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calmkiller
07-27-2011, 10:54 PM
According to Jim Wexell on scout.com the steelers have released max Starks. The move will be made official tomorrow. This will only save the steelers 2 million against the cap.

insanesteelersfan
07-27-2011, 10:57 PM
According to Jim Wexell on scout.com the steelers have released max Starks. The move will be made official tomorrow. This will only save the steelers 2 million against the cap.



Wow. That is a surprise. Not only because J.Scott sucks. But because it only saves them 2 million. I thought Max's base salary for this season was over 8 million ? I know the kid we drafted from Florida can't play LT, so I wonder what is up.

hawaiiansteel
07-27-2011, 11:02 PM
can't say I saw that coming, his neck must not be fully healed.

I read somewhere that by cutting Starks the 2011 cap savings will be $3.25 million...guess this is the first step in getting back under the cap.

calmkiller
07-27-2011, 11:05 PM
Starks was scheduled to make $6.575 million this season. The cap savings, though, will be reduced by $2 million in prorated bonus money from the four-year contract he signed in 2009. Could be released for injury issues. Maybe he's not healthy or failed his physical? I Misread the article and you need to reduce 2 million from his salary so it would save us 4.5 million I guess? That's almost half of the cap. At least before we signed Ike.

Maybe Chris Scott is our secret weapon?

insanesteelersfan
07-27-2011, 11:07 PM
can't say I saw that coming, his neck must not be fully healed.

I read somewhere that by cutting Starks the 2011 cap savings will be $3.25 million...guess this is the first step in getting back under the cap.




A much better way would be to dump Aaron Smith. He is on his final year, and would save us over 7 million alone. BTW, Max signed his 4 year extension in 2009, and since it is past June 1st, there is no signing bonus Cap hit by releasing Max. He must have a pretty high Base this season. I wouldn't be surprised if this is a move simular to the Ravens releasing all those Vets. Max may be re-signed to a lower deal a bit later on. We'll see.

Djfan
07-27-2011, 11:14 PM
I agree on A Smith. Love the guy, and understand that he is a great locker room leader, too, but he is near the end. His back ups did well last year, IMO.

Chadman
07-27-2011, 11:22 PM
Shocked.


I believe Starks is the 2nd best OL on the team behind Pouncey- so cutting him means they feel J Scott is good enough (hmm), Colon is moving to LT (hmmmmmmmmm) or bg Flo is moving to LT (hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm)- all options are not as good as Max at LT, for mine.

When you have a suspect OL, cutting the 2nd best OL player doesn't spell success to me- but I trust the FO has options in place.

I also suspect we'll be hearing of Aaron Smith's release soon as a result.

Maybe Wesley Saunders (the big UDFA TE) might move to LT???

steelblood
07-27-2011, 11:28 PM
This is a mistake unless Starks neck is a chronic problem. I would have released Kemo.

plainnasty
07-27-2011, 11:34 PM
I read that Max was close to 400 lbs.

I hope that Cam Heyward gets a year to learn from Aaron Smith.

RuthlessBurgher
07-27-2011, 11:35 PM
:wft :wft :wft

Starks > Colon (who isn't signed and coming off his own devastating injury)

Starks >> Adams (who is 36 and scheduled to make too much money himself)

Starks >>> Jon Scott (who isn't signed either)

:wft :wft :wft

Unless his injury is similar to the one that put Marvel Smith out of commission, this move makes zero sense to me. Zero.

You want to save a few million, dump backups making too much money like Arnaz Battle or Antwaan Randle El or Larry Foote, not your starting left #&@%ing tackle. If they need a bigger chunk than that and want to sacrifice an o-lineman with a large salary, then cut Chris Kemoeatu's fat stupid @$$. What. The. Hell.

:HeadBanger :HeadBanger :HeadBanger

hawaiiansteel
07-27-2011, 11:41 PM
Max Starks released by Steelers

Posted by Gregg Rosenthal on July 27, 2011, 11:19 PM EDT


The Steelers have a brand new problem on their offensive line. They need a left tackle.

Alex Marvez of FoxSports.com reports the team surprisingly let Max Starks know Wednesday night that they are cutting him.

Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette mentioned via Twitter that Starks’ weight was in the high 300?s. He was coming off neck surgery. (Okay, maybe this shouldn’t have been a huge shock.)

We’ve heard the Steelers want to bring back Willie Colon, a move which will take greater importance now. Johnathan Scott’s role also figures to increase.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/20 ... -steelers/ (http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2011/07/27/max-starks-released-by-steelers/)

focosteeler
07-27-2011, 11:45 PM
I hope that Cam Heyward gets a year to learn from Aaron Smith.
:Agree

plainnasty
07-27-2011, 11:49 PM
There are reports that the Steelers are working to restructure Stark's contract to get him back.

focosteeler
07-27-2011, 11:58 PM
I like how the ticker on nflnetwork says he is a guard :HeadBanger

hawaiiansteel
07-27-2011, 11:59 PM
There are reports that the Steelers are working to restructure Stark's contract to get him back.


that seems a lot more logical to me...

pfelix73
07-28-2011, 12:03 AM
That makes sense-



:tt1

insanesteelersfan
07-28-2011, 12:14 AM
I don't know about Max weight. But I know he has always been right about the 360 range hasn't he ? And I thought he had a weight clause in his deal that he signed. Either way, we better HOPE that Tony Hills shows us something.

fezziwig
07-28-2011, 12:20 AM
I thought and mentioned last season that I thought Max put on weight. To me he is slow on his feet and needs to shed some pounds to remain as quick as possible. Or as quick as possible for him. I always liked Max and I hope his health and Steeler career goes well.

BradshawsHairdresser
07-28-2011, 12:25 AM
Well, we had to free up money from somewhere if we're going to sign Plaxico to that $10 million per year contract.







j/k

AkronSteel
07-28-2011, 03:03 AM
I'm a little surprised that the Steelers are cutting ties with Max but they must think they are going to resign Scott and they were able to get to the Super Bowl with him at that position and they can save the money going that route. I would personally like to see the Steelers get Colon back under contract under a 3-4 year deal to play RT, and then they can let Flozell go to save additional money. The starting line would be:

LT: J. Scott
LG: Kemo
C: Pouncey
RG: Foster/Gilbert
RT: Colon

Bench:

Legursky - C/G
Foster or Gilbert?
C. Scott - G/T

A number of other players would compete for the last OL spot on the roster, but that is a solid top 8. Granted it's not the best but it is definitely competent. I'm probably in the minority but I think this could end up being a good move for the team. None of us wanted Max a couple of years ago anyways!!!

phillyesq
07-28-2011, 08:00 AM
This can't be a cap move. Cutting Flozell would save more cap money, and wouldn't impact the team down the road.

If the report is accurate, Starks must not be right physically.

If they are cutting Starks, I think they need to go out and add a veteran free agent. Maybe not Doug Free, but certainly a capable veteran. Jon Scott progressed from abysmal to mediocre last year; he simply can't be the plan at LT.

Oviedo
07-28-2011, 08:27 AM
This is a mistake unless Starks neck is a chronic problem. I would have released Kemo.

I agree. IMO this means our OL situation is worse now than it was going into last year. The situation at Left Tackle has just become very serious because Jon Scott IS NOT the answer.

Oviedo
07-28-2011, 08:30 AM
I'm a little surprised that the Steelers are cutting ties with Max but they must think they are going to resign Scott and they were able to get to the Super Bowl with him at that position and they can save the money going that route. I would personally like to see the Steelers get Colon back under contract under a 3-4 year deal to play RT, and then they can let Flozell go to save additional money. The starting line would be:

LT: J. Scott
LG: Kemo
C: Pouncey
RG: Foster/Gilbert
RT: Colon

Bench:

Legursky - C/G
Foster or Gilbert?
C. Scott - G/T

A number of other players would compete for the last OL spot on the roster, but that is a solid top 8. Granted it's not the best but it is definitely competent. I'm probably in the minority but I think this could end up being a good move for the team. None of us wanted Max a couple of years ago anyways!!!

I have to disagree. Jon Scott at LT is a "season ending injury to Ben" waiting to happen. Ashley may love having her man at home more but for the Steeler Nation it would mean a disaster.

Oviedo
07-28-2011, 08:55 AM
According to ESPN here are the free agent OTs out there. Maybe they plan on making a run at one of these guys??????

PLAYER POS. FA TYPE HT WT EXP 2010 TEAM 2011 TEAM GRADE COMMENT
Khalif Barnes OT UFA 6-5 325 7 Raiders 62 Expert's Take
Alex Barron OT UFA 6-8 316 7 Cowboys 67 Expert's Take
Jammal Brown OT UFA 6-6 313 7 Redskins 75 Expert's Take
Jermon Bushrod OT UFA 6-5 315 5 Saints 68 Expert's Take
Kirk Chambers OT UFA 6-7 315 7 Bengals 58 Expert's Take
Tyson Clabo OT UFA 6-6 331 7 Falcons 79 Expert's Take
Willie Colon OT UFA 6-3 315 6 Steelers 78 Expert's Take
Ryan Cook OT UFA 6-6 328 6 Vikings 62 Expert's Take
Oniel Cousins OT RFA 6-4 315 4 Ravens 61 Expert's Take
Renardo Foster OT RFA 6-7 333 3 Rams 56 Expert's Take
Jared Gaither OT UFA 6-9 340 5 Ravens 84 Expert's Take
Nate Garner OT RFA 6-7 325 4 Dolphins 62 Expert's Take
Adam Goldberg OT UFA 6-7 309 8 Rams 65 Expert's Take
Ryan Harris OT UFA 6-5 300 5 Broncos 77 Expert's Take
Mario Henderson OT UFA 6-7 300 5 Raiders 67 Expert's Take

JPbucco
07-28-2011, 08:56 AM
I've seen NOWHERE that they are restructuring. Max is gone,400 pounds + a bad neck...goodbye.

They have to sign another tackle, unless they play Flozell or Scott there until Gilbert is ready. Yuck.

steelz09
07-28-2011, 09:25 AM
I have faith in J. Scott.

In the beginning, he was terrible and then got benched mainly due to mental mistakes.

After that, he came back strong. I don't remember him struggling vs. anyone worse than what Starks would have.

The only guy that rings a bell is Suggs. And he dominated our entire oline because it didn't matter where he lined up.

SteelTorch
07-28-2011, 09:29 AM
Well, he's gone. Just been confirmed. A bloody shame, he was one of our better tackles. :?

I really fear for Ben's health this season. Then again, I always do so this is nothing new. Here's hoping Scott's up to the task.

calmkiller
07-28-2011, 09:47 AM
http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/ ... 0ae16008c5 (http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/Starks-Randle-El-released/7e2dc40c-8395-4558-8884-d10ae16008c5)


Starks, Randle El released

Posted 43 minutes ago

PITTSBURGH ? The Steelers released two veterans today, offensive tackle Max Starks and wide receiver Antwaan Randle El, the team announced.

Starks was originally drafted by the Steelers in the third round (75th overall) of the 2004 NFL Draft. He started 68 games in his seven seasons in Pittsburgh, including seven in 2010 before being placed on the Reserve/Injured List with a neck injury. Starks was a starter for the Steelers in Super Bowls XL and XLIII.

Randle El has started 23 games in two stints with the Steelers. After being drafted in the second round (62nd overall) by Pittsburgh in the 2002 NFL Draft, he spent four seasons with the Steelers (2002-05) before playing the next four in Washington (2006-09). Randle El returned to Pittsburgh in 2010 and played in all 16 games, finishing with 22 catches for 253 yards (11.5 avg.)

Oviedo
07-28-2011, 10:00 AM
http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/Starks-Randle-El-released/7e2dc40c-8395-4558-8884-d10ae16008c5


Starks, Randle El released

Posted 43 minutes ago

PITTSBURGH ? The Steelers released two veterans today, offensive tackle Max Starks and wide receiver Antwaan Randle El, the team announced.

Starks was originally drafted by the Steelers in the third round (75th overall) of the 2004 NFL Draft. He started 68 games in his seven seasons in Pittsburgh, including seven in 2010 before being placed on the Reserve/Injured List with a neck injury. Starks was a starter for the Steelers in Super Bowls XL and XLIII.

Randle El has started 23 games in two stints with the Steelers. After being drafted in the second round (62nd overall) by Pittsburgh in the 2002 NFL Draft, he spent four seasons with the Steelers (2002-05) before playing the next four in Washington (2006-09). Randle El returned to Pittsburgh in 2010 and played in all 16 games, finishing with 22 catches for 253 yards (11.5 avg.)


Clearing cap space??? Maybe we can start to realize that Ike DID NOT take a "hometown discount"

RuthlessBurgher
07-28-2011, 10:03 AM
I have faith in J. Scott.

In the beginning, he was terrible and then got benched mainly due to mental mistakes.

After that, he came back strong. I don't remember him struggling vs. anyone worse than what Starks would have.

The only guy that rings a bell is Suggs. And he dominated our entire oline because it didn't matter where he lined up.

I don't have faith in Jon Scott. He's a decent backup, but should not be a starter on a Super Bowl contender. He couldn't even hold down a starting gig on a historically awful Buffalo Bills line. Ugh...

calmkiller
07-28-2011, 10:07 AM
Clearing cap space??? Maybe we can start to realize that Ike DID NOT take a "hometown discount"

We were 10 million over before we signed Ike....so no.

Steelgal
07-28-2011, 10:10 AM
Tweet from Max Starks




maxstarks78Max Starks IV


To all of #SteelersNation thank you so much for all your support throughout my career as a Steeler. I will always be a part of pittsburgh, And you as fans have always given support, on and off the field. We had some great memories, a couple trophies along the way! Thank you...

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 10:12 AM
Starks release was a weight issue. Steelers DO NOT take kindly to making a huge investment in you and not taking care of yourself. If I'm predicting, the Steelers will make every attempt to re-sign Colon and have him possibly play LT while asking Adams to take a paycut to start at RT. Scott will be the back-up plan and they will try to retain him too. The Steelers were also very high on Chris Scott but none of us can really grade him & know if he is in the plans. The coaches also said Gilbert can play either side. I'm not in "panic" mode just yet. I think this all centers around Starks reporting heavy and the Steelers are ready to make the $$$$ commitment to Colon that he wants if he moves to LT. It has been reported...He wants LT money...So play LT. Many will say I'm crazy...But his pass blocking was the best on the team head to head in 2008 & 2009. If this happens....And Colon has no issues from his injuries...Could be an upgrade at LT.

insanesteelersfan
07-28-2011, 10:14 AM
I have faith in J. Scott.

In the beginning, he was terrible and then got benched mainly due to mental mistakes.

After that, he came back strong. I don't remember him struggling vs. anyone worse than what Starks would have.

The only guy that rings a bell is Suggs. And he dominated our entire oline because it didn't matter where he lined up.

I don't have faith in Jon Scott. He's a decent backup, but should not be a starter on a Super Bowl contender. He couldn't even hold down a starting gig on a historically awful Buffalo Bills line. Ugh...




I don't buy that statement. What a player does, or does not do on a bad team has nothing to do with what he can do on a better team. Kimo was cut from Cincy, and he was our starter for several seasons on a SB calibur team. The Chargers were not only a bad team back in the day, but NEEDED WR help, and cut Yancy Thigpen, and all he did for us was have the single BEST WR season in Steeler History!


So your J-Scott comment has zero merit.

steelz09
07-28-2011, 10:16 AM
Starks release was a weight issue. Steelers DO NOT take kindly to making a huge investment in you and not taking care of yourself. If I'm predicting, the Steelers will make every attempt to re-sign Colon and have him possibly play LT while asking Adams to take a paycut to start at RT. Scott will be the back-up plan and they will try to retain him too. The Steelers were also very high on Chris Scott but none of us can really grade him & know if he is in the plans. The coaches also said Gilbert can play either side. I'm not in "panic" mode just yet. I think this all centers around Starks reporting heavy and the Steelers are ready to make the $$$$ commitment to Colon that he wants if he moves to LT. It has been reported...He wants LT money...So play LT. Many will say I'm crazy...But his pass blocking was the best on the team head to head in 2008 & 2009. If this happens....And Colon has no issues from his injuries...Could be an upgrade at LT.

There is no way I would put Colon at LT and match him up against the defense best rusher.

J. Scott will be starting or we'll have a vet signing. If Colon is signed, he'll likely play RT and and Gilbert / Foster will fight over RG.

Chadman
07-28-2011, 10:19 AM
Jon Scott is underrated & a favourite of Coach Kugs. Here's betting that Scott's chances of starting are pretty good.

that said, JPN might be right- re-sign Colon & insert him at LT. We all thought Starks 'would never be able to transition' from RT to LT and were proven wrong. Colon is, one-on-one, still a very solid blocker, in my opinion. In fact, quite dominant once he locks on. He'll struggle against speed rushers- but so does Max.

I'm not against Colon at LT & Adams at RT- that'll work.

phillyesq
07-28-2011, 10:34 AM
Clearing cap space??? Maybe we can start to realize that Ike DID NOT take a "hometown discount"

We were 10 million over before we signed Ike....so no.

Again, I don't think that Starks was a cap move. Cutting Flozell would save more money against the cap and have no impact on next year. Cutting Starks results in a penalty from his signing bonus (not sure if that all applies this year, or if part applies next year as well).

This has to be a health/weight issue.

Any local media outlets in the Burgh shedding any light on this?

kindlecatsb'ng
07-28-2011, 10:53 AM
Ed Bruchette (sp?) said on 93.7 The Fan this morning that it was a weight issue--close to 400#. That is the reason for the release.

GO STEELERS!

Kindle

insanesteelersfan
07-28-2011, 10:59 AM
It might be time to get on the phone and give " Jason Capizzi " a call :Beer :Boobs


I mean why not ? Maybe the 4th time is the Charm :Clap

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 11:05 AM
Starks release was a weight issue. Steelers DO NOT take kindly to making a huge investment in you and not taking care of yourself. If I'm predicting, the Steelers will make every attempt to re-sign Colon and have him possibly play LT while asking Adams to take a paycut to start at RT. Scott will be the back-up plan and they will try to retain him too. The Steelers were also very high on Chris Scott but none of us can really grade him & know if he is in the plans. The coaches also said Gilbert can play either side. I'm not in "panic" mode just yet. I think this all centers around Starks reporting heavy and the Steelers are ready to make the $$$$ commitment to Colon that he wants if he moves to LT. It has been reported...He wants LT money...So play LT. Many will say I'm crazy...But his pass blocking was the best on the team head to head in 2008 & 2009. If this happens....And Colon has no issues from his injuries...Could be an upgrade at LT.

There is no way I would put Colon at LT and match him up against the defense best rusher.

J. Scott will be starting or we'll have a vet signing. If Colon is signed, he'll likely play RT and and Gilbert / Foster will fight over RG.

Colon was the best pass blocking OL hands down when he played. No debate. LT primary duty? Hmmm...I'm sure the coaches can do the math. Take every OL on the 2010 roster active & IR...He would be the one I would want going against the best rusher....I can't believe you think otherwise. Who is your guy you would pick on the edge first?

Are we targeting a vet...Very possible. Is Gilbert, J Scott, or C Scott in the plans...They could be an option. We can sit back and watch it unfold. If Adams restructures & Colon is retained....I don't see Colon getting the $$$$ to play G & Adams restructuring to back up. Colon's strong points now are his pass blocking & kick slide....Not his pulling ability and his success on the second level. The Equation is different this year with no mini camps and it will be very difficult to plug & play a rookie. So I'm leaning towards our own FA or a vet FA in that order to replace Starks. Our best FA option right now within is Colon.

steeler_george
07-28-2011, 11:16 AM
When I first read about, I was sort of shocked. I thought for sure Colon would be the one cut, concerning the ability to return from injuries. Maybe the are going to get a "friendly" contract from Colon not as a LT but more of a swing G/T to prove he is healed. Could we pick up another T or 2 in free agency.

Is Flo the next to go?

The more I am thinking about it, I like it. Time for change on this OL. Everyone on this line is expndable and replaceable except for Pouncy.

steelz09
07-28-2011, 11:30 AM
I would sign a vet LT (that can also play RT) and let J Scott and him compete for LT.

If the Steelers are that interested in Colon, they they should just cut Adams.

LT: J Scott / Vet
LG: Kemo (he still sucks)
C: Pouncey
RG: Foster / Gilbert
RT: Colon

Then you still have C. Scott, Legusrky, Essex, Hills

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 11:55 AM
I would sign a vet LT (that can also play RT) and let J Scott and him compete for LT.

If the Steelers are that interested in Colon, they they should just cut Adams.

LT: J Scott / Vet
LG: Kemo (he still sucks)
C: Pouncey
RG: Foster / Gilbert
RT: Colon

Then you still have C. Scott, Legusrky, Essex, Hills

I think Kemo is on notice. He's the best pulling G we have but his pass blocking is really become terrible. I also saw a pic of him reporting to camp and he is anything but "looking fit".

Your scenario could be a possibilty too. If they can't get Adams to restructure...I don't see him being retained. He is a + 5 mil swing if they release him. I would be very happy having J Scott as an option...But not sold on him starting. He made some very good strides but simple hand placement seems to get him in trouble too often for my liking. He just doesn't have the feet to recover when that happens. If they are not looking at Colon at LT...There has to be confidence in C Scott or Gilbert among the staff or they have a vet in mind.

RuthlessBurgher
07-28-2011, 12:08 PM
How much would Jared Gaither cost? (I know, he's also had his injury issues as well of late, but he's still a young, big fella)

steelz09
07-28-2011, 12:10 PM
I always thought Gaither was decent. He's a big dude.

Oviedo
07-28-2011, 12:21 PM
[quote="JUST-PLAIN-NASTY":2zz8gde9]Starks release was a weight issue. Steelers DO NOT take kindly to making a huge investment in you and not taking care of yourself. If I'm predicting, the Steelers will make every attempt to re-sign Colon and have him possibly play LT while asking Adams to take a paycut to start at RT. Scott will be the back-up plan and they will try to retain him too. The Steelers were also very high on Chris Scott but none of us can really grade him & know if he is in the plans. The coaches also said Gilbert can play either side. I'm not in "panic" mode just yet. I think this all centers around Starks reporting heavy and the Steelers are ready to make the $$$$ commitment to Colon that he wants if he moves to LT. It has been reported...He wants LT money...So play LT. Many will say I'm crazy...But his pass blocking was the best on the team head to head in 2008 & 2009. If this happens....And Colon has no issues from his injuries...Could be an upgrade at LT.

There is no way I would put Colon at LT and match him up against the defense best rusher.

J. Scott will be starting or we'll have a vet signing. If Colon is signed, he'll likely play RT and and Gilbert / Foster will fight over RG.

Colon was the best pass blocking OL hands down when he played. No debate. LT primary duty? Hmmm...I'm sure the coaches can do the math. Take every OL on the 2010 roster active & IR...He would be the one I would want going against the best rusher....I can't believe you think otherwise. Who is your guy you would pick on the edge first?

Are we targeting a vet...Very possible. Is Gilbert, J Scott, or C Scott in the plans...They could be an option. We can sit back and watch it unfold. If Adams restructures & Colon is retained....I don't see Colon getting the $$$$ to play G & Adams restructuring to back up. Colon's strong points now are his pass blocking & kick slide....Not his pulling ability and his success on the second level. The Equation is different this year with no mini camps and it will be very difficult to plug & play a rookie. So I'm leaning towards our own FA or a vet FA in that order to replace Starks. Our best FA option right now within is Colon.[/quote:2zz8gde9]

Sorry, but not buying Colon's pass blocking skills. We may watch the same games, but see completely different things. I see Colon struggling against pass rushers especially speed guys. He is good for one holding a call per game average.

NW Steeler
07-28-2011, 12:52 PM
Someone may have already pointed this out, and I am not going to go back thru this thread, but I think there is some over-reaction to all of this. Starks did not play half of the year last year, and Colon obviously did not play at all. I'm not saying that our oline would not be a lot better off with either or both of them, but we managed to get by last year without either of them. They must have something else in mind, or be comfortable with what they have left. I hope there is another shoe to drop yet.

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 12:59 PM
[quote="JUST-PLAIN-NASTY":22j3r7gi]Starks release was a weight issue. Steelers DO NOT take kindly to making a huge investment in you and not taking care of yourself. If I'm predicting, the Steelers will make every attempt to re-sign Colon and have him possibly play LT while asking Adams to take a paycut to start at RT. Scott will be the back-up plan and they will try to retain him too. The Steelers were also very high on Chris Scott but none of us can really grade him & know if he is in the plans. The coaches also said Gilbert can play either side. I'm not in "panic" mode just yet. I think this all centers around Starks reporting heavy and the Steelers are ready to make the $$$$ commitment to Colon that he wants if he moves to LT. It has been reported...He wants LT money...So play LT. Many will say I'm crazy...But his pass blocking was the best on the team head to head in 2008 & 2009. If this happens....And Colon has no issues from his injuries...Could be an upgrade at LT.

There is no way I would put Colon at LT and match him up against the defense best rusher.

J. Scott will be starting or we'll have a vet signing. If Colon is signed, he'll likely play RT and and Gilbert / Foster will fight over RG.

Colon was the best pass blocking OL hands down when he played. No debate. LT primary duty? Hmmm...I'm sure the coaches can do the math. Take every OL on the 2010 roster active & IR...He would be the one I would want going against the best rusher....I can't believe you think otherwise. Who is your guy you would pick on the edge first?

Are we targeting a vet...Very possible. Is Gilbert, J Scott, or C Scott in the plans...They could be an option. We can sit back and watch it unfold. If Adams restructures & Colon is retained....I don't see Colon getting the $$$$ to play G & Adams restructuring to back up. Colon's strong points now are his pass blocking & kick slide....Not his pulling ability and his success on the second level. The Equation is different this year with no mini camps and it will be very difficult to plug & play a rookie. So I'm leaning towards our own FA or a vet FA in that order to replace Starks. Our best FA option right now within is Colon.

Sorry, but not buying Colon's pass blocking skills. We may watch the same games, but see completely different things. I see Colon struggling against pass rushers especially speed guys. He is good for one holding a call per game average.[/quote:22j3r7gi]

I pay more attention to the OL & DL than any other position because thats where the game is won and lost. You don't have to buy anything. Colon's pass blocking has been uncontested since 2007. The best since a healthy Marvel. Don't sour on him because he isn't the mammoth OT everyone covets in here. His track record speaks for itself on the field. Why would anyone want to push the best OT & 2nd best OL (Pouncey's ceiling is high) out the door if the contract can be done? Should be even more of a priority now that 3rd best OL was released.

insanesteelersfan
07-28-2011, 01:13 PM
Considering how many times Ben has been sacked the past 4 years,,,I wouldn't be
" Pimping " ANY of our O-Linemen for their pass protecting abilities. :2c

grotonsteel
07-28-2011, 01:15 PM
[quote=jhansle1][quote="JUST-PLAIN-NASTY":lt1w02a8]Starks release was a weight issue. Steelers DO NOT take kindly to making a huge investment in you and not taking care of yourself. If I'm predicting, the Steelers will make every attempt to re-sign Colon and have him possibly play LT while asking Adams to take a paycut to start at RT. Scott will be the back-up plan and they will try to retain him too. The Steelers were also very high on Chris Scott but none of us can really grade him & know if he is in the plans. The coaches also said Gilbert can play either side. I'm not in "panic" mode just yet. I think this all centers around Starks reporting heavy and the Steelers are ready to make the $$$$ commitment to Colon that he wants if he moves to LT. It has been reported...He wants LT money...So play LT. Many will say I'm crazy...But his pass blocking was the best on the team head to head in 2008 & 2009. If this happens....And Colon has no issues from his injuries...Could be an upgrade at LT.

There is no way I would put Colon at LT and match him up against the defense best rusher.

J. Scott will be starting or we'll have a vet signing. If Colon is signed, he'll likely play RT and and Gilbert / Foster will fight over RG.

Colon was the best pass blocking OL hands down when he played. No debate. LT primary duty? Hmmm...I'm sure the coaches can do the math. Take every OL on the 2010 roster active & IR...He would be the one I would want going against the best rusher....I can't believe you think otherwise. Who is your guy you would pick on the edge first?

Are we targeting a vet...Very possible. Is Gilbert, J Scott, or C Scott in the plans...They could be an option. We can sit back and watch it unfold. If Adams restructures & Colon is retained....I don't see Colon getting the $$$$ to play G & Adams restructuring to back up. Colon's strong points now are his pass blocking & kick slide....Not his pulling ability and his success on the second level. The Equation is different this year with no mini camps and it will be very difficult to plug & play a rookie. So I'm leaning towards our own FA or a vet FA in that order to replace Starks. Our best FA option right now within is Colon.

Sorry, but not buying Colon's pass blocking skills. We may watch the same games, but see completely different things. I see Colon struggling against pass rushers especially speed guys. He is good for one holding a call per game average.[/quote:lt1w02a8]

I pay more attention to the OL & DL than any other position because thats where the game is won and lost. You don't have to buy anything. Colon's pass blocking has been uncontested since 2007. The best since a healthy Marvel. Don't sour on him because he isn't the mammoth OT everyone covets in here. His track record speaks for itself on the field. Why would anyone want to push the best OT & 2nd best OL (Pouncey's ceiling is high) out the door if the contract can be done? Should be even more of a priority now that 3rd best OL was released.[/quote:lt1w02a8]


I always thought Willie Colon is on of the better RT in NFL if he can get hold of a player. Again that's a big if. I have seen Willie Colon repeatedly getting beat by quick DL. Again i don't watch OL or DL that closely. But i always though Willie was slow footed and always cost us Field Position with his stupid penalties every game. Again for a 4th Rd pick he played very well.

IMO Max Starks was 2nd best O-lineman after Pouncey. I am disappointed that they let Starks go. Who is going to play LT??

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 01:28 PM
Considering how many times Ben has been sacked the past 4 years,,,I wouldn't be
" Pimping " ANY of our O-Linemen for their pass protecting abilities. :2c




That argument will never cease as long as BB is the QB.

sentinel33
07-28-2011, 01:30 PM
It's a bold move. But if Starks isn't in the shape we need him to be, then thanks for your service.

Toatally cool with starting the same lineup we had in the super bowl. Except have Colon at RT instead of Adams.

Scott-Kemoeatu-Pouncey-Foster-Colon

Legursky-Gilbert-C. Scott

Can we get both Scott and Colon for around what we might give Adams?


Regardless, I'm not freakin out. In Kugler I trust. Worked out well last year. This guy is good.

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 02:10 PM
I always thought Willie Colon is on of the better RT in NFL if he can get hold of a player. Again that's a big if. I have seen Willie Colon repeatedly getting beat by quick DL. Again i don't watch OL or DL that closely. But i always though Willie was slow footed and always cost us Field Position with his stupid penalties every game. Again for a 4th Rd pick he played very well.

IMO Max Starks was 2nd best O-lineman after Pouncey. I am disappointed that they let Starks go. Who is going to play LT??

I agree with Pouncey because of his ceiling I have to put him #1. 2009 Colon would be #2 and I would put Starks #3. Not far behind STarks would be Adams at #4. He really played some solid football the 2nd half of the season. He has a case of lazy feet every now & then but a pleasant surprise filling in for Colon. Kemo really is erasing what he does in the run game with his blunders in pass pro so I would actually drop him to #5 with guys like Foster, Scott, & Bronco sitting right there with him. There wasn't much seperating them because they all have their strengths & weakness. Unfortunately, Essex really struggled and I would say he was the wrost out of all the OL that saw the field. He just really never did anything good long enough to give him credit for.

Its very hard to grade OL with BA's system & BB style. One thing I did notice about BB this year that he had to work on during his suspension was his drops & footwork. BA has route trees that put your QB in 5-7 step drops. You open up the edge on your OT if you fade or hang on those drops. BB got to his back foot...Setting up the pocket...And stepped up while going through his progressions. It created a deep pocket and then shut the door when he stepped up helping his OTs. The one flaw he has....But he wins so don't touch it...Is he tries to break over his OT when he wants to get outside when he feels pressure. That opens up the edge for the deep rush at his back and the rusher gets an easy sack where if he stepped up under the OT would have negated him. Like I said...Don't fix it because going over his OT creates time for him to look downfield and he is athletic enough to prolong plays by staying out in front of the rush. Then we get the famous "splash play" because he bought an extra 2-4 seconds and DB can't cover that long. The other thing he improved was his feet in shotgun. In 2009, he would take the snap and drift several steps. That is a big problem because your are asking you OL to carry the pocket 7-10 yards and makes the OT vulnerable to outside speed rushes. BB still can get better at this but he looked much more confident in 2010.

Next time you watch a game...Pay attention to these little things. You will see how a simple step or two up in a pocket would have taken away the pressure while drifting or taking too many steps back allowed an edge for the OT to get beat. Also pay attention to where BB escapes when he feels the pressure. Typical play last year would be Kemo getting beat inside and BB tries to roll outside Adams. BB has enough foot speed to get around Adams guy but Starks guy saw BB roll over the top of Adams and he continues his deep rush around Starks (normally Starks thinks he is running himself out of the play) but he is actually running down BB from behind as BB rolls right into his path. Who's fault actually...Kemo. Who gets credit for the sack...Starks. Stat not kept is the sack occured 6 seconds after the ball was snapped.

So here we are geting ready for the 2011 season with the same debate. The Steelers won their division, conference, and lost in the SB but all the OL except Pouncey suck and give up too many sacks. Wow...My head hurts...deja vu!

birtikidis
07-28-2011, 02:10 PM
Not feeling Colon at LT. We need to bring someone in. I liked Starks and hope that he'll resign. I don't get the whole weight issue. They didn't cut hampton when he came in fat and he doesn't even protect the blind side of the qb. I would have let him at least battle it out.

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 02:17 PM
Not feeling Colon at LT. We need to bring someone in. I liked Starks and hope that he'll resign. I don't get the whole weight issue. They didn't cut hampton when he came in fat and he doesn't even protect the blind side of the qb. I would have let him at least battle it out.

I would say the Hampton - Starks comparison isn't a good one. Hampton is one of the Top 3 NT in the league. Starks isn't even close to that...Just almost paid like one.

birtikidis
07-28-2011, 02:19 PM
Not feeling Colon at LT. We need to bring someone in. I liked Starks and hope that he'll resign. I don't get the whole weight issue. They didn't cut hampton when he came in fat and he doesn't even protect the blind side of the qb. I would have let him at least battle it out.

I would say the Hampton - Starks comparison isn't a good one. Hampton is one of the Top 3 NT in the league. Starks isn't even close to that...Just almost paid like one.
Yea I know the comparison is pretty weak. just feel that any replacement we have is a HUGE difference.

grotonsteel
07-28-2011, 02:20 PM
I always thought Willie Colon is on of the better RT in NFL if he can get hold of a player. Again that's a big if. I have seen Willie Colon repeatedly getting beat by quick DL. Again i don't watch OL or DL that closely. But i always though Willie was slow footed and always cost us Field Position with his stupid penalties every game. Again for a 4th Rd pick he played very well.

IMO Max Starks was 2nd best O-lineman after Pouncey. I am disappointed that they let Starks go. Who is going to play LT??

I agree with Pouncey because of his ceiling I have to put him #1. 2009 Colon would be #2 and I would put Starks #3. Not far behind STarks would be Adams at #4. He really played some solid football the 2nd half of the season. He has a case of lazy feet every now & then but a pleasant surprise filling in for Colon. Kemo really is erasing what he does in the run game with his blunders in pass pro so I would actually drop him to #5 with guys like Foster, Scott, & Bronco sitting right there with him. There wasn't much seperating them because they all have their strengths & weakness. Unfortunately, Essex really struggled and I would say he was the wrost out of all the OL that saw the field. He just really never did anything good long enough to give him credit for.

Its very hard to grade OL with BA's system & BB style. One thing I did notice about BB this year that he had to work on during his suspension was his drops & footwork. BA has route trees that put your QB in 5-7 step drops. You open up the edge on your OT if you fade or hang on those drops. BB got to his back foot...Setting up the pocket...And stepped up while going through his progressions. It created a deep pocket and then shut the door when he stepped up helping his OTs. The one flaw he has....But he wins so don't touch it...Is he tries to break over his OT when he wants to get outside when he feels pressure. That opens up the edge for the deep rush at his back and the rusher gets an easy sack where if he stepped up under the OT would have negated him. Like I said...Don't fix it because going over his OT creates time for him to look downfield and he is athletic enough to prolong plays by staying out in front of the rush. Then we get the famous "splash play" because he bought an extra 2-4 seconds and DB can't cover that long. The other thing he improved was his feet in shotgun. In 2009, he would take the snap and drift several steps. That is a big problem because your are asking you OL to carry the pocket 7-10 yards and makes the OT vulnerable to outside speed rushes. BB still can get better at this but he looked much more confident in 2010.

Next time you watch a game...Pay attention to these little things. You will see how a simple step or two up in a pocket would have taken away the pressure while drifting or taking too many steps back allowed an edge for the OT to get beat. Also pay attention to where BB escapes when he feels the pressure. Typical play last year would be Kemo getting beat inside and BB tries to roll outside Adams. BB has enough foot speed to get around Adams guy but Starks guy saw BB roll over the top of Adams and he continues his deep rush around Starks (normally Starks thinks he is running himself out of the play) but he is actually running down BB from behind as BB rolls right into his path. Who's fault actually...Kemo. Who gets credit for the sack...Starks. Stat not kept is the sack occured 6 seconds after the ball was snapped.

So here we are geting ready for the 2011 season with the same debate. The Steelers won their division, conference, and lost in the SB but all the OL except Pouncey suck and give up too many sacks. Wow...My head hurts...deja vu!


Great Insight.

I did not think O-line sucked last season. I thought Adams and J Scott played pretty well.

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 02:27 PM
I always thought Willie Colon is on of the better RT in NFL if he can get hold of a player. Again that's a big if. I have seen Willie Colon repeatedly getting beat by quick DL. Again i don't watch OL or DL that closely. But i always though Willie was slow footed and always cost us Field Position with his stupid penalties every game. Again for a 4th Rd pick he played very well.

IMO Max Starks was 2nd best O-lineman after Pouncey. I am disappointed that they let Starks go. Who is going to play LT??

I agree with Pouncey because of his ceiling I have to put him #1. 2009 Colon would be #2 and I would put Starks #3. Not far behind STarks would be Adams at #4. He really played some solid football the 2nd half of the season. He has a case of lazy feet every now & then but a pleasant surprise filling in for Colon. Kemo really is erasing what he does in the run game with his blunders in pass pro so I would actually drop him to #5 with guys like Foster, Scott, & Bronco sitting right there with him. There wasn't much seperating them because they all have their strengths & weakness. Unfortunately, Essex really struggled and I would say he was the wrost out of all the OL that saw the field. He just really never did anything good long enough to give him credit for.

Its very hard to grade OL with BA's system & BB style. One thing I did notice about BB this year that he had to work on during his suspension was his drops & footwork. BA has route trees that put your QB in 5-7 step drops. You open up the edge on your OT if you fade or hang on those drops. BB got to his back foot...Setting up the pocket...And stepped up while going through his progressions. It created a deep pocket and then shut the door when he stepped up helping his OTs. The one flaw he has....But he wins so don't touch it...Is he tries to break over his OT when he wants to get outside when he feels pressure. That opens up the edge for the deep rush at his back and the rusher gets an easy sack where if he stepped up under the OT would have negated him. Like I said...Don't fix it because going over his OT creates time for him to look downfield and he is athletic enough to prolong plays by staying out in front of the rush. Then we get the famous "splash play" because he bought an extra 2-4 seconds and DB can't cover that long. The other thing he improved was his feet in shotgun. In 2009, he would take the snap and drift several steps. That is a big problem because your are asking you OL to carry the pocket 7-10 yards and makes the OT vulnerable to outside speed rushes. BB still can get better at this but he looked much more confident in 2010.

Next time you watch a game...Pay attention to these little things. You will see how a simple step or two up in a pocket would have taken away the pressure while drifting or taking too many steps back allowed an edge for the OT to get beat. Also pay attention to where BB escapes when he feels the pressure. Typical play last year would be Kemo getting beat inside and BB tries to roll outside Adams. BB has enough foot speed to get around Adams guy but Starks guy saw BB roll over the top of Adams and he continues his deep rush around Starks (normally Starks thinks he is running himself out of the play) but he is actually running down BB from behind as BB rolls right into his path. Who's fault actually...Kemo. Who gets credit for the sack...Starks. Stat not kept is the sack occured 6 seconds after the ball was snapped.

So here we are geting ready for the 2011 season with the same debate. The Steelers won their division, conference, and lost in the SB but all the OL except Pouncey suck and give up too many sacks. Wow...My head hurts...deja vu!


Great Insight.

I did not think O-line sucked last season. I thought Adams and J Scott played pretty well.

I agree. Scott made some big strides especially post season. If the staff feels he will continue to grow like that...He may be the guy that made Starks expendable. Unfortunately for us...They know...We have to speculate...And get sick with worry! :wink:

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-28-2011, 02:34 PM
Not feeling Colon at LT. We need to bring someone in. I liked Starks and hope that he'll resign. I don't get the whole weight issue. They didn't cut hampton when he came in fat and he doesn't even protect the blind side of the qb. I would have let him at least battle it out.

I would say the Hampton - Starks comparison isn't a good one. Hampton is one of the Top 3 NT in the league. Starks isn't even close to that...Just almost paid like one.
Yea I know the comparison is pretty weak. just feel that any replacement we have is a HUGE difference.

They must have a strong feeling on someone. I'm not to sure that there even would be a drop off if they did decide to go with Colon at LT. I don't think Scott was playing on the same level of Starks but he was coming on. I agree the "difference" exist because of the questions. There may be potential there for improvement but until I hear the plan...I will continue to scratch my head. Concerned...Not panicing....Just yet.

hawaiiansteel
07-28-2011, 02:44 PM
Not feeling Colon at LT.


me neither.

I would feel more comfortable with J. Scott at LT than Willie Colon.

Flasteel
07-28-2011, 03:21 PM
Weight issue or no weight issue, the team wouldn't make this move without having a solid idea what they want to do at LT. I'm guessing their thinking will be revealed in the next couple of days.

I just hope they aren't pinning their hopes on Scott (who is decent at best) or Colon. Colon has never played the left side before. Not only will he be going up against more elite speed rushers on that side; it's a huge adjustment to get your body to naturally do things in the opposite direction. August is not the time to be trying this out for the first time. Starks on the other hand, was a natural LT who played there in high school and college.

Something else seems to be in the works here...we'll soon find out.

RuthlessBurgher
07-28-2011, 03:55 PM
Not feeling Colon at LT. We need to bring someone in. I liked Starks and hope that he'll resign. I don't get the whole weight issue. They didn't cut hampton when he came in fat and he doesn't even protect the blind side of the qb. I would have let him at least battle it out.

Considering that Max was coming of surgery to fix a disc in his neck, he probably wasn't able to do the conditioning work during the offseason that most of his teammates were doing, so it would be somewhat understandable if he came in heavier than usual this year.

pittpete
07-28-2011, 04:06 PM
Considering that Max was coming of surgery to fix a disc in his neck, he probably wasn't able to do the conditioning work during the offseason that most of his teammates were doing, so it would be somewhat understandable if he came in heavier than usual this year.

If I'm not mistaken, didnt Max get operated on last November?
Over 7 months w/o training or exercising shows his lack of commitment to this team as well as himself(if the weight rumours are true)
Harrison has had 2 lower back surgeries in less than 5 months and I bet you he doesnt miss a beat in camp....
Sorry Maxie you did it to yourself.... :2c

Slapstick
07-28-2011, 04:14 PM
Flozell played for years at the LT position...

If he's can maintain his level of play from the end of last year, he might be the stopgap...

Also, you could pay your starting LT $5 mil and not feel bad...

Steelerphile
07-28-2011, 04:33 PM
Starks, nor Kemo or Essex know how to say 'when' at the chow line. I think the Steeler O-line in general has been overweight. Starks has been a pretty good lineman but I'm not crushed over his departure. J. Scott improved a lot during the course of the year and he has the self-discipline to keep his body fat in check and to pay attention to good coaching. That is evident because of his improvement and I don't see why he would not be considered starter quality. I didn't like him at first but he has grown on me.

I think the Steelers will be fine on the O-line even if Colon can't come back.

SidSmythe
07-28-2011, 04:44 PM
Like most players in the NFL, Jonathan Scott made some pretty big mistakes (like missing down blocks ...remember when Jason Taylor got a safetyy against us?)

But what I liked about Scott is that he got PISSED and showed his emotions big time when he made mistakes. It's nice to see someone who cares about his play instead of making excuses.

hawaiiansteel
07-28-2011, 05:02 PM
Source: Starks could re-sign with Steelers

Thursday, July 28, 2011
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

http://files.pittsburghlive.com/photos/2011-07-28/FBNstarks2-g.jpg

Max Starks, released by the Steelers earlier today to help create salary cap room, could be re-signed by them before the end of training camp, sources told the Post-Gazette.

Starks, who has has been a starter at tackle since his second season in 2005, counted more than $7 million on their salary cap, which was estimated to be more than $10 million above the limit this year. He started the past three seasons at left tackle on offense following two years at right tackle.

However, his season ended last November when he required neck surgery and he has had trouble getting his weight down this year.

The Steelers started their first day of training camp by releasing Starks and veteran wide receiver Antwaan Randle El.

Randle El left the Steelers as a free agent after the 2005 season but returned last season. He was quickly surpassed as their No. 3 receiver by rookie Emmanuel Sanders and then bypassed as No. 4 by rookie Antonioe Brown. He caught 22 passes last season and completed two pass attempts, both for touchdowns.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11209/11 ... z1TQcKiukH (http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11209/1163580-100.stm#ixzz1TQcKiukH)

NJ-STEELER
07-28-2011, 05:11 PM
did they know this during the draft?

really puzzling why they would pass on a LT if they knew about these issues

hawaiiansteel
07-28-2011, 05:20 PM
did they know this during the draft?

really puzzling why they would pass on a LT if they knew about these issues



maybe the Steelers think Gilbert can eventually play LT. he did start for one season at LT for the Gators...

birtikidis
07-28-2011, 05:58 PM
Considering that Max was coming of surgery to fix a disc in his neck, he probably wasn't able to do the conditioning work during the offseason that most of his teammates were doing, so it would be somewhat understandable if he came in heavier than usual this year.

If I'm not mistaken, didnt Max get operated on last November?
Over 7 months w/o training or exercising shows his lack of commitment to this team as well as himself(if the weight rumours are true)
Harrison has had 2 lower back surgeries in less than 5 months and I bet you he doesnt miss a beat in camp....
Sorry Maxie you did it to yourself.... :2c
I had back surgery for a slight herniation in my lower back it took me months before I could start jogging again. I could do all my upper body work as long as my lower back was stabilized. The neck though.. you'd have to have a lot more stability then what I had. It was at least 6 months before I started running sprints again.

flippy
07-28-2011, 06:19 PM
It's gotta be the injury. Starks was our best lineman.

But I really liked what we got out of Jon Scott down the stretch. I can live with him over there if it means more money to be better elsewhere.

Shoe
07-28-2011, 06:47 PM
did they know this during the draft?

really puzzling why they would pass on a LT if they knew about these issues



maybe the Steelers think Gilbert can eventually play LT. he did start for one season at LT for the Gators...

And/or maybe they didn't see anyone worthy when it was their turn to pick...

RuthlessBurgher
07-28-2011, 06:55 PM
did they know this during the draft?

really puzzling why they would pass on a LT if they knew about these issues



maybe the Steelers think Gilbert can eventually play LT. he did start for one season at LT for the Gators...

And/or maybe they didn't see anyone worthy when it was their turn to pick...

I was hoping we'd take Derek Sherrod when he was available at #32 (and that was well before I knew we'd be cutting Max Starks!). I guess the front office did not feel the same way about him, though. Overall, I'm happy with the Cam Heyward pick (just didn't think they'd spend a first rounder on a 3-4 DE 2 out of 3 years).

steelblood
07-28-2011, 11:30 PM
Our offensive line run blocked very well in the playoffs. I think Kugler is our most dynamic and important position coach (even more than Mitchell or Butler).

steeler_fan_in_t.o.
07-28-2011, 11:59 PM
Someone may have already pointed this out, and I am not going to go back thru this thread, but I think there is some over-reaction to all of this. Starks did not play half of the year last year, and Colon obviously did not play at all. I'm not saying that our oline would not be a lot better off with either or both of them, but we managed to get by last year without either of them. They must have something else in mind, or be comfortable with what they have left. I hope there is another shoe to drop yet.

If you drive tonight without any insurance and return home without getting into an accident, would you now claim that insurance is not necessary?

Just because we put a bullseye on our QB and nobody hit it last year does not mean that I feel safe putting that bullseye on him again.

fordfixer
07-29-2011, 02:37 AM
Cook: It's a good day for offensive line
Friday, July 29, 2011
By Ron Cook, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11210/1163723-87-0.stm
Max Starks for Willie Colon and Jonathan Scott? That's a pretty good trade for the Steelers. It made for a terrific Thursday for general manager Kevin Colbert and coach Mike Tomlin.

The day began with news that Starks -- a starter on the Steelers' Super Bowl-winning teams in 2005 and '08 -- had been released. It came as a bit of a surprise because of the team's tenuous depth on the offensive line. "We don't have [a left tackle] today ... " Tomlin acknowledged shortly after his men gathered on the Saint Vincent College lawn in Latrobe for a brief conditioning session and the official start of a training camp that seemed in doubt earlier this month because of the NFL lockout.

That's tenuous, for sure.

But Tomlin knew Colbert had or at least was close to new deals with Colon and Scott. Colon was considered the Steelers' best lineman before he tore an Achilles tendon a year ago and before rookie center Maurkice Pouncey emerged as a Pro Bowl player and a key part of another Super Bowl team. Scott, a man of many positions, did a decent job filling in for Starks after Starks went down and out for the season with a neck injury in early November.

Starks was expendable because he had a huge contract at a time the Steelers had to shed salary to squeeze under the NFL cap. He is coming off surgery. There also were whispers that he isn't in the best of shape.

"We won't get into specifics," Tomlin said when asked about releasing not just Starks, but also wideout Antwaan Randle El.

But, hey, the coach did wish Big Max and El well.

Is it just me or do you wonder, too, if the boss -- any boss -- means it when he wishes a guy well as he shows him the door?

But I did believe Tomlin when he made a promise:

"We will have [a left tackle] tomorrow."

That looks to be Scott, at least for now. It's hard to think about climbing a mountain and shouting from the top about that, but he appears to be the Steelers' best option. There's a chance Flozell Adams could be moved back to left tackle, the position he played for 12 seasons with Dallas before joining the Steelers last summer and switching to the right side. But that's unlikely because he is 36; fending off the NFL's best pass-rushers coming after quarterback Ben Roethlisberger from his blind side is a lot to ask of a man that age. Colon is a lock at right tackle.

Adams, who reported Thursday but wasn't available for comment, can't be happy. He had talked about retiring if he wasn't going to be a starter. His mood will worsen considerably if Colbert goes to him, as expected, and asks him to accept considerably less than the $5 million he's supposed to make this season. It would be unfortunate for the team if Adams doesn't stick around because its tackle depth then would figure to be Chris Scott, a fifth-round draft choice in 2010, and Marcus Gilbert, their second-round pick this spring.

It's nice to think Adams will want one more season of checks, even if they are reduced. Surely, he has to realize he almost certainly will get a fair number of starts because of the inevitable injuries during the long NFL season.

Adams was the only Steelers lineman to start every game last season, although Pouncey missed just the Super Bowl. Adams, Pouncey and left guard Chris Kemoeatu were the only linemen to play exclusively at their position. Jonathan Scott played both tackles and left guard. Ramon Foster played both guards and right tackle. Doug Legursky played center and both guards and took the occasional rep as a blocking fullback. Trai Essex, a free agent and not expected back, played every position but center.

No doubt, there should be plenty of work for Adams, should he accept it.

Pouncey is set at center. Kemoeatu, Foster and Legursky should battle it out for the two guard spots. Kemoeatu, who will start camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list after showing up with swelling on a knee, had better not miss too much time.

No matter how the offensive line takes shape between now and the Sept. 11 opener at Baltimore, a lot of people are going to complain about it. That's what they do here. It always has baffled me how the line is supposed to be so bad season after season, yet the team went to three Super Bowls in the past six years and won two.

Offensive line coach Sean Kugler performed magic in his first season with the Steelers last season, constantly shuffling players to fill the injury holes. Word at the team's camp compound is that he did not -- repeat: did not -- take stupid pills during the offseason.

The line should be good enough again even if Jonathan Scott is the left tackle. Colon is a strong addition. The line won't be the NFL's best, but it will be better than a lot of people are going to say it is.

It's always better than they say it is.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11210/11 ... z1TTQltfBr (http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11210/1163723-87-0.stm#ixzz1TTQltfBr)

NorthCoast
07-29-2011, 08:36 AM
I join those who think the OL is serviceable with Scott at LT. His improvement as the season progressed was noticeable. He is young and seems to actually care about his position. We could do far worse. Didnt Essex play emergency LT at one point a couple seasons ago? Yikes!!
On Colon at RT, I recall more than one website had him ranked in the top 5 RTs in the league before his injury. So some of us focus on the good and others seem to focus on his misses. No one wins them all.
I actually think we can piece together another OL good enough to make the playoffs again this season. Ben can help them look good if he can change a few things in his game.

pittpete
07-29-2011, 09:06 AM
Kemoeatu, who will start camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list after showing up with swelling on a knee, had better not miss too much time.

Watch this closely....

RuthlessBurgher
07-29-2011, 09:19 AM
I join those who think the OL is serviceable with Scott at LT. His improvement as the season progressed was noticeable. He is young and seems to actually care about his position. We could do far worse. Didnt Essex play emergency LT at one point a couple seasons ago? Yikes!!
On Colon at RT, I recall more than one website had him ranked in the top 5 RTs in the league before his injury. So some of us focus on the good and others seem to focus on his misses. No one wins them all.
I actually think we can piece together another OL good enough to make the playoffs again this season. Ben can help them look good if he can change a few things in his game.

He's not THAT young. He's only one year younger than Max (exactly one year...they share the same birthday). He should be entering the prime of his career, though. He did show improvement over the course of last year, but the consensus was that he did an "okay" job filling in for Max last year. I would prefer someone that is more than just adequate protecting the blind side of our biggest asset, but that's just me. At this point, I'm hoping that Hotel accepts a pay reduction then moves back to his old spot on the left side with Willie back at RT (unless of course we are able to re-sign a slimmed down Max at a reduced rate in a few weeks, or if we are able to land another LT such as Jared Gaither). I'm happy with Jon Scott as the backup swing tackle (certainly an improvement over Trai Essex in that role).

NorthCoast
07-29-2011, 09:29 AM
Kemoeatu, who will start camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list after showing up with swelling on a knee, had better not miss too much time.

Watch this closely....

Kemo is a constant frustration...has the physical tools but mental lapses continually put the QB in jeopardy. And he has been that way almost from the day he started. His one talent, being a good pulling blocker has not offset his huge weakness as a pass blocker. I wonder how long Kugs and staff will put up with Kemo's brain farts?

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-29-2011, 09:30 AM
Weight issue or no weight issue, the team wouldn't make this move without having a solid idea what they want to do at LT. I'm guessing their thinking will be revealed in the next couple of days.

I just hope they aren't pinning their hopes on Scott (who is decent at best) or Colon. Colon has never played the left side before. Not only will he be going up against more elite speed rushers on that side; it's a huge adjustment to get your body to naturally do things in the opposite direction. August is not the time to be trying this out for the first time. Starks on the other hand, was a natural LT who played there in high school and college.

Something else seems to be in the works here...we'll soon find out.

It isn't a huge adjustment as you think...More of a transition. Not everyone could do it. It's about learning left versus right back & first step change in kick slide. The biggest adjustment is strong arm inside verus outside. I actually preferred left side & I'm a righty. But I had good feet to negate speed rushes outside at LT and liked having my strong arm inside to stone inside counter. But My feet were too good and I played LG most of the time because of my pulling & trapping ability. Never played in a pass heavy system so Gs were more utilized than OTs. OT were the OL that couldn't pull, trap, or block in space. lol

Don't forget who Colon is. He was a defensive standout in HS and came to college on the defensive side. Transitioned over in college and played OG & OT. His heart is on the right side...But the coaches know where he could play. The $$$$ he was looking for and the release of Starks fueled some speculation. After seeing his contract numbers now...I don't believe the Steelers are slotting him at LT unless he gave a nice hometown discount. That all being said, Colon seems to handle transition very well. This will all start to come into focus soon but perhaps if there is a "transition" it is to RG...But I don't think it will. Based upon Tomlins words...If no LT is signed today...J Scott was the guy. All I could say to that is...wow!

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
07-29-2011, 09:39 AM
Kemoeatu, who will start camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list after showing up with swelling on a knee, had better not miss too much time.

Watch this closely....

I saw pics of Kemo and it appears to me...He is too "comfortable". With names like Woodley, Timmons, & Polamalu on the table of extensions...If Bronco, Scott, Gilbert, or Williams show the ability at LG...His share may be pushed backed to the middle of the table. If the Steelers pay you...You better remain committed. I haven't seen "commitment" out of Kemo the last two years on the field or during the offseason. I agree with your statement and I think the expectations of Kemo this year have been raised by the staff. If he doesn't meet them and there is a capable replacement...He may be in the last cuts.

papillon
07-29-2011, 11:06 AM
Kemoeatu, who will start camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list after showing up with swelling on a knee, had better not miss too much time.

Watch this closely....

I saw pics of Kemo and it appears to me...He is too "comfortable". With names like Woodley, Timmons, & Polamalu on the table of extensions...If Bronco, Scott, Gilbert, or Williams show the ability at LG...His share may be pushed backed to the middle of the table. If the Steelers pay you...You better remain committed. I haven't seen "commitment" out of Kemo the last two years on the field or during the offseason. I agree with your statement and I think the expectations of Kemo this year have been raised by the staff. If he doesn't meet them and there is a capable replacement...He may be in the last cuts.

This would not disappoint me in the least. I don't know the intricate details of playing offensive line, but I know one thing that is universal to any sport and that is that coaches have difficulty accepting mental lapses and Kemo has too many of them. He has to be as frustrating a player to coach as any out there. He has the tools and skills, but the part between the ears just never seems to stay engaged for an entire game.

Pappy