PITTSBURGH - The Pittsburgh Steelers have filed notice they'll sue the city-county Sports & Exhibition Authority over stalled plans to add 3,000 seats to the team's 11-year-old stadium, Heinz Field.
The Steelers contend their lease requires the authority to pay about two-thirds of the estimated $39 million the team expects it will cost to add the end zone seats and a new video scoreboard those fans can see.
The team thought the authority could raise its share through a $1 ticket surcharge and an extra $2-$3 parking fee but Alco Parking Co., which operates the stadium lots, has balked at that. As a result, the authority - which runs the city's sports stadiums and venues like its convention center - has so far refused to foot its share of the looming bill, the team says.
A clause in the team's 30-year stadium lease requires the authority to pay two-thirds of a "designated expansion" of no more than 10,000 seats in the south end zone, which is where the team wants to add the new seats. The stadium now has 65,050 seats.
NFL to deter faking
When Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Emmanuel Sanders suddenly dropped to the turf late in the fourth quarter, was helped to the sideline, returned after missing one play, then managed to be the first player down the field on punt coverage, announcers Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth let NBC's audience know their feelings.
"Man," Michaels said, his voice dripping with sarcasm, "I'm sure glad Sanders is OK."
In a similar tone, Collinsworth chimed in: "It's a miracle." Both chuckled. More guffaws and hearty mocking of Sanders came from ESPN's talking heads on a "C'mon Man!" segment a couple of days later.
Safe to say the NFL doesn't consider this a laughing matter: The league told Sanders it wants to chat about what happened in that Sunday night game against the Cincinnati Bengals. When a reporter asked Sanders this week whether he really had a cramp against the Bengals, he didn't answer directly.