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Mister Pittsburgh
04-22-2012, 06:02 PM
What would be a more dominant front 7...

Mclellin
Keisel
Harrison
Hampton
Timmons
Hood
Woodley

or

Harrison
Keisel
Timmons
Hampton
Hightower
Hood
Woodley

Just wondering with Harrison having the ability to play ILB and his age causing him some back issues hindering his pass rush, would it make more sense to take Hightower or Shea Mclellin who has flown up draft boards? I am not sold on Worilds and am unsure about Carter.

Just something I am throwing out there for discussion purposes.

OLB - Harrison, Woodley, Worilds, Carter

ILB - Timmons, Harrison, Foote, Sylvester

Shawn
04-22-2012, 06:34 PM
Where is Heyward?

Mister Pittsburgh
04-22-2012, 06:50 PM
Where is Heyward?

Well I don't see him taking Keisels job so I assume rotating in.

TD386Steel
04-22-2012, 06:56 PM
Where is Heyward?

I was thinking the same thing, Heyward is probably better now then Hood at DE, which is why they are discussing moving Hood to DT right?

Mister Pittsburgh
04-22-2012, 07:40 PM
Either way, regarding Hood or Heyward at DE or NT, any thoughts on the LB issue? The reason I brought it up is I liked McLellin but thought he would be long gone by our pick in the 2nd, then saw on Walterfootballs latest rendition of their mock they have Shea going off at the Patriots pick at 27, only three draft slots after ours.

blacknblue80s
04-22-2012, 08:16 PM
I think OLB is a definite need. I'm all for picking up an OLB prospect in round one and an ILB later if there isn't good o-line value at pick #24.

We had several games where either Woodley or Harrison were out last year and IMO, Worilds was a liability. Woodley is probably the best pass rusher in the NFL but it's hard to compare him with his peers when he spends so much time either injured or fighting through nagging injuries every season. Harrison is well into his 30s and had back surgery.

I like the line-up of:

Harrison/ Mercilus Whitney
Keisel
Sylvester
Hampton
Timmons
Heyward
Woodley/ Mercilus Whitney

Mister Pittsburgh
04-22-2012, 08:36 PM
Could definitely be a different OLB then McLellin. After some research I see the Steelers couldn't even be bothered to be one of 28 teams with a representative there at the Boise Pro Day.

Eddie Spaghetti
04-22-2012, 08:39 PM
no offense, but there is no way in hell woodley is the best pass rusher in the NFL. And taking a project OLB in round 1 would be a terrible move. This team has too many holes right now.

there is a need at OLB. I believe that worilds was a terrible pick and will never produce many meaningful plays. however, at this moment ILB seems to be of greater need. both positions could use some quality depth. If Carter can actually contribute, that would be a huge plus going forward.

I understand harrison missed some time last year, but he has not shown himself to miss alot of games. I think he will be fine this year and can be very productive for the next two.

Mister Pittsburgh
04-22-2012, 09:05 PM
The Steelers took a huge project OLB much higher then 24 in Timmons when everyone & their brother had him much lower.

Steel Life
04-22-2012, 09:10 PM
As for McClellin, I'm all for selecting him but 24 seems a little high. The Steelers spoke with him at the combine so I wouldn't read anything into not being there for the pro-day. The one thing that concerns me with him is that he supposedly has had 3 concussions...major potential issue there.

Chadman
04-22-2012, 09:29 PM
Interesting interview on "The site that won't be named" the other day with David-Te Thomas about the Steelers- he shares an agent with Jason Worilds & suggested that Worilds is practicing with Tom Shaw & talk is he could be learning the ILB position. If that is the case, OLB becomes a definate 'future need' & someone like Perry, McLellin or Ingram become very real possibilities at #24...

Mister Pittsburgh
04-22-2012, 10:22 PM
I like McLellin's size & speed. He's tall but solid at 260 but his 40 wasn't slow. Would be great news if Worilds & Timmons could man the middle.

Shoe
04-22-2012, 11:02 PM
The Steelers took a huge project OLB much higher then 24 in Timmons when everyone & their brother had him much lower.

Dude, you're making some huge leaps of judgement. First of all, Timmons was highly rated coming out of college. If he was overdrafted, it wasn't by much (He was certainly a first-rounder).

Second, you made the statement of Harrison's ability to play ILB. What gives you that idea? AFAIK, he's never played the position, at least not as a professional in an actual game. And for the record, projecting Harrison to play at his "usual" production IMO is more of a long shot than it is a certainty. The guy is undersized, 33+ years old, and had back surgery last year. It's the favorite to say that he will never be the same player ever again.

On that end, I think that Chris Carter can fill that role as either a 3-4 OLB or 4-3 OLB. I really have no basis for that mind you, just a hunch.

hawaiiansteel
04-22-2012, 11:12 PM
I like McLellin's size & speed. He's tall but solid at 260 but his 40 wasn't slow. Would be great news if Worilds & Timmons could man the middle.

it would be great, but i just don't see Worilds being able to hold up against the run in the middle.

RuthlessBurgher
04-23-2012, 12:32 AM
Interesting interview on "The site that won't be named" the other day with David-Te Thomas about the Steelers- he shares an agent with Jason Worilds & suggested that Worilds is practicing with Tom Shaw & talk is he could be learning the ILB position. If that is the case, OLB becomes a definate 'future need' & someone like Perry, McLellin or Ingram become very real possibilities at #24...

Perry or McClellin, maybe...but Melvin Ingram??? He should be looooooong gone by the time we pick at #24. I've heard scuttlebutt about his stock possibly dropping a bit, but I think that means instead of going in the top 10, he might go in the early teens now.

Chadman
04-23-2012, 12:45 AM
Perry or McClellin, maybe...but Melvin Ingram??? He should be looooooong gone by the time we pick at #24. I've heard scuttlebutt about his stock possibly dropping a bit, but I think that means instead of going in the top 10, he might go in the early teens now.

Let Chadman rephrase that one...Courtney Upshaw... ;)

blacknblue80s
04-23-2012, 12:48 AM
no offense,
None taken.

there is no way in hell woodley is the best pass rusher in the NFL.
IIRC, Woodley had 8 or 9 sacks early in the season last year before the hamstring injury. Talent-wise he is at least one of the best pass-rushers, just injury prone.

And taking a project OLB in round 1 would be a terrible move.
He did play some OLB at Illinois so he's not as much of a project as the usual DE's. IMO he would be a huge improvement over our current back-ups, and our backups tend to see a lot of action.

Mister Pittsburgh
04-23-2012, 12:51 AM
Harrison was an ILB. Do some research before running your mouth. He was an ILB and the primary backup at both ILB & OLB. But yeah, I'm sure he has no clue. His back has been what ails him. You think him being a 6' tall LB going up against 6'5"+ has anything to do with that?
http://pit.scout.com/a.z?s=68&p=2&c=175170&ssf=1&RequestedURL=http%3a%2f%2fpit.scout.com%2f2%2f1751 70.html

Timmons was a young, 1 year starter that was projected lower than 15 & near the back end in these mocks.

http://walterfootball.com/draft2007.php

http://www.draftking.com/nfl/2007/mockdraft.shtml

Which all I was trying to point out was the Steelers aren't afraid to reach for a player they want. But yes, I would say a young, 1 yr starting DE that is to convert to 3-4 OLB in DL's system is a big project.

blacknblue80s
04-23-2012, 12:55 AM
Second, you made the statement of Harrison's ability to play ILB. What gives you that idea? AFAIK, he's never played the position, at least not as a professional in an actual game.
He played ILB in two consecutive preseasons and was a beast before he became a starter.

Chadman
04-23-2012, 12:59 AM
The Steelers took a huge project OLB much higher then 24 in Timmons when everyone & their brother had him much lower.

Are you referring to Mercilus, McLellin or Andre Branch as this years example?

Chadman
04-23-2012, 01:03 AM
For the record- if the Steelers ARE going OLB at some stage in the first 2 rounds- Mercilus & Bruce Irvin would be the 2 Chadman would consider the best options.

Shoe
04-23-2012, 01:04 AM
Harrison was an ILB. Do some research before running your mouth. He was an ILB and the primary backup at both ILB & OLB. But yeah, I'm sure he has no clue. His back has been what ails him. You think him being a 6' tall LB going up against 6'5"+ has anything to do with that?

That's why I prefaced my comment with "As Far As I Know..."

Take it easy, keyboard warrior.

Chadman
04-23-2012, 01:05 AM
it would be great, but i just don't see Worilds being able to hold up against the run in the middle.

Not being funny- but can you explain why? He's 260lbs, which is bigger than Farrior ever was, and quite agile.

Chadman
04-23-2012, 01:06 AM
That's why I prefaced my comment with "As Far As I Know..."

Take it easy, keyboard warrior.

:D

There may have been a slight over reaction in there somewhere, Chadman suspects...

RuthlessBurgher
04-23-2012, 01:55 AM
For the record- if the Steelers ARE going OLB at some stage in the first 2 rounds- Mercilus & Bruce Irvin would be the 2 Chadman would consider the best options.

Too much baggage for my taste re: Irvin.

Discipline of Steel
04-23-2012, 06:52 AM
I hope all this talk of taking more LBs in the first 2 rounds is a moot point. We need big uglies now as in an OT, 2 OGs, and a NT, Casey and Colon are no guarantees to perform at a high level early this season if at all. At least we have Harrison, Timmons, Foote, Sylvester, and Woodley to start this year at full strength.

Chadman
04-23-2012, 08:38 AM
Too much baggage for my taste re: Irvin.

Read an interesting report on him that suggets that the way he interviewed & addressed his previous issues may actually get people onside with him- a guy that went through the tough times & emerged a better man- sort of deal.

In Chadman's opinion, there is NO BETTER pass rusher in the draft.

blacknblue80s
04-23-2012, 10:53 AM
I hope all this talk of taking more LBs in the first 2 rounds is a moot point. We need big uglies now as in an OT, 2 OGs, and a NT, Casey and Colon are no guarantees to perform at a high level early this season if at all. At least we have Harrison, Timmons, Foote, Sylvester, and Woodley to start this year at full strength.
I agree. IMO, G and OT are our biggest needs. It just seems like the Steelers FO places higher value on defense and pass rushers especially. If one of the premiere pass-rushers fell to us I don't think they would be able to resist.

grotonsteel
04-23-2012, 11:04 AM
In Chadman's opinion, there is NO BETTER pass rusher in the draft.

I am a fan of Bruce Irvin.

If Steelers want an OLB then i would go with Bruce Irvin or Nick Perry. BTW how can anyone go wrong with a PREDATOR aka Bruce Irvin ;)

Oviedo
04-23-2012, 11:23 AM
More defense early in this draft will doom any attempts Haley makes to improve the offense. We've got about 5 more year of ben being the starting QB. I would prefer he was not injured on the sideline for a significant part of that time. We need OL. Defense does not win in today's NFL, offense wins.

Mister Pittsburgh
04-23-2012, 12:42 PM
That's why I prefaced my comment with "As Far As I Know..."

Take it easy, keyboard warrior.

Not a keyboard warrior....just didn't see how on one hand you are saying I am taking huge leaps of judgement when I wasn't at all, but then your information was incorrect. Took that the wrong way I suppose. Sorry for that.

Have had bad experiences trying to simply chat about my other two favorite teams from Pittsburgh on MB's lately where any time you say anything it turns into some BS debate where you feel like you need a law degree to even talk without being blasted. Kind of takes the fun out of simply chatting about your favorite team with other fans.

Chadman, was referring to McLellin. Just saw him at 27 to the Pats in Walterfootballs latest Mock and it just got me thinking about this whole OLB-ILB thing. Harrison was originally an ILB, Timmons an OLB, and it is now being discussed that Worilds will attempt to move inside. Kind of makes me think 1) Tomlin is full of crap saying we needed OLB depth instead of ILB when passing over SEan Lee for Worilds....kind of ironic now that they want Worilds to try and move inside and Sean Lee is a totall badass inside already and 2) if it is a huge deal to maybe reach a little for a guy you like like picking Timmons at 15 when most mocks had him ranked in the later portion of the first round. Would that same mentality apply to taking someone like McLellin who most predict early 2nd when at 24 as long as the Steelers feel he is their guy? I have read the Pats are real high on him and see him as a Vrabel type OLB.

Anyway, just wanted to clarify with you Shoe that I wasn't trying to come off as a jerk. Also, being that I am not sold on taking Hightower or really, it seems like anyone that would be sitting there at 24 (in most mocks it seems the quality is way down by our pick), then I wouldn't have an issue if they reached a little for a guy who can come in and stud.

hawaiiansteel
04-23-2012, 01:30 PM
Not being funny- but can you explain why? He's 260lbs, which is bigger than Farrior ever was, and quite agile.


Worilds was inconsistent against the run when he played on the outside where he could use his speed and agility, why would he be better on the inside where he has never played before?

Steelerphile
04-23-2012, 07:27 PM
Worilds was inconsistent against the run when he played on the outside where he could use his speed and agility, why would he be better on the inside where he has never played before?

I think it is all a matter of learning the defense so that your movements are natural and you can attack the play without hesitation. I think Worilds has a ton of ability but coming from college had a pass rush first mentality. It takes a while to get used to a new more complex defense, where your responsibilities involve reading run and possible pass options, as well as pass rush. David Te thinks the third year could be the breakout for Worilds. I side with his thinking. I think Worilds should be more involved with the next years defense than guys like Sylvester, who hasn't shown me much on defense, or Foote, who is a solid vet, but does not possess the size or athletic ability of Worilds.

I was encouraged by Worilds in his limited play last year. No way is he this horrible player as some portray him to be.

Shoe
04-23-2012, 08:54 PM
No worries Mister Pittsburgh... just a misunderstanding.

In think more about this issue (and from my PoV, LB will be best value/need pick), I want to amplify why I prefer Kendricks to Hightower in the first round.

First of all, to those who say 24 is too high for Kendricks. Please realize that Kendricks is projected as a solid 2nd. That's 33-64. From 24 to 33, it's not that huge a value difference, if you like a player that much. In other words, it's easily worth the loss in "value", picking a guy a bit ahead of where everyone else seems to think--if you can ensure that you will get that guy, AND he turns into the player you think.

Now, as to why I think Kendricks is the better fit. He is scheme-diverse. He can play the 3-4 ILB slot next to Timmons (coincidentally, giving us the fastest set of ILBs in the league by far)... but he can just as easily fit as a 4-3 OLB/MLB. Hightower doesn't bring that level of scheme diversity IMO.

Chadman
04-24-2012, 12:14 AM
No worries Mister Pittsburgh... just a misunderstanding.

In think more about this issue (and from my PoV, LB will be best value/need pick), I want to amplify why I prefer Kendricks to Hightower in the first round.

First of all, to those who say 24 is too high for Kendricks. Please realize that Kendricks is projected as a solid 2nd. That's 33-64. From 24 to 33, it's not that huge a value difference, if you like a player that much. In other words, it's easily worth the loss in "value", picking a guy a bit ahead of where everyone else seems to think--if you can ensure that you will get that guy, AND he turns into the player you think.

Now, as to why I think Kendricks is the better fit. He is scheme-diverse. He can play the 3-4 ILB slot next to Timmons (coincidentally, giving us the fastest set of ILBs in the league by far)... but he can just as easily fit as a 4-3 OLB/MLB. Hightower doesn't bring that level of scheme diversity IMO.

You know what? Chadman isn't completely against that idea.

hawaiiansteel
04-24-2012, 04:06 PM
Drafting a LB is imperative for Steelers

Posted: Monday, April 23, 2012
By Jim Wexell For HeraldStandard.com


The lifeblood of the Pittsburgh Steelers failed them last year.

Their group of linebackers, the heart of their 3-4 defense, had one of its worst statistical seasons in decades.

Injuries played a part. So did age. James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley saw double-digit sack streaks stopped when they — hurting and hurt, respectively — finished with 9 sacks apiece.

James Farrior had only 2 sacks and was released. Lawrence Timmons was moved outside and back inside and had only 2 sacks. Backups Jason Worilds and Larry Foote had 3 and 1 sacks.

The defense accounted for only 35 sacks, lowest since the 2003 defense had 35 and the 1990 defense had 34.

Worse was the scant number of “splash plays,” as coach Mike Tomlin likes to call them.

To quantify “splash plays,” add interceptions and forced fumbles, and by that measurement last year’s Steelers linebackers made only 6 “splash plays.”

That measure was the worst in the 13 seasons D!ck LeBeau has spent on the Steelers’ defensive staff.

In defenses LeBeau has coached here (three seasons secondary; 10 seasons coordinator), the top six linebackers have never had less than 12 interceptions and forced fumbles.

The previous 3-4 defenses pale when comparing sacks and/or “splash plays” to the LeBeau-era 3-4s, but only one other time has a group of 3-4 Steelers linebackers made only six “splash plays” — and that was in the strike-shortened 1987 season (Cole, Hinkle, Little, Merriweather).

The Steelers began playing the 3-4 defense in 1982.

Perhaps this all helps us better understand why the Steelers are looking so intently at linebackers this draft season.

Whether they’re looking to replace Farrior, or moving Worilds inside, or searching for the 34-year-old Harrison’s eventual replacement, or whether they’re merely reacting to statistical evidence, the Steelers are making no secret about their interest.

These are the main outside linebacker candidates:

Nick Perry (6-2.6, 271, 4.59) — No one his size at the combine was as fast, but a 4.66 20-yard shuttle does not indicate a smooth transition from DE to OLB. The two best Pac-12 OTs said at the combine that Perry is the real deal.

Whitney Mercilus (6-3.5, 254, 4.69) — Should be nicknamed “Ming” by now. Mercilus was outstanding against Penn State and Ohio State. Similar in size and style to Joey Porter, but the redshirt junior had only one good year.

Courtney Upshaw (6-1.5, 272, 4.79) — Alabama cross between Harrison and Woodley has even more trouble than Woodley cutting weight.

Shea McClellin (6-3.3, 260, 4.66) — Those who subscribe to KEI theory (strength + jump numbers = explosiveness) won’t like this Boise Stater, but the DE can get downfield to cover. Also, wouldn’t shut up about his hero Mike Vrabel at the combine.

Andre Branch (6-4.2, 259, 4.69) — Steelers had him in for a visit, but peg this Clemson DE as a too-late first-rounder/too-early second-rounder.

Bruce Irvin (6-3, 245, 4.44) — Former WVU 3-3 backup DE had the best agility times of every front-seven player at the combine (and all but one safety in each category). The downside is he’s been in jail and was arrested again recently for a minor disturbance. Steelers scouts can dream, though.

Olivier Vernon (6-2.1, 261, 4.77) — True junior DE sat out six games for “impermissible benefits” last season at Miami. Right age and position for the Steelers.

Cam Johnson (6-3.4, 268, 4.81) — Steelers also had this Virginia pass-rusher in for a visit. Reminiscent on the field of Clark Haggans, without the heart.

And here are the inside linebackers:

Luke Kuechly (6-3.2, 242, 4.61) — Don’t know whether he’s the next Jack Lambert or the next Jack Ham. Best instincts I’ve seen from a college linebacker in years.

Donta Hightower (6-2.2, 265, 4.64) — Big, fast, intimidating, intelligent leader would fit right into Farrior’s “buck,” or playcalling, position.

Lavonte David (6-0.5, 233, 4.59) — Nebraska captain should last into early second round, or could be Tomlin curveball in first.

Mychal Kendricks (5-11.1, 239, 4.46) — Cal MLB put up top times and jumps at the combine, but will likely be overdrafted. Reportedly struggled at the combine whiteboard.

James-Michael Johnson (6-1.1, 241, 4.66) — If Hightower’s not there in the first, wait for this MLB from Nevada ...

Demario Davis (6-2, 235, 4.56) - ... or this MLB from Arkansas State in the middle rounds. Followers of aforementioned KEI theory call Davis the second most explosive athlete behind Nick Perry. Stood up Cordy Glenn twice at the Senior Bowl to tackle RBs.

Ronnell Lewis (6-1.6, 253, 4.67) — Like Irvin, Lewis was a backup 3-3 DE for a coach who didn’t know how to use him. A true junior, Lewis is a fearsome special-teams killer. But where to play him?

Nigel Bradham (6-1.7, 241, 4.59) — Was shown around Florida State campus during his recruiting visit by Timmons. Would have to play “mack” and move Timmons to the more cerebral “buck,” but for whatever reason the Steelers are teaching Timmons to play OLB instead of the captain’s position.

Travis Lewis (6-1.3, 246, 4.77) — Overhyped since his freshman year at Oklahoma, this Larry Foote clone could be underrated by now.

Danny Trevathan (6-0.2, 237) — No one else likes this small, slow and ultra-productive Kentucky overachiever. But would not surprise me if he becomes a solid starter in the league.

Pittsburgh Steelers’ Value Board

First Round — Luke Kuechly, Boston College; Dont’a Hightower, Alabama; Nick Perry, USC.

Second Round — Lavonte David, Nebraska.

Third Round — James-Michael Johnson, Nevada; Olivier Vernon, Miami.

Fourth Round — Demario Davis, Arkansas State; Nigel Bradham, Florida State; Bobby Wagner, Utah State.

Fifth Round — Miles Burris, San Diego State; Kyle Wilber, Wake Forest; Travis Lewis, Oklahoma.

Seventh Round — Danny Trevathan, Kentucky; Sammy Brown, Houston; Adrian Robinson, Temple; Jerrell Harris, Alabama.

http://www.heraldstandard.com/sports/steelers/drafting-a-lb-is-imperative-for-steelers/article_028f4552-b004-5a88-b30b-a7a3c33d9604.html

steeler_fan_in_t.o.
04-24-2012, 04:20 PM
Casey and Colon are no guarantees to perform at a high level early this season if at all.

Guarantee? Vegas is issuing odds as to which pre-season game it will be when we lose Colon for the season.