The regular season is now over, and the Pittsburgh Steelers are taking their practices at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, formerly known and still referred to as the ‘South Side’ facility of Heinz Field. While the postseason is now upon us, there is plenty left to be done.
And there are plenty of questions left unanswered as well. The offseason is just really the beginning phase of the answer-seeking process, which is lasts all the way through the Super Bowl for teams fortunate enough to reach that far.
You can rest assured that we have the questions, and we will be monitoring the developments in the playoffs as they develop, and beyond, looking for the answers as we look to evaluate the makeup of the Steelers as they try to navigate their way back to playoff success, in which they are, at least supposed to be, among the favorites to win the Super Bowl.
Question: How does the kickoff time for tomorrow’s game affect the Steelers?
In a rather rare occurrence, the league announced yesterday that they would be moving the Steelers’ Divisional Round playoff game in Kansas City against the Chiefs from a 1:05 kickoff time to 8:20, putting it into prime time. But this isn’t the usual flex scheduling sort of nonsense. The game was moved back to later in the day due to reports of a very serious weather development in the area.
It’s likely that the Steelers and Chiefs were informed that this would be a possibility at some point earlier in the week, so it shouldn’t exactly come as a great surprise, or so, at least, I would hope that that would be the case.
But change is never ideal, and change is what they’ve been handed. I’m not sure how this might affect their pre-game preparation, but it certainly has to have some impact on the players’ night before and day of, considering that they will be working seven hours later than they were expecting.
For what it’s worth, I believe I saw on Twitter that the Steelers are 14-8 on Sunday night games under Mike Tomlin, which is actually pretty much right in line with his overall winning percentage. His Monday night record is even better, so his team hasn’t necessarily had an issue getting up the play at night.
Some have raised concerns about after the game, such as the fact that the late game will result in them getting home, back to Pittsburgh, in the early morning hours on Monday. But, for starters, they need to win on Sunday for that to even matter. And players get Monday off after they win. So I’m not sure that’ relevant.
And football is football no matter what time it’s played, so I’m not sure there is even a way of knowing how a change of time would impact a game, letting alone knowing that it actually happens. Still, it’s not ideal for us here, as I know for me at least it means I’ll be writing into the early hours of Monday morning.