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Thread: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

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    Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    By Scott Brown, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
    Sunday, February 26, 2012


    INDIANAPOLIS -- There would appear to be less and less room in the pass-happy NFL for space-consuming, run-stuffers who don't play on throwing downs.

    Not that Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert buys that nose tackles are creeping toward Jurassic status just because 10 players threw for more than 4,000 yards last season.

    "You can't get to third down if you don't stop them on first and second down," Colbert said.

    Translation: Nose tackle is still one of the team's most important positions.

    The Steelers figure to make finding an eventual successor to Casey Hampton one of their priorities as they piece together their draft board. And two of the more highly regarded defensive players offered glimpses Saturday as to why tackle is one of the deeper positions in the draft.

    "I think hands down I'm the best defensive tackle in the draft," Penn State's Devon Still said. Dontari Poe, a 6-foot-4, 346-pounder from Memphis, used the words "weight-room" and "love" in the same sentence.

    The Steelers may be more interested in Poe because he has the size of a prototypical nose tackle, and he played the position in college.

    "Most people kind of see me as a 3-4 nose tackle, which is cool with me," said Poe, who had eight tackles for losses last season. "I think I can rush the passer a lot more than people think, but I am used to playing nose tackle."

    Poe said few play the position better than Hampton, which is why he has long followed the five-time Pro Bowler.

    "Once he gets his hands on you, he controls you," Poe said." That's probably what I admire most about him."

    Poe's strength -- he is a self-described weightlifting devout -- could allow him to control opposing linemen in the NFL, though he said he needs to become a more consistent player.

    The question the Steelers may have about Still is how he would fit with them.

    The 6-foot-5 Still weighed in at 303 pounds here at the NFL Scouting Combine, and he may be better suited to play tackle in a 4-3 defense.

    Still said he could play nose tackle in a 3-4 defense, and what isn't in question are the credentials he put together during his final season at Penn State.

    Buoyed by success he had against Florida center Mike Pouncey in the Outback Bowl at the end of his junior season, Still dominated on a unit that carried Penn State. He recorded 17 tackles for a loss and became the latest standout developed by defensive line coach Larry Johnson.

    Still overcame two serious injuries -- one a torn ACL -- early in his career. That, he said, is telling of his desire to excel.

    "I don't strive to be mediocre," said Still, the 2011 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year.

    Still once headed draft expert Mike Mayock's rankings for defensive tackles.

    Underclassmen, like Poe, pushed him to No. 4 when they entered the draft -- and they made the position flush with top-end talent.

    Mayock said he will give first-round grades to as many as seven defensive tackles in his final evaluation of draft-eligible players.

    That doesn't necessarily mean there is a lot of quality when it comes prototypical nose tackles.

    Colbert said the pool of nose tackles is "not as deep as some other positions, but there's enough. Chances are, you aren't going to get them if you don't take them high."

    Colbert drafted Hampton in the first round of the 2001 draft, and Hampton has been a vital part of a defense that has helped the Steelers win two Super Bowls and play in another since then.

    At 34, though, Hampton is nearing the end of his career. He is in the final year of his contract and coming off a third torn ACL dating to college. The question doesn't appear to be if the Steelers will take a nose tackle in this year's draft but when.

    "Can you take a guy that's not a three-down player high? Absolutely," Colbert said. "But they've got to be special (since) nose tackle is a special part of our defense."

    http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsbu ... z1nVtOsxoJ

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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    The Steel Mill

    News and updates about the Pittsburgh Steelers
    Feb 25, 2012

    3 questions with Memphis DT Dontari Poe



    INDIANAPOLIS ó Dontari Poe, a potential target for the Steelers in the first round of the draft, talked about Casey Hampton, his versatility and his devotion to the weight room today during his media interview at the NFL Combine.

    Poe, a defensive tackle from Memphis, was measured at 6-4, and he weighed in at 346 pounds. He didnít look like someone that is pushing 350 pounds, and the biggest question the Steelers may have about Poe is whether they will get a crack at him.
    The Steelers donít pick until No. 24 in the first round of the draft.

    Here are three questions with Poe:

    Q: Are you more comfortable in a 3-4 or a 4-3 defense?
    A: Iím used to both, I played both in college. Either or would be good for me. Iím comfortable playing either so itís really not a big deal. Most people kind of see me as a 3-4 nose tackle, which is cool with me because I like that position as well. I like to think that I am versatile. I can play multiple positions.

    Q: You seem to know your way around a weight room. Can you talk about that?
    A: I love the weight room. Itís something that I got into high school because people always used to say college players are way bigger, faster, stronger and when you get to college they say the NFL is way bigger, stronger. I never let up. Iím self motivated to do it.

    Q: You said you have long followed Casey Hampton. What do you like about him?
    A: Heís one of the more aggressive defensive tackles that this league has seen. His hand strength, once he gets his hands on you he controls you. Thatís probably what I admire most about him.

    Ė Scott Brown

    http://blog.triblive.com/steel-mill/201 ... ntari-poe/

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    Legend RuthlessBurgher's Avatar
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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    Last year, Phil Taylor came off the board at #21 overall to Cleveland. Dontari Poe is bigger, stronger, and more athletic than Taylor, and Poe does not have Taylor's history of red flags (kicked out of Penn State) either.

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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    We'd have three first rounders on our d-line for years to come, well at least hopefully. I'd like to see the Steelers take the biggest, toughest, most physical presence they can get their hands on in the first round. If it's Poe, great. Glenn? Fantastic, if they trade up and try to get DeCastro, that'd be awesome too.
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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    Quote Originally Posted by ramblinjim
    We'd have three first rounders on our d-line for years to come, well at least hopefully. I'd like to see the Steelers take the biggest, toughest, most physical presence they can get their hands on in the first round. If it's Poe, great. Glenn? Fantastic, if they trade up and try to get DeCastro, that'd be awesome too.
    Go big. Go ugly. Lather, rinse, repeat.

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    Hall of Famer Dee Dub's Avatar
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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    I do not think Dontari Poe is a legitmate 3-4 NT. He is too big to get the needed leverage and if you watch his tape you'll see him consistantly too high. I think he is better suited in 4-3. Plus he is very raw and you will not get much out of him for a while.

    I think I would much rather have a much more natural NT like Brandon Thompson or Alameda Ta'Amu.
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    1-Jaelen Strong WR Arizona State

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    Legend hawaiiansteel's Avatar
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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2012

    News, notes from the combine thus far


    Memphis nose tackle Dontari Poe showed off his strength this weekend in the bench press, putting 225 pounds up 44 times, the best at this year's combine.

    Poe is a sculpted 6-4, 346 pounds, though his arms were a bit short at 32 inches.

    @ Alameda Ta'amu of Washington, the other top nose tackle prospect, weighed in at 348 pounds on his 6-3 frame.

    Ta'amu, who is more of a second-round prospect, did 35 reps and had 32-inch arms.

    @ Georgia guard/tackle Cordy Glenn ran the 40 in 5.15 seconds, not bad for a man who is 6-5, 345 pounds.

    He also had the second-longest longest arms of any of the offensive linemen at 35 3/4 inches.

    Despite the long arms, Glenn still pressed 225 pounds 31 times, a very respectible number

    Glenn is viewed as a mid-to-late first-round pick, which puts him in the Steelers' range.

    @ California University of Pennsylvania guard Rishaw Johnson showed off his wheels by clocking in right behind Glenn at 5.24 seconds in the 40.

    Johnson, 6-3, 313 pounds, is a sleeper in this draft who's likely to be selected in round four or five. The former Ole Miss star transferred to Cal last season.

    He showed at the Senior Bowl that he's not really capable of playing center, but his mobility and strength are excellent.

    Johnson did, however, struggle in some of the drills, failing to perform them properly and drawing the wrath of position coaches.

    He's raw, but with his athleticism, you never know.

    @ Winconsin guard Kevin Zeitler and Iowa State's Kelechi Osemele, a pair of late-first, early-second round prospects, clocked in at 5.39 seconds and 5.36 seconds, respectively.

    Zeitler's arm length - 32 3/4 - is a bit short, but he used that to his advantage, doing 32 reps on the bench.

    Osemele had the longest arms of any lineman - he should at 6-6, 333 pounds - at 35 7/8 and also managed 32 bench reps.

    @ We'll see how the linebackers run later this week.

    At this point, it clearly appears the Steelers will target two of those three positions in the first two rounds of the draft.

    posted by Dale Lolley

    http://www.observer-reporter.com/or/sidelines/

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    Pro Bowler D Rock's Avatar
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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    Glenn and Osemele likely bumped their stock up with those size, arm length, and strength numbers.

    Glenn may climb into the top 15, and Osemele could become a late first rounder now.

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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    Quote Originally Posted by Dee Dub
    I do not think Dontari Poe is a legitmate 3-4 NT. He is too big to get the needed leverage and if you watch his tape you'll see him consistantly too high. I think he is better suited in 4-3. Plus he is very raw and you will not get much out of him for a while.

    I think I would much rather have a much more natural NT like Brandon Thompson or Alameda Ta'Amu.
    Dub...You may be able to save me some work. Send me the links for Poe's game tape because I can find very little on you tube. Thanks.



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    Administrator steelz09's Avatar
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    Re: Steelers could opt for nose tackle

    Poe just ran a 4.8x 40.

    Are you freaking kidding me?

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