Reporting Jory Rand
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — With Jeff Reed’s sudden and unexpected departure Tuesday, Shaun Suisham now takes over kicking duties for the Steelers. He’s ready to start this Sunday.
Suisham wants to become a household name in Pittsburgh, but he knows he is stepping into a difficult situation.
“It’s part of being a kicker for the NFL,” Suisham said. “I love it. You sure learn to appreciate it a lot more when you’re sitting at home watching football games. I’m just so thankful to be here, and happy to be back, kicking footballs.”
As Suisham adjusted to his new surrounding, his teammates, specifically those on the special teams, were still adjusting to life without Jeff Reed.
“Man, you know, I don’t know if that was totally expected by a lot of the guys in here. I was, um, you know, it’s a shame. I really enjoyed the time I got to spend with him. I’m sad to see him go, especially under these circumstances, but, you know, it’s a stark reminder of what this business is and how it works,” Steelers punter Dan Sepulveda said.
“When you lose a guy like that, it always hurts,” Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward said. “You know, you remember the relationships that, you know, he established with all the guys in the locker room. You know, our case, Coach Tomlin thought what he was doing was best for the team, to try to help his team win ball games, and as a player, all you can do is, you know, respect his decision and move on.”
Suisham said he is fully aware of the problems kickers have at Heinz Field. He said he had none of those problems Tuesday during his tryout and does not expect any beginning Sunday against Oakland.