Tag Archives: Keenan Lewis

Steelers vs Falcons – Things to Look For

The Atlanta Falcons will face the Pittsburgh Steelers tonight at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh.  This will be the Steelers third preseason game and you’ll see the starters play the 1st half and the roster will begin to finalize for those on the “bubble”.

Tonights game will be broadcasted by the NFL Network at 7:30 EDT. Also be sure to check out the Planet Steelers Forum and participate in our popular Game Day Chat during all games.

Here are a few players to pay special attention to during tonight’s game:

Tony Hills – The tackle from the University of Texas in now a 4th year player and it’s now or never for him.  Hills came into training camp in great shape and has played inspired during practice and the last 2 preseason games.  Hills can play tackle as displayed against the Philadelphia Eagles or guard.  Hills has been so impressive that he appears to be the front runner for the RG position. Tonight, Hills is starting at RG.

Antonio Brown – What else can you say about the youngster?  The guy has seized every opportunity in training camp and preseason.  He is continuing right where he left off last year but now he may be in the process of wrestling the 3rd wide receiver spot from Emmanual Sanders.  Sanders has been sidelined with a foot injury.

Cornerbacks – How will our cornerbacks Keenan Lewis, Crezdon Butler, William Gay, Donovan Warren, Bryant McFadden (questionable), and Cortez Allen (questionable) fair against the highly talented and explosive Atlanta Falcons offense.

Ramon Foster and Chris Scott – Will they allow Tony Hills to steal their spot at RG?  At the start of training camp, it was Foster’s job to lose.  Apparently, he is starting to lose it.

Marcus Gilbert – The rookie LT from the University of Florida had a rough start to training camp reportedly showing up out of shape.  He has turned things around recently and is getting his first start due to Jonathan Scott’s injury (hyperextended knee).  He will have a tough matchup against Atlanta’s 4-time Pro Bowler, John Abraham.

Face Me Ike on his way out

With the NFL lockout still looming, the Steelers have had plenty of time to plan their free agency strategy.  The question remains…

Will the Steelers resign the 31 year old, Ike Taylor?  Taylor has been the only proven cornerback  in the Steelers secondary over the past several years.  But Taylor is over 30 and wants to be paid.  The Steelers, more than any other team in the NFL, do not pay big money to players on the downside of their career.  Taylor doesn’t feel confident in the Steelers’ ability to resign him:

I see myself being anywhere I need to be. Wherever you put me, I’m going to make home….I just leave it up to my agent and Pittsburgh.When it comes down to getting serious, I’m sure my agent is going to call me. Other than that, he’ll let me know when the time is right.

I need that market value. I work so hard. I’ve been through so much, I feel so unappreciated, feel so underrated at my position, I feel like it’s my time to get my worth, in whatever city that’s in.

Most fans, including myself fear that our secondary will get burnt by the likes of Brady, Brees, Manning and Rodgers moreso than usual without Ike.  The Steelers have shown little ability to draft quality cornerbacks over recent years (see Keenan Lewis).  Hopefully one of the young guys step up and replace Ike if he indeed leaves and follows the money.

Keenan Lewis practices with 1st team defense

Keenan Lewis, the second year pro from Oregon practiced with the first team defense for the first time this training camp.

Lewis, who was injured the majority of last year has high expectations from the coaching staff and fans alike especially given the struggles last year with the loss of Polamalu. The steelers defense needs another playmaker in the secondary; lewis may be that guy.

Lewis has looked impressive in training camp and preseason. Although Lewis gave up a touchdown against the Detroit Lions, Lewis played well matched up against Calvin Johnson, one of the most talented and physically gifted receivers in the NFL.

Steelers Inactives

The following Steelers are listed as inactive in today’s game against the Cleveland Browns.

QB Dennis Dixon

WR Limas Sweed – Very disappointing.  We all had high hopes for this guy but his future doesn’t look bright right now in Pittsburgh.

CB Keenan Lewis – Lewis was supposed to be Ike Taylor’s mirror image and had a great training camp.  He has not seen any playing time this year thus far.

FB Carey Davis – Who is the starting fullback?

LB Andre Frazier – Special teams ace… who is going to steup up in his replacement?

OG Kraig Urbik – We all thought he was going to steal the show in training camp and win the starting RG spot.  Instead, Trai Essex as impressed.

OT Tony Hills – Another disappointment but he may end up competing for Colon’s RT spot in the Steelers don’t resign him.

DE Sunny Harris – Just resigned after the injury to Aaron Smith.  This guy had a decent training camp and preseason and could end up having a roster spot in the future.  He has the size and youth that the Steelers desperately need at the defensive line.

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