They might be friends, but that won't stop Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Ike Taylor from crushing New York Jets receiver Santonio Holmes if he gets the chance.
"I'm not going to hesitate to lay him out," Taylor said, according to the New York Post. "No question at all. You know why? Because he ain't going to hesitate to crack on me if he gets a chance."
Taylor and Holmes are former teammates in Pittsburgh -- winning a Super Bowl in 2008 -- and still hang out together, but that won't factor in the AFC Championship Game at Heinz Field on Sunday.
"I love him and that's my boy, but when we get between those white lines, it's a whole different deal," Taylor said to the Post.
"I'm going to try to be as disrespectful as possible once we get between those white lines. Friendship doesn't enter into it then."
When told of Taylor's comments on Thursday, Holmes agreed.
"It's for the Super Bowl," he said. "
That's what it's all about. I'd give it to him if I played defense and he played offense."
Taylor has been with the Steelers since 2003. Holmes played there from 2006 until being dealt to the Jets before this season after off-the-field problems. He served a four-game suspension to start the year for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy but had 52 catches for 746 yards and six touchdowns in the regular season.
Holmes and Taylor work out at Disney's Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Fla., during the offseason. During the season, however, they don't talk football.
"I talked to Tone [on Tuesday], but it was what we always talk about," Taylor said, according to the Post. "'What you doing?' Playing PlayStation, what you doing? 'Playing PlayStation.' No [on-field] matchups or anything like that. We just rap."
There will be no pleasantries Sunday.
"It all changes between those white lines," Taylor told the Post.
Holmes' teammate Braylon Edwards said you have to have that kind of attitude when you play a friend, something that happens pretty frequently in the NFL. The wide receiver played for Cleveland before coming to the Jets in 2009 and knows what it's like to have personal loyalties beyond his current team.
"There are probably times during the regular season when guys might be buddy-buddy and giddy-giddy, but you're talking about our livelihoods," Edwards said. "Santonio Holmes is trying to win another Super Bowl. Ike Taylor is trying to win another Super Bowl. So they have to bury their friendship pretty much this whole week."
Information from ESPNNewYork.com's Jane McManus was used in this report.