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The Steelers finished No. 5 overall in defense last year, but they didn’t play to the level of the 2008 team that led the league in overall defense, rushing defense and allowed the fewest points in the league while winning the Super Bowl. Farrior had perhaps his worst season since joining the Steelers in 2002.

“When they brought Larry in, I took it like they wanted to make us better. You know that Larry works hard and is a tough guy, and that’s what we need,” Timmons said.

That and a Timmons who plays to his full ability.

“If he’s healthy, he’s hard to handle,” Butler said.