Gerry Dulac's Steelers chat transcript: 8.16.12


Gerry Dulac: OK, its time to get started with our weekly chat. Just back from interviews and lunch at camp, so lets get started....

Tprod: Gerry, would the Steelers seriously consider moving Marcus Gilbert permanently to Left Tackle? Mike Tomlin has stated that "left tackle is Gilbert's more natural position." Mike Adams from several source performed very well in the run blocking and right tackle places a premium on effective run blocking. He was also described as having the physique for left tackle, but possible not the feet. This could allow Max Starks to move to the right side in a less demanding position just coming from ACL surgery.

Gerry Dulac: No. Not that Marcus Gilbert can't play tackle, because before they drafted Mike Adams and re-signed Max Starks, he WAS moving to left tackle. The only way it will happen now is if both Starks and Adams were unable to play because of injuries. You might see -- and probably will see -- Gilbert start there Sunday night against the Colts, but that's only temporary until they feel Starks has acclimated himself to some of Todd Haley's new terminology system.

Tprod: Gerry, when do the Steelers expect Jason Worilds to return from wrist surgery? He seemingly has missed a great deal of time over the last couple of years with various ailments and has not made the plays expected of a second round pick. Cincy's beleaguered former first round pick, Andre Smith, dominated him in the first Cincy-Pit game. Did the Steelers make a grave error in passing up Sean Lee for Worilds?

Gerry Dulac: Well, I don't know if they know when Worilds will be back because the injury has been very problematic with him. At the start of camp, I was told he would be out 2 to 4 weeks, with 2 weeks being the very optimistic prognosis. So it will be likely be another week or two. The problem is, he can't use his wrist to take on blockers or punch at the point of attack. And, if you can't do that, you're in trouble.

And, you're right, he has had a lot of injuries, but I thought he started to come on last year late in the year.

Remember, this is a guy who could have used the offseason OTAs and minicamp after his first year and that didnt happen because of the lockout. Now, missing all of this camp, or most of it, isn't going to help. The Steelers were prepared to draft Sean Lee in the second round and, at the last minute, didn't. The coaches thought Lee, for the way they play and what they ask their LBs to do, was the best fit among ALL linebackers in the draft. Ask me, I think they regret it. They should.

Stush: Whatever happens with Harrison's knee - does it look like maybe he's coming to the end of his career?

Gerry Dulac: At age 34, that is very much a reasonable assumption. His body has been slowly breaking down over the past couple years with any number of injuries, and that's a by-product of the way he plays and the way he trains. It's one of the reasons they would not have shied away from a pass-rushing LB in the first round of the draft if one of the guys they really liked sli[pped to them. Of course, that might not have mattered, though, when DeCastro slipped, too.

Tprod: Gerry, after Ike, Kenaan, Cortez, and Curtis, any keepers for the CB position?

Gerry Dulac: No, not really. Rookie free-agent Andre Freeman has probably been the best of the possibilities, but it depends how many corners they will decide to's more likely they will keep an extra safety, and that woiuld be rookie free-agent Robert Golden. He and rookie TE David Paulson,, their seventh-round pick, have probably two of the biggest rookie surprises, not counting the top draft picks.

Stush: Another CB question: who has the inside track across from Ike?

Gerry Dulac: Keenan Lewis. And, to his credit, he has not done anything to hurt his chances, despite playing and practicing with a shoulder separation. He has not missed a day of practice because of the injury and that is to his credit, also.

Tprod: Gerry, although Kevin Colbert has emphatically stated that Wallace is not available to trade, if the Steelers fall out of contention early and the owners approve of a later trade deadline, would the Steelers trade him? A second round pick may be better than a compensatory third.

Gerry Dulac: Based on what I have been told by the people who would know, the Steelers do not intend to trade Wallace at any point. Don't forget, even if they can't sign him to a long-term deal this year, they can always make him their franchise player for 2013. Now, if Wallace would become a malcontent or a locker-room problem, then maybe that becomes a possibility. But not at this point.,

Tprod: Gerry, last year with the lockout and the shortened preseason seemed the year in which teams would suffer more injuries. Right now, the Steelers are playing with their third string OLB, fourth and fifth RB, and G playing OT who never played OT for the Steelers previously. Is it something in the water at Latrobe?

Gerry Dulac: I shower in it every day I'm here and I haven't noticed anything.

DaveBryan: Can you see the Steelers releasing Jason Worilds?

Gerry Dulac: No.

DaveBryan: Will Weslye Saunders be on the roster when he returns from suspension?

Gerry Dulac: I think so Dave. Why else keep him around in training camp?? If they werent interested in keeping him because of what happened, I don't think they would have bothered bringing him to camp.

Ryan W: Gerry thanks for your time, Do you think Chris Rainey can fill the "stretch the field" role if Wallace decides to hold out into the season?

Gerry Dulac: Thanx, and no. Rainey is more running back than receiver. He is not a guy who is going, to use Mike Tomlin's words, take the top off the coverage. He's more Antonio Brown -- get the ball is his hands in an open space and let him create.

Gerry Dulac: Well, that's all the time we have today kids. thanx for the questions and we'll do it again next week. Still not sure what day, but keep checking your website.

Bye now!!