Ireland Contracting Nightly Sports Call: December 2, 2019 (Pt. 2)

WE ARE GOING TO FOCUS ON THE PENGUINS RETURNING TO PRACTICE TODAY ST

LOUIS RETURNS HERE ON WEDNESDAY PLAYING TONIGHT IN CHICAGO LEADING 2-0 THE PENGUINS GOT MORE BAD NEWS THEY LOST BRIAN WITH SEVERED TENDONS IN HIS ANKLE THEY SURGICALLY REPAIRED IT BUT YOU ALWAYS WORRY ABOUT INFECTION AND STUFF LIKE THAT

YOU WILL BE GONE FOR A COUPLE OF MONTHS TODAY THEY GO BACK TO PRACTICE AND THEN PATRICK LUNDQUIST ENDS UP GETTING INVOLVED IN SOMETHING THAT KNOCKED HIM TO THE ICE AND HE IS OUT WITH A LOWER BODY INJURY YOU CAN SEE HIM THERE, HE HAD TO LEAVE AND HE IS NOW DAY-TO- DAY I ASSUME WE WILL GET AN UPDATE AND LIKELY HE WILL NOT PLAY TOMORROW OR WEDNESDAY NIGHT HE IS ONE OF THOSE GUYS WHO PLAYS THE WAY HE PLAYS AND THAT'S THE WAY IT IS

HE CAN'T CHANGE THE WAY HE IS THAT IS AN UNFORTUNATE SITUATION BECAUSE THESE INJURIES, IN WHICH THEY HAVE MISSED A COUPLE OF GAMES THEN YOU HAVE TODAY AT PRACTICE WE HAVE SOME TWEETS AND YOU CAN TWEET ME THIS IS FROM ANTHONY WHO SAYS, IS THERE ANYWHERE ON JUJU SMITH SCHUSTER RETURNING I WOULD LOOK FOR ANY TIME SOON

HE'S DEALING WITH AN INJURY AND I THINK IT IS A PCL INJURY ON HIS KNEE I WOULD EXPECT TO SEE HIM, HOPEFULLY FOR THE BUFFALO GAME BUT THAT MAY BE A BIT OF A STRETCH JAMES CONNOR COULD RETURN THIS WEEK BUT WHEN YOU TALK ABOUT DIVISION OF LABOR TO USE MIKE TOMLIN'S TERMINOLOGY THEY ARE HAVING TO BE CAUTIOUS WITH JAMES CONNOR I CERTAINLY DON'T WANT HIM TO HANDLE THE BALL BECAUSE WHEN HE CAME BACK LAST TIME HE REACTIVATED THAT AC JOINT AND YOU WANT TO TAKE YOUR TIME

BENNY SNELL HAS A KNACK FOR BEING GOOD BETWEEN THE TACKLES AND I EXPECT THEM TO CONTINUE IT IS A NICE SITUATION HAVE THAT I WOULD MAKE SURE THEY ARE 100% IT SHOULD BE A VERY FASCINATING WEEK THIS WEEK WITH ALL OF THESE GAMES AND THE WAY THE SCHEDULE IS, AS I SAID, THE BILLS ARE A TEAM THAT I LOOK TO AND I THINK THEY ARE MUCH BETTER PEOPLE WISE THE DEFENSES CARRIED THEM, AS WE HAVE SEEN PEOPLE DON'T WANT TO GIVE YOUNG PLAYERS THEIR DUE THEY EXPECT IMMEDIATE RESULTS SOMETIMES AND YOU HAVE TO LET THEM GROW

JOSH ALLEN WAS NOT GOOD LAST YEAR, HE HAS TAKEN HIS TIME AND GOTTEN BETTER AND WE HAVE SEEN A PROGRESSION AND THE DEFENSE MAKES IT EASIER I THOUGHT WE SAW WITH MASON RUDOLPH HE WAS THE QUARTERBACK FOR THOSE GAMES AND HE PLAYED WELL I THINK PEOPLE ARE SHORTSIGHTED IF YOU HAVE SEEN THE LAST OF MASON RUDOLPH I THINK WE WILL BENEFIT FROM EVERYTHING HE HAS HAD TO GO THROUGH WHICH IS A LOT FOR A YOUNG GUY

FROM A CONCUSSION THAT WAS DANGEROUSLY WORSE THAN THAT TO GETTING A NEW HELMET AND GETTING YOUR CHARACTER ASSASSINATED I THINK MIKE TOMLIN MADE THE PRUDENT MOVE TO GO WITH HODGES HE IS COME INTO SOME PRESSURE PACKED SITUATIONS THINK ABOUT IT THE FIRST TIME YOU SEE HIM AS A STARTER IS IN, LOS ANGELES, AGAINST THE CHARGERS

THEY ARE 1-4 AND THEY CAN'T AFFORD TO GO 1-5 HE DELIVERED A NICE PERFORMANCE THE NEXT TIME YOU SEE HIM HE IS IN THE RAVENS GAME HE ENGINEERED THE TOUCHDOWN DRIVE IT WASN'T HIS FAULT THEY GOT THEM JUMPSTARTED AND HE COMES IN AND GET THE TOUCHDOWN WITH JAMES WASHINGTON THAT IS MY POINT FOR YOU ABOUT HODGES, HE PUTS THE BALL ACCURATELY WHERE HE NEEDS TO WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE ABOUT HIM YESTERDAY EARLY ON IS HE STEPPED IN AND ROLLED TOO QUICKLY AWAY FROM THE POCKET TO THE RIGHT SIDE

I THINK YOU HAVE TO BE WILLING TO STEP UP IN THE POCKET BECAUSE I THINK OFFENSIVE LINEMAN EXCEPT THAT WHEN YOU LEAVE IT AND VACATE EARLY YOU COULD BE IN A BAD SITUATION THIS IS A YOUNG KID WHO TOOK ADVANTAGE OF AN OPPORTUNITY HE WAS JUST SOMEBODY LOOKING FOR AN OPPORTUNITY TO TRY OUT THEY LIKED HIM AND GOT HIM INTO CAMP

THE CAMP ARM DELIVERED SOME PRETTY GOOD NUMBERS SO HE ENDED UP GETTING ON THE ROSTER THEY CAN'T AFFORD TO KEEP HIM AROUND SO THEY KEPT HIM IN THE BACK POCKET HE COULD BE THE GUY TO COME IN HERE EVEN AFTER THE TRADE SO FAR IT'S ALL PRETTY GOOD WITH THAT BUT IT'S GOING TO BE A FASCINATING LAST FOR WEEK THAT GAME, I KNOW A LOT OF YOU OUT THERE BASED ON THE TWEETS OUT THERE ARE UPSET THAT THEY FLEXED IT BUT THE NFL CAN DO WHAT THEY WANT IT'S A VERY BIG GAME IN THE AFC LANDSCAPE

THEY FLEXED IT TO 8:20 AND I FEEL BAD FOR THOSE OF YOU FROM OUT OF TOWN IF YOU WANT TO SEE A GAME YOU MIGHT HAVE TO CHANGE YOUR FLIGHT NOW THAT'S JUST THE WAY IT WORKS IN THE NFL THEY MAKE YOU AWARE THAT THAT'S A POSSIBILITY WITH ALL GAMES ESPECIALLY LATER IN THE SEASON ALTHOUGH I DID THINK THE MAXIMUM YOU COULD APPEAR ON PRIME TIME GAMES WAS 5:00 AND THE STEELERS HAVE ALREADY BEEN

THE FLEXING MAIL OUT IT TO INCREASE THAT SHOULD BE A TREMENDOUS GAME, THE ONLY HOME GAME LEFT ON THE SCHEDULE I THINK THE STEELERS, TO ME YOU COULD LOOK AT IT AND SAY 2-2 IS WORSE, 3-1, WILL NINE WINS BE GOOD ENOUGH THERE WILL BE A LOT OF HEADBANGING GOING ON AND THE TITANS HAVE A TOUGH SCHEDULE ALONG WITH THE BUFFALO BILLS 2-2 WOULD NOT BE GOOD ENOUGH

I THINK THEY CAN GO 3-1, ESPECIALLY IF THE WIN IS AGAINST THE AFC TEAM YOU HAVE TO BE TO BILLS AND THE JETS IF YOU LOSE TO THE RAVENS IS LESS HARMFUL IT'S GOING TO GO RIGHT DOWN TO THE WIRE JUST LIKE IT DID LAST YEAR WHEN THE STEELERS WERE ROOTING FOR THE CLEVELAND BROWNS ON THE FINAL GAME OF THE YEAR

THAT WILL DO IT FOR US, HANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE AS WE MAKE THE TRANSITION FROM THIS STUDIO INTO A NEW ONE THAT IS BEING CONSTRUCTED WE WILL GET THOSE PHONE CALLS ON TOMORROW, I APPRECIATE YOUR TWEETS AND WE ARE DOING IT AGAIN TOMORROW WITH THE IRELAND CONTRACTING NIGHTLY SPORTS CALL POWERED BY FAN DUEL SPORTS BOOK KEN RICE IS READY FOR YOU