Steelers Q & A with Brett Keisel

September 7, 2008

Steelers defensive end Brett Keisel is in his seventh season, which is seven more than most seventh-round draft picks play in the NFL.

The 242nd pick of the 2002 draft has gone from special teams standout to starter on a defense that finished No. 1 in the NFL last season. Keisel is one of the most athletic players on the team -- the 6-6, 285-pounder was also a standout basketball player in high school -- and he is among the more quotable Steelers.

Keisel recently talked to the Tribune-Review about a number of things, including how he wants to finish more plays this season, how much sleep he has been getting as a father -- he and his wife, Sarah, had a son late March -- and which Steeler would get his vote for president if he had to pick one.

Q: You had a team-high 31 quarterback pressures last season. Do you take satisfaction in that or do you look at it as coming up just short on a lot of potential sacks?

A: "I hate hurries. I guess you made the play but I would much rather get the guy on the ground and I've worked hard this year to hopefully finish those plays. When you get to (the quarterback) a lot of good things can happen. The hurries are OK but I'd much rather have a sack."

Q: Your son, Jacob, is less than a year old. Are you getting any sleep?

A: "I sleep great. My wife Sarah's been incredible with this whole thing. She's like 'Super Mom.' I haven't had to get up once in the night. I did at first because she had a C-section. Since she's healed up from that I haven't done anything, I feel like. I change a diaper every once in awhile. He's starting to get on regular food so I'm sure I'll be getting on those roles now."

Q: You can have dinner with any three people, past or present. Who is sitting at your table?

A: "Larry Bird, Theodore Roosevelt and my wife."

Q: Why Roosevelt?

A: "I just think he did so much for this country back in the day and he was kind of my type of guy. He saved Yellowstone Park, which I love so much and have spent so much time in. He was a hunter and I think he was just a great man for this country. I would like to pick his brain on what life was like back then."

Q: If you had to vote for player in your locker to be president who would get your vote?

A: "I guess I would have to vote for Troy (Polamalu). I guess just because of the type of person he is. He's not one of those types of guys that hollers but he always seems to get the job done and he gets the job done well. He's very humble, very family-oriented. He would be my guy."

Q: Who is the best basketball player on the team?

A: "No question. You're looking at him."

Q: Who is second best?

A: "There's a lot of guys that are really good. Ben's a good player. Aaron Smith's a great player. Deshea Townsend can shoot like no other. Ike Taylor's a great player."

Q: Who's the one guy that can really get after it on defense?

A: "Gotta be Ike. Ike will lock down anyone playing hoops. Anyone."

Q: Even you?

A: "Except me."