Steelers outlook for 2013
The following article from the PG pretty much lays it on the line. TS front office certainly has its work cut out for them. While I am confident all these issues can be handled in positive way it is going to be interesting to see how it all works out.
I suppose this is an opportunity for Steeler fans to play GM and speculate on the solution to any one or all of the upcoming problems.
[LEFT][COLOR=#000000]By Ed Bouchette / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
A different kind of problem confronts Art Rooney II, Kevin Colbert and Mike Tomlin after their team's worst season in the past six, a problem unlike any they have routinely visited this time of year.
They must again either shed money or move it around to tuck themselves under the salary cap. They must make the hard but not necessarily difficult decisions to say goodbye to longtime contributors. Again they will sift through free agents -- others and their own -- to determine if they want to sign them and whether they can.
They have annual experience with all of that. But, one new, perplexing dilemma exists for them in the first teen-age year of this century: Do they even know what they have?
An analysis of their roster will produce more questions than answers, many of them debated throughout their 8-8 season. Add in the possibility of yet a third offensive coordinator in three seasons because of Todd Haley's candidacy for the head coaching job with the Arizona Cardinals.
Start with that offense, which looked much better at mid-season than it did by the end of it. The Steelers wanted to emphasize the run more in 2012 and instead they were forced to de-emphasize it because no back asserted himself. Jonathan Dwyer led the team with 623 yards rushing, the lowest total by their leader in 21 years. Entering 2013, they do not have a lead back.
Their wide receivers, once the strength on offense, were not in 2012. Even if Mike Wallace would somehow return, can he return to becoming one of the game's most dangerous deep threats or was his slip to third among receptions on the Steelers and another dip in average to 13.1 per catch a trend?
Antonio Brown, fighting some minor injuries, could not match his 2011 production, a year that prompted the Steelers to give him Mike Wallace's money in the summer. Emmanuel Sanders did not have the breakout year many expected.
If the Steelers lose Wallace, their receiving corps looks to be below average, based on the 2012 returns.
The one position that flourished was tight end, thanks to Heath Miller, who led the team with 71 receptions and all position players with 50 points. But he finished the season on injured reserve and had surgery to repair anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments. Will he be ready to go early in 2013, how effective will he be and who takes over at that position until he does? There are only guesses there.
The offensive line looked solid for a while, then injuries forced them to mix and match, and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and the running game paid the price. It still can be a strength of the team after all the high draft picks invested into it. Sean Kugler, praised for the coaching job he did through all of those injuries, is gone. Re-signing Max Starks and having a healthy Willie Colon would help, but both may be out of reach. Colon looked strong at his new position at left guard right up until he wound up on injured reserve for the third consecutive season. They will either gamble that he can stay healthy or try to sign one or both free agents, Ramon Foster and Doug Legursky, as insurance. Those two have been keys to holding the line together through all the injuries, and losing both would leave them thin.
Then there is Roethlisberger. Midway through the season, he was on pace to break his own passing yardage team record and led all quarterbacks in third-down passing efficiency. Then, his right shoulder and a rib were injured, he missed three games and was not the same quarterback in his final four games, three of them losses.
These are only half of the problems. I decided to post the article so that in case any one replys to a situation we will know what they are talking about.The other half is in the next post cause it was so long.
Read more: [URL]http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/sports/steelers/steelers-face-more-questions-than-answers-669183/#ixzz2HC8l1ami[/URL][/COLOR][/LEFT]