View Full Version : Sweed working hard to improve

04-23-2009, 10:46 PM
Sweed working hard to improve

http://www.timesonline.com/articles/200 ... 623391.txt (http://www.timesonline.com/articles/2009/04/21/sports/steelers/doc49ee957dc3125733623391.txt)

By Mike Bires, Times Sports Staff
Published: Tuesday, April 21, 2009 11:57 PM EDT
PITTSBURGH — The last man remaining on the Steelers practice field Tuesday was Limas Sweed. Already, he’s working hard to prove he’s not a bust.

As the rest of the Steelers headed to the locker room, Sweed stayed behind, catching deep passes thrown from a jugs machine. After all, the most vivid image of his rookie season was his drop of a long, would-be touchdown pass in the AFC Championship Game.

“I wouldn’t say I’ve been beating myself up because of that drop,” he said. “But I am using that as fuel this year.”

Nearly a year ago, Sweed became property of the Steelers when he was selected in the second round of the NFL Draft. At 6-foot-4, he was picked to provide quarterback Ben Roethlisberger with a tall target at wide receiver.

The pick was somewhat of a gamble. Sweed missed half of his senior season at the University of Texas with a wrist injury and finished with only 19 catches. His stock was definitely falling when the Steelers chose him with the 53rd overall pick.

As a rookie, Sweed struggled early. Pro ball was more difficult that he expected, physically and mentally. He only played in 11 games during the regular season and made only six catches.

Then late in the first half of that thrilling AFC title game, a 23-14 win over the rival Ravens, Sweed dropped what should have been a 50-yard TD pass.

Had Sweed made the catch, the Steelers would have led 20-7 at intermission.

Had the Steelers lost, Sweed would have been ridiculed unmercifully.

“I like Sweed,” Steelers cornerback Ike Taylor said. “I mean, you can say he dropped a couple passes last year. But if you look at the passes he dropped, he was behind DBs. I think his potential is sky high.”

Coach Mike Tomlin always says that he expects players to make significant progress in their second seasons. That’s what Sweed intends to do.

And this year, with wide receiver Nate Washington gone after signing via free agency with Tennessee, the Steelers’ need a new No. 3 wide receiver.

There’s speculation the Steelers will draft another wide receiver, possibly even Saturday in the first or second round. Even if that happens, Sweed wants to be the guy who complements starting wideouts Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes.

That’s why Sweed is already staying after practice.

When asked if there’s one area of his game that he needs to improve most, Sweed simply said “Everything.”


Tuesday was the second of the Steelers’ 14 organized team activities, which are voluntary. Next up is the mandatory mini-camp on May 1-3. … OTAs continue May 19-21, May 26-28, June 2-4 and June 9-11. … After missing Monday’s OTA, Holmes and LB Lawrence Timmons returned Tuesday. … Missing both days were RB Willie Parker, LB Larry Foote, S Troy Polamalu, S Ryan Clark, S Tyrone Carter and DE Nick Eason. … Also missing Tuesday were DE Aaron Smith and LB LaMarr Woodley.

04-24-2009, 01:17 AM
Sweed will be fine.

He didn't get selected in Round 2 because he can't play.

He's a willing blocker & as Ike said, he gets open. Get rid of the nerves, and he'll be sweet.

Or is it Sweed? :D