Inside the Ropes: Tight end Peelle grasps fundamentals
By Ralph N. Paulk
Published: Tuesday, August 14, 2012
• Tight end Justin Peelle, a 10-year veteran signed to replace the injured David Johnson, got off to a quick start. The 6-foot-4, 251-pound journeyman appeared to grasp the offense’s fundamentals, but he had trouble moving the blocking sled. “I need to knock off the rust and prove I can still play,” he said.
• Rookie running back Chris Rainey and rookie wide receiver Marquis Maze showed off their playmaking abilities by each making two acrobatic, one-hand catches
• Offensive coordinator Todd Haley didn’t seem concerned, but his quarterbacks spent plenty of time tap dancing in the pocket while looking for open receivers. Ben Roethlisberger and Byron Leftwich held onto the ball, waiting to find a target. Jerrod Johnson was decisive and delivered a perfectly thrown low, outside ball to Tyler Beiler.
• It was a rough day for guard Kelvin Beachum. The 6-3, 306-pounder absorbed a couple of verbal jabs from coach Mike Tomlin, who screamed, “Get Beachum ... out of there,” after the rookie blew an assignment.
• Rookie tight end David Paulson grabbed attention when he snatched a pass from the hands of linebacker Lawrence Timmons and cornerback Cortez Allen. In a crowded field of tight end candidates, the seventh-round draft pick has impressed coaches with his pass-catching and run-blocking skills.
• Running back Isaac Redman came up limping after he couldn’t pull in an errant pass. He continued to practice but avoided contact.
by Teresa Varley
Tight end Justin Peelle signed with the Steelers on Monday, and on Tuesday was getting his first taste of Steelers football, getting acclimated to his new team.
“It was fun,” said Peelle. “I have been sitting on the couch and playing golf. I was working out too. It’s nice to get out here and be a part of something.”
Peelle was originally drafted by the San Diego Chargers in 2002 and has played for the Chargers, Dolphins, Falcons and 49ers.
“I just want to show them I can still play,” said Peelle. “I can still contribute and help this team win. My career has been mainly blocking, but I can do everything. I am not going to catch 100 balls, but I can do some things in the passing and the run game. I need to get out here and get the rust off and get ready to play.”
Peelle, who said he has played fullback sparingly, is excited about his new opportunity with the Steelers.
“At this point in your career you are just looking to play and be a part of something that is going to be successful, which this organization has done for years,” said Peelle. “The opportunity to come here and win was a big draw for me. It’s a fun environment to be around.”