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Thread: Despite massive losses, Kevin Colbert has Steelers in good position

  1. #1
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    Despite massive losses, Kevin Colbert has Steelers in good position

    Joe Starkey: Despite massive losses, Kevin Colbert has Steelers in good position

    JOE STARKEY
    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
    MAY 2, 2019

    Most franchises would be devastated. Three of the NFL’s biggest stars, still in their primes, suddenly lopped from the roster?

    Who survives that?

    The Steelers will. The heavy lifting for this offseason is finished, and the depth chart looks contender-capable. Maybe not 1978 Steelers-capable, but certainly good enough to make this team one of a handful with legitimate designs on the Super Bowl.

    That is largely a testament to general manager Kevin Colbert, who, despite drafting from the nethermost regions of every round, nearly every year, has cobbled together a quality roster.

    Nobody wants to hear that. The focus tends to drift toward the failures, and there have been more than a few of those at certain positions. Namely cornerback and outside linebacker aside from T.J. Watt (although the Steelers seem to view Bud Dupree the way the Penguins view Dominik Simon; which is to say, far more favorably than the population at-large).

    Generally speaking, all things considered? Colbert has the Steelers in excellent position.

    Think about the players they lost in barely a year …

    — Ryan Shazier was a rising star linebacker, a legitimate Defensive Player of the Year candidate, when he sustained a devastating injury.

    — Le’Veon Bell was one of the better running backs in the league when his contract issues exploded, ultimately landing him in New York.

    — Antonio Brown was arguably the best wide receiver in football when his contract-motivated conniption turned him into “Mr. Big Chest” and landed him in Oakland.

    Let me ask again: Who survives that?

    One could argue the Steelers didn’t survive too well last season without Bell and Shazier, collapsing late and missing the playoffs. I would say the issues ran much deeper than that – including a kicker who couldn’t kick straight – but Colbert admitted to falling woefully short in his attempts to replace Shazier.

    Let’s look at the roster now. It is not without holes — which roster is? — but I don’t see monstrous deficiencies, either. I see more than enough to win.

    Start with an elite quarterback in Ben Roethlisberger. That’s a pretty good place to start. Baltimore and Cincinnati would like to start there. So would another third of the league.

    The Steelers have a legit No. 1 receiver in JuJu Smith-Schuster, a legit No. 1 running back in James Conner, a good tight end in Vance McDonald and an outstanding line. They upped their scoring average last year despite Bell’s absence and a disaster of a season finale after Brown sabotaged his teammates.

    I’m convinced that Conner, by the way, will remain very much the man in the Steelers’ running game. He will be a workhorse. There has been a lot of talk of a new back-by-committee approach, but that can be defined in different ways.

    Here’s what I know: Conner last year was better than Bell in his final year here. Conner had a better yards-per-carry average, a better yards-per-catch average, more touchdowns and more long runs. He isn’t close to vintage Bell, but how many are?

    Conner has an injury history, too, but would five fewer carries per game save him?

    If the idea is to adopt a New England Patriots-type approach, great. Sony Michel had 115 more carries than anyone on his team and logged 71 carries in three playoff games. He was basically a committee of one in the running game, although James White did all the pass catching out of New England’s backfield.

    If the Steelers want to use Jaylen Samuels as that guy — an H-back of sorts — it would make sense.

    When the real games arrive, and Conner is in a rhythm, I’m guessing Mike Tomlin will be loathe to remove him from games for Samuels or rookie Benny Snell.

    Anyway, the offense will be good and maybe better than that depending on how the role players (Donte Moncrief and Diontae Johnson spring to mind) perform.

    The defense needs stars, and it just might have a few brewing: Watt has 20 sacks and seven forced fumbles in two years; Terrell Edmunds came on late in his rookie year and showed the kind of closing speed not seen around here since Troy Polamalu; and rookie linebacker Devin Bush was one of the gems of this year’s draft class.

    The Steelers are solid up front with Cam Heyward, Javon Hargrave and Stephon Tuitt. The secondary is improved, though we’ll have to see if Steven Nelson holds up, Sean Davis shows out and Mike Hilton bounces back from a rough finish. Joe Haden can still play.

    Special teams were a disaster. Issues need fixing there. Kicker Chris Boswell is a giant story going into camp.

    All we can do now is judge the offseason — and the judgement here is a win for Kevin Colbert.

    https://www.post-gazette.com/sports/...er_PGSportsNow

  2. #2
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    Someone please refresh my memory: So how many Super Bowls did the Steelers win with Bell and Brown?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Man of Steel View Post
    Someone please refresh my memory: So how many Super Bowls did the Steelers win with Bell and Brown?
    zippo!!!!!
    From the 2010-2019 season, (An 9 year period that the majority of Cowher's players & coaches had left) Mike Tomlin has only won 3 playoff games. And two of those wins were against back up Quarterbacks. Our history has been defined by what we do in the postseason; not the regular season.

    My official proclamation: WE WILL NOT WIN ANOTHER SUPER BOWL WITH MIKE TOMLIN AS OUR HEAD COACH. So why delay the inevitable?

    FIRE MIKE TOMLIN

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    Former NFL CB Foxworth Thinks Colbert Is An Unbright, Roethlisberger-Cult-Leading Nerd

    By Dave Bryan
    Posted on May 3, 2019

    During his recent interview with Mike Florio on Pro Football Talk Live, Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert was asked a seemingly innocent question about the organization recently getting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger signed to a two-year contract extension. In summation, Colbert was asked if the thinking was mutual that after three more years that Roethlisberger will retire and walk off into the sunset. Colbert answered that question as he should have.

    “I know he doesn’t have an expiration date,” Colbert said. “We just felt that that was a foreseeable future that we were able to do and he was agreeable to. But I’m sure he doesn’t have an expiration date. I know that he’s still very competitive. He still wants to do this and a high level and he doesn’t need money, he doesn’t need Hall of Fame credentials, in my opinion. He’s already achieved both of those. What he wants is more Super Bowls and he wants to continue to try to win and we’re going to support that and that was a big part of why we were willing to do what we did. And now it’s our job to, again, help him help us try to get there.”

    What Colbert obviously meant when he said that he knows that Roethlisberger doesn’t currently have an expiration date relates to the quarterback probably not yet saying that he’ll definitely be ready to retire after the contract he just signed, which runs through the 2021 season, expires. The two sides obviously didn’t want to commit to each other past three years and considering that Roethlisberger will be turning 40 just ahead of the 2022 new league year getting underway, the length of the extension agreed upon, along with Colbert’s recent comments, are more than understandable.

    Understandable, however, to most everyone except for former NFL cornerback Domonique Foxworth, who is now an analysts on ESPN and a senior writer for ‘The Undefeated.’ On Friday during a segment on ‘Get Up!’, Foxworth went off on Colbert and the recent comments he made about Roethlisberger to Florio.

    “First of all, obviously he has an expiration date,” Foxworth said. “Even Ben Roethlisberger knows he has an expiration date because he’s talked about it ad nauseam. At the end of many seasons he talks about how he feels like he may be coming up on that expiration date. It’s also stupid because Kevin Colbert, your job is to anticipate the expiration date and prepare for the expiration date. So, either you’re lying to us or you’re not very bright.”

    Wait, what? Once again, Colbert was referencing Roethlisberger as not having an expiration date as him maybe possibly wanting to continue to play after his current contract that he signed expires. Colbert simply didn’t want to put words in his quarterback’s mouth that he’ll be done with football after three more seasons. He also wanted to possibly leave the door open for Roethlisberger maybe continuing his career in Pittsburgh after his current contract expires.

    As far as Foxworth saying that Colbert’s job is to anticipate some sort of Roethlisberger expiration date, as if the quarterback is a gallon of milk, I guess the former NFL cornerback hasn’t noticed that the Steelers drafted two young quarterbacks in 2017 and 2018 in Joshua Dobbs and Mason Rudolph. As you can probably see by now, and after you’ve gotten the full context of what both Colbert and Foxworth both recently said, the latter is the one that comes off as not being bright.

    Somehow, Foxworth then decided it was worth moving forward from Colbert’s expiration comment and start attacking the Steelers general manager referring to all members of the team, except for Roethlisberger, as kids several weeks ago and then connecting those comments back to the recent expiration comment.

    “And it just bothers me, again, we’re talking about this theme of GMs being more and more outspoken. Kevin Colbert is another one of these outspoken GMs because he was the same one who essentially called all of the Steelers children except for Ben Roethlisberger, who implicitly is their father,” Foxworth said. “Which is nonsense because it just feels like Kevin Colbert is like a a nerd who was really into this one jock and really wants to impress him.

    “He’s just leading this cult of Ben Roethlisberger when it’s not as if Ben Roethlisberger has been good. Like, that expiration date might already be here. He’s already throwing bad passes and it seems like he’s in opposition to AB [Antonio Brown]. That’s what it feels like this is all about, that it feels like a binary, you have to choose AB, or you have to choose Ben. He’s all in on Ben, which is fine, but it doesn’t mean you have to be delusional and stupid.”

    What? So, Colbert is leading a Roethlisberger cult like an impressed nerd following around a jock and looking to please him all because of what happened with former wide receiver Antonio Brown dating back to Week 17 of the 2018 regular season? I can’t be the only one who thinks that sounds so incredibly ludicrous, right?

    Look, Roethlisberger will never be accused of being a saintly teammate and Colbert will never be accused of always choosing his words careful enough when conducting interviews. That said, Colbert’s comments to Florio about Roethlisberger not having any sort of expiration date were harmless and once again, him only inferring that the quarterback might not be ready to retire after playing the next three seasons.

    Foxworth is obviously a smart guy to some degree as not only was he once elected president of the NFLPA during his football playing days, he’s since received an MBA from Harvard Business School. However, that nice resume aside, his comments made on Friday morning about Colbert has him as the one that looks to be delusional and stupid. Perhaps Foxworth should try listening to that full Colbert interview once again, assuming he listened to it already in lieu of just reading internet quotes.

    What say yinz?

    https://steelersdepot.com/2019/05/fo...-leading-nerd/

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Man of Steel View Post
    Someone please refresh my memory: So how many Super Bowls did the Steelers win with Bell and Brown?
    FOUR SBs......

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Lemming View Post
    FOUR SBs......

    70s teammates Theo Bell (2) and Larry Brown (4)
    Last edited by Captain Lemming; 05-03-2019 at 09:06 PM.

  7. #7
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    Bush and Snell will be serious contributors this season. That’s all the contributors from this draft for this coming season.
    I know there’s a few story lines we are all excited about.

    But I think we all need to watch with a microscope our offensive line because I’m not convinced about our O-line coach now. Just because this guy watched under Munch doesn’t mean dick.
    From the 2010-2019 season, (An 9 year period that the majority of Cowher's players & coaches had left) Mike Tomlin has only won 3 playoff games. And two of those wins were against back up Quarterbacks. Our history has been defined by what we do in the postseason; not the regular season.

    My official proclamation: WE WILL NOT WIN ANOTHER SUPER BOWL WITH MIKE TOMLIN AS OUR HEAD COACH. So why delay the inevitable?

    FIRE MIKE TOMLIN

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Maniac View Post
    I think we all need to watch with a microscope our offensive line because I’m not convinced about our O-line coach now. Just because this guy watched under Munch doesn’t mean dick.
    Sarrett was an offensive assistant with the team from 2012-17, working mainly with the offensive line, and then promoted to assistant offensive line coach for the 2018 season.

    I'm sure that all he ever did during all of this time on the Steelers coaching staff was just watch Munchak.
    Steeler teams featuring stat-driven, me-first, fantasy-football-darling diva types such as Antonio Brown & Le'Veon Bell won no championships.

    Super Bowl winning Steeler teams were built around a dynamic, in-your-face defense plus blue-collar, hard-hitting, no-nonsense football players on offense such as Hines Ward & Jerome Bettis.

    We don't want Juju & Conner to replace what we lost in Brown & Bell.

    We are counting on Juju & Conner to return us to the glory we once had with Hines & The Bus.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Maniac View Post
    Bush and Snell will be serious contributors this season. That’s all the contributors from this draft for this coming season.
    I think Diontae Johnson will surprise...

  10. #10
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    He can’t surprise if he doesn’t play. He’s not playing this much this year. From all the reports , he will not be a real contributor other then return duties. They are giving Washington, juju and Moncrief all the work. With Rogers/ Switzer manning any slot duties. That’s what their saying at least. And I see no reason to doubt them considering the way they are touting Washington and they just gave Moncrief a nice first year chunk of money.
    Last edited by Steel Maniac; 05-05-2019 at 03:38 PM.
    From the 2010-2019 season, (An 9 year period that the majority of Cowher's players & coaches had left) Mike Tomlin has only won 3 playoff games. And two of those wins were against back up Quarterbacks. Our history has been defined by what we do in the postseason; not the regular season.

    My official proclamation: WE WILL NOT WIN ANOTHER SUPER BOWL WITH MIKE TOMLIN AS OUR HEAD COACH. So why delay the inevitable?

    FIRE MIKE TOMLIN

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