The only concern I have with Redman is whether he can hold onto the ball. I'm hoping those 2 fumbles were an aberation and not the norm. Other than that I think Redman will give us a good run game and with an improved O-line it might even be great. I guess you can call me one of those "believers".
I agree Ike... what seems odd to me is Redman hasn't done much outside of those 2 fumbles to make anyone not believe in him. I could see if he had a few lousy outings or was stuffed, didn't fall forward and was horrible behind our OL but he has done the exact opposite.
[B]Rashard Mendenhall Says Week 1 Return Is Best Case Scenario[/B]
Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012 by Dave Bryan
The Pittsburgh Steelers have wrapped up day two of their first OTA session of the 2012 season and running back Rashard Mendenhall talked to the media afterwards. Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports via Twitter that Mendenhall said that he is still experiencing swelling and soreness in his surgically repaired knee and said that week 1 was a best-case scenario for his return to action. Mendenhall also fully expects to play in 2012 according to Kovacevic.
Dejan Kovacevic@Dejan_Kovacevic via twitter:
Mendenhall: Still swelling and soreness in knee, calls best-case scenario "Week 1" for his return. Fully expects to play in 2012. #Steelers
This report is not really earth shattering in nature as Mendenhall tore the ACL in his right knee late in the first half of the season finale against the Cleveland Browns. Generally the timeline for a running back to be fully ready for action is anywhere from 9 to 12 months, but it is not out of the question he could be ready sooner than that. Despite his optimism, Mendenhall is expected to start training camp off on the Steelers Active PUP list and that will likely lead to him being moved to the Reserve PUP list once the season begins. That would mean that he must miss the first six weeks of the season at the very least.
General Manager Kevin Colbert has stated since Mendenhall suffered the knee injury that he is never really comfortable with running backs returning from ACL injuries until after a year, but he did not rule out the Steelers 2008 first round draft pick returning to action much earlier than that. Mendenhall was spotted by Mark Kaboly on Tuesday running at a pretty good clip during the session, but no cutting was involved.
Mendenhall is entering the final year of his rookie contract and will be an unrestricted free agent following the 2012 season.
[B]In other running back news Wednesday, running back Isaac Redman, who would be the starter in week 1 if Mendenhall is not ready, said that the new offense of Todd Haley will get the ball to the backs more in the air this year.[/B] Redman was quoted as saying, "I feel we're capable of doing well with that." In addition, Redman also said that tight end David Johnson has officially been moved to fullback and that is the very same thing Jonathan Dwyer told us on the podcast prior to the OTA sessions.
[QUOTE=hawaiiansteel;510019][B]In other running back news Wednesday, running back Isaac Redman, who would be the starter in week 1 if Mendenhall is not ready, said that the new offense of Todd Haley will get the ball to the backs more in the air this year.[/B][/QUOTE]
Hmmm... On one hand, Ben could get crushed back there... On the other hand, he could dump the ball off to a RB... Hmmm... I think I'll take the latter.
[B]Steelers’ Mendenhall ready to run in 2012[/B]
By Scott Brown - Tribune-Review
Published: Wednesday, May 23, 2012
[B]Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall runs during OTAs on the South Side May 23, 2012[/B]
Rashard Mendenhall said he will play this season, and the Steelers running back didn’t rule out doing so in the Sept. 9 season opener in Denver.
“There’s always the possibility,” Mendenhall said Wednesday. “I’ll be back at some point. It’s just a matter of what point that is.”
Mendenhall’s future here has been murky, on several levels, since he tore the ACL in his right knee Jan. 1.
Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert has said it usually takes a year to fully recover from that injury. And the Steelers have braced for the possibility that Mendenhall will spend the first six weeks of the season on the physically unable to perform list.
Mendenhall is in the final year of his contract, but the Steelers’ 2008 first-round pick plans on playing through whatever risk comes with returning this season. When asked if there is any chance he won’t play in 2012, Mendenhall said, “I don’t see that happening at all.”
Mendenhall, the Steelers’ leading rusher the past three seasons, said he is still experiencing soreness and swelling in the knee he hurt in the Steelers’ 2011 regular-season finale in Cleveland.
The 5-foot-10, 225-pounder didn’t appear to be favoring it while running on the side during the Steelers’ first two offseason practices, and Mendenhall said he has been cutting and doing other things that put him on track to return in 2012.
There is not a whole lot in the way of experience behind Mendenhall.
Third-year man Isaac Redman has shown promise, but he has made just two career starts. No other healthy running back on the roster has more than 25 career carries.
The Steelers are eager to see if Redman, who rushed for 213 yards in the final two games last season, is ready to handle an increased workload.
“Everybody here has confidence in Isaac,” Mendenhall said.
If we are allegedly going to start using RBs as receivers we should be talking to LT, and perhaps Cedric Benson for a possible depth signing.
[QUOTE=Crash;510070]If we are allegedly going to start using RBs as receivers we should be talking to LT, and perhaps Cedric Benson for a possible depth signing.[/QUOTE]
Benson's receiving totals parallel what Mendenhall typically does (catches in the teens or 20's). Tomlinson, on the other hand, has been able to regularly get over 50 catches per season throughout his career (and has a 100 catch season back in his prime a decade ago). He's a guy who knows that role, for sure.
[QUOTE]Redman prepared to carry the load
Posted 14 minutes ago
The memory is still fresh in Isaac Redman’s mind. It was training camp of his rookie season when he woke up in his dorm room in Rooney Hall at St. Vincent College and realized none of his teammates were around.
“I overslept,” recalled Redman. “I came out of the dorm and everybody was on the field. The first thing I thought was why didn’t my roommate wake me up? I thought I would go out there and they would send me back to my room and tell me to go home.
“Coach (Mike) Tomlin asked what happened and I explained. I really thought I might get cut. That never happened again.”
It truly was a wake-up call for Redman, who said it made him grow not only as a person, but as a player.
“I am a lot more professional,” said Redman. “I am a lot smarter. I am always early, watch film. I am more dedicated to what I am doing.”
That is going to be a necessity this year as Redman will carry the load for the Steelers running game when the 2012 season kicks off in Denver, with Rashard Mendenhall still working his way back from a torn ACL suffered in the 2011 regular-season finale against Cleveland.
Redman is ready for the challenge.
“You look at the depth chart and see your name number one there,” said Redman. “It makes you look back at how far you have come since you got here. I am trying to treat this situation the same way I have every other one since I got here and trying to make the best of it.
“Since I left Bowie State I haven’t come into a season with all eyes on me and being that guy whose spot it is from day one. I am out here on the field, running with the ones, and everything feels different. I feel like I am back home and I am ready to take this opportunity and run with it.”
This has been a key offseason for Redman, who admits he wasn’t in the best of shape his rookie year and doesn’t want anything like that to happen again.
“You focus in a lot more on your workouts, eating habits,” said Redman. “I feel like I want my body in tip-top shape by the time the season gets here to be ready to take the bulk of carries and take those hits day in and day out. You have seen my style of running. If I am going to run like that for a whole season I am going to have to be ready because that is the way I am. There is no going down. I am going to fight for the extra yards. With that running style I am going to have to make sure my body is ready to take it.
“I came back early to make sure I am in shape, the shape of a starting running back in this league, so my body doesn’t get too worn down or getting too tired by the time the middle of the season comes. I am going to have to stay away from McDonalds and Burger King and be more disciplined and be more professional about the way I take care of my body.”
Another reason Redman wanted the early jump was to get a look at offensive coordinator Todd Haley’s playbook before OTAs got underway.
“For me, being in the league a couple of years now, I am picking it up faster than the younger guys,” said Redman. “It’s not too difficult for us. Everybody is out here working together, helping each other out, discussing things so that when the season comes around we should be clicking on all cylinders.”
While this is the first time Redman is starting at the beginning of the season, it’s not the first time he started for the Steelers. Redman started two games in 2011, including the AFC wild card game against the Denver Broncos when he responded with 121 yards on 17 carries, after what was an emotionally trying week.
When Redman arrived at the Steelers practice facility the Friday morning before the game he heard about a fire at running backs coach Kirby Wilson’s home. He soon got word that Wilson was injured, but initially didn’t know how serious it was.
“I was kind of in disbelief,” said Redman. “I didn’t really understand what was going on, how serious it was, just that his house caught on fire. I didn’t know it was life threatening. When I heard that it hit me hard that he was fighting for his life and you have to go out and play a game you know he loves. I wanted to play my heart out for him.”
Redman heard all of the speculation, that Wilson might not be back at all during the 2012 season, or he might be out six or nine months. Others told him it could even be two years. So when Redman returned for offseason workouts in April, he was thrilled to see Wilson there greeting him.
“That is all of the motivation you need,” said Redman. “A guy fighting for his life three months ago and you come back and he is at his desk working. He is like Superman. To go through what he went through, to come back and be at work, on the field, going over plays, it’s just very inspirational.”
[COLOR=#00ff00]I think Mendy's been underutilized as a receiver out of the backfield. He has good hands and is dangerous in the open field.[/COLOR]
[QUOTE=DukieBoy;510182][COLOR=#00ff00]I think Mendy's been underutilized as a receiver out of the backfield. He has good hands and is dangerous in the open field.[/COLOR][/QUOTE]
The question is, when healthy, and with a competant offensive line in front of him (finally), will Haley be able to transform Mendenhall into a Ray Rice or Shady McCoy type of running/receiving weapon?