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steeler_fan_in_t.o.
03-17-2009, 12:12 PM
I think we got spoiled for many years as Steelers fans. Most other fans would list the OL importance like this:

LT
RT
LG
RG & C

But for over 30 years we knew what it was like to have a dominating center. A guy who was athletic enough to get out in front of a RB as he pulls outisde or plow forward to open a hole up in the middle of the D. A guy who could keep the big fat guy in front of him off of the QB in pass protection.

Is it just a coincidence that we haven't had that power running game since the retirement of Hartings? The talk of how awful our line is also began around this same time.

I say that it is imperative to identify our next dominating C who would pick up the torch that has been dropped since Mahan arrived and carry it for the next ten years, and grab him wherever we can. If that is Mack, then he is our man. If it can be Unger, Luigs, Wood, Shipley, than we can afford to pick the one who lands at our feet. But I don't want to hear that "A center is not worthy of this draft position" or "how can we trade up for a Center?" because while others might not understand the importance of this position, Steeler fans do.

RuthlessBurgher
03-17-2009, 12:28 PM
:Agree

I think having a strong, smart, and athletic center in the middle of your line is vital. That is why I am so big on Alex Mack.

I would rank the importance as:

LT, C, RT, LG, RG

WoodleyofTroy
03-17-2009, 06:32 PM
This makes a good landing spot for this article.

http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news;_ylt=AqNCKMqsHYv7vENM9wBQqfI5nYcB?slug=ms-trippintuesday031709&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

MaxAMillion
03-17-2009, 08:42 PM
Center is very important, but it is quite possible that a quality center falls into our laps in the second or third rounds.

Chadman
03-17-2009, 09:05 PM
Is it just a coincidence that we haven't had that power running game since the retirement of Hartings? The talk of how awful our line is also began around this same time.

Actually, the line started getting critisism after The Bus retired & the Steelers started focussing on the passing game more.

Power running game? Hasn't been in Pittsburgh since Bettis left.

One problem that this line has, that people never seem to give a thought to, is that this line (well, the one that has slowly fallen apart really) was built to block for Jerome Bettis- not Willie Parker, not Ben Roethlisberger. It was a pure power-running based OL. Now the Steelers have the sharp, darting Willie Parker & a passing attack- these big oafs were not brought here to block for that.

Guys like Marvel, Faneca, Simmons- they were power running blockers. Colon & Starks were brought in on the same regime. Kemoeatu too.

Unless the Steelers revert back to that style of blocking, these types of OL players will not fit properly.

Conversely, for the type of OL that Larry Z wants to put in place, guys like former TE Hills, Darnell Stapleton- athletic 'finesse' blockers- are required, guys that can move in space & create 'quick' holes for Parker to squeeze through, or mobile enough to block for Ben as he scrambles around.

Of course- just to frustrate us- the Steelers franchise Starks, tender Colon & re-sign Kemoeatu.