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Bill Cowher: Pittsburgh Steelers 'soft on defense'

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There are a select few people who could say something negative about the Steelers' organization that would actually hit home.

Bill Cowher, one of their three head coaches since 1969, is probably one of them.

Speaking shortly after a 31-10 blowout loss to the rival Cleveland Browns on Sunday, Cowher said that his former team "has gotten soft."

"I never thought I would say these words," Cowher said on CBS, right before taking his shot.

At 3-3, Mike Tomlin's Steelers look like a former powerhouse shifting into a rebuild, which is understandable after a nine-year stretch with a pair of Super Bowl wins and a third appearance.

That doesn't mean it will sit well with a proud group of alumni who have a weekly soap box to stand on.

"They're very close to hitting that panic button," Hines Ward added later that day on NBC. "The defense looks soft. Guys are just able to run the ball up and down the field. I look at their personnel; they can't cover anybody in the secondary. Offensively, I thought I'd never say it, but the Steelers are a finesse offense right now. I don't even know who these guys are."

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