate? Or will Mitch Trubisky have a chance to play well against it in the absence of the injured Kenny Pickett. What is Bill Belichick's future in New England amid a 2-10 record so far? Is he on the hot seat? Or will his reputation help him as it's helped Steelers coach Mike Tomlin? And can teams like the Steelers and Patriots win with great defenses moving forward in today's NFL? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 05, 2023 Does Steelers' Mike Tomlin deserve blame after Diontae Johnson, others admit taking Arizona lightly?

On the weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, the Post-Gazette's Adam Bittner welcomes former Penn State and Steelers standout Justin King to sort through Diontae Johnson's recent comments about the team's NFL Week 13 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. How could a locker room of professionals take that team "lightly" despite its 2-10 record? How much blame does coach Mike Tomlin deserve for that mentality compared to his players? And do Tomlin's bad losses stand out more because of their rarity?


Our duo tackles those topics and the defensive communication issues caused by injuries to linebackers Elandon Roberts, Kwon Alexander and Cole Holcomb. Justin also offers his thoughts on the growth of Joey Porter Jr., who he once recruited to Penn State and the team's chances this week on Thursday Night Football against the New England Patriots.

December 05, 2023 Pitt football: Why is Pat Narduzzi's defense losing so many players to transfer portal?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them, why is coach Pat Narduzzi's defense losing so many players -- including vaunted linebacker Bangally Kamara -- from his vaunted defense while the struggling offense has remained mostly intact? Was it more surprising that running back Rodney Hammond Jr. or tight end Gavin Bartholomew chose to return? And does Pitt have the NIL support to chase a top quarterback such as Kyle McCord, Dillon Gabriel or Drew Shapen in the transfer portal this offseason?

December 04, 2023 Can Kris Letang help the Penguins' power play? | Why does this team keep blowing leads?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel analyze a power play unit that continues to struggle. Can the addition of defenseman Kris Letang make a difference? Why hasn't general manager Kyle Dubas been able to find more depth with his variety of roster moves lately? And why is a team that includes Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin struggling to hold third-period leads? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 04, 2023 Steelers-Cardinals reaction: Can Mike Tomlin save the season amid Kenny Pickett injury?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to break do the team's NFL Week 13 loss to the Arizona Cardinals at Acrisure Stadium. Why is the offense such a mess, even after the firing of offensive coordinator Matt Canada? How can the unit navigate the loss of quarterback Kenny Pickett for at least the next couple of weeks? Why did the defense give up so many big plays to the Cardinals, particularly running back James Conner? And can coach Mike Tomlin save the season amid an ever-tightening playoff race in the AFC? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 03, 2023 NFL Week 13: Steelers vs. Cardinals reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports editors Adam Bittner and Chris Dell break down the Steelers' 24-10 loss to Arizona. What is their outlook if Kenny Pickett is forced to miss significant time? Why is the offense having so much trouble finishing despite moving the ball more efficiently? How big of a loss is Elandon Roberts for the defense? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

December 01, 2023 Steelers-Cardinals: Which QB will play better between Kenny Pickett and Kyler Murray?

On the Saturday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by the Acrisure Fan Advantage, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter welcomes Bo Brack of PHNX Sports to preview the Steelers' NFL Week 13 game with the Arizona Cardinals in Pittsburgh. Do Kyler Murray and the Cardinals present a "trap game" on Sunday for the 7-4 Steelers?


What matchups can Kenny Pickett exploit through the air in Pittsburgh's new-look offense? Chris and Bo also give their final predictions and discuss the key matchups needed for each team to win. Our duo tackles those topics and more.


For more sports, visit post-gazette.com.

December 01, 2023 Is Jaylen Warren overrated? | Week 13 fantasy football preview

Post-Gazette sports editor Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things fantasy for Steelers-Cardinals, as well as their top players to start and sit for Week 13 on our new "Steel City Sleepers" show.


The guys discuss which Steelers players they're either buying or selling after seeing Pittsburgh’s new-look, Canada-less offense last weekend. They also dish out their top five sleepers and busts at each position, including top defensive (D/ST) streamers and kickers.


Is Najee Harris now the better fantasy back to own over Jaylen Warren?


Are we buying Pat Freiermuth as a top-10 TE option the rest of the season?


And what are the top fantasy playoff strategies we should be employing right now?


Visit the Post-Gazette website for Chris' weekly 'Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' flagship column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our reporters, columnists and guests.

December 01, 2023 Pirates offseason: When will Ben Cherington make a move?

On the latest episode of Pitching In presented by North Shore Tavern, Pirates insiders Jason Mackey and Michael McKenry discuss a too-quiet offseason ahead of the Winter Meetings. Should fans be concerned that no one has been signed yet? Plus, they discuss the hiring of Sarah Gelles as an assistant general manager and what it could mean and answer questions about the 2024 payroll.


December 01, 2023 Steelers-Cardinals: Do Kenny Pickett, offense need to dominate? | What did Faulkner/Sullivan change?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to break down the team's NFL Week 13 matchup with the Arizona Cardinals at Acrisure Stadium. Is this the week Kenny Pickett, Najee Harris, George Pickens, Diontae Johnson and the offense need to show dominance of an inferior opponent? What did interim offensive coordinator Eddie Faulkner and play caller Mike Sullivan change after the firing of Matt Canada to produce more yardage in NFL Week 12 against the Bengals? And could these next two games against the Cardinals and Patriots be trap games for the Steelers? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 30, 2023 Reacting to Penn State's hiring of Andy Kotelnicki as OC. A coup for James Franklin, Drew Allar?

The Post-Gazette's Adam Bittner and Seth Engle react to Penn State's reported hiring of Andy Kotelnicki as offensive coordinator, replacing Mike Yurcich. Did coach James Franklin make the right choice from a crowded field of candidates? Can the now-former Kansas OC get running backs Kaytron Allen and Nick Singleton back on track after they lacked explosiveness in 2023? Is this a good fit for Drew Allar, who showed promise but didn't quite live up to his five-star hype? And could this hire convince possible draft and transfer candidates including KeAndre Lambert-Smith, Theo Johnson and Tyler Warren to remain in Happy Valley for 2024? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

November 30, 2023 Pitt football: TE Gavin Bartholomew discusses his football future

On the final episode of the In the Trenches podcast for 2023, Pitt football standouts Jake Kradel and Gavin Bartholomew join host Noah Hiles to look back at the season that was. What were the reasons that the offense was never able to find its stride en route to a 3-9 record? How has the beginning of this offseason been different than in past years, with no bowl game looming and teammates hitting the NCAA transfer portal? How much is NIL influencing transfer portal decisions? And will Gavin return to Pitt for the 2024 season? Our trio tackles those topics and more.

November 30, 2023 Is Steelers' Najee Harris blooming late like Derrick Henry? | Would 10 wins be a disappointment?

In his weekly YouTube and podcast appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze Steelers running back Najee Harris. Is his recent run of solid production a sign he's blooming late like fellow Alabama back Derrick Henry did? Should the Steelers use their fifth-year option on his rookie contract? And does this offense need Harris alongside Jaylen Warren to function at its best?


Our duo tackles those questions, takes stock of Pat Narduzzi's job security at Pitt following a 3-9 season, ponders Penn State's looming decision on a new offensive coordinator and wonders when the Pirates will make a move in MLB free agency.

November 29, 2023 Time for Steelers to hold Diontae Johnson accountable? | Can AFC North still be won?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to discuss Diontae Johnson's lack of hustle Sunday at Cincinnati and a report that the receiver got into an altercation with teammate Minkah Fitzpatrick. Will coach Mike Tomlin hold him accountable for those actions? And is Johnson's conduct becoming a larger problem for the team?


Our duo tackles those questions, sizes up the Steelers' chances to beat the Ravens in the AFC North race and ponders the impact the return of Fitzpatrick and Montravius Adams could have on the defense.

November 29, 2023 Penn State OC search: Should James Franklin target Joe Moorhead? Brennan Marion? Sean Lewis?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle analyze potential candidates to be the Nittany Lions' offensive coordinator. Does a return for Joe Moorhead make sense after his success with Trace McSorley, Saquon Barkley and Chris Godwin en route to a Big Ten title in 2016? Could James Franklin target a young up-and-comer like UNLV's Brennan Marion? Does Colorado's Sean Lewis deserve a shot in a more stable program? Do other names like Tim Cramsey of Memphis or Mike Denbrock of LSU belong in the conversation? What about recently fired coaches including the Carolina Panthers' Frank Reich or Houston's Dana Holgorsen?


Our duo tackles all of those questions and sizes up the rest of the program as it enters bowl season. Can Drew Allar, Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen build on an explosive regular season finale at Michigan State? What does Penn State need to do in the transfer portal when it opens next week? And are there any open head coaching jobs that could appear to defensive coordinator Manny Diaz?

November 28, 2023 Ed Bouchette on Steelers' Hall of Fame candidates, Art Rooney II's role in Matt Canada firing

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes the Post-Gazette's retired Hall of Fame beat writer Ed Bouchette to discuss hot topics around the team. Do James Harrison and Hines Ward belong in the Pro Football Hall of Fame after being named semifinalists for induction this week? Did Art Rooney II overstep in the team's firing of Matt Canada as offensive coordinator? And is the growth Kenny Pickett showed in the win against the Bengals this week sustainable? Our duo answers those questions and more.

November 28, 2023 Pitt mailbag: Who might Pat Narduzzi target OC? Who to blame for QB struggles after Kenny Pickett?

In their weekly Pitt mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: Why have coach Pat Narduzzi and the Panthers struggled so much at the QB position since Kenny Pickett left for the Steelers? Who will Narduzzi target as his new offensive coordinator, replacing the fired Frank Cignetti? And what is receiver Tiquan Underwood's future with the program?

November 28, 2023 What's wrong with the Penguins' power play? Can Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin get it back on track?

On their weekly hockey podcast, Post-Gazette Penguins insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel discuss the team's struggling power play. What tweaks can coach Mike Sullivan make to get a unit highlighted by Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin back on track? Does the group need more of the physicality Patric Hornqvist once offered in front of the net? And how has the penalty kill unit gotten back on track after a rough start? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 27, 2023 Steelers-Bengals recap: Did Matt Canada firing really make a difference for Kenny Pickett, offense?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to break down an NFL Week 12 victory against the Bengals on Sunday in Cincinnati.


Did Kenny Pickett and the offense really show progress in the absence of fired coordinator Matt Canada by moving the ball? Or was the lack of points still a concern for interim coordinator Eddie Faulkner and play caller Mike Sullivan? How much credit does coordinator Teryl Austin deserve for the defense's emerging dominance amid injuries to key players including Minkah Fitzpatrick, Cole Holcomb and Kwon Alexander? And where do the Steelers stand in the AFC North race following a win for the Ravens and loss for the Browns on Sunday? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 27, 2023 NFL Week 12: Steelers vs. Bengals reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' Week 12 matchup with the Cincinnati Bengals.


Did Kenny Pickett show any signs of improvement from his recent poor efforts against Cleveland and Green Bay? How did the offense look overall following the firing of Matt Canada? And how did T.J. Watt and the defense handle a Bengals offense led by Jake Browning, not the injured Joe Burrow?


The live stream will begin 10-15 minutes after the conclusion of the game on CBS. A replay of the show will be available immediately after the live show ends.

November 25, 2023 Steelers-Bengals: Can Jake Browning challenge T.J. Watt, Steelers defense amid Joe Burrow injury?

On the Saturday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by the Acrisure Fan Advantage, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter welcomes Ben Baby of ESPN to preview the Steelers' NFL Week 12 showdown with the Bengals in Cincinnati. What do Steelers fans need to know about Jake Browning as he takes over at quarterback for the injured Joe Burrow? What impact will the firing of Matt Canada have on the game? And could Kenny Pickett and the Steelers offense find its stride against a Bengals defense that has been struggling? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

November 24, 2023 Do the Steelers have a coordinator hiring problem?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike’s Beer Bar, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter and Brian Batko discuss what the realistic expectations should be for the Steelers’ new OC. Do the Steelers have a coordinator hiring problem? What changes should we expect from the playcalling this Sunday against Cincinnati? Our duo those questions and more, plus give their Week 12 Steelers-Bengals predictions.

If you haven’t already, subscribe to the sports department’s YouTube channel so you don’t miss a video with our reporters, columnists and their special guests.

November 23, 2023 Ranking Steelers OC candidates: How do Ken Dorsey, Byron Leftwich, Darrell Bevell and more stack up?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnists Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze possible candidates to replace the fired Matt Canada as Steelers offensive coordinator. Does Byron Leftwich make sense with his Pittsburgh ties? Could Ken Dorsey make Kenny Pickett better with lessons learned coaching Josh Allen in Buffalo? Could Darrell Bevell or Zach Robinson bring fresh ideas from trendy systems? Or could a veteran like Jim Caldwell be the steady hand Pickett needs? Our duo tackles those questions and other changes coach Mike Tomlin should make now that Canada has been let go. 


Later, Paul and Adam share their thoughts on the college football national championship race. Who's got the edge between Ohio State and Michigan as coaches Ryan Day and Jim Harbaugh face off for possibly the final time? Does Florida State belong in the College Football Playoff without QB Jordan Travis? And could chaos in the final weeks spice up an otherwise fairly chalky season? 

November 22, 2023 Should Penn State give Beau Pribula an extended look at QB over injured Drew Allar at Michigan State?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle analyze the Nittany Lions' quarterback situation heading into the season finale at Michigan State. Will the injured Drew Allar play at all? If he does, should backup Beau Pribula still get an extended look in the second half? And will Pribula get a chance to pass more frequently if and when he does enter the game?


Later, our duo dives into other questions around the program. Are Chop Robinson and Olu Fashanu locks to leave Happy Valley for the NFL draft? Could defensive coordinator Manny Diaz head elsewhere for a head coaching position? And what are Penn State's likely bowl outcomes? Does anywhere other than the Peach Bowl make sense right now? Get insight on those topics and more.

November 22, 2023 Steelers' Matt Canada fired: Was midseason move a surprise? Can Kenny Pickett improve under Eddie Faulkner?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes former Steelers offensive lineman Trai Essex to analyze the firing of offensive coordinator Matt Canada. Was it a surprise that the team made the change now instead of at the end of the season, given the historical rarity of such moves? Do Kenny Pickett and the offense have any chance at improvement under interim OC Eddie Faulkner and play caller Mike Sullivan? And where do the Steelers fit in the AFC North race with the Ravens, Bengals and Browns following the injuries to Deshaun Watson and Joe Burrow? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

November 21, 2023 Will Kenny Pickett, Steelers pass game ever be able to 'open it up'? Charles Davis of CBS weighs in

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes CBS Sports NFL analyst Charles Davis to analyze the team's passing game in the wake of a 13-10 loss to the Cleveland Browns in NFL Week 11. Why can't quarterback Kenny Pickett seem to get receivers including Diontae Johnson and George Pickens involved downfield? What options does coordinator Matt Canada have to try to find a spark? And on the rushing front, does Jaylen Warren have a chance to be the Steelers' backfield star of the future? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 21, 2023 Reacting to Steelers' firing of Matt Canada. Where do Mike Tomlin, Kenny Pickett go from here?

Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins Adam Bittner to react to the team's firing of offensive coordinator Matt Canada on Tuesday. Who ultimately made the decision? Was it owner Art Rooney II or coach Mike Tomlin? What impact will the decision have on quarterback Kenny Pickett? What can we expect from reported interim coordinator Eddie Faulkner and quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan as the play caller? And what direction should the Steelers go in hiring a new offensive coordinator in 2024? Do names like Pep Hamilton or Jim Caldwell make sense? Our duo tackles all of that and more.

November 21, 2023 Pitt football: Should Dino Babers be on OC radar? | Could Brennan Marion return?

In their weekly Pitt mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them, could fired Syracuse coach Dino Babers be an option for Pat Narduzzi and Pitt if they move on from Frank Cignetti Jr. at offensive coordinator? Who are some other OC candidates and is former receivers coach Brennan Marion among them? And who are the basketball team's most important players at the preseason NIT tournament this week in Brooklyn?

November 20, 2023 Will Penguins G Tristan Jarry be pushed for playing time by Alex Nedeljkovic

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin analyze the team's goalie situation. Is Tristan Jarry still the team's unquestioned No. 1 following his long offseason extension? Or could backup Alex Nedeljkovic push him for playing time coming off a stretch of stellar play, including a 3-0 shutout of the Vegas Golden Knights on Sunday evening at PPG Paints Arena?


Our duo tackles those topics and more. They also ponder captain Sidney Crosby's hot start to the season and consider the club's depth options amid injuries to defenseman Chad Ruhwedel and forward Vinnie Hinostroza.

November 20, 2023 Steelers-Browns aftermath: Has Mike Tomlin lost his locker room? | Is Kenny Pickett the problem?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to break down the team's 13-10 loss to the Cleveland Browns in NFL Week 11. Has coach Mike Tomlin lost the locker room, given some of the post-game comments by his players? Is quarterback Kenny Pickett the piece that is holding the offense back most? How much credit should the defense get for keeping the Steelers in the game? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 19, 2023 Steelers-Browns reaction: Offense is in deep trouble

North Shore Drove podcast host Christopher Carter joins Adam Bittner to break down an anemic Steelers loss to the Browns. How much is Kenny Pickett part of the problem? Is there anything the coaching staff can do to right the ship? And is the defense being hurt by the offense's ineptitude?

November 17, 2023 MLB free agency: How will Pirates replace Johan Oviedo? | Should Henry Davis continue to catch?

On their weekly Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey is joined by club TV analyst Michael McKenry to discuss hot offseason topics. Among them: How will general manager Ben Cherington replace starter Johan Oviedo in MLB free agency after news of his season-ending injury? Could Cherington choose to non-tender any members of last year's roster before the deadline Friday? What should we make of the club's 40-man roster going into the Rule 5 draft? And should Henry Davis continue to find himself in the Pirates' catching mix?

November 17, 2023 Bench Najee Harris? | Week 11 Fantasy Football Preview

Post-Gazette sports editor Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers-Browns, as well as top players to start and sit for Week 11 on our new "Steel City Sleepers" podcast and YouTube show.


The guys discuss which Steelers and Browns players they're either buying or selling ahead of this Sunday's pivotal AFC North clash. They also dish out their top five sleepers and busts at each position, including top defensive (D/ST) streamers and kickers.


Is Jaylen Warren now the clear Steelers RB to own over Najee Harris?


Are we benching Pat Freiermuth against a stingy Cleveland Browns defense?


And are there any Browns worth buying with Watson out for the year?


Visit the Post-Gazette website for Chris' weekly 'Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' flagship column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our reporters, columnists and guests.

November 17, 2023 Should Steeler' Kenny Pickett get offseason competition? | Is Browns QB Thompson-Robinson a threat?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to tackle a range of hot topics around the team. How do T.J. Watt and the defense match up against Dorian Thompson-Robinson, the Browns quarterback they'll face this week in place of the injured Deshaun Watson? Should general manager Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin considering bringing in some competition for Kenny Pickett at QB this offseason? And what are Chris and Brian's predictions for the NFL Week 11 matchup this weekend at Cleveland?

November 16, 2023 Steelers-Browns: Are Mark Robinson, Elandon Roberts enough at ILB? | Overreacting on Kenny Pickett?

In his weekly YouTube/podcast appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze the Steelers' situation at inside linebacker. Are Elandon Roberts and Mark Robinson enough to help the team reach the playoffs amid season-ending injuries to Kwon Alexander and Cole Holcomb? Or should the Steelers be considering a move to rebuild their depth ahead of their NFL Week 11 matchup with the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium?


Our duo tackles those topics, ponders whether some fans and media are overreacting to quarterback Kenny Pickett's underwhelming performance in the win against Green Bay and analyzes where James Franklin and Penn State go from here after losing to Michigan and firing offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich.

November 16, 2023 Pitt Senior Night: Jake Kradel, Gavin Bartholomew remember highlights of Panthers' careers together

On their weekly In the Trenches podcast, Pitt football standouts Jake Kradel and Gavin Bartholomew join Post-Gazette insider Noah Hiles to reflect on some memories ahead of Kradel's Senior Night on Thursday against Boston College. They discuss Kradel's favorite road stadiums to play in; beating Clemson on the road to an ACC championship in 2021; and Kradel overcoming injury and earning his starting position back.

November 15, 2023 Have Steelers rookies Joey Porter Jr., Broderick Jones and Keeanu Benton taken over for good?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze the team's rookies. Have names like Joey Porter Jr., Broderick Jones and Keeanu Benton secured starting roles for good after limited playing time early on? And what kind of impact could they have the rest of the way?


Our duo tackles those topics plus the potential impact of Pat Freiermuth's return from injury and news that Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson will miss the game Sunday against the Steelers and the rest of the season because of shoulder surgery.

November 15, 2023 Could Penn State lose Drew Allar to transfer after OC Mike Yurcich's firing?

On their weekly Penn State sports podcast, Post-Gazette insider Seth Engle joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the Nittany Lions' frustrating loss to Michigan on Saturday at Beaver Stadium and the subsequent firing of offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich by coach James Franklin. Was it a surprise to see Franklin move on so quickly? Was the move a response to losses in big games or offensive sluggishness the entire season? Could quarterback Drew Allar weigh a transfer without the coach primarily responsible for getting him to Happy Valley? And would backups Beau Pribula and Jaxon Smolik be ready to fill the void if Allar did move on? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 14, 2023 Do Kenny Pickett, Steelers' offense have disastrous analytics? Not necessarily...

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Aaron Schatz, chief analytics officer at FTN, to break down the team's advanced metrics. Do they paint offensive coordinator Matt Canada's unit as a disaster? Or is it more efficient than some might think? How does quarterback Kenny Pickett grade out? And where do the Steelers fit in the AFC North hierarchy? Can they be considered a serious contender by continually winning one-possession games while getting outgained by their opponents? Our duo tackles those topics and more ahead of the Steelers' Week 11 matchup with the Browns on Sunday at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland.

November 14, 2023 Pitt football: Who's in trouble if Pat Narduzzi shakes up coaching staff?| Who should start at QB?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer readers questions. Among them: Which of coach Pat Narduzzi's assistants could be out if he shakes up this staff this offseason? Could the Panthers lose numerous players to the NCAA transfer portal because of their bad results this season? Could Phil Jurkovec see playing time this week against Boston College, his former school? And who should start at quarterback? Christian Veilleux or Nate Yarnell?

November 13, 2023 Penguins trends: Can Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Erik Karlsson keep making up for lack of depth?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel discuss six trends from the team's first 13 games and whether they'll continue moving forward. Can the top core of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Erik Karlsson and others keep carrying the offense if the depth forwards don't step up? Are the Penguins a good or bad finishing team after going through peaks and valleys of offensive production vs. their expected goal total so far? Is Karlsson starting to take a next step in his offensive game? And is the third line sustainable? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 13, 2023 Have Steelers' Broderick Jones, Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris made the running game a real weapon?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to break down the team's NFL Week 10 victory against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday at Acrisure Stadium. Has the Steelers' running game found its stride with rookie tackle Broderick Jones in the lineup and backs Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris playing well? What should we make of Kenny Pickett after yet another tepid performance? And how does the AFC North race look after a big win for the Browns and losses for the Ravens and Bengals this week? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 13, 2023 Steelers-Packers reaction, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette columnist Paul Zeise joins Adam Bittner to react to the Steelers' win over the Packers on Sunday. It was another ugly game, but it was also another win. What are our main takeaways as the Steelers move to 6-3?

November 11, 2023 Steelers-Packers: Will T.J. Watt be too much for Jordan Love? Can Green Bay contain George Pickens?

On the Saturday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by the Acrisure Fan Advantage, the Post-Gazette's Christopher Carter welcomes ESPN's Rob Demovsky to break down the Steelers' Week 10 matchup with the Green Bay Packers. Will T.J. Watt and the Steelers defense be too much for first-year starting QB Jordan Love? Or can the young signal caller pose a threat despite an ordinary start to 2023? Will the Packers defense continue the recent trend of containing star Steelers receiver George Pickens? And who should be favored to win? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 10, 2023 MLB free agency: Does Pirates' Ben Cherington need to spend to improve? Or are there other options?

On their weekly Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette insider Jason Mackey and Pirates TV analyst Michael McKenry discuss Ben Cherington's comments at the MLB general manager meetings in Arizona. Specifically, they dive into the club's options as MLB free agency gets underway. Should general manager Ben Cherington be allocating his dollars toward acquiring starting pitcher? Or options at first base? How much should the club be able to rely on its development regime to help fill holes? What are the chances that Andrew McCutchen returns for another season in 2024? And what did we learn about players from the Pirates system in the annual Arizona Fall League? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 10, 2023 Steelers-Packers: Was Merril Hoge right to call George Pickens 'immature'?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Post-Gazette insider Brian Batko joins host Christopher Carter to discuss former Steelers running back Merril Hoge's recent comments about George Pickens. Was it fair for Hoge to call the receiver "immature" for his sideline demeanor and social media conduct in the week since the Steelers beat the Tennessee Titans? What should we make of Pickens' explanation to reporters on Wednesday? And what action should the coaching staff take, if any?


Our duo tackles those topics, answers a reader's question about former players like the Raiders' Antonio Piece taking coaching jobs with little coaching experience and previews the NFL Week 10 matchup with the Green Bay Packers on Sunday at Acrisure Stadium.

November 09, 2023 Pitt-Syracuse: Can the Panthers build some momentum at Yankee Stadium?

In the latest episode of In The Trenches, Pitt football standouts Gavin Bartholomew and Jake Kradel and Post-Gazette Pitt beat reporter Noah Hiles go over the Panthers' 24-7 loss to Florida State. They then talk a little baseball before previewing the team's upcoming trip to Yankee Stadium to take on Syracuse at a neutral site in the Big Apple.

November 09, 2023 Should the Steelers have taken another chance on Martavis Bryant? Are their WRs big enough?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze the Steelers' wide receiver corps. Should general manager Omar Khan and coach Mike Tomlin have considered bringing back former WR Martavis Bryant before he signed with the Dallas Cowboys earlier this week? Do the Steelers generally have enough size at the position? And is George Pickens' apparent displeasure with his role and issue?


Our duo tackles those topics, offers thoughts on rookie Broderick Jones taking over for Chuks Okorafor at right tackle and breaks down Penn State's top 10 battle against Michigan this Saturday at Beaver Stadium. Do coach James Franklin and the Nittany Lions have a chance? And what role will sign-stealing allegations against coach Jim Harbaugh's Wolverines have on the contest.

November 08, 2023 Should Steelers' Broderick Jones be starting at right tackle vs. left? | What is the playoff path?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Shelby Cassesse of 93.7 The Fan and WPXI-TV to discuss hot Steelers topics of the week. Among them: Is coach Mike Tomlin making the right call starting rookie Broderick Jones at right tackle over Chuks Okorafor instead of left over Dan Moore Jr.? What should we make of Tomlin's comments about receiver George Pickens and the dissatisfaction some felt they saw from him at the end of the win Thursday night against the Tennessee Titans? And which remaining games are most important if the Steelers intend to make the playoffs? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 08, 2023 Penn State-Michigan: Is James Franklin feeling the pressure? Has bad Big Ten hurt Nittany Lions?

On their weekly Penn State podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette Nittany Lions insider Seth Engle discuss the hot topics ahead of a pivotal game against Michigan on Saturday at Beaver Stadium. Were coach James Franklin's frustrations after this past week's win against Maryland fair? How badly has the Big Ten struggles this season hurt his team in terms of perception? And is the coach possibly letting the pressure get to him a little bit ahead of a huge matchup?


Our duo tackles those questions and breaks down the game itself. How does Drew Allar matchup with the Wolverines' J.J. McCarthy? Will the Penn State defense do a better job of slowing Blake Corum, Donovan Edwards and the Michigan running game that dominated in last season's showdown? And were the signs of offensive life against Maryland relevant when facing an elite defense like Michigan's?

November 07, 2023 Steelers-Packers: Are Kenny Pickett and Jordan Love in the same mediocre boat?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes Fox Sports NFC North reporter Carmen Vitali to break down the Week 10 matchup against the Green Bay Packers. How does coach Mike Tomlin keep "baffling" national observers by racking up wins despite the Steelers' poor performance offensively? What do quarterback Kenny Pickett and Packers counterpart Jordan Love have in common as they search for consistency? How far can former Steelers quarterback Josh Dobbs take the Minnesota Vikings as he replaces the injured Kirk Cousins as the starter? And why didn't the Steelers completed their rumored deal for Chicago Bears cornerback Jaylon Johnson before the NFL trade deadline last week? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 07, 2023 Pitt basketball preview: Have Jeff Capel, Panthers settled on a starting five?

On their weekly Pitt sports mailbag podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: Have Jeff Capel and the Pitt basketball team settled on a starting five before their season opener Tuesday against North Carolina A&T at the Petersen Events Center? How much better will Blake Hinson be this season compared to last? Who will the Panthers' most impactful newcomer be? And what our Chris and Noah's record predictions for the squad?

November 06, 2023 What can Penguins do with struggling Jeff Carter? | How can Erik Karlsson find another gear?

On their weekly Penguins podcast, Post-Gazette insiders Matt Vensel and Andrew Destin analyze the Jeff Carter situation. What are the Penguins' options with the veteran who's tallied zero points in nine games this season and was scratched in the 10-2 win against the San Jose Sharks over the weekend. Could he be traded? Waived and sent to the minor leagues? Continue to take up a roster spot as a consistent healthy? Or will he get another chance to prove his worth?


Our duo tackles those questions, ponders defenseman Erik Karlsson's potential to find another gear in his impressive play and discusses goalie Tristan Jarry's improved play of late.

November 06, 2023 What's wrong with Steelers WR George Pickens? | What boost will Cam Heyward give defense?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to to discuss receiver George Pickens' recent lack of production. Is something wrong with Pickens' games? Or are opposing defenses just loading up to stop him and force other Steelers receivers to make plays? And should Pickens' sour demeanor on the sideline concern Steelers fans from a team chemistry perspective?


Our duo tackles those topics, analyzes the impact Cam Heyward's return will have on the defense moving forward and ponders what the success of the AFC North division rival Ravens, Bengals and Browns means for the Steelers' playoff hopes.

November 03, 2023 Steelers recap: Kenny Pickett's 4th-quarter magic is becoming crazy

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast presented by Mike's Beer Bar, Steelers insider Brian Batko joins Christopher Carter to recap another comeback win, this time over the Titans. Is Kenny Pickett simply a winner, or is his fourth-quarter play still a mirage? Plus did Joey Porter Jr. and Broderick Jones lock down starting jobs after their great performances?

November 03, 2023 Steel City Sleepers: Week 9 Fantasy Football Preview

Post-Gazette sports editor Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers and fantasy football on our new "Steel City Sleepers" Week 9 fantasy preview show.

They also discuss their top five players to start and sit at each position, including top defensive (D/ST) streamers, kickers, sleepers, stashes and busts.

Does Tua Tagovailoa belong on fantasy benches against a stingy Chiefs defense in Germany?

Will Trey McBride emerge as an elite TE option or become a waiver wire bust in Week 9?

And who are the top RB stashes to add now, ahead of the fantasy playoff stretch?

Visit our website for Chris' weekly 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' flagship column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our reporters, columnists and guests.

For three months of digital access to the Post-Gazette for just 99¢, visit here.

November 03, 2023 NFL Week 9: Steelers vs. Titans reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' Week 9 matchup with the Tennessee Titans at Acrisure Stadium.


How did quarterback Kenny Pickett look in his return from injury last week against Jacksonville? What about defensive captain Cam Heyward, who’s been injured since week 1? How did the defense cope with the loss of star safety Minkah Fitzpatrick? And how did the offense respond to offensive coordinator Matt Canada calling plays on the sideline instead of in the press box? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

November 02, 2023 MLB free agency: Should Pirates GM Ben Cherington spend on pitching or a first baseman?

On their weekly Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey and TV analyst Michael McKenry welcome team radio host Dan Zangrilli to break down the team's offseason. Should general manager Ben Cherington put more focus on starting pitching or first base during MLB free agency? How much could the club's payroll increase? What lessons did we learn from the 2023 World Series, which ended Wednesday with the Texas Rangers beating the Arizona Diamondbacks in five games? And should 2024 be Andrew McCutchen's last season in the big leagues? Our trio tackles those topics and more.

November 01, 2023 Grading Penn State's offense under Mike Yurcich. | James Franklin takes dig at Pitt's Pat Narduzzi?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette Nittany Lions insider Seth Engle break down the offense under coordinator Mike Yurcich. What grade does he deserve this season and over his entire three-year tenure in Happy Valley? Should he be on any kind of hot seat because of ugly performances against Ohio State and Indiana? Or has last year's Rose Bowl victory bought him more time? And how responsible is he for his receivers' struggles this season?


Later, our duo breaks down whether Drew Allar or his receivers deserve more blame for the passing game's ineffectiveness; looks ahead to an important game Saturday against Maryland; and discusses whether coach James Franklin took a jab at Pitt's Pat Narduzzi during his weekly news conference Tuesday.

November 01, 2023 Steelers-Titans: Could Will Levis cause issues for Pittsburgh?

On this week's Acrisure Fan Advantage podcast, Locked On Titans expert Tyler Rowland joins Christopher Carter to preview Steelers-Titans on "Thursday Night Football." What can we expect from Titans rookie QB Will Levis in his second career start? And can Kenny Pickett find success against a suspect secondary? And finally, what are our final predictions? 


October 31, 2023 Steelers-Titans: Andrew Whitworth on why short week could benefit Pittsburgh

On the latest episode of the Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Steelers insider Brian Batko is joined by Prime Video's Andrew Whitworth to look ahead to Thursday night's game against the Titans. Could the short week actually help the Steelers? And is there any hope for Kenny Pickett and the offense to turn things around in the second half of the season?

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October 31, 2023 Pitt football: Why has Rodney Hammond Jr.'s role been reduced? Is Christian Veilleux still the guy?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag video podcast, Post-Gazette Panthers insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: Why has running back Rodney Hammond Jr. seen his playing time reduced in recent weeks? Is Christian Veilleux still looking like a potential fixture at quarterback amid a blowout loss this past week at Notre Dame? And is there any chance Michigan State will be interested in coach Pat Narduzzi despite Pitt's ugly season on the field?


Our duo tackles those topics, plus Narduzzi's controversial comments after the loss on Saturday in South Bend.

October 30, 2023 Can Steelers' defense cope without Minkah Fitzpatrick? Will Kenny Pickett play vs. Titans?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, Post-Gazette Steelers insiders Ray Fittipaldo and Brian Batko break down the loss Sunday to the Jacksonville Jaguars at Acrisure Stadium and look ahead at a quick turnaround to the Thursday Night Football matchup against the Tennessee Titans in Week 9. How will the defense cope with the loss of safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, who's expected to miss substantial time with a hamstring injury? Does quarterback Kenny Pickett have a chance to play against the Titans? And how did coach Mike Tomlin assess the loss in which Matt Canada's offense struggled mightily once again? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 29, 2023 NFL Week 8: Steelers vs. Jaguars reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins sports editor Chris Dell as they react live after the Steelers' Week 8 matchup with the Jacksonville Jaguars at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh.

Who is to blame for the Steelers' 20-10 loss to the Jaguars: the referees, Matt Canada, Mike Tomlin or someone else?

How will the defense be impacted moving forward — and on a short week — without Minkah Fitzpatrick?

And do we now have a QB controversy in Pittsburgh following Kenny Pickett's rib injury?

Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 28, 2023 Pirates offseason: Can Pittsburgh take major leap like Rangers, Diamondbacks?

On the latest episode of the Pitching In podcast, Michael McKenry and Jason Mackey look at the World Series matchup and wonder: Can the Pirates make a similar jump from 100 losses to title contention? Plus they look ahead to key offseason moves, namely what the team will do with Miguel Andujar and what's on their wish list.

October 28, 2023 Will similarities between Steelers and Jaguars call for a close matchup?

In this week’s edition of the Acrisure Fan Advantage, ESPN Jaguars beat reporter Michael DiRocco joins Christopher Carter to break down their NFL Week 8 showdown with the Steelers at Acrisure Stadium. These two teams share a lot of similarities. Will that lead to a close game? How will Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne attack an opportunistic Steelers defense? And how will former first overall pick Travon Walker attack Kenny Pickett and the Steelers offensive line? Our duo tackles those topics and more.


October 27, 2023 Pitt-Notre Dame: Extra motivation for an upset win?

In the latest episode of In The Trenches, Pitt football standouts Gavin Bartholomew and Jake Kradel welcome running back C'Bo Flemister to preview a trip to Notre Dame. Can the former Fighting Irish running back send a message to his former team and help the Panthers to a major upset?  

October 27, 2023 Start Kenny Pickett vs. the Jaguars? | Week 8 fantasy football preview

Post-Gazette sports editor and lead fantasy football analyst Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers and fantasy football on our new "Steel City Sleepers" show.


The guys debate whether Kenny Pickett is worth starting ahead of the Steelers’ Week 8 home clash against the Jaguars.


They also discuss their top five players to start and sit at each position, including top defenses, kickers, sleepers, stashes and busts.

Has Najee Harris finally proven himself as a reliable, weekly top-20 RB option?


Who is the top running back to own in the Cleveland Browns backfield?


And does Tua Tagovailoa belong on your fantasy bench in Week 8?


Visit www.post-gazette.com/sports/fantasy-football for Chris' weekly 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' written column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our reporters, columnists and guests.


For three months of digital access to the Post-Gazette for just 99¢, visit the following link: https://promo.post-gazette.com/youtube


Chris Dell: cdell@post-gazette.com and Twitter @maddjournalist

October 27, 2023 Will George Pickens' on-field antics end up costing Steelers?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, Steelers inside Brian Batko joins Christopher Carter to look ahead to Sunday’s game against the Jaguars and the NFL trade deadline. Does Omar Khan have another ace up his sleeve to make his team better (or acquire more picks)? Will the Steelers finally be able to beat the Jaguars?

Plus, does George Pickens need to watch his behavior on the field to avoid further taunting penalties that could end up costing them a win?

October 26, 2023 Are Steelers WRs Allen Robinson, Calvin Austin III holding back Kenny Pickett, passing game?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnists Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the Steelers' depth receivers. How big of a problem is the lack of production from Allen Robinson and Calvin Austin III in the past three games? The duo has just 10 catches for 68 yards. since Week 3. Does quarterback Kenny Pickett need tight ends Pat Freiermuth and/or Darnell Washington to step up as targets if receivers like Robinson and Austin don't? And how much criticism do coach Mike Tomlin and general manager Omar Khan deserve for putting together a receiver room so lacking in depth.


Our duo tackles those questions and some other burning topics in local sports. Among them: Has Penn State reached its ceiling with coach James Franklin after another loss to Ohio State? Can Pirates fans draw any hope from the Arizona Diamondbacks' improbable World Series run? And what changes must Pitt make with the season now looking lost after a controversial loss to Wake Forest.

October 25, 2023 Has James Franklin reached his ceiling at Penn State? Or will B1G expansion, 12-team playoff help?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, the Post-Gazette's Adam Bittner and Seth Engle dissect the Nittany Lions' 20-12 loss to Ohio State last Saturday and where it leaves them as a program. Has James Franklin reached his ceiling as Penn State's coach? Can the program itself compete seriously at a national championship level regardless of who the coach is? Could Penn State find a path around the Buckeyes with Big Ten and College Football Playoff expansion looming in 2024? And is Penn State's recruiting a problem compared to teams like Ohio State and Michigan?


Our duo tackles those questions and evaluates the performance of quarterback Drew Allar and the receiving corps led by KeAndre Lambert-Smith ahead of this weekend's matchup with Indiana back at Beaver Stadium.

October 25, 2023 Steelers-Jaguars: Has the offense found an identity?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, former Steelers offensive lineman Trai Essex joins Christopher Carter to break down what he saw in the win against the Rams. Has the running game emerged as a focal point in the offense? And did Najee Harris re-establish himself as the No. 1 running back over Jaylen Warren? 

October 24, 2023 Dave Dameshek: Cynicism against Steelers' Mike Tomlin is 'weird'

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette insider Brian Batko welcomes podcaster and Steelers fan Dave Dameshek. The two discuss a range of topics including: the number of Steelers fans who turned out to support the team in its win Sunday against the Rams at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles; T.J. Watt's gamechanging play and reasons he seems to get less national respect than other top defensive players; and the local vs. national perception of coach Mike Tomlin. Why do folks outside of Pittsburgh like him so much more than his own fans? Our duo tackles those topics and more. 

October 24, 2023 Pitt football: Why didn't Pat Narduzzi challenge spot on controversial Christian Veilleux slide?

On their weekly Pitt football mailbag video, Post-Gazette Panthers insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them, why didn't coach Pat Narduzzi challenge the controversial spot of QB Christian Veilleux's slide late in the loss Saturday at Wake Forest? Which assistant coaches should Narduzzi consider replacing in the offseason given the team's struggles in 2023? Why isn't running back Rodney Hammond Jr. getting more carries? Is Veilleux the answer for Pitt at quarterback long-term? And where should the basketball team be ranking in the ACC preseason poll? Our duo tackles those questions and more.

October 23, 2023 Why is Penguins' Mike Sullivan refusing to juggle his lines despite struggles vs. Red Wings, Blues?

On their weekly hockey podcast, Post-Gazette Penguins insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel discuss coach Mike Sullivan's comments after practice Monday. Why is the former Stanley Cup champion preaching patience with the team's current lines amid a losing skid against the Detroit Red Wings and St. Louis Blues this past week? Are there any moves general manager Kyle Dubas could consider the tweak the lineup? And does Bryan Rust belong on the top power play unit with Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Erik Karlsson because of his hot start? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 23, 2023 Steelers-Rams aftermath: Can Kenny Pickett, George Pickens & Diontae Johnson build on late heroics?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to break down the team's 24-17 NFL Week 7 victory against the Rams on Sunday at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. Did QB Kenny Pickett and receivers George Pickens and Diontae Johnson show legitimate progress with a dominant fourth quarter? How did coach Mike Tomlin's defense adjust to slow Matthew Stafford, Puka Nacua and the dangerous Rams offense? And did the offensive line take a step forward even as rookie tackle Broderick Jones returned to the bench in favor of veteran Dan Moore Jr.? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 22, 2023 NFL Week 7: Steelers vs. Rams reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' Week 7 matchup with the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium.


How did T.J. Watt, Minkah Fitzpatrick and the defense contain Puka Nacua, Cooper Kupp, Matthew Stafford and the dangerous Rams offense? And were Kenny Pickett and Matt Canada able to show improvement offensively after a long bye week to correct their issues? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 21, 2023 Steelers-Rams preview: Stage set for T.J. Watt to dominate Matthew Stafford, shaky offensive line?

In this week’s edition of the Acrisure Fan Advantage brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, the Athletic's Los Angeles Rams beat reporter Rich Hammond joins host Christopher Carter to break down their NFL Week 7 showdown with the Steelers at SoFi Stadium. Can the Rams offensive line protect QB Matthew Stafford from the Steelers' potent pass rush featuring T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith? What challenges will the potential absence of running back Kyren Williams pose for the Rams offense? And how much will rams receivers Puka Nacua and Cooper Kupp test the Steelers secondary that includes names like Joey Porter Jr., Levi Wallace and Patrick Peterson? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 20, 2023 Does Pirates' Ke'Bryan Hayes deserve to win Gold Glove? | Plus MLB postseason impressions

On the latest episode of the Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey and TV analyst Michael McKenry discuss the hottest topics around the club and MLB at large. Among them: What should we make of the MLB postseason so far, with top seeds like the Los Angeles Dodgers losing and teams like the Philadelphia Phillies and Texas Rangers dominating? Does the Pirates' Ke'Bryan Hayes deserve to finally win a Gold Glove after years of stellar defensive efforts? What is the future of Pirates TV broadcasts now that Sportsnet Pittsburgh has replaced AT&T Sportsnet? And could former Pirates general manager Neal Huntington be a candidate to take on the same role in Boston? our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 20, 2023 Steelers-Rams: Will T.J. Watt or Aaron Donald make a bigger impact? | Are coaching changes coming?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to preview the Steelers' NFL Week 7 matchup against the Rams at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. What more does rookie Broderick Jones need to do to earn the starting nod over veteran tackle Dan Moore Jr.? Could we see fellow Joey Porter Jr. bump veteran cornerback Patrick Peterson into slot duty this week? Will the Steelers' T.J. Watt or the Rams' Aaron Donald make a bigger impact on the game defensively? And could major changes to the coaching staff come if offensive coordinator Matt Canada's unit doesn't begin to show progress soon? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 19, 2023 Pitt QB Christian Veilleux on 'channeling the nerves' to get win in first start vs. Louisville

On this week's episode of the In the Trenches podcast, hosts Jake Kradel, Gavin Bartholomew and Noah Hiles are joined by Pitt football starting quarterback Christian Veilleux. The quartet discusses a range of hot Panthers questions, including: What clicked last week in the upset of No. 14 Louisville at Acrisure Stadium? Can Pitt use the momentum from the victory to tackle a tough schedule in the second half of the season and reach a bowl game? Did Veilleux worry about his career when the pandemic caused the cancellation of his senior high school season in Canada? And how could revenue sharing with players change college football in the coming years?

October 19, 2023 NFL trade deadline: Will Steelers' Omar Khan find an upgrade? Or repeat Chase Claypool heist?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to analyze the Steelers' options as the NFL trade deadline approaches. Will they be able to find upgrades for areas of weakness and replace names like Mason Cole at center? Will they look to repeat the stellar Chase Claypool trade by dealing an underachieving former early round pick like Najee Harris? Will they look for an upgrade at receiver? Or does Julio Jones' signing with the Eagles signal that coach Mike Tomlin likes the options he has? And could veteran Cam Heyward be a candidate to be moved considering his advanced age and the Steelers' bolstered depth on the defensive front? 


Our duo tackles those topics and more. Then later, they check in on the other teams in town. Could the Pirates ever has an offense as potent as the Phillies is right now in pursuit of a World Series victory? Is this the year Penn State figures out how to beat Ohio State? Is Pitt's upset of No. 14 Louisville and sign of what's to come? And are the Penguins just as inconsistent as ever? 

October 18, 2023 Penn State-Ohio State: Is James Franklin's belief in Nittany Lions' more rugged identity warranted?

On their weekly Penn State football podcast, host Adam Bittner and Daily Collegian and Post-Gazette Nittany Lions insider Seth Engle preview the pivotal matchup this week against No. 3 Ohio State in Columbus. Is James Franklin correct to believe in the more rugged identity that his offense has forged this season? Can Drew Allar, KeAndre Lambert-Smith, Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen produce enough explosive plays to win if Kyle McCord and the Buckeyes jump out to a lead? Has the the defense been tested enough to handle a talented Ohio State roster that includes likely first-round pick Marvin Harrison Jr.? And what role might backup QB Beau Pribula play for Penn State? Our duo tackles those topic and more, then offers picks for the matchup.

October 18, 2023 Steelers-Rams: Why is Mike Tomlin still cautious with rookies Joey Porter Jr., Broderick Jones?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze Steelers rookies Joey Porter Jr. and Broderick Jones. Why does coach Mike Tomlin still seem cautious about using them as starters despite strong results in the Week 5 win against the Baltimore Ravens? When might we see them grow into full-time starting roles? And what should we make of the general manager Omar Khan's decision Tuesday to cut veteran cornerback Desmond King in favor of signing rookie Darius Rush off the Kansas City Chiefs' practice squad? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 17, 2023 Should Steelers' Broderick Jones continue to start with Dan Moore Jr. healthy? Trai Essex weighs in

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes former offensive lineman Trai Essex to analyze the team's play up front this season. Should first-round draft pick Broderick Jones start over Dan Moore Jr. at tackle now that the latter is back healthy? If Jones stays in the lineup, should Chuks Okrafor be under pressure for playing time from Moore? And how much scrutiny does center Mason Cole deserve? Should he be in danger of losing his job to names including James Daniels and Nate Herbig? Our duo tackles those topics and more as the Steelers prepare for an NFL Week 7 matchup this Sunday against the Rams at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles.

October 16, 2023 Is the Penguins' offense still too reliant on Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin lines?

On their weekly hockey podcast, Post-Gazette Penguins insiders Andrew Destin and Matt Vensel analyze the team's first three games of the season. Is the offense still too reliant on the top lines of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin to win games? What kind of difference has Erik Karlsson made on the blue line -- and especially the power play? And can Drew O'Connor ride a strong preseason into a regular role on the third line along Lars Eller? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 16, 2023 Are Steelers using Minkah Fitzpatrick properly? | Bad weekend for AFC North hopes?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze safety Minkah Fitzpatrick's role in the defense. Are the Steelers using him correctly? Or is he doing too much work in the slot and run support the generate the turnovers the Steelers have become accustomed to from him?


Our duo tackles those questions, discusses the latest developments with coordinator Matt Canada's offense and ponders a busy Week 6 for the AFC North in which Bengals, Ravens and Browns all picked up victories.

October 14, 2023 Steelers news: Which starter will Joey Porter Jr. replace? Patrick Peterson or Levi Wallace?

On a special mailbag episode of the North Shore Drive podcast brought to you by Mike's Beer Bar, host Christopher Carter and Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko answer reader questions. Among them: Which starting cornerback will rookie corner Joey Porter Jr. eventually replace? Levi Wallace or Patrick Peterson? What constitutes a successful season for the Steelers? Is it NFL playoffs or bust? Will the defense ever move past the loss of Ryan Shazier at middle linebacker? And is Matt Canada coaching for his job the rest of the season? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 13, 2023 World Series picks? Plus, Pirates arbitration projections for Mitch Keller, David Bednar and more?

On their weekly baseball show, Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Jason Mackey and Andrew Destin discuss the MLB postseason so far from a Pittsburgh perspective. Who should Pirates fans be rooting for? And which teams are the best bets to actually win the World Series? Later, they get into arbitration projections for Pirates players including Mitch Keller and David Bednar, and analyze whether those figures seem high, low or accurate based on the results of the 2023 season.

October 13, 2023 Grading Steelers' offense, defense so far? Plus, why doesn't Kenny Pickett throw from under center?

On the Friday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko joins host Christopher Carter to issue grades for the offense and defense as the team enters its week off. They also answer reader questions in their mailbag segment. Among them: Why doesn't coordinator Matt Canada call many pass plays from under center, and doesn't the offense become predictable if quarterback Kenny Pickett is only throwing from the shotgun?

October 12, 2023 Sell George Pickens? | Week 6 Fantasy Football Preview

Post-Gazette sports editor and lead fantasy football analyst Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers and fantasy football on our new "Steel City Sleepers" weekly show.

The guys debate whether George Pickens can be consistently trusted after Pittsburgh's bye week and following his dominant performance in the team's comeback victory over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.

They also discuss their top five players to start and sit at each position, including D/ST and kicker.

Is it worth selling high on George Pickens after his Week 5 breakout?

Are Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals offense officially back?

Is Zay Flowers the best buy-low receiver for fantasy trades?

Chris and Tony answer those questions and more, as well as talk about their favorite sleepers and stashes for next week (Week 7), including their favorite fantasy buy-low/sell-high trade targets.

Visit www.post-gazette.com/sports/fantasy-football for Chris' weekly 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' written column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our reporters, columnists and their special guests.

For three months of digital access to the Post-Gazette for just 99¢, visit the following link: https://promo.post-gazette.com/youtube

October 12, 2023 Pitt football: QB Christian Veilleux's teammates excited to see him start -'heck of an athlete'

On their weekly In the Trenches podcast, Pitt football standouts Jake Kradel and Gavin Bartholomew join host Noah Hiles to preview the Panthers' showdown with No. 14 Louisville on Saturday night at Acrisure Stadium. How will Christian Veilleux look in his first start? And has the bye week aided preparations to face a ranked team?


Our trio tackles those topics and also welcomes offensive lineman Matt Goncalves to discuss his NFL aspirations and play a little trivia.

October 12, 2023 Steelers fans revolt? Are 'fire Matt Canada' chants part of larger trend of Pittsburgh sports anger?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss the latest round of "fire Matt Canada" chants from Steelers fans. Are some getting carried away in piling the blame for the offense's struggles on the coordinator? Or is any level of anger justified? And are the chants against Canada part of a larger trend of fan anger in Pittsburgh, given recent incidents with Pitt's Phil Jurkovec, former Penguins GM Ron Hextall and former Pirates catcher Austin Hedges?

Our duo tackles those questions, weighs the value of the Steelers' 3-2 record and analyzes the importance of receiver Diontae Johnson's return from injury. They also ponder the importance of Pitt's meeting with No. 14 Louisville on Saturday at Acrisure Stadium, react to Penn State coach James Franklin's viral rant against a reporter this week and weigh in on calls for MLB to change its playoff format in response to upsets of World Series favorites including the Baltimore Orioles and Los Angeles Dodgers.

October 11, 2023 Can Diontae Johnson save the Steelers' scuffling offense? | Grading Broderick Jones' so far

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo to analyze the Steelers' offense. What kind of difference with the return of receiver Diontae Johnson make for quarterback Kenny Pickett, offensive coordinator Matt Canada and head coach Mike Tomlin? How did rookie offensive tackle Broderick Jones look in his first NFL home start in Week 5 against the Baltimore Ravens? And on the defensive side, does Joey Porter Jr. have a chance to start after earning high marks his most recent outing. Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 11, 2023 Does Penn State football have a fair College Football Playoff path in expanded Big Ten schedules?

On their weekly Penn State football show, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle analyze the Nittany Lions' Big Ten opponents for the 2024-28 seasons, announced last week. Is Penn State's tough 2024 schedule that includes USC, Ohio State, Wisconsin, UCLA and Washington fair? Do Drew Allar, James Franklin and Co. have a better chance at making the four-team College Football Playoff field this season? Or the expanded 12-team field next season? Is the lack of a protected rival a good thing or a bad thing? And could the addition of USC, UCLA, Oregon and Washington mean more desirable kickoff times?


Our duo tackles those topics, weighs in on what Penn State must accomplish this week against Massachusetts and reacts to Ohio State's win against Maryland that was closer than expected for most of four quarters this past Saturday.

October 10, 2023 Steelers-Ravens: Should 'strange' win quell fans' rage at Matt Canada? CBS Sports' Ian Eagle reacts

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes CBS Sports broadcast Ian Eagle to analyze the the team's "strange" win against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday at Acrisure Stadium. How should fans process the fact that the team enters its off week at 3-2 despite struggles from Matt Canada's offense? What confidence level did Eagle sense from coaches in the lead up to the victory? What is the relationship between coordinators and broadcasters like given Canada's dust-up with Eagle's network last week? Could coach Mike Tomlin have a future in media? Why does Eagle believe running back Jaylen Warren is the most underrated Steelers player nationally? And how does he size up the AFC North race with the Ravens, Bengals and Browns? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 10, 2023 Pitt football: Will Pat Narduzzi have quick hook with Christian Veilleux? Will we see Nate Yarnell?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: Is Christian Veilleux solidified as the Panthers' new starting QB? Or could we see Nate Yarnell if Veilleux struggles? How much is recruiting to blame for the Panthers' slow start? Which remaining games on Pitt's schedule offer the best chances for wins? And how can Pitt define success for the rest of the season?

October 09, 2023 Steelers-Ravens: Did Joey Porter Jr. earn a starting spot?

On the Monday episode of The North Shore Drive podcast, Christopher Carter and Ray Fittipaldo break down the Steelers' wild win over the Ravens. Was there any real progress made heading into the bye week? Did Joey Porter Jr. earn a starting role moving forward? 


October 08, 2023 NFL Week 5: Steelers vs. Ravens reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise and sports editor Chris Dell react live after the Steelers' 17-10 victory over the Baltimore Ravens in Week 5.

How did Kenny Pickett look health-wise just one week after his knee injury?

Will the national spotlight and critics still be focused on Mike Tomlin and Matt Canada heading into Pittsburgh's bye week?

And does Jaylen Warren finally deserve more touches than Najee Harris for the Steelers in their next game in Week 7 against the Los Angeles Rams?

Paul and Chris break down those topics and touch on a few other notable games around the NFL, including the Patriots' 34-0 shutout loss to the New Orleans Saints.

Subscribe to our YouTube Channel (@PGsportsnow) for all of our shows on the Steelers, Pirates, Penguins & more.

October 06, 2023 Jaylen Warren over Najee Harris? | Week 5 Fantasy Football Preview

Post-Gazette sports editor and lead fantasy football analyst Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down all things Steelers and fantasy football on our new "Steel City Fantasy" show.

The guys debate whether there are any Steelers currently worth starting — or still rostering — in Pittsburgh's AFC North battle vs. the Baltimore Ravens in Week 5.

They also discuss their top five players to start and sit at each position, including top defenses and kickers.

Is the Arizona Cardinals' Josh Dobbs the next breakout fantasy quarterback?

Are the Cincinnati Bengals and Joe Burrow ever going to turn things around?

Chris and Tony answer those questions and more, as well as talk about their favorite sleepers and stashes for Week 6 and their favorite fantasy buy-low/sell-high trade targets.

Visit www.post-gazette.com/sports/fantasy-football for Chris' weekly 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites Manifesto' written column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper) and subscribe to our @PGSportsNow YouTube channel to avoid missing future videos from our reporters, columnists and their special guests.

For three months of digital access to the Post-Gazette for just 99¢, visit the following link: https://promo.post-gazette.com/youtube

October 06, 2023 Pirates offseason: What should GM Ben Cherington's priorities be? Should Liover Peguero start at 2B?

On their weekly baseball show, Post-Gazette Pirates insiders Jason Mackey and Andrew Destin analyze general manager Ben Cherington's comments to reporters earlier this week. What is his vision for the starting rotation beyond Mitch Keller and Johan Oviedo? Can names like Quinn Priester, Roansy Contreras and Luis Ortiz help? Or will free agents be needed to fill the void? What are the options at second base if Oneil Cruz is healthy enough to retake his spot at shortstop? Is that position Liover Peguero's to lose? And where do names including Nick Gonzales, Henry Davis and Miguel Andujar fit into the club's future? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 05, 2023 Steelers-Ravens: Matt Canada fires back at CBS? How much does offense miss Diontae Johnson?

On the Friday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko with the latest from inside the team's locker room. Why does offensive coordinator Matt Canada believe CBS his comments unfairly in its broadcast of the game against the Texans this past Sunday? Why does running back Najee Harris believe Canada is being treated unfairly by critical fans and media? And how much does the offense miss Diontae Johnson as he navigates his hamstring injury? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 05, 2023 Can Pitt football use off week to regroup? OL Jake Kradel says 'it's crucial' as tough slate looms

On the latest episode of the In the Trenches podcast, Pitt football standouts Jake Kradel and Gavin Bartholomew take you inside the mood of the locker room amid a 1-4 start. Are players and coaches still hopeful for a turnaround despite a disappointing loss to Virginia Tech this past week? What changes need to be made with the Panthers having this week off? And how can the offense, specifically, regain its identity? Host Noah Hiles breaks it down with our player duo.

October 05, 2023 Does Steelers owner Art Rooney II deserve some blame for mediocrity under Mike Tomlin, Matt Canada?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to discuss Steelers owner Art Rooney II's role in the team's recent mediocrity. How much blame does he deserve for keeping coaches including Mike Tomlin and Matt Canada in place? Is he too invested in continuity because it's worked for his family in the past. And has he allowed personnel decisions to become too parochial by bringing in too many coaches and players with Pittsburgh ties?


Our duo tackles those and a few other Steelers topics and ponders Frank Cignetti Jr.'s future as Pitt offensive coordinator; Pitt's future if Pat Narduzzi moves on to Michigan State or another coaching job; and moves the Pirates should make this offseason with an eye toward competing for playoff bids in 2024.

October 04, 2023 Why Steelers aren’t firing Matt Canada | Will Kenny Pickett start vs Ravens?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko to analyze coach Mike Tomlin's news conference Tuesday. Why won't Tomlin make any changes with offensive coordinator Matt Canada and his playcalling duties? Will we see injury players including quarterback Kenny Pickett, tackle Dan Moore Jr. and tight end Pat Freiermuth in Week 5 against Baltimore? And are players including rookie tight end Darnell Washington ready to step in if Freiermuth is forced to miss significant time?

October 04, 2023 Are PSU football's Drew Allar, his receivers out of sync? OC Mike Yurcich calls it 'a big concern'

On their weekly Penn State football show, Post-Gazette and Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle joins host Adam Bittner to discuss offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich's comments with reporters Tuesday. Is the connection between quarterback Drew Allar and receivers including Dante Cephas, Malik McClain and Omari Evans really "a big concern," as Yurcich stated? Is Allar or the receiving corps the bigger issue in getting things figured out? Is transfer running back Trey Potts a thread to playing time for star running backs Kaytron Allen or Nick Singleton? And why is defensive coordinator Manny Diaz sounding confident about his unit? Our duo tackles those topics, ponders strong starts by Nittany Lion opponents West Virginia and Maryland and tries to piece together why former basketball star Ross Travis was spotted in Taylor Swift's suite for the Jets-Chiefs game this past Sunday at MetLife Stadium. 

October 03, 2023 Too stale? Have Steelers' Mike Tomlin, Matt Canada fallen behind NFL's innovation curve?

On his weekly Chipped Ham and Football podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Brian Batko welcomes NFL Network analyst and former executive Marc Ross to analyze the Steelers' 2-2 start to the season. Has coach Mike Tomlin's message to the team gotten stale after two blowout losses in the first four weeks? Has innovation across the league passed him by from an X's and O's standpoint? Should offensive coordinator Matt Canada be let go if things don't change soon offensively? And how responsible is Kenny Pickett for the unit's struggles? The duo tackles those topics and more.

October 03, 2023 Pitt football: If Pat Narduzzi left for Michigan State, what caliber of coach could Panthers hire?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag video, Post-Gazette insiders Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them, if Pat Narduzzi left the Panthers for Michigan State, what caliber of coach could athletic director Heather Lyke hope to replace him with? Which receivers and tight ends are executing despite the offense's inability to sustain drives? And could Pitt's 2027 game against Wisconsin be moved to Ireland?

October 02, 2023 Was Pirates' 2023 season a success? And how can Ben Cherington make them better?

On this week's episode of the Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette Pirates beat writers Jason Mackey and Andrew Destin discuss the end of the club's 2023 season. Was their 76-86 final record a success or failure? When can we expect to see top prospects such as No. 1 overall MLB draft pick Paul Skenes next season? Will Andrew McCutchen return for a final season? And what moves can general manager Ben Cherington make in the offseason to make this roster a playoff contender? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

October 02, 2023 Steelers-Texans: Did Mike Tomlin, Matt Canada fail the team?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, Ray Fittipaldo and Christopher Carter break down a disastrous Steelers loss to the Texans. How much did coaching hurt the team in this game? And what do the Steelers do if Kenny Pickett is out for an extended time? 

For three months of digital access to the Post-Gazette for just 99¢, visit the following link: https://promo.post-gazette.com/youtube

October 01, 2023 NFL Week 4: Steelers vs. Texans reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Paul Zeise react live after the Steelers' 30-6 loss to the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Who's to blame for the disastrous offensive effort? How will this unit fare moving forward if Kenny Pickett is forced to miss any time with an injury? And was the defense exposed by C.J. Stroud and the Texans, who moved the ball fairly well throughout the game? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 30, 2023 Steelers-Texans: Is C.J. Stroud ready for T.J. Watt and ferocious pass rush?

In this week’s edition of the Acrisure Fan Advantage, legendary Houston writer John McClain joins the show to break down Steelers-Texans. How will rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud stand up against the pressure T.J. Watt and Co. are sure to bring? Is the Houston defense ripe for Kenny Pickett and the Steelers offense to pick apart? And finally, what are our final predictions? 

September 29, 2023 Johan Oviedo wants to be 'more mean'? Plus, who is Pirates' 2023 MVP?

In their weekly baseball video, Post-Gazette Pirates beat writers Andrew Destin and Jason Mackey break down the final week of the 2023 season. Why does starter Johan Oviedo say he wants to be "more mean" heading into 2024? What moves does general manager Ben Cherington need to make this offseason? Does Quinn Priester belong in next year's rotation? And who is the Pirates' team MVP? Bryan Reynolds? Ke'Bryan Hayes? Mitch Keller? David Bednar? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 29, 2023 Steelers-Texans: Will T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith terrorize C.J. Stroud?

On the Friday episode of The North Shore Drive, Steelers insider Brian Batko joins Christopher Carter to break down everything about the Week 4 matchup with the Texans. Will T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith and the rest of the Steelers defense terrorize Kendrick Green and a banged-up Houston offensive line? Can Kenny Pickett and the offense continue its growth? And how confident are we that the Steelers can advance to 3-1?

Plus, in the Acrisure Fan Advantage segment, we answer a listener question about if Broderick Jones should start at left tackle now. 


September 28, 2023 Steelers-Texans: Does Kenny Pickett have enough freedom? Is Matt Canada's unit growing fast enough?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins Adam Bittner to discuss the growth of the Steelers' offense. Is Kenny Pickett given enough freedom to change calls at the line of scrimmage? Do some fans just want anyone other than Matt Canada in charge? And is the offense growing too slowly considering the immediate success duos like Tua Tagovailoa and coach Mike McDaniel have had with the Miami Dolphins?


Our duo tackles those questions and other hot topics in local sports. Will Pitt football make a bowl game this season? Is Penn State looking dominant enough to beat Ohio State and/or Michigan for the Big Ten title? And is Miguel Andujar a potential answer for the Pirates at first base in 2024?

September 28, 2023 Did Pitt's offense find some answers vs. UNC, despite loss? Plus, previewing trip to Virginia Tech

On their weekly In the Trenches podcast, Pitt football standouts Jake Kradel and Gavin Bartholomew discuss the week that was around the program. Did the offense find some answers to its woes with a nice first-half performance against North Carolina? And what can fans expect in a must-win game this week at Virginia Tech? Our duo joins Pitt beat writer Noah Hiles to give you the inside scoop. They also welcome teammate and running back Rodney Hammond Jr. as a special guest.

September 28, 2023 'Fantasy Football Favorites': Week 4 start/sit, sleepers/stashes and trade targets

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette sports editor and lead fantasy football analyst Chris Dell joins Tony Squares to break down their favorite starts, sits, stashes and sleepers for our 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites' Week 4 show. The guys break down their top five start/sit players at each position — including D/ST & Kicker — and also play their weekly rapid-fire segment of "buy/sell" trade targets.  

Will Raheem Mostert keep up his top-5 RB pace, or should you sell high and trade him away? Are the Texans' "Tank" Dell and C.J. Stroud performing over their heads, or will they continue their run as viable weekly starters? Will Keenan Allen remain an elite WR option for the rest of 2023? Chris and Tony answer those questions and more, as well as play another edition of 'Marry, pluck, kill."

Visit www.post-gazette.com/sports-fantasy-football for Chris' weekly 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites' written column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper), and subscribe to our YouTube channel to avoid missing videos from our reporters, columnists, and guests.

September 27, 2023 Steelers-Texans: Has Kenny Pickett, Matt Canada or the OL been offense's biggest impediment so far?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes two-time Super Bowl champion Max Starks to analyze the Steelers' offense through three games. Has quarterback Kenny Pickett, offensive coordinator Max Canada or the offensive line been most to blame for the unit's struggles so far? Did the OL show progress this past week in the win over Las Vegas? And when should fans expect to see first-round pick Broderick Jones take over one of the tackle spots? Our duo tackles those topics and also discusses what the defense will need to do to shut down C.J. Stroud, Tank Dell, Nico Collins and a red hot Houston Texans offense in Week 4.

September 27, 2023 Is Penn State football's offensive explosiveness a concern despite dominant Whiteout win over Iowa?

On their weekly Penn State football show, host Adam Bittner and Seth Engle of the Post-Gazette and Daily Collegian break down the Nittany Lions' offense after a dominant Whiteout night win against Iowa on Saturday night at Beaver Stadium. Are Drew Allar, Nick Singleton, Kaytron Allen and KeAndre Lambert-Smith showing enough explosive with tough games against Michigan and Ohio State looming, especially with some analytics sites rating them lower than national polls? Does coach James Franklin need a receiver or two to step up statistically for his team to be a serious national title contender? Or is this a situation similar to 2016, when Penn State was able to find a dominant offensive rhythm in the second half of the season? 


Our duo tackles those topics, checks in on the defense after it smothered Cade McNamara and the Hawkeyes offense on Saturday and also takes a look at the national picture. Does Ohio State's own lack of explosiveness in its win over Notre Dame signal that an opponent more suited to Penn State's strengths? Which conferences and programs are the biggest threats to the Big Ten nabbing two playoff spots? And how is the NIL landscape continuing to shift?  

September 26, 2023 Are Steelers too cautious with rookies Joey Porter Jr., Broderick Jones? Or is patience warranted?

On the latest episode of the Chipped Ham and Football Podcast, CBS sports NFL reporter Aditi Kinkhabwala joins guest host Adam Bittner to discuss playing time for Steelers rookies. Are the Steelers being too cautious with rookies including Joey Porter Jr., Keeanu Benton and Broderick Jones, given the early success of names including Christian Gonzalez in New England and Brian Branch with Detroit? Or is there some logic to bringing them along slowly.


Aditi also gives her expert assessments on how the Steelers, Bengals, Browns and Ravens have lived up to her expectations for them; how the Nick Chubb injury does or does not change Cleveland's identity; where she weighs in on the T.J. Watt vs. Myles Garrett debate; and what she's watching in Weeks 4 and 5 in the NFL as the Steelers take on the Texans and Ravens.

September 26, 2023 Pitt football: Is starting Christian Veilleux or Nate Yarnell at QB now better for Panthers' future?

In their weekly Pitt football mailbag, Post-Gazette beat writers Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them? Is starting Christian Veilleux or Nate Yarnell at quarterback now the better move for the Panthers' post-Phil Jurkovec future? Is Pitt's future QB even on the roster, or could coach Pat Narduzzi look toward the transfer portal again next season? And how likely is it that both Narduzzi and athletic director Heather Lyke are at Pitt next season given developments at Michigan State? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 25, 2023 Steelers-Raiders reaction: Did Kenny Pickett, Matt Canada show legit growth? Or just beat a bad defense?

On the Monday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes Joe Starkey to break down the Steelers 23-18 NFL Week 3 victory against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium. Did quarterback Kenny Pickett and offensive coordinator Matt Canada find a legit combination for offense success moving forward? Or did they simply take advantage of a bad defense? Where do things stand at the cornerback position after strong performances for Levi Wallace and Patrick Peterson as well as elevated snap counts for rookie Joey Porter Jr.? And are the Steelers legitimate contenders with the Bengals, Ravens and Browns, as they're now tied atop the AFC North standings? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 25, 2023 Did Pirates prove Cubs' David Ross wrong this week despite elimination from MLB playoff race?

On the latest episode of the Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey and AT&T SportsNet analyst Michael McKenry break down a busy week for the club. Was a 4-2 road trip against the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds proof that manager Derek Shelton's club is taking a step forward despite being eliminated from the MLB postseason race and dropping an 82nd game that guarantees a losing season? Was Cubs manager David Ross out of line for calling the Pirates a "bad team"? What does management have to get right this offseason to keep the rebuild on the right path? And was it fair for Hunter Stratton to lose his first MLB win on a controversial scoring change? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 24, 2023 NFL Week 3: Steelers vs. Raiders reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Joe Starkey react live after the Steelers' Week 3 Sunday Night Football matchup with the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium.


How did Kenny Pickett and the offense execute after ugly performances against the Browns and 49ers to open the season? Did T.J. Watt and the defense keep momentum going against Raiders stars Josh Jacobs, Davante Adams and Jimmy Garoppolo? And how should offensive coordinator Matt Canada's playcalling be graded after heavy criticism from fans and media over the past week? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 23, 2023 Steelers-Raiders: Will Kenny Pickett, Steelers offense wake up in prime time?

On the Week 3 version of the Acrisure Fan Advantage podcast, Las Vegas Sports Network's Qiant Myers (Your Boy Q) joins Christopher Carter to preview Steelers-Raiders. Both offenses have struggled out of the gate, so will Kenny Pickett or Jimmy Garoppolo wake up first? Will T.J. Watt or Maxx Crosby take over on defense? And what are our final predictions?

September 22, 2023 Steelers-Raiders: How much time does Matt Canada have to fix offense?

On the Friday episode of The North Shore Drive podcast, Steelers insider Brian Batko joins Christopher Carter to look ahead to another prime-time matchup, this time Sunday night in Las Vegas. Steelers fans have clearly had enough of offensive Matt Canada, but is it even realistic to think the team could make a change? Would getting tight end Pat Freiermuth more involved help solve some of the offensive issues? 

Plus, we make our picks for Sunday’s game against the Raiders, and we have at least one prediction of a Steelers blowout win. 

September 22, 2023 Pirates 2024 focus: Will Henry Davis, Endy Rodriguez and Quinn Priester take over?

Pirates reporters Jason Mackey and Andrew Destin reflect on what they've learned from a roller-coaster 2023 season and begin to look ahead to 2024. Which prospects have proven they can earn a role? And what outisde options should the Pirates target in the offseason?


September 21, 2023 Fantasy football Week 3 start, sits & sleeper picks: Is it time to trade away or bench Najee Harris?

Post-Gazette sports editor and lead fantasy football analyst Chris Dell joins host Tony Squares to break down his favorite starts, sits, stashes, sleepers, and busts for their all-new 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites' Week 3 show.

The guys break down their top five players to start - and sit - at each position, as well as top plays D/ST and Kicker. Tony also goes rapid-fire format with Chris on a new game of "versus" and "marry, pluck, kill" to figure out which players are worth starting vs. sitting, holding onto, or dropping to waivers.

Is Pittsburgh Steelers RB Najee Harris finally worth starting vs. the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday Night Football? Will Geno Smith turn in another Top 10 QB performance against the Carolina Panthers? Does Kareem Hunt truly pose a threat in Cleveland to current Browns' starter Jerome Ford?

Visit www.post-gazette.com/fantasy-football every weekend for Chris' weekly 'Post-Gazette Fantasy Favorites' column (also printed in our Sunday newspaper), and subscribe to our YouTube channel @PGSportsNow to avoid missing a single video from our sports reporters, columnists, and guests.

For three months of digital access to the Post-Gazette for just 99¢, visit the following link: https://promo.post-gazette.com/youtube

September 21, 2023 Steelers-Raiders: Ben Roethlisberger thinks Dan Moore is 'killing it'? Time for Broderick Jones?

In his weekly YouTube appearance, Post-Gazette sports columnist Paul Zeise joins host Adam Bittner to weight in on all things Steelers after their dramatic victory Monday against the Cleveland Browns. Is it time for Broderick Jones to start over Dan Moore Jr.? Why does Ben Roethlisberger believe Moore is "killing it" despite heavy criticism from sources including Pro Football Focus? When should Joey Porter Jr. get the bulk of the starting reps at cornerback? Is Matt Canada or Kenny Pickett more at fault for the offense's woes? And have the Steelers' receivers been good enough so far?


Our duo tackles all those topics, analyzes what's wrong with Phil Jurkovec and Pitt, ponders the meaning of Penn State's Whiteout matchup with No. 24 Iowa this week and weighs how much the Pirates' final win total is actually worth as long as young players including Quinn Priester, Henry Davis and Endy Rodriguez are still struggling.

September 21, 2023 Pitt football: Can Panthers turn things around during ACC play?

On this week's In The Trenches podcast, Pitt football stars Gavin Bartholomew and Jake Kradel talk about what went wrong against West Virginia, why there's still belief on the locker room and why the first ACC game of the season represents a fresh start. 


September 20, 2023 Bogus grades? Why did PFF rate Browns' Myles Garrett ahead of Steelers' T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith?

On the Wednesday episode of the North Shore Drive podcast, host Christopher Carter welcomes assistant sports editor Adam Bittner to discuss controversial Pro Football Focus grades from the Steelers' Monday Night Football victory against the Cleveland Browns at Acrisure Stadium. Was the Browns' Myles Garrett really more impactful than the Steelers' T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith, who changed the game with defensive plays that led to touchdowns? Or is there a flaw in PFF's system that caused the scouting website to grade Garrett more highly?


Our duo tackles that topic, analyzes who from the group of Matt Canada, Kenny Pickett and the offensive line is most to blame for the Steelers' offensive woes and ponders whether Joey Porter Jr. should see more snaps ahead of Levi Wallace after making two key defensive plays against the Browns.

September 20, 2023 Pitt football: Larry Fitzgerald recalls Heisman campaign, ponders looming Hall of Fame inductions

Post-Gazette Pitt insider Noah Hiles welcomes legendary former Pitt receiver Larry Fitzgerald to discuss a range of topics. Among them: Fitzgerald's looming induction into the Pitt Athletics Hall of Fames; the qualities that drew him to Pitt as a young college football recruit; the 2002 season during which he challenged for the Heisman Trophy with 1,672 receiving yards and 22 touchdowns; and his pride in being a member of the NFL's decorated 2004 draft class.

September 20, 2023 PSU football: Were Drew Allar's struggles a net positive in his development? Plus, Whiteout preview

On their weekly Penn State football video, host Adam Bittner and Post-Gazette/Daily Collegian insider Seth Engle break down the Nittany Lions' 30-13 win at Illinois. Were quarterback Drew Allar's struggles in the game a cause for concern? Or a net positive in his development? Should fans worry about the running game after Kaytron Allen and Nick Singleton took a while to get going against the tough Illini front? And how did receivers including KeAndre Lambert-Smith and Malik McClain perform in their first Big Ten road test?


Our duo tackles those topics and looks ahead to Penn State's Whiteout night clash with No. 24 Iowa at Beaver Stadium. Will the environment be the same for an opponent outside the top 10 of the rankings? How will the experience of the Hawkeyes' Cade McNamara factor into the outcome? And what role will injuries to some of Iowa's key pieces play?

September 19, 2023 Pitt football: Why won't Pat Narduzzi bench Phil Jurkovec? More targets for Gavin Bartholomew?

In their weekly Pitt mailbag video, Post-Gazette beat writers Noah Hiles and Christopher Carter answer reader questions. Among them: Why won't coach Pat Narduzzi bench QB Phil Jurkovec after poor performance in the Backyard Brawl against West Virginia despite showing willingness to bench starters at other positions? When will tight end Gavin Bartholomew get more targets in the passing game? What is the reason that receivers aren't producing in Frank Cignetti Jr.'s offense? And should backup Christian Veilleux get a look at QB?

September 18, 2023 NFL Week 2: Steelers vs. Browns reaction, recap, highlights and analysis

Post-Gazette sports writers Adam Bittner and Joe Starkey react live after the Steelers' Week 2 Monday Night Football matchup with the Cleveland Browns at Acrisure Stadium. How did quarterback Kenny Pickett bounce back from his ugly effort against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 2? How did the Steelers cope with the injury absences of Cam Heyward and Diontae Johnson? And where does the team stand in the AFC North race moving forward following the Bengals' Week 2 loss to the Ravens? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 18, 2023 Steelers-Browns: Did T.J. Watt get bulletin board material from Dawand Jones?

On the Monday edition of the North Shore Drive podcast, Post-Gazette Steelers insider Ray Fittipaldo joins host Christopher Carter to discuss the team's Monday Night Football matchup against the Cleveland Browns at Acrisure Stadium. Will the Steelers finally be able to establish their identity after an ugly Week 1 loss to San Francisco? Did Browns rookie Dawand Jones give Steelers All-Pro pass rusher T.J. Watt bulletin board material in suggesting he's found a flaw in Watt's technique? And what role will injuries play on both sides of the matchup with Cam Heyward and Diontae Johnson out for the Steelers and Jack Conklin out for the Browns?

September 18, 2023 Pirates in 2024: Are playoffs a realistic goal? What will Opening Day lineup, rotation look like?

On this week's episode of the Pitching In podcast, Post-Gazette Pirates insider Jason Mackey and AT&T SportsNet analyst and former Pirates catcher Michael McKenry discuss expectations for the club in 2024. What will the opening day lineup and rotation look like? Can this team realistically compete for a playoff spot as general manager Ben Cherington suggested over the weekend? Where do players including Andrew McCutchen, Henry Davis and Liover Peguero fit into that vision?  And what outside pieces should Cherington look to add in free agency? Our duo tackles those topics and more.

September 16, 2023 Steelers-Browns: Will Myles Garrett make life miserable for Kenny Pickett?

On the Acrisure Fan Advantage podcast, Irie Harris from Cleveland.com joins the show to preview Week 2 of the Steelers' season. Can Kenny Pickett and the offense avoid a "nightmare scenario" against an aggresive Browns defense, led by Myles Garrett? And is Deshaun Watson ready to return to his old form and break Cleveland's long losing streak in Pittsburgh? Plus we make the case for each team to win and make our final predictions. 



Music from https://filmmusic.io "RetroFuture Clean" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)