Tag Archives: Cardinals
Quick show of hands – who else is nominally a fan of Steelers West just because they’re Steelers West? I know I would’ve been rooting wholeheartedly for them if they’d been playing anyone else on February 1, 2009. Anyways, thanks go to Steel34D for the analysis here. Next up: Dallas Cowboys and they’ll be represented by Mike Frazer.
By the way, today we’re finally able to include one of SBN’s minute-long draft profiles with the pick when it’s published! It’s been Michael Bean’s personal project to make these videos happen, and let us know what you think of them! -barnerburner-
Before the announcement of the Arizona Cardinals pick, I will first recap the season and off-season moves of Steelers West.
After the Lockout in 2011, the Arizona Cardinals continued their standard operating procedure of signing former Steelers. In 2011 it was Nick Eason who was signed to not only help in depth but to teach Ray Horton’s scheme. The Cardinals started with an abysmal 1-5 record after learning they had a long ways to go to match the Steelers in week 6. It was their game the next week that seemed to inspire the team to make a push. Against the Ravens in week 7 the defense dominated in the first half and the offense was effective. Ultimately the Cardinals lost but something change with the team after that game. They went on a 7-2 run with very good play from their defense.
The defensive spark ironically came when they replaced two former Steelers in the lineup. Sam Acho, a rookie 4th round steal, replaced Clark Haggans and was an exciting and very intelligent player. O’Brien Schofield replaced Joey Porter and was effective at times, showing much promise. However, the biggest contribution to the team’s success in their run was rookie first round pick Patrick Petersen. Though he went through his up and downs in coverage, he was electric in the return game tying an NFL-record 4 punt return TDs in a season. The Cardinals finished 8-8.
After a failed courting of Peyton Manning, the Cardinals made like seemingly every off season and signed yet another former-Steeler in William Gay. Gay will replace the unheralded Team Defensive MVP, Richard Marshall, who signed with the Dolphins. Gay will be a good slot corner for a very young and very talented corner group that includes Petersen, Greg Toler, and A.J. Jefferson . The Cardinals also helped their offensive line by signing former 49er Adam Snyder, who can play both ROG and RT. Snyder is a run blocking RG who struggles with pass protection. They franchised the best young 3-4 DE in the game in Calais Campbell, and to the fan base’s dismay, re-signed Levi Brown after cutting him because he was due $ 16 million.
Last year the Cardinals hit big on Patrick Petersen and hope to do it again. They could use an upgraded pass rusher, O-line help and a true #2 WR. Since Michael Floyd and Melvin Ingram are off the board, they will look strictly to the offensive line. The prospects there that they could consider are:
With the 13th pick in the 2012 BTSC Community Mock Draft the Arizona Cardinals select Riley Reiff, Offensive Tackle, Iowa.
There is no denying the Cardinals need a true LT and Reiff has the athleticism to be an NFL left tackle. The former TE for Iowa was moved to guard after his freshman year in 2009. When All-American LT Bryan Bulaga went down with an injury, Reiff filled in very well and in 2010 the Hawkeyes didn’t miss the 1st round pick by the Green Bay Packers. Though his arms are shorter than scouts would like at 33″, Reiff has undeniable athleticism. At 6’6″ 316 lbs, Reiff can move well laterally and naturally bends at his knees. He effortlessly will wash the DE up field creating a pocket. He can effectively run block, though he is very raw and displays the athleticism to get to the second level. He will need to improve his strength and technique, but this is understandable for someone who has only played on the O-line for 3 years total and LT for only 2 years. Reiff has a high ceiling despite his physical short comings and will protect whoever is throwing the ball for the Cardinals. Given the full offseason this year, I believe there will be a drastically different Cardinals offense in 2012. Ryan Williams, the electric RB from Virginia Tech, should return healthy from a knee injury sustained this past preseason. Third round pick Rob Housler, TE will learn the game better and be a bigger receiving threat, and with this pick the O-line should be better. The rest will depend on either Kevin Kolb or John Skelton.
Here is film of Reiff against Oklahoma and Frank Alexander who is considered a draftable DE:
Riley Reiff vs Oklahoma 2011 (via JMPasq)
Riley Reiff 2012 NFL Draft Profile (via sbnnfl)
BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Picks:
- Indianapolis Colts — Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
- Washington Redsinks — Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
- Minnesota Vikings — Matt Kalil, OT, USC
- Cleveland Browns — Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers — Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
- St. Louis Rams — Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
- Jacksonville Jaguars — Quinton Coples, DE, UNC
- Miami Dolphins — Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
- Carolina Panthers — Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
- Buffalo Bills — Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
- Kansas City Chiefs — Brock Osweiler, QB, Arizona State
- Seattle Seahawks — Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
Source: Behind the Steel Curtain
Now that William Gay Has Signed with the Cardinals, Who Will Step up to be the Steelers Number Two Corner?
The Steelers said goodbye to a number of long-time veteran players in recent weeks, but other than sentimental value, players like Hines Ward and Aaron Smith didn’t figure to have much of an impact or make much of a difference in wins and losses starting next season. One might say that James Farrior is going to be hard to replace as a leader and the inside linebacker. There is some merit to that, obviously, but Farrior is also 37 years old, and his replacement will more than likely be Larry Foote, a player who has started in two Super Bowls and played in a third. Is Foote James Farrior? No, but he’s serviceable.
During his time here, William Gay wasn’t exactly revered by Steelers fans in the same way that Hines Ward and Aaron Smith were during their careers. In fact, it was pretty much the opposite, especially in ’09 and ’10.
In ’09, Gay assumed the starting corner job after Bryant McFadden left for Arizona (there’s that team again), but his ’09 season was a disaster, as he was one of the main culprits in the team’s inability to hold 4th quarter leads.
In 2010, Gay was most remembered for his infamous performance trying to cover Rob Gronkowski in a Sunday night game against the Patriots. In that game, a 39-26 New England victory, Gay was beaten by Gronkowski for three touchdowns and looked completely overmatched on every single one of them. Gay was also one of the players singled out for the team’s failure to stop Aaron Rodgers and the Packers passing offense in Super Bowl XLV.
Last offseason, there was much talk that the team should draft a corner as high as the first round in order to address the major need. The Steelers, instead, decided to further address the defensive line by making Cam Heyward the team’s first round draft choice. The Steelers did go corner in back to back rounds when they took Curtis Brown out of Texas in the 3rd round and Cortez Allen out of the Citadel in the 4th round.
Many were wondering if Gay would return to the team last season, and he did re-sign with the Steelers shortly after the lockout ended. McFadden opened the 2011 season as the starting corner opposite Ike Taylor, but Gay would soon be in the lineup following a Mcfadden injury early on. Not only did Gay hold his own, he was part of a passing defense that was number one in the NFL. And he contributed significantly to a win against the Bengals with a couple of big 4th quarter plays, including an interception late to seal the deal. Gay came up big again the following week with another key 4th quarter interception that clinched a victory against the Chiefs on Sunday Night Football. T
The secondary went from an area of great concern to one that was seen as a strength, and William Gay was certainly a key member of the unit.
So, now that Gay is gone, how will the Steelers address the issue?
The good news is the Steelers do seem to have three very talented candidates to replace Gay.
Fourth year corner Keenan Lewis appeared to make significant strides last season after struggling mightily in his first two campaigns, and he did so well, he was the number three cornerback in 2011.
And the team appears to be very excited about the potential of both Brown and Allen. The fact that McFadden couldn’t even sniff the lineup last season after recovering from his injury tells me that there are more than enough candidates to replace Gay. And let’s not forget about the key contributions of new secondary coach Carnell Lake. Lake received rave reviews last year for the work he did with the secondary, including improving the play of both Gay and Lewis, and he might have been the central reason for that number one ranking. Hopefully, he can get both Brown and Allen to make significant strides in 2012.
There are no guarantees, obviously. Lewis isn’t too far removed from that infamous preseason game in Denver just two seasons ago, and Brown and Allen haven’t shown anything other than raw potential up to now.
How do you think the Steelers will address the departure of Gay? Do you think they’ll just go in the obvious direction and promote Lewis and have Brown and Allen fight it out for the nickle spot?
Or do you think they need to go out and find a veteran player to be the team’s number two corner for at least another year while the young guys get some more seasoning?
Source: Behind the Steel Curtain
The Arizona Cardinals announced on Sunday that they have agreed to a two-year deal with Cornerback William Gay.
Former Steeler Gay, 27, a starter for two of the past three seasons, was drafted by the Steelers in 2007 and has played in all 80 games since entering the league (37 starts).
Gay was one of only two Steelers starters who were unrestricted free agents. The other was offensive tackle Max Starks.
Last week, Gay said he wanted to stay with Pittsburgh and the team had expressed interest in retaining him as well. Apparently, Gay found a better deal than what cash strapped Pittsburgh was offering.
Source: Yardbarker: Pittsburgh Steelers
Twitter has become the preferred avenue for athletes to announce their plans this offseason and William Gay is not averse to hopping on board the trend. Early Sunday morning, Gay tweeted that “O yeah by the way I’m #Birdgang now west coast,” which, when translated out of Twitterspeak, means that he’s decided to play for…
Arizona could be viewed as a logical landing spot for free agent receiver Hines Ward because the Cardinals’ coaching staff has a history with Ward from their time together in Pittsburgh. The Cards could also use a slot receiver, as Early Doucet is destined for free agency. According to Mike Jurecki of XTRA 910 in…
PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) – Former Arizona Cardinals, and St. Louis Rams quarterback, and Super Bowl Champion, Kurt Warner joined the Fan Morning Show on Monday to talk about his former offensive coordinator, Todd Haley.
Haley was Warner’s offensive coordinator for two years in Arizona.
Haley’s fiery personality has caused concern for Steelers fans, but Kurt said of Haley, ”He is definitely a competitor,” and that he ”wears his emotions on his sleeve.” However, he respected Haley, saying, “I came to… appreciate that side of him because he challenged me to be the best I can be.”
For the entire interview, click below:
Source: CBS Pittsburgh » Steelers
PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) — Arizona Cardinals Reporter Kent Somers joined Seibel, Starkey and Miller on Sportsradio 93-7 The FAN to talk about the Steelers choice of Todd Haley to be their next offensive coordinator.
When it comes to Haley’s personality, Somers said there are times where even his best friends want to punch him, but that doesn’t mean they don’t get along and respect him still. Somers added that Haley’s demeanor can get on players’ nerves at times, but he asks a lot of his players, and the stars he has coached really seemed to have liked him.
Kansas City Chiefs Reporter Kent Babb also weighed in on Todd Haley and his story that painted Haley as a paranoid man who didn’t trust team administrators with the Chiefs. Babb added that Haley’s paranoia was well founded based on the way the organization was run, and said it wasn’t a very healthy environment to work in.
Source: CBS Pittsburgh » Steelers