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Discipline of Steel
04-25-2010, 07:10 PM
Draft grades abound but they always seem to be comparisons of the players we got to the ones everyone outside of the Steelers think they should have gotten. Perhaps a more fair assessment of our FO is to grade the entire offseason process including cuts, resignings, FA pickups, and of course the draft. So here is my stab at grading their handling of the challenges presented to them since the beginning of the year. Feel free to post your own grades...

QB-They stood behind their leader and signed a respectable veteran to cover the position while Ben rides the pine. Considering the amount of horrific news generated in the media feeding frenzy, I think they deserve an A for weathering the storm and being decisive during the chaos.

RB-They made a commitment to the run and proved it by pickiing up a big guy. Couple that with the loss of CD and you have the makings of a B+

WR-Stonio didnt leave us much choice and Im actually happy with the 5th round pick we got for 12 games worth of him. The holes in the roster were filled with 2 FAs, then we drafted 2 young guys to compete with those vets. Im not thrilled with the draftees but the FO moves have put us in a position to field a deep unit despite Stonio. B+

OL-They hired a promising new coach and gave him 3 quality starters, a budding star, and enough competition at the last position for Kugs to put his stamp early on this group. I like what they have done here...A

DL-The promising rookies last year translated into no real need for action in this unit this year. Maybe one earlier pick in the draft would have been nice but you can only call so many names on draft day. This unit will need more attention next off-season but for now we ride with a solid B.

LB-We started with little depth, addeed a vet FA, and drafted new players to round out our strongest unit on the field. Since this position provides core players for ST, I have to agree with their commitment to improving its depth...A

DB-We did not make the draft moves many expected and I personally wanted to see a good young S prospect because of injury questions at the position. But again we filled the holes at S with FAs and expect our draftees from last year to show some development. Like the DL, we couldnt draft to every position so I will give them a B- because they signed FAs early and allowed us the flexibility to draft the BPA elsewhere.

Overall, these grades average out to a solid A-...good FA moves to shore up holes in the roster, bringing rookies to compete with our marginal depth, and only a few instances where my personal preferences weren't addressed. I think our roster is going to be very solid. Congrats to the FO because this off-season has certainly had its challenges.