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hawaiiansteel
08-09-2010, 01:26 AM
Steelers rookie rusher Dwyer struggling to make transition

By John Harris, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Monday, August 9, 2010


http://files.pittsburghlive.com/photos/2010-08-08/DwyerScores-a.jpg

Tough week at camp
Chaz Palla | Pittsburgh Tribune-Review



How was your work week? It was probably outstanding when compared with Steelers rookie running back Jonathan Dwyer's.

First, Dwyer aggravated his hamstring injury during the second practice on the first day of his first NFL training camp.

So much for making a good first impression. That immediately put Dwyer on the wrong side of the coaching staff.

For five days, Dwyer worked frantically to get back on the field. For a sixth-round draft pick like Dwyer, a debilitating injury can be the kiss of death.

During Friday night's practice at Latrobe Memorial Stadium, Dwyer was finally healthy enough to return to the field -- but immediately wished he wasn't.

Because of a lack of practice time that probably contributed to him not executing properly, Dwyer was ordered to perform a blocking drill against rookie linebacker Thaddeus Gibson four consecutive times -- which may be a first under Tomlin.

After not doing it to Mike Tomlin's satisfaction the first time -- when he missed blocking Gibson altogether -- Dwyer had to line up and do it three more times in a row while his teammates, coaches and fans all watched.

"Nervousness. Anxiousness. Excitement. The crowd was there. You want to put on a show not just for the fans, but your coaches and teammates and show them what you bring to the table,'' Dwyer said Sunday afternoon. "I don't like to make excuses, so I'm going to take this as a learning experience.''

Dwyer's week to forget wasn't complete until running backs coach Kirby Wilson, far from pleased with the rookie's performance during another drill Friday, chastised him with words not fit for a family newspaper. That exchange was capped by Dwyer tossing his helmet in what might have been his most aggressive move of the week.

Dwyer believed he knew what to expect when he prepared for his first pro training camp. As it turned out, he had no idea.

"People can tell you, but you're not going to realize how it is until you get there,'' said Dwyer, who ran for a touchdown during goal-line drills yesterday afternoon in what was his first extended practice during training camp.

"It's tougher (in training camp). You're practicing more. Longer hours. You have to put more into it. It's different from the spring, where you're done by 2 o'clock and the rest of your day is free. It's the difference between the college level and the professional level. This is your job, what you get paid to do.''

During voluntary workouts, Dwyer, who starred at Georgia Tech, made several impressive runs and looked like a potential backup to starter Rashard Mendenhall.

Once training camp began, Dwyer looked like a different player -- out of sorts, and perhaps, even a little out of shape.

Dwyer said he arrived to camp in good shape, although hamstring injuries, especially with a rookie, can indicate a lack of conditioning.

"I felt like I did enough, but being hurt is a setback for anybody,'' Dwyer said. "I'm just trying to get back in shape. This is a learning experience for me how to take care of my body better, to realize what it takes to become a professional.

"Everybody goes through trials and tribulations in their lives. This will make me stronger. It's not about getting through each day. It's about doing your best each day and figure out what you did wrong and improving the next day.''

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsbu ... 94056.html (http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_694056.html)

StarSpangledSteeler
08-09-2010, 02:46 AM
I'm really not worried about Dwyer at this point. He fell to the 6th round because he is not at starting NFL RB level... yet. That's okay. He will learn. He will train. He will get stronger. He will increase his skill set and improve his technique. The bright spot is that he apparently has a great attitude. That we can work with. The coaches are riding him a bit harder (just like they did with Mendy last year) because they want him to improve faster, not because they're going to cut him. The fact that we're a little bit light at RB depth is the GM's fault, not Dwyer's. I think the kid will be fine.

Stewie
08-09-2010, 07:22 AM
REDMAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

stlrz d
08-09-2010, 08:00 AM
I'm really not worried about Dwyer at this point. He fell to the 6th round because he is not at starting NFL RB level... yet. That's okay. He will learn. He will train. He will get stronger. He will increase his skill set and improve his technique. The bright spot is that he apparently has a great attitude. That we can work with. The coaches are riding him a bit harder (just like they did with Mendy last year) because they want him to improve faster, not because they're going to cut him. The fact that we're a little bit light at RB depth is the GM's fault, not Dwyer's. I think the kid will be fine.

Agreed.

grotonsteel
08-09-2010, 09:51 AM
Well someone said Dwyer was 20 pounds overweight when he joined the training camp and Tomlin was not happy at all...I don't recollect which news outlet though...

I guess Redman gets the nod ahead of Dwyer.

Steelskin
08-09-2010, 11:31 AM
I'm really not worried about Dwyer at this point. He fell to the 6th round because he is not at starting NFL RB level... yet. That's okay. He will learn. He will train. He will get stronger. He will increase his skill set and improve his technique. The bright spot is that he apparently has a great attitude. That we can work with. The coaches are riding him a bit harder (just like they did with Mendy last year) because they want him to improve faster, not because they're going to cut him. The fact that we're a little bit light at RB depth is the GM's fault, not Dwyer's. I think the kid will be fine.

Exactly. If we were the Lions or Chargers and Best/Matthews were pulling something like this, then ok; time to worry. The thing is, Dwyer was our SIXTH round pick. He wasn't drafted to make an immediate impact...

That said, he was one of the most intriguing players in the draft and I'm glad we were able to get him. He'll be fine in due time. He's a project.

Stewie
08-09-2010, 11:33 AM
Zackly!! The rook came to camp 20lbs overweight. Redman worked his arse off in the off-season. Which one would you pick to dress? I'm not saying Dwyer necessarily gets cut, but Redman has to play, at least this year.

Notleadpoisoned
08-09-2010, 11:53 AM
I would think that a triple-option RB like Dwyer might have a tougher time adjusting to the NFL than say, a rookie RB coming out of a pro-style offense.

aggiebones
08-09-2010, 12:56 PM
"That said, he was one of the most intriguing players in the draft and I'm glad we were able to get him. He'll be fine in due time. He's a project."


He was only intriguing cause he was a name player that fell. But there are obvious reasons for it. Now I'm all for getting on board with a project, especially at RB which I think is an easy position to fill despite the glory it gets. I'd rather have a top OL and stuff a solid smart RB in behind them.
If Redman has indeed gotten his head in position as it seems for the NFL, he has far more potential today.
Talk to me next year about Dwyer and I've said that from day 1. He will not help this year. Maybe next year. I'm anxious to see him run a bit though even in preseason.

BradshawsHairdresser
08-09-2010, 06:34 PM
Running back is probably one of the easiest of all positions to transition from college to pro. Let's hope Dwyer isn't just another example of wasted potential.

I doubt if he will be cut this season. I'm thinking he will at least be kept on the practice squad. Hopefully, he works his tail off.

BURGH86STEEL
08-09-2010, 07:49 PM
Running back is probably one of the easiest of all positions to transition from college to pro. Let's hope Dwyer isn't just another example of wasted potential.

I doubt if he will be cut this season. I'm thinking he will at least be kept on the practice squad. Hopefully, he works his tail off.

I don't believe he will last on the practice squad if he does not make the team.

aggiebones
08-10-2010, 11:20 AM
He's not a lost cause. Not many 6th rounders contribute much in their rookie campaign, outside of maybe STs.
So frankly, he's on target. Those EXPECTING more from him this year were delusional. Its POSSIBLE to contribute, but very rare. He clearly is not that special case.
So, I say let him alone and simmering for a season. Let's see what a year in the program can do for him. He may excel in learning or pack it in over the next 6 months.

Steelskin
08-10-2010, 11:39 AM
He was only intriguing cause he was a name player that fell. But there are obvious reasons for it. Now I'm all for getting on board with a project, especially at RB which I think is an easy position to fill despite the glory it gets. I'd rather have a top OL and stuff a solid smart RB in behind them.
If Redman has indeed gotten his head in position as it seems for the NFL, he has far more potential today.
Talk to me next year about Dwyer and I've said that from day 1. He will not help this year. Maybe next year. I'm anxious to see him run a bit though even in preseason.

Oh, I agree with pretty much everything you said.

The fact is, though, when you're in round 6, the best thing to do is find projects because there really isn't much blatant skill hanging around. Maybe we could've taken LeGarrette Blount instead, as I think his "punch" was an isolated incident. Shoulda, coulda, woulda.

I watched a fair amount of ACC football last year and Dwyer was good--in the option. I don't know him as a person, but hopefully he is a dedicated, intelligent person that he can grasp the pro playbook. If not, he'll be gone next year and we try again (or look towards free agency).

Shoe
08-10-2010, 11:48 AM
What potental does Dwyer have as a converted FB? No question the guy has size and the physical ability...

Northern_Blitz
08-10-2010, 03:29 PM
I worry when there is a negative article about a rookie this time of year. Now is the time for fluff pieces about how this guy is Bettis, W.Payton, Emmit Smith, and LT all rolled into one.

RuthlessBurgher
08-10-2010, 03:44 PM
I worry when there is a negative article about a rookie this time of year. Now is the time for fluff pieces about how this guy is Bettis, W.Payton, Emmit Smith, and LT all rolled into one.

Now Dwyer's just Tim Worley, Curtis Enis, Maurice Clarett, and Ki-Jana Carter all rolled into one, while Redman is once again the Bettis/Payton/Smith/Tomlinson combo platter.

cruzer8
08-10-2010, 04:17 PM
I worry when there is a negative article about a rookie this time of year. Now is the time for fluff pieces about how this guy is Bettis, W.Payton, Emmit Smith, and LT all rolled into one.

Now Dwyer's just Tim Worley, Curtis Enis, Maurice Clarett, and Ki-Jana Carter all rolled into one, while Redman is once again the Bettis/Payton/Smith/Tomlinson combo platter.

Guacamole on the side?

Captain Lemming
08-10-2010, 11:42 PM
I worry when there is a negative article about a rookie this time of year. Now is the time for fluff pieces about how this guy is Bettis, W.Payton, Emmit Smith, and LT all rolled into one.

Now Dwyer's just Tim Worley, Curtis Enis, Maurice Clarett, and Ki-Jana Carter all rolled into one, while Redman is once again the Bettis/Payton/Smith/Tomlinson combo platter.

All I know is that this time LAST YEAR as a FREE AGENT ROOKIE Redman was creating a positive buzz doing EXACTLY what we need in Dwyer. Redman did this even though HE was not is great shape.

Dwyer is fat and struggling, and people are saying "what do you expect he was a 6th rounder".

I expect that this supposed 2nd round talent to make us FORGET REDMAN.

Redman is fit and hungry to make the team and is AGAIN looking like our best short yardage option.
Dwyer is fat hungry for a extra large triple whopper meal deal, and the best option if you need someone to do a pizza run.

The difference between these guys is the FB in the Paul Johnsons triple option ALWAYS looks like an unstoppable beast on a highly visible top twenty team, and Redman broke all the records at an invisible small school.

All that matters now is what they look like as Steelers and reports are it aint close.

hawaiiansteel
08-14-2010, 11:34 PM
Dwyer didn't look very good tonight, Redman is obviously ahead of Dwyer on the depth chart.