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Thread: Two Back Sets Anyone?

  1. #11
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    Versatile Jaylen Samuels to be used in increasingly varied ways in Steelers offense

    CHRIS ADAMSKI | Wednesday, May 29, 2019

    When he was a rookie last season, the Pittsburgh Steelers tried to keep Jaylen Samuels as entrenched as a traditional, fulltime running back as possible.

    Now that he’s been a pro and as part of the offense for a full year, Samuels is ready to spread his wings as the proverbial Swiss Army knife he was projected to be.

    Samuels said Wednesday that he’s been used in more varied ways over the first week and a half of organized team activities.

    “I feel like there is more they are putting on my plate this year,” the former N.C. State tight end/fullback/receiver/running back said. “Now that they saw I could do last year, I am getting more routes split out, and more routes overall as a receiver.”

    Samuels had 56 carries (for 256 yards) and 26 catches (for 199 yards) and three touchdowns last season as a rookie. His usage varied wildly from healthy scratch in some games to Swiss Army knife in others, to being the featured running back during the Week 15 win against the eventual Super Bowl champion New England Patriots.

    With James Conner and rookie Benny Snell also in the running back position room, Samuels versatility is what makes him stand out. Does he embrace carrying out diverse duties in the offense?

    “I love it, I love it,” Samuels said. “The more I can do, the more I can help this team, and I love it.”

    https://triblive.com/sports/versatil...elers-offense/

  2. #12
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    We have to remember the 2nd back is likely Samuels who is an HBack or a 2nd TE. It's not likely the Steelers are going to put Conner and Snell in the backfield together. It's Samuels that's the X factor in 2 back sets.

    He's a better option imho than putting our #2 TE on the field.

    But I also see a lot of 3 WR sets as our base offense.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oviedo View Post
    This is the concern with Conner. No one questions his talent, desire or character. I said during his rookie year he reminds me of Chris Fuamatu-Ma'afala. Strong, quick runner but can't stay healthy.

    Hopefully we come up with the formula to keep Conner on the field all season long
    Our previous starting rb only finished one season healthy. So I’m going to give Conner the benefit of the doubt and think he will finish this season healthy now that he knows exactly what to expect and what is expected from him. If he gets significantly hurt then we can label him injury prone but I’m not ready to do that just yet.
    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

  4. #14
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    The health of the feature back, whether we're talking Connor or Bell, is more indicative of Mike Tomlin's style of running the wheels off the back during the season. That's where using different backs to split the load (as Ruthless mentioned about NE*) will ultimately help keep Connor healthy into the post season. In which case, we can switch them up according to situation, or post a couple backs at a time. Either way, I'm fine with that, I just think we definitely need a shift in philosophy here in regards to player over-utilization.

  5. #15
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    Our offense revolved so much around Bell and Brown the last few years.

    We should not be so reliant on one specific RB and one specific WR.

    Juju and Conner have shown that they are capable of handling this mantle if needed, but they should not be asked to do so.

    Our overall depth at both RB and WR now means that we don't have to rely on any one guy all the time now.

    Rotate guys, keep everyone fresh, and just find the open guy.
    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.

  6. #16
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    Jaylen Samuels Aiming To Prove New Level Of Conditioning During OTAs

    By Alex Kozora
    Posted on May 30, 2019

    Jaylen Samuels, like many of the running backs before him, is looking to be a new version of himself entering Year Two. Over the offseason, he talked about slimming down and working with a speed trainer in order to become a more explosive and effective runner. Speaking with the media after Wednesday’s practice, he talked about – and I know it’s cliche but for young guys, often true – being in the best shape of his short NFL career.

    “Just showing my conditioning,” he told the media via the team site of what he’s trying to show this spring. “That’s the main thing. Finishing runs. Making the tough catches. Knowing the plays. Playing faster. But most definitely, showing I am in condition. That’s the main thing coming into OTAs. Because we don’t have pads on or anything. We can finish downfield without getting hit.”

    It’s unclear what Samuels current or target weight is at. But if he’s like so many others, a 15 pound decrease would place him in the 210-215 range. Coming out of NC State, it was unclear was position the NFL wanted him to play. He was a jack-of-all-trades in college, logging time at receiver, running back, and even a little at tight end. The Senior Bowl had him as a full-time running back but the Combine lumped him in with the tight ends while scouts liked what he did out of the backfield the most. Without a defined position, it was impossible to know what weight to shoot for.

    Although you may have forgotten the name, Cameron Stingily, who spent two training camps with the team in 2015 and 2016, was in a similar predicament his first time through. From my interview with him three years ago:

    “Coming out of the draft, it wasn’t clear if teams wanted him to play as a fullback or running back. So he kept his weight, 255 pounds. When the Steelers decided to make him exclusively a runner, his performance suffered. He lacked the quickness to break away at the second level. During last fall, he committed to slim down to his junior year playing weight of 230 pounds. By the looks of it, he’s a completely different player than the one who stepped foot onto St. Vincent’s campus a year ago.

    “’Last year I was 250 with 12% body fat. This year I came back at 230 with 7%.’”

    Stingily never made the roster but you get the principle of the idea. When you know how a team plans to use you, you can adjust accordingly.

    “I think I’ll be a better runner this year as a running back,” Samuels went on to say. “Not just catching. And definitely better in pass protection.”

    Losing weight means, in theory at least, Samuels will become a more dynamic runner in the open field. Last year, he was a bit of a plodder, only able to bust into the open grass when given a large runway. And though his pass protection was better than expected considering how little he did it in school, it has a long ways to go, too. There though, it has more to do with technique than any weight he’s lost.

    Improving conditioning is important for the expanded role he’s going to have. Samuels will be the #2 from the get go unlike his rookie year, where he hardly saw the field until Week 13. In that sense, 2019 will be his first “full” year and with more involvement in the offense, his body has to be ready to handle that rigor.

    https://steelersdepot.com/2019/05/ja...g-during-otas/

  7. #17
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    With the weight drop , Samuels could surprise people. After listening to reporters covering the Steelers, I think Snell is strictly an insurance policy in case Conner gets hurt. It’s Conner and Samuels who’ll be toting the load.
    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. #18
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    Remember how Bell dropped weight in the off-season after his first year? I see Samuels weight loss in that light.
    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

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by RuthlessBurgher View Post
    Our offense revolved so much around Bell and Brown the last few years.

    We should not be so reliant on one specific RB and one specific WR.

    Juju and Conner have shown that they are capable of handling this mantle if needed, but they should not be asked to do so.

    Our overall depth at both RB and WR now means that we don't have to rely on any one guy all the time now.

    Rotate guys, keep everyone fresh, and just find the open guy.
    That's interesting. I tend to think we don't have much depth at either WR or RB.

    Conner was good last year, but has struggled to stay healthy. The league has also seen its fair share of 1 hit wonders. I think he'll be good, but he's not really a proven thing. Samuels is pretty much a big ? and Snell hasn't played a down in pre season.

    At WR, Juju has proven to be an awesome WR2, but I think it's reasonable to think he'll need at least some time to feel comfortable at WR1. Moncrief has been an average guy which is OK but not great. We don't really have a WR3 (except maybe Moncrief who we'll play at 2), but a bunch of WR4s with hopes of improving.

    Maybe that's OK because we have a very good QB. But I don't see how people aren't at least a little concerned about the O.

    I like the idea that we'll be a better team because we'll have less drama. But it feels more like a hope than something we can support with evidence. Losing elite talent sucks.

    I think ABs made it so we're unlikely to contend this year (baring dramatic improvement on D). Maybe we can use the cap space for not having AB next year to improve the D?
    Last edited by Northern_Blitz; 05-30-2019 at 06:58 PM.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jooser View Post
    The health of the feature back, whether we're talking Connor or Bell, is more indicative of Mike Tomlin's style of running the wheels off the back during the season. That's where using different backs to split the load (as Ruthless mentioned about NE*) will ultimately help keep Connor healthy into the post season. In which case, we can switch them up according to situation, or post a couple backs at a time. Either way, I'm fine with that, I just think we definitely need a shift in philosophy here in regards to player over-utilization.
    Tomlin isn’t going to change from giving his #1 runningback the huge bulk of the carries. He’s not changing
    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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