PITTSBURGH - Defensive back Anthony Smith is so certain the Pittsburgh Steelers will end the New England Patriots' unbeaten season, he is guaranteeing a win Sunday in Foxborough, Mass.
The Patriots (12-0) may have the perfect record, Smith said Wednesday, but it should be New England that is worried about the Steelers (9-3) rather than the other way around.
"People keep asking me if we're ready for the Patriots," Smith said. "They should be asking if they're ready for us."
Is Smith so confident that he is willing to copy one of former Pittsburgh linebacker Joey Porter's familiar motivational ploys by guaranteeing the Steelers will win?
"We're going to win," Smith said. "Yeah, I can guarantee a win. As long as we come out and do what we got to do. Both sides of the ball are rolling, and if our special teams come through for us, we've got a good chance to win."
Despite Smith's abundant optimism, no other Steelers are designating Sunday as guaranteed win day. Linebacker James Farrior, cautioning that Smith hasn't been in the NFL long and may not realize what he is saying, doesn't think the Patriots will pay any attention.
Smith, a third-round pick from Syracuse University in 2006, became the starter at free safety only after Ryan Clark needed spleen surgery in late October.
Used to winning? He went to Syracuse, who just wrapped up a successful 2-10 season and hasn't been any good since McNabb was first booed by the Philly faithful.