The Pittsburgh Steelers might be at a disadvantage Sunday that goes well beyond the normal adversity that comes with playing on the road. That being said, you likely won’t hear the team complaining about its odd travel schedule.
With the Steelers preparing to take on the Giants in New York’s MetLife Stadium at 4:25 p.m. ET on Sunday, they’re well aware of the damage that Hurricane Sandy caused the surrounding areas. In fact, the hotel that the team usually stays at near Newark Airport in New Jersey is still without power, and the team has declined to look for another one in the area, according to ESPN and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
"Before we looked for another one [hotel], we decided we just didn’t feel right about asking employees at any of the hotels down there to start making a bunch of extra efforts to accommodate us, when so many of them are having issues themselves," said an anonymous Steelers official according to the ESPN report. "There are a lot of very difficult things going on for a lot of people in that area. Us having to fly in and out on the same day as a football game is no hardship in comparison."
Normally, NFL rules stipulate that a traveling team must arrive in its destination city the day before a road game, but the league wisely made an exception in this case. So the Steelers will fly into Newark the day of the game, have a pregame meal near the airport, and then head over to the stadium.
Of course, the travel schedule only figures to make things that much more difficult for the Steelers, who have gone 1-3 on the road this season. But considering that the Brooklyn Nets’ first game in the city was postponed from its scheduled Thursday tip, the Steelers may consider themselves fortunate just to get the game in as scheduled.