Steelers nose tackle Casey Hampton told reporters before the Baltimore game that a yearly ritual at M&T Bank Stadium during pregame is accepting a hot dog from a Ravens fan.
Until this year, when Hampton's 'guy' didn't show up.
"No, he wasn't there," Hampton chuckled. "Y'all pumped it up, man, he's probably embarrassed. A big time fan didn't want nobody to see him. That's y'alls fault."
The only handing out of food that Hampton received during the team's 23-20 win was a pancake block from Baltimore fullback Vonta Leach in the second quarter which put 'Big Snack' on his wallet. Hampton said it was a first-time happening in his 12-year career.
"Never, I ain't never been caught like that," said Hampton. "I didn't see him. That's the type of thing that happens, like [Dick] Lebeau says 'sometimes you get the bear, sometimes the bear gets you.' With me, guys are giving me a hard time about it because nobody has ever seen something like that happen to me before. But, you know, it's all good man. I've been playing in this league a long time and a whole lot worse things have happened so at the end of the day, man, it is what it is."
The previous worst-hit Hampton had been on the taking end of was in the team's training camp a few years ago when he tried out as a fullback for one play. That play resulted in several Pittsburgh linebackers converging on and drilling Hampton backwards, who then vowed never to play offense again.
"Yeah, but I didn't hit the ground, though" Hampton said recalling the short fullback stint. "I don't like getting on that ground, man, I tried to put that kickstand up [when Leach hit me] but it wouldn't go down. It was kind of tough. It happens."
After the play, Hampton and Leach were seen exchanging words, but Casey said it was friendly fire.
"Oh, I know Leach," said Hampton. "From [him] playing in Houston, and I live in Houston. We were just kind of laughing. He got me right there. I told him I'd get him back, but you know it's kind of hard to get a fullback. Not too many opportunities to get those guys back."
And now Hampton's own teammates have been getting him back verbally.
"Oh, [Larry] Foote, all the linebackers," Hampton said when asked who was giving him the most grief. "They're going to give me that because I mess with everybody about everything, I'm one of those guys. When I see something on tape I'm going to let them know it happened. So, whenever somebody gets me, they're going to get me. They don't care if the hit was legit or not, that doesn't matter, I shouldn't have let [Leach] get me. Foote is like, 'You're Hamp. We're going to look soft now. We're a soft defense, they don't look at us the same.' That's just how they look at it."