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Thread: Kugler: "Fortunately, DeCastro is not done for the year"

  1. #11

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    Why not put DD on the regular season PUP? It doesn't sound like he will be available for 6 weeks anyway and I didn't think a PUP player counted against the 53 (or do I have that wrong?)

    EDIT - Nevermind. I just read the other thread.
    Last edited by Pops8; 08-30-2012 at 11:10 AM.

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by fordfixer View Post
    Battle at WR

    The return of Pro Bowl wide receiver Mike Wallace means offensive coordinator Todd Haley needs to find only one player from his crop of rookies or free agents to be the No. 5 receiver.

    Right now, the battle appears to be between David Gilreath, a first-year free agent from Wisconsin; and Derrick Williams, a third-year free agent from Penn State.

    "We got a lot of guys still trying to make this team and we're still in the evaluation process for a lot of young guys fighting for their NFL lives right now," Haley said.

    One player Haley does not need to evaluate is rookie running back Chris Rainey, who has two long touchdowns in the preseason and will be used as a situational player in the regular season.

    "That's why they drafted me," said Rainey, a fifth-round pick from Florida who is listed at 5 feet 8, 178 pounds. "Everybody has always said small guys can't do anything and I keep proving them wrong
    I don't think we keep a 5th WR. Wallace, Brown, Sanders, Cotchery. Rainey counts as a RB, but he could be the de facto #5 receiver, since he will be used in the slot probably as often as he is used in the backfield. There is your extra roster spot saved to keep DeCastro off I.R.

    If Roquan Smith falls to late teens, trade 1.28 & 2.60 to SEA for 1.18 & 4.120:

    1.18 LB Roquan Smith
    3.92 FS Jessie Bates
    4.120 RB Royce Freeman
    5.148 DT Ken Norton
    5.165 TE Chris Herndon
    7.220 WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling
    7.246 OT Brett Toth

    If not:

    1.28 LB Leighton Vander Esch
    2.60 C/G Billy Price
    3.92 FS Jessie Bates
    5.148 DT Ken Norton
    5.165 TE Chris Herndon
    7.220 RB Ito Smith
    7.246 WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling

  3. #13
    Pro Bowler

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    Any further timeline on a return for DD

  4. #14
    Pro Bowler

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    Quote Originally Posted by aggiebones View Post
    Any further timeline on a return for DD
    8 weeks is what is being touted today

  5. #15

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    Steelers O-line in good hands with Kugler

    by John Dudley

    Cursed? Steelers offensive line coach Sean Kugler wouldn't go that far.

    But in two-plus seasons in Pittsburgh he has seen a string of starting linemen go down with significant injuries, most recently rookie guard David DeCastro, a first-round pick who suffered a torn knee ligament in a preseason game at Buffalo.

    DeCastro's injury is devastating, considering that the Steelers expected him to step in and immediately solidify the right side of the offensive line. They even parted ways with veteran Chris Kemoeatu in March, leaving Ramon Foster as the only guard on the roster with meaningful experience at the position. (Willie Colon, the starter at left guard this season, has made all 51 of his career starts at tackle.)

    But this isn't Kugler's first rodeo.

    No sooner had he arrived in Pittsburgh than the Steelers lost Colon during the preseason to the first of what would become back-to-back season-ending injuries.

    The patchwork quilt began to take shape from there.

    Center Maurkice Pouncey, the team's 2010 first-round pick, went down at the most critical points of the past two seasons with injuries that kept him out of Super Bowl XLV and last year's AFC wild-card loss in Denver.

    At one point last season, guard Trai Essex was forced to play center because Pouncey was out and backup Doug Legursky got hurt in a game against the St. Louis Rams.

    It would be laughable if it weren't so frustrating for a team whose foundation rests on power running behind a rock-solid offensive line.

    But the 46-year-old Kugler isn't whining. A Lockport, N.Y., native whose college offensive line coach at Texas-El Paso was Andy Reid and who once painted a mural of the Miners' mascot, Paydirt Pete, across the weight room wall, relishes the challenge of piecing together a unit each week, if that unit happens to be in pieces.

    "The reason I like coaching the offensive line is I like coaching all five guys collectively,' Kugler said. "It's a challenge to get all five guys to play together as a unit, and I enjoy coaching the entire group."

    Still, the net result of all the shifting has been a gradual decline in the Steelers' commitment to the run and a lot of beatings for quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, the $100 million investment who has been sacked 73 times over the past two seasons.

    The Steelers have thrown more and more, in part because of the difficulty involved in establishing and maintaining a consistent running game with a revolving door of blockers and in part because the league, which has always worked in cycles, has cycled into a passing game again.

    Not so long ago, the Steelers had the NFL's most feared ground attack. They ranked in the league's top 10 in rushing for four straight seasons from 2004-2007. But over the past four seasons, they've ranked 23rd, 19th, 11th and 14th.

    No offensive line coach could have made lemonade with the lemons Kugler has been dealt over the past two seasons, but he has shown a no-excuses resiliency that has rubbed off on his players.

    A big, tough guy with two big, tough sons who helped North Allegheny High School outside Pittsburgh win a PIAA title two years ago, Kugler has earned the respect of head coach Mike Tomlin -- he of the "next man up" philosophy -- and praise elsewhere in and near the Steelers locker room.

    Former Steelers offensive lineman Craig Wolfley said last year that he believes Kugler deserves a great deal of the credit for the team's managing to reach the playoffs the past two years despite a string of catastrophic injuries up front.

    "Number one, he's played the position," Wolfley said. "He brings an attitude. He celebrates the physical style of play. When their coach becomes someone that they want to be one of his guys, then you want to be that guy. If you see highlights on film of guys throwing guys down, you want to be the guy throwing guys down. He engenders a great sense of guys busting their humps for him."

    Kugler, who arrived in Pittsburgh on the heels of coaching the Bills' offensive line, calls what he does "the greatest job in the world."

    What he's managed to do on the job the past two seasons speaks of greatness, too.


  6. #16
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    Thanks for posting the article Hawaiin. I always appreciate that.


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