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costanza2k1
04-07-2009, 10:43 PM
Steelers needs: Smart approach serves Steelers well
April 3, 2009
By Pete Prisco
CBSSports.com Senior Writer
Tell Pete your opinion!



The Pittsburgh Steelers have won two Super Bowls in the past four years. The reason is simple.

They draft well.

Kevin Colbert, the Steelers' director of player personnel, is one of the top personnel men in the league when it comes to drafting. For some reason, he doesn't get his due.

He should.

The Steelers are one of the smart teams that rarely dive into the free-agency pool, instead choosing to build their team with good drafting. Their roster is loaded with star draft picks.

The other good thing about the Steelers is they have a good feel for when it's time to let a player go. That's the case this year with corner Bryant McFadden. They liked McFadden, but not enough to give him a mega-contract. So he signed with Arizona for two years and $10 million.

The Steelers will likely draft a corner in the first two or three rounds -- maybe even in the first round -- to help fill that void.

That's the Steelers way.

That's the winning way.

QB: Ben Roethlisberger won his second Super Bowl, proving he is one of the game's elite. He isn't as conventional as some other top quarterbacks but he gets the job done. Backup Byron Leftwich is a free agent but if he doesn't sign somewhere else the Steelers would love to have him back. Charlie Batch and Dennis Dixon are also in the mix.


RB: Willie Parker is the starter, but Rashard Mendenhall will push him for time. Mendenhall is a tougher inside runner who is coming off a major injury. Mewelde Moore offers a nice third-down back, while Carey Davis a nice fullback.

WR: Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes form a nice pass-catching combination. Ward is no longer the top guy, being passed by Holmes, but he can still get the job done. The key here is whether Limas Sweed steps up as the third receiver to replace Nate Washington. Sweed dropped several key passes last season as a rookie. Martin Nance is also in the mix.

TE: Heath Miller is one of the better all-round tight ends in the league. He blocks and he can be a factor in the passing game. Matt Spaeth is a solid backup and Sean McHugh is a young player with potential.

OL: The Steelers return the entire line that started in the Super Bowl, which they needed. Those five played well in the postseason, but the question now is if they can maintain it. The key is how well left tackle Max Starks holds up. The Steelers could still use an upgrade at a few spots, so look for an early pick on the offensive line.

DL: Age is starting to become a factor on their line. Casey Hampton, Aaron Smith and Brett Keisel are all 30 or more. They're all good players, but they have to find depth behind them and possible replacements. The Steelers got by with little backup help last season. Chris Hoke and Travis Kirschke are just OK.

LB: This is one of the strongest positions on the team. Outside rushers James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley are the best pair of outside linebackers in the game. Inside backers James Farrior and Larry Foote are good, but look for Lawrence Timmons to push Foote out this season.

Secondary: The loss of McFadden to the Cardinals in free agency leaves a huge hole. Can Deshea Townsend or William Gay fill it? There's also Fernando Bryant as a reserve. They will likely use an early pick on a corner. Troy Polamalu and Ryan Clark form a nice combo in the back two. Tyrone Carter is a decent backup, but they need a young safety who can run.

pfelix73
04-07-2009, 10:58 PM
I've been reading some things in the local press regarding this draft. Obviously, it will depend on who goes ahead of them with the first 31 picks, but I'm getting the impression that I just don't think they will be drafting a OL in round 1. Unless a OT like Beatty or Britton fall down to them. I think they will wait on a C for someone like Wood or Shipley instead of Mack or Unger.

A quality CB or DL might be there for the picking. OR how about this: a WR.

RuthlessBurgher
04-08-2009, 12:27 AM
Carey Davis a nice fullback.

I didn't know Prisco did a comedy act! :lol:


Ward is no longer the top guy, being passed by Holmes, but he can still get the job done.

I thought Holmes could pass Ward coming into last season, but Ward had his first 1000+ yard season since 2004 (and his 81 catches were the most he has had since 2003).

Meanwhile, Holmes regressed from 942 yards and 8 TD's in 2007 to 821 yards and 5 TD's last year (while playing in 2 more games).

People seem to forget this, because Santonio had a great post-season, culminating with an MVP performance in the Super Bowl (when Ward was severely limited by an injury that should have required twice as much rest as he was able to get from the Championship game to the Super Bowl). Here's hoping that Holmes can keep up that momentum going into next season and blossom into a true #1 WR.

Discipline of Steel
04-08-2009, 07:11 AM
I disagreed with those two comments as well Ruthless. I also thought the 'good, but' comment on our two middle LB was a little light to say the least. Farrior is a key cog.

Regarding the suggestion to grab a WR in the 1st round, my opinion is
No, sign a veteran instead.
Hope that helps.

SteelCzar76
04-08-2009, 09:46 AM
WR: Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes form a nice pass-catching combination. Ward is no longer the top guy, being passed by Holmes, but he can still get the job done. The key here is whether Limas Sweed steps up as the third receiver to replace Nate Washington. Sweed dropped several key passes last season as a rookie. Martin Nance is also in the mix.

TE: Heath Miller is one of the better all-round tight ends in the league. He blocks and he can be a factor in the passing game. Matt Spaeth is a solid backup and Sean McHugh is a young player with potential.

OL: The Steelers return the entire line that started in the Super Bowl, which they needed. Those five played well in the postseason, but the question now is if they can maintain it. The key is how well left tackle Max Starks holds up. The Steelers could still use an upgrade at a few spots, so look for an early pick on the offensive line.

DL: Age is starting to become a factor on their line. Casey Hampton, Aaron Smith and Brett Keisel are all 30 or more. They're all good players, but they have to find depth behind them and possible replacements. The Steelers got by with little backup help last season. Chris Hoke and Travis Kirschke are just OK.

LB: This is one of the strongest positions on the team. Outside rushers James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley are the best pair of outside linebackers in the game. Inside backers James Farrior and Larry Foote are good, but look for Lawrence Timmons to push Foote out this season.

Secondary: The loss of McFadden to the Cardinals in free agency leaves a huge hole. Can Deshea Townsend or William Gay fill it? There's also Fernando Bryant as a reserve. They will likely use an early pick on a corner. Troy Polamalu and Ryan Clark form a nice combo in the back two. Tyrone Carter is a decent backup, but they need a young safety who can run.


Fair assesment,....with the exception of the "look out for Timmons" comment. Perhaps a 6'0 230 lb linebacker could be dominant at MLB in say,..the 60's or 70's,...but this 2009. How much longer will people continue to "put extras" on a players ability simply because they are on the roster ?

MeetJoeGreene
04-08-2009, 10:12 AM
Carey Davis a nice fullback.

I didn't know Prisco did a comedy act! :lol:

.

That struck me as well.

steelsnis
04-08-2009, 02:43 PM
Fair assesment,....with the exception of the "look out for Timmons" comment. Perhaps a 6'0 230 lb linebacker could be dominant at MLB in say,..the 60's or 70's,...but this 2009. How much longer will people continue to "put extras" on a players ability simply because they are on the roster?

Boy, I'm not sure how you could have watched Timmons play last year and NOT think he's ready to unseat Foote as a starter. The guy made tons of plays from that inside position and it's gettin damn near impossible to keep him off the field.

feltdizz
04-08-2009, 03:31 PM
Timmons is a stud.. even Stevie Wonder saw it...

Holmes was terrible in the regular season but he also had some demons/distractions on his shoulders. I think he is now free of them and will be a star this year...

My beef is the "Mendenhall is a tough inside runner" he is a bigger FWP with vision IMO.
I think he will have a great year but if he fails to move the pile don't be surprised. He was never a power runner in college.

and how does Prisco say Davis and good in the same sentence but say nothing about Russell.

RuthlessBurgher
04-08-2009, 03:56 PM
Timmons is a stud.. even Stevie Wonder saw it...

Holmes was terrible in the regular season but he also had some demons/distractions on his shoulders. I think he is now free of them and will be a star this year...

My beef is the "Mendenhall is a tough inside runner" he is a bigger FWP with vision IMO.
I think he will have a great year but if he fails to move the pile don't be surprised. He was never a power runner in college.

and how does Prisco say Davis and good in the same sentence but say nothing about Russell.

It seems like Russell never even existed. If you asked 100 people on the street who scored the first touchdown in the Steelers-Cardinals Super Bowl, I bet you that less than 10 people would know the correct answer.

(On a side note, the answer should really be that Ben scored the first TD, but that didn't count because the refs...the ones that supposedly handed the game to Pittsburgh on a silver platter... :roll: ...ruled him down even though he knee never actually hit the ground).

SteelCzar76
04-08-2009, 07:21 PM
Fair assesment,....with the exception of the "look out for Timmons" comment. Perhaps a 6'0 230 lb linebacker could be dominant at MLB in say,..the 60's or 70's,...but this 2009. How much longer will people continue to "put extras" on a players ability simply because they are on the roster?

Boy, I'm not sure how you could have watched Timmons play last year and NOT think he's ready to unseat Foote as a starter. The guy made tons of plays from that inside position and it's gettin damn near impossible to keep him off the field.

It appears that the career overacheiving late round selection Larry Foote has done quite a job at keeping the #16 pick of the 1st rnd off the field.(In the same way that Old man Townsend does to our supposed by the cheerleader fans,.. "young stud" corners ?)

Or are you speaking of him coming in on the obvious passing downs (3rd) as a blitzer or to drop into coverage ? Not impressed. The fact remains that this cat was drafted as an undersized (and actually slow for that size) Outside backer,....to replace Silverback as Woodely did Joey. But,...Silverback was not quite finished, pulls a fast one,..and now the team is still trying to justify their selection of him for Tomlin by attempting to force the 6'0 230 lbs Timmons square peg at the Middle spot.

I'm curious,...does anyone here know of a single quality starting MLB of Timmons' size in the entire league ? Let alone an All Pro.

NorthCoast
04-08-2009, 09:06 PM
If the Steelers are looking for a WR to replace Nate then no reason to draft one sooner than the 3rd round. IF, however, they feel like Holmes isn't going to be the dominant #1 they need, then I could definitely see a WR in Rd 1 or 2.

RuthlessBurgher
04-09-2009, 12:17 AM
Fair assesment,....with the exception of the "look out for Timmons" comment. Perhaps a 6'0 230 lb linebacker could be dominant at MLB in say,..the 60's or 70's,...but this 2009. How much longer will people continue to "put extras" on a players ability simply because they are on the roster?

Boy, I'm not sure how you could have watched Timmons play last year and NOT think he's ready to unseat Foote as a starter. The guy made tons of plays from that inside position and it's gettin damn near impossible to keep him off the field.

It appears that the career overacheiving late round selection Larry Foote has done quite a job at keeping the #16 pick of the 1st rnd off the field.(In the same way that Old man Townsend does to our supposed by the cheerleader fans,.. "young stud" corners ?)

Or are you speaking of him coming in on the obvious passing downs (3rd) as a blitzer or to drop into coverage ? Not impressed. The fact remains that this cat was drafted as an undersized (and actually slow for that size) Outside backer,....to replace Silverback as Woodely did Joey. But,...Silverback was not quite finished, pulls a fast one,..and now the team is still trying to justify their selection of him for Tomlin by attempting to force the 6'0 230 lbs Timmons square peg at the Middle spot.

I'm curious,...does anyone here know of a single quality starting MLB of Timmons' size in the entire league ? Let alone an All Pro.

I'm confused by the "to replace Silverback as Woodely did Joey" statement. Woodley didn't replace Porter as the weakside OLB. He replaced Haggans at the strongside OLB. And how was Timmons drafted to replace Harrison when Harrison hadn't been a starter yet at the time Timmons was drafted? Porter's last year as a starter in Pittsburgh was in 2006 (the 8-8 season that followed SBXL...Cowher's last year). When Tomlin was brought in, Porter was released and Timmons was drafted with his first pick in April of 2007. Harrison surprisingly blossomed into a team MVP in his first year as a starter (Timmons' rookie year) and then NFL defensive player of the year in his second season as a starter. But when Timmons was drafted, nobody had any idea that Harrison would become such a monster when given the opportunity.

The answer to your question about guys as small as Timmons playing ILB is standing right next to him. Did you read the article last December about Farrior's weight being down to 218 lbs. by the time the Dallas game rolled around last year?

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08354/936233-66.stm

SteelCzar76
04-09-2009, 08:45 AM
Fair assesment,....with the exception of the "look out for Timmons" comment. Perhaps a 6'0 230 lb linebacker could be dominant at MLB in say,..the 60's or 70's,...but this 2009. How much longer will people continue to "put extras" on a players ability simply because they are on the roster?

Boy, I'm not sure how you could have watched Timmons play last year and NOT think he's ready to unseat Foote as a starter. The guy made tons of plays from that inside position and it's gettin damn near impossible to keep him off the field.

It appears that the career overacheiving late round selection Larry Foote has done quite a job at keeping the #16 pick of the 1st rnd off the field.(In the same way that Old man Townsend has done to our "supposed by the cheerleader fans",.. "young stud" corners ?)

Or are you speaking of him coming in on the obvious passing downs (3rd) as a blitzer or to drop into coverage ? Not impressed. The fact remains that this cat was drafted as an undersized (and actually slow for that size) Outside backer,....to replace Silverback as Woodely did Joey. But,...Silverback was not quite finished, pulls a fast one,..and now the team is still trying to justify their selection of him for Tomlin by attempting to force the 6'0 230 lbs Timmons square peg at the Middle spot.

I'm curious,...does anyone here know of a single quality starting MLB of Timmons' size in the entire league ? Let alone an All Pro.

I'm confused by the "to replace Silverback as Woodely did Joey" statement. Woodley didn't replace Porter as the weakside OLB. He replaced Haggans at the strongside OLB. And how was Timmons drafted to replace Harrison when Harrison hadn't been a starter yet at the time Timmons was drafted? Porter's last year as a starter in Pittsburgh was in 2006 (the 8-8 season that followed SBXL...Cowher's last year). When Tomlin was brought in, Porter was released and Timmons was drafted with his first pick in April of 2007. Harrison surprisingly blossomed into a team MVP in his first year as a starter (Timmons' rookie year) and then NFL defensive player of the year in his second season as a starter. But when Timmons was drafted, nobody had any idea that Harrison would become such a monster when given the opportunity.

The answer to your question about guys as small as Timmons playing ILB is standing right next to him. Did you read the article last December about Farrior's weight being down to 218 lbs. by the time the Dallas game rolled around last year?

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08354/936233-66.stm




As far as Joey's release,..c'mon Ruthless he (along with Bussey) was the heart and soul of this team,..but more importantly was a Coach Cowher Guy from head to heel. Tomlin was in (at least tapped) when Joey was released. He had to have known his release was coming, most certainly as he had to have been made aware that Haggans was on his way out whether he (Clark) was aware of it or not. And i personally do not feel as though he (Tomlin) expected Silverback at his age and with his pedigree (or lack thereof) to become the act of God in pads that he has become.


So,...Weakside or Strongside,...Timmons and Woodley were Drafted to be our outside backers. I'am not alone in the understanding that Timmons is not an inside backer,...perhaps one of the rare few that speaks upon it as a Steeler Fan,...but not alone. In fact Mike Mayock spoke of personally asking Mike Tomlin "What are you going to do with Timmons ?" (as he cannot possibly beat out Woodley and Harrison is not a MLB.)

Timmons did not play inside in college, and at no point displayed the elite talent and size to do so.(ie: a Patrick Willis, Brian Cushing, or Clay Mattews)

It's just not his game,..the guy is at best "cut" to be a Colts type smallish outside backer whom plays sideline to sideline (chasing plays backside) and specializes in coverage.

In regards to Potsie's weight,....i have actually noticed as much. As i mentioned to friends this season that he looked smaller than usual. But if he's down to 218 than Timmons is most certainly lighter than 230 or 234 lbs,... as smallish cats are routinely given several inches and or few pounds when they are listed.( this is done since at least College)

The difference being between the two though is Timmons is not Farrior. Potsie is a veteran whom has already established his level of play at his natural position at the proper weight, whom now has the liberty to "experiment". He also has a great deal more natural strength and experience than Timmons.

And i suspect that much like Troy did,..Potsie will put weight back on,...as it "eases" the beating that one takes when playing in such a physical system. (especially at inside backer.)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ahWEIYl4i_U