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Thread: Thoughts for Discussion

  1. #1
    Chemsteel
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    Thoughts for Discussion

    During the 2007 draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Lawrence Timmons and Lamar Woodley with their first two selections. The selection of a TE was a surprise to everyone except this writer. Arians was promoted to OC in 2007 and Roesthlisberger had one of his best years and Hines Ward is a very big fan of Arians.

    The Steelers passed on LeRon McClain in the third round for Matt Spaeth. They also passed on McClain in the fourth round in favor of Sepulveda and Ryan McBean. Coach Tomlin has stated that the bottom line is winning and that Willie should be careful with his comments to the Media. He stated they did very well with two TE sets in 2006.

    Coach Tomlin is correct but perhaps the reason for winning is his decision to abide with the thinking of Coach LeBeau.

    My questions are as follows:

    1. Would you have taken the chance on LeRon McClain in 2007 over any of the above mentioned draft choices? (A tip was that Ron Hughes was supposedly told McClain had a weight control problem and was at 275 lbs. prior to the draft.)

    2. Do you think the Steelers need to go back to a true fullback set?
    3. Do our offensive linemen have the athleticism, specifically the guards, to pull and block to ever run 34 Counter Pike again?

    4. What value does Matt Spaeth add to this offense?

    5. Is the Two TE set more predictable than the I formation?

    6. Does Bruce Arians get his walking papers next year? Remember that Arians had in his contract that he would be promoted to offensive coordinator if Ken Whisenhut left. Also, remember who said We dont need an OL. Well protect Ben with weapons.

  2. #2
    Hall of Famer SidSmythe's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    That's a lot of stuff dude.

    McClain isn't a true FB ... he's a big TB and yes i'd take him over Spaeth
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  3. #3
    Chemsteel
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    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by SidSmythe
    That's a lot of stuff dude.

    McClain isn't a true FB ... he's a big TB and yes i'd take him over Spaeth
    OK Sid, I'll be a little more specific:

    Let me give you a few stats for our offense this year.

    From The I Formation
    Run - 5
    Pass - 202

    From the I Formation
    Run - 67
    Pass - 0

    With A Lone Set back
    Run - 229
    Pass - 294

    One TE
    Run - 119
    Pass - 175

    Two Tight Ends
    Run - 131
    Pass - 81

    Three Tight Ends
    Run - 73
    Pass - 13

    Two WR's
    Run - 98
    Pass - 81

    Three WR's
    Run - 91
    Pass - 175

    Four WR's
    Run - 12
    Pass- 123

    Jim Wexall is getting a little snarky about it but you all must remember what happened to the Cleveland Brown's when Arians had enough receivers to install a similar offense.

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    (Please note that many people within the organization are calling for a FB.)

    The closest the Steeler offense has come to balanced, which all Super Bowl Champions have a commonality, is the one TE and Three WR's.

  4. #4
    Pro Bowler Jigawatts's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    Remember that Arians had in his contract that he would be promoted to offensive coordinator if Ken Whisenhut left.
    Wow, I did not know that.

  5. #5
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    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    During the 2007 draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Lawrence Timmons and Lamar Woodley with their first two selections. The selection of a TE was a surprise to everyone except this writer. Arians was promoted to OC in 2007 and Roesthlisberger had one of his best years and Hines Ward is a very big fan of Arians.

    The Steelers passed on LeRon McClain in the third round for Matt Spaeth. They also passed on McClain in the fourth round in favor of Sepulveda and Ryan McBean. Coach Tomlin has stated that the bottom line is winning and that Willie should be careful with his comments to the Media. He stated they did very well with two TE sets in 2006.

    Coach Tomlin is correct but perhaps the reason for winning is his decision to abide with the thinking of Coach LeBeau.

    My questions are as follows:

    1. Would you have taken the chance on LeRon McClain in 2007 over any of the above mentioned draft choices? (A tip was that Ron Hughes was supposedly told McClain had a weight control problem and was at 275 lbs. prior to the draft.)

    2. Do you think the Steelers need to go back to a true fullback set?
    3. Do our offensive linemen have the athleticism, specifically the guards, to pull and block to ever run 34 Counter Pike again?

    4. What value does Matt Spaeth add to this offense?

    5. Is the Two TE set more predictable than the I formation?

    6. Does Bruce Arians get his walking papers next year? Remember that Arians had in his contract that he would be promoted to offensive coordinator if Ken Whisenhut left. Also, remember who said We dont need an OL. Well protect Ben with weapons.
    1. If McClain were 275 and had problems controlling his weight, I guess we see why Steelers & other teams passed on him. I think they made the right choices with the players they drafted. I think Spaeth was a good choice. Needed a punter to help with special teams. Tried to add depth on the Dline with Mcbean. All hindsight.

    2. Teams had success running the football without a true FB set. Sometimes it depends on the RB. Improve the blocking by the Oline and TEs and the run game will be fine. No matter what they run, they need to execute better. I do not think a FB is an answer to the stuggles of the run game.

    3. Simmons had the athleticism and awareness to pull. Simmons stuggled in pass protection at times. I think his smarts and ability to run block were the reasons he was a starter. I am not sure if the guys that are playing there can pull on that level. Sometimes Kemo looks lost out there. Stapleton is a 1st year starter.

    4. Spaeth offers depth at the TE position. When Heath went down, Spaeth stepped up nicely.

    5. I think the two TE set offers more options in the run and passing games. So I guess it is less predictable. I am not so big on what is or isn't predictable because teams usually know what plays are going to be run. I think we need to execute better on offense. Better blocking from the TE position will help.

    6. I think Arians will be back with a team. Sometimes coaches say things that I do not much stock into.

  6. #6
    Chemsteel
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    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by BURGH86STEEL
    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    During the 2007 draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Lawrence Timmons and Lamar Woodley with their first two selections. The selection of a TE was a surprise to everyone except this writer. Arians was promoted to OC in 2007 and Roesthlisberger had one of his best years and Hines Ward is a very big fan of Arians.

    The Steelers passed on LeRon McClain in the third round for Matt Spaeth. They also passed on McClain in the fourth round in favor of Sepulveda and Ryan McBean. Coach Tomlin has stated that the bottom line is winning and that Willie should be careful with his comments to the Media. He stated they did very well with two TE sets in 2006.

    Coach Tomlin is correct but perhaps the reason for winning is his decision to abide with the thinking of Coach LeBeau.

    My questions are as follows:

    1. Would you have taken the chance on LeRon McClain in 2007 over any of the above mentioned draft choices? (A tip was that Ron Hughes was supposedly told McClain had a weight control problem and was at 275 lbs. prior to the draft.)

    2. Do you think the Steelers need to go back to a true fullback set?
    3. Do our offensive linemen have the athleticism, specifically the guards, to pull and block to ever run 34 Counter Pike again?

    4. What value does Matt Spaeth add to this offense?

    5. Is the Two TE set more predictable than the I formation?

    6. Does Bruce Arians get his walking papers next year? Remember that Arians had in his contract that he would be promoted to offensive coordinator if Ken Whisenhut left. Also, remember who said We dont need an OL. Well protect Ben with weapons.
    1. If McClain were 275 and had problems controlling his weight, I guess we see why Steelers & other teams passed on him. I think they made the right choices with the players they drafted. I think Spaeth was a good choice. Needed a punter to help with special teams. Tried to add depth on the Dline with Mcbean. All hindsight.

    2. Teams had success running the football without a true FB set. Sometimes it depends on the RB. Improve the blocking by the Oline and TEs and the run game will be fine. No matter what they run, they need to execute better. I do not think a FB is an answer to the stuggles of the run game.

    3. Simmons had the athleticism and awareness to pull. Simmons stuggled in pass protection at times. I think his smarts and ability to run block were the reasons he was a starter. I am not sure if the guys that are playing there can pull on that level. Sometimes Kemo looks lost out there. Stapleton is a 1st year starter.

    4. Spaeth offers depth at the TE position. When Heath went down, Spaeth stepped up nicely.

    5. I think the two TE set offers more options in the run and passing games. So I guess it is less predictable. I am not so big on what is or isn't predictable because teams usually know what plays are going to be run. I think we need to execute better on offense. Better blocking from the TE position will help.

    6. I think Arians will be back with a team. Sometimes coaches say things that I do not much stock into.
    Good response Burgh86. Most all Super Bowl teams are very balanced in offense when comparing running plays to passing. Arians has tried to open up the offense with the two TE sets and spread offense. The closest we come to a balanced attack is the one TE and 3 WR sets. The most successful running plays we have had is in the I formation.

    Willie Parker is trying to say we are predictable but he also wants to say the OL is not upper echelon talent. We cannot run a 34 counter pike because our guards do not have the athleticism to pull for wide runs.

    There is no getting around the fact that we pass 98% of the time when Ben is in the Shot Gun.

  7. #7
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    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    During the 2007 draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Lawrence Timmons and Lamar Woodley with their first two selections. The selection of a TE was a surprise to everyone except this writer. Arians was promoted to OC in 2007 and Roesthlisberger had one of his best years and Hines Ward is a very big fan of Arians.

    The Steelers passed on LeRon McClain in the third round for Matt Spaeth. They also passed on McClain in the fourth round in favor of Sepulveda and Ryan McBean. Coach Tomlin has stated that the bottom line is winning and that Willie should be careful with his comments to the Media. He stated they did very well with two TE sets in 2006.

    Coach Tomlin is correct but perhaps the reason for winning is his decision to abide with the thinking of Coach LeBeau.

    My questions are as follows:

    1. Would you have taken the chance on LeRon McClain in 2007 over any of the above mentioned draft choices? (A tip was that Ron Hughes was supposedly told McClain had a weight control problem and was at 275 lbs. prior to the draft.) I probably would not have.
    2. Do you think the Steelers need to go back to a true fullback set?
    I think we need that as a viable tool in the toolkit, yes. And use that tool.


    3. Do our offensive linemen have the athleticism, specifically the guards, to pull and block to ever run 34 Counter Pike again? Not Kemo. I don't know about Stapleton, but I suspect not.

    4. What value does Matt Spaeth add to this offense? He came through when Heath was out. I don't know if that fact that he is underutilized in catching is a function of himself, playcalling, Ben, or other.
    5. Is the Two TE set more predictable than the I formation? Not per se. But with the way Arians does things, probably equally as predictable.

    6. Does Bruce Arians get his walking papers next year? Remember that Arians had in his contract that he would be promoted to offensive coordinator if Ken Whisenhut left. Also, remember who said We dont need an OL. Well protect Ben with weapons.
    I think Arians will stay. Note: This is NOT an endorsement of Arians by me. Just my hunch.
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  8. #8

    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    1. Would you have taken the chance on LeRon McClain in 2007 over any of the above mentioned draft choices? (A tip was that Ron Hughes was supposedly told McClain had a weight control problem and was at 275 lbs. prior to the draft.)
    Knowing what I knew then, I wouldn't have drafted McClain. Timmons wasn't my guy, but, I was "OK" with the selection. Woodley WAS my guy. In the 3rd, it was well documented that I didn't want another TE. I felt like "if he's going to be a blocker, draft a lineman." Otherwise, I wanted either an RB with size and short yardage ability who was capable of being the backup should FWP go down. I didn't think Dookie was the guy. Later that season, he proved that he wasn't.

    HOWEVER, we did get that guy as a UDFA - we just didn't get him on the field.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    2. Do you think the Steelers need to go back to a true fullback set?
    I think there's some benefit to it. I'd like the flexibility of having all the packages. I think you put yourself at a disadvantage to go with a 3 TE set if you're going short yardage. You've got 3 guys outside the tackle and you're going up the middle. If it were me, I'd have a FB and bring the TE in motion to make the backfield look like a Power-I formation.

    All in all, there are benefits to having a true FB as well as the multi-TE sets.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    3. Do our offensive linemen have the athleticism, specifically the guards, to pull and block to ever run 34 Counter Pike again?
    I'm more concerned about the OT position due to the nubmer of guys we have coming up for FA after this season. However, i wouldn't be opposed to drafting a stud (athletic) guard if one (Duke Robinson) was available and all the OTs were gone.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    4. What value does Matt Spaeth add to this offense?
    He's a very good TE... but, that's not waht you asked. I've been personally dissapointed in his usage. I would like to see more catches out of him. If he's going to be used primarily as a blocker, I wouldn't mind seeing Essex come in - if for no other reason, but, to see how that would impact blocking.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    5. Is the Two TE set more predictable than the I formation?
    No. Our offensive coordinator is, though. You can do some really cool stuff out of either formation if you have the imagination.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    6. Does Bruce Arians get his walking papers next year? Remember that Arians had in his contract that he would be promoted to offensive coordinator if Ken Whisenhut left. Also, remember who said We dont need an OL. Well protect Ben with weapons.
    Unfortunately, no, he doesn't get his walking papers. Not off an 11-3 team. They'd have to tank in order for that to happen.
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  9. #9
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    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Does anyone think that the o-line blocking problems might have more to do with the transition to zone blocking & trying to find O-Lineman that fit that system, rather than the players ability?

    As for McLain...he fits the system he's in. Fullbacks are a dime a dozen- get a strong runner that can catch a bit, block a bit...you have your fullback.

    As for the two TE system, it should work in theory. Can't see why it wouldn't. With that in mind, selected Speath made sense. And really- Speath has performed pretty well when called upon, so he was a decent pick in Chadman's opinion.
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  10. #10

    Re: Thoughts for Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by BURGH86STEEL
    Quote Originally Posted by Chemsteel
    1. Would you have taken the chance on LeRon McClain in 2007 over any of the above mentioned draft choices? (A tip was that Ron Hughes was supposedly told McClain had a weight control problem and was at 275 lbs. prior to the draft.)
    1. If McClain were 275 and had problems controlling his weight, I guess we see why Steelers & other teams passed on him. I think they made the right choices with the players they drafted. I think Spaeth was a good choice. Needed a punter to help with special teams. Tried to add depth on the Dline with Mcbean. All hindsight.
    I never liked the Sepulveda pick and still don't. Too high of a draft choice (not counting the additional pick). Do I "mis-remember" or wasn't the rap on Timmons also that he had a weight problem? That certainly didn't stop the Steelers from taking him. The McClain pick would have been helpful in retrospect, but we really needed to address other more pressing issues......and still do.
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