2013 Off Season News and Notes

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  • http://www.post-gazette.com/st…lt-offensive-line-670169/


    Ed Bouchette -

    Quote

    "Look for Max Starks and Ramon Foster to leave in free agency and Willie Colon to be released. Colon's knee injury that placed him on injured reserve for the third season in a row was the last straw. The Steelers want to move on, and they believe they have the right man to replace him."


    So, according to Bouchette the Steelers starting O.L. for 2013 will be as follows:
    From left to right - Gilbert, Beachum, Poncey, DeCastro, Adams


    I'm at odds with this revelation mostly because I'm concerned about the loss of quality and experienced depth on the O.L. I agree that it's time to part ways with Colon. He's an exceptional player and teammate, but from a business standpoint it is extremely difficult to justify putting one's faith in and paying a player that has spent the majority of the past three years on injured reserve. I really like Foster as a backup, but given his experience as a starter he deserves to seek a starting job elsewhere. The same goes for Max.


    I adamantly agree with Art Rooney when he said - "I think that we have to look at as a league where we are with some of the rules in terms of conditioning and how often the players can be in the building and what they can do here," Rooney said. "I'd like to see us have some of that loosened up a little bit. That obviously is not something that is completely in our control."


    Art Rooney has seen enough of the negative cause and affects of the collective bargaining agreement as it pertains to player conditioning. The player's union's reason for pushing for a decrease in the amount of off season work outs was to reduce the number of injuries. It has become obvious that that clause has had the opposite affect. The key reason is not every player is an Ike Taylor or James Farrior, guys that are highly motivated with exceptional self discipline, who fully understand the need to get and keep their bodies ready for the season. We all know that there are those players that lack the drive, determination, motivation and self discipline to work out on their own. It is those players that have the highest risk for injury. Art knows full well that in the grand scheme of an NFL season nine weeks is simply not enough time for the coaching staffs to get their players physically ready for the season. Something has to change or else the NFL and the player's union are going to have a lot of splainin' to do in the court of public opinion.

  • not sure how close Ed is on this , considering it is nearly as cheap to keep Colon as it is to let him go cap hit wise so virtually no savings on the 2013 cap and then you figure you have to sign another body to take his place at that point you have spent more than what the slight savings is ....

    "They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    Ben Franklin

  • "Dwinsgames" wrote:

    not sure how close Ed is on this , considering it is nearly as cheap to keep Colon as it is to let him go cap hit wise so virtually no savings on the 2013 cap and then you figure you have to sign another body to take his place at that point you have spent more than what the slight savings is ....


    Although it is an important point, I don't believe that the cap hit was the main point that Buchette was making. It had more to do with the lack of availability. He can't help the team if he's not on the field. Colon has not been on the field for the majority of the past three seasons because of his three season ending injuries. I'm sure that the Steelers look at him and say, "We love the guy and what he brings from a talent standpoint, BUT he's excruciatingly unreliable. We simply can not count on him to make it through training camp, let alone a season before he is out, again, with another season ending injury. It is a huge detriment to the offense, especially as it relates to the issue of continuity and cohesiveness. We're not going to continue to pay him and waste a roster spot for him to be a cheerleader".


    As for signing another body to take his place, they already did that when they penciled in Beachum to replace. Beachum's a cheap alternative, given his draft position. Therefore, the cap hit is a moot point.

  • "Master Blaster" wrote:


    Although it is an important point, I don't believe that the cap hit was the main point that Buchette was making. It had more to do with the lack of availability. He can't help the team if he's not on the field. Colon has not been on the field for the majority of the past three seasons because of his three season ending injuries. I'm sure that the Steelers look at him and say, "We love the guy and what he brings from a talent standpoint, BUT he's excruciatingly unreliable. We simply can not count on him to make it through training camp, let alone a season before he is out, again, with another season ending injury. It is a huge detriment to the offense, especially as it relates to the issue of continuity and cohesiveness. We're not going to continue to pay him and waste a roster spot for him to be a cheerleader".


    As for signing another body to take his place, they already did that when they penciled in Beachum to replace. Beachum's a cheap alternative, given his draft position. Therefore, the cap hit is a moot point.



    but in doing so with Beachum , that leaves you not only down Beachum in terms of depth but also Foster , Starks and Colon ...... so unless they plan on drafting 3 or 4 O-linemen this April you are treading in dangerous waters .... and when you consider Gilbert and Adams have not proved to be the picture of health either ( same can be said for Pouncey ) and I believe Legursky is also a FA you have more questions than answers in terms of not only who you have but what you have on the roster and who will be available from week to week ....


    I would rather keep Colon as a reserve and over pay him than to release him and pay him starter money to play elsewhere and maybe be healthy for once ... cut him in 2014 when his hit is not nearly as bad and the new TV deal will help the cap increase some so what hit he has wont be as much of a detriment ....


    how do you replace ...


    Starks
    Colon
    Foster
    Lego


    in one off season when 4 of the guys who would be slated as starters in 2013 have spent a HUGE portion of 2012 on the sidelines due to injury .... in Gilbert , Adams , De'Castro , and occasionally Pouncey and none of them have proven to be a LT in this league to this point


    For me it would be stupid to even consider ... but I felt the same way when we let Starks go last time and penciled in J Scott .... I was found to be right and Colbert wrong that time and suspect I will be found to be correct yet again if this happens this time

    "They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    Ben Franklin

  • "SteelHack" wrote:

    Douchette knows nothing.


    HACK


    Well spoken. We don't even have an OL coach and maybe not an OC for next year.....so how the ell does he know. I was loving the move of Colon to LG, and for a stretch, when everyone was healthy and on the same page, we had a running game, and Colon was a beast with a nice amount of nasty. But damn it he can't stay healthy. I say if we aren't saving much by letting him go, keep him, if just some veteran leadership on the line. Bouchette is plugging Beachum in at LG before he's played a single snap at that position. Od course we will re-address this (as we always do), as we get closer to the 2013 season. :nohope:

    "this place is a bit like Atlas Shrugged" ---Lemonhead


    "I think we're going to need a bigger boat"


    "Oh George, not the livestock"!

  • I was very glad to see Art Rooney address an issue that I felt needed to be addressed and that is the excessive amount of injuries the team has endured the past two years. He made it a point of contention, in his recent state-of-the-team address, that the number of injures the team has dealt with the past two years has exceeded acceptable and reasonable levels. I don't ever remember seeing as many players, especially offensive line players, suffer major leg injuries as I have the past two seasons. Like Art, I think there is a direct correlation between the reduced workout clause in the recent C.B.A. and the physical conditioning of the players. Nine weeks is an insufficient amount of time for the coaching staffs and physical trainers to get the players ready for the season. IMO, the NFL's attempt to reduce the amount of injuries backfired and failed, miserably. By his comments, I know Art Rooney feels the same way.

  • "SteelHack" wrote:

    Douchette knows nothing.


    HACK


    As I was reading Bouchette's column I realized that what he was saying was based on an educated guess and pure speculation.


    Since their season ended I reflected on what I saw from them this past season and there are some major sticking points that stood out to me.


    * The excessive amount of injuries and their negative cause and affect.
    * The excessive amount of penalties. There is a noticeable lack of discipline between Cowher's teams and Tomlin's. Cowher's teams never amassed the amount of penalties that Tomlin's have.
    * Poor coaching. Example: Antonio Brown runs backwards into the end zone after a punt return for a touch down. When asked why he did that he said that he didn't know that it was a penalty. That's on Scottie Montgomery since it's his job to make sure that his charges know the rules. Of course it's also incumbent on the players to use some common sense. If you're not sure, don't do it. The same goes for Tomlin. He continues to make the same poor in-game decisions.
    * The excessive amount of turnovers vs take-aways.
    * No Pass Rush. I've already pointed out that there is no outstanding or dominant player on the defense. This has been an on going issue since '09. Art addressed that lack of a pass rush issue in his recent state-of-the-team address. He essentially called out the defense and who can blame him? Despite their league standing, their lack of a pass rush was appalling. Those guys need to be put on notice, especially given the inordinate amount of cap money spent on them. Woodley was a non factor. Despite his hammy injury, I wondered how much his invisibility had to do with his attitude after getting paid last season. I also believe that he, like so many players today, has too many outside distractions. IMO, he spends far too much energy and time on business deals, facebook and twitter for my liking. He isn't alone. IMO, The advent of technological innovation, (smart phones, ipads, facebook, twitter, etc.) and it's cause and affect on the players has to be addressed. Players today have too many outside distractions for my liking. I wonder how many of them suffer from sensory overload?
    * Wasted money on players that have yet to make a noticeable contribution, those who can't be counted and those who can't be counted on any more. Those players include the following:


    Troy Polamalu
    Casey Hampton
    James Harrison
    Baron Batch
    Mike Wallace
    Ziggy Hood
    Byron Leftwich
    Rashard Mendenhall
    Stevenson Sylvester
    Ryan Mundy


  • all the bold ( half the list ) are FA this off season so that problem will solve itself in part ...


    Batch and Sly are not making much , still on rookie deals and where not high draft picks leaving just 3 that are soaking up a kings ransom ... 20 mill alone between Troy and Harrison

    "They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    Ben Franklin

  • "Dwinsgames" wrote:

    all the bold ( half the list ) are FA this off season so that problem will solve itself in part ...


    Batch and Sly are not making much , still on rookie deals and where not high draft picks leaving just 3 that are soaking up a kings ransom ... 20 mill alone between Troy and Harrison


    I understand that point, D., but in the case of Sly, he's been on the team for three years now and he has yet to show any amount of improvement to justify his spot on the team. Despite his low cap hit, the guy was simply invisible. You know as well as I do that he was selected to be groomed and eventually play I.L.B. Most of us assumed that he would replace Larry Foote by now, but he has failed to do so. That, IMO, is not acceptable, especially considering the amount of energy and resources invested in him. It is expected that players must make significant strides in their second year to justify their roster spot. In Sly's case, most fans will tell you that they forgot he was on the team because we rarely see him on the field or hear his name mentioned. IMO, he needs to join Alonzo Jackson working at a car wash.

  • http://triblive.com/sports/ste…ney-players#axzz2HyD8q7r6



    This article expresses several of the points I made.


    Robinson also touched on an issue that has been a bone of contention with Art Rooney for the last few years and that is the woefully under productive running game. This team has not had a good and reliable running game since Jerome retired. The local media spin doctors had talked extensively about Ariens' close relationship with Ben and how that close relationship was the catalyst for much of Ben's success as a passer. They even gushed over how Ariens gave Ben a lot of leeway and input into the game plan. Many in the media asked, if that realtionship was so successful then why was Ariens asked to retire? The answer is simple. Ariens did not heed Mr. Rooney's edict to improve the running game. I'll go so far as to say that Ariens' demise was based on one reason, he stubbornly and arrogantly defied Mr. Rooney since there was no body of evidence to prove that he made a concerted effort to do what he was asked to do.


    This article proves that Art Rooney is still seeking answers for why the running game has yet to improve. Despite what Mr. Rooney said about having complete faith and confidence in the job coach Tomlin is doing, his dissatisfaction with the lack of progress in the running game points directly to Tomlin, as it should. Tomlin had better adhere to Mr. Rooney's demands and make the changes he expects to see or else he'll be giving sound bites for a different team. Actions speak louder than words and given the results of the past two seasons, Tomlin is walking on thin ice.



  • good post , hard to disagree with it when framed as such ...

    "They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    Ben Franklin

  • Thanks guys.


    There is another point that I would like to bring to your attention and to get your feedback on: I have noticed and that there is a difference between the mindset of Cowher's teams vs Tomlin's. Cowher's teams had swagger. They entered a game expecting to win. They had unwavering confidence in their ability to impose their will on their opponent. When they lined up to run the ball they didn't care if the opponent knew they were going to run it because dared the opponent to stop them. They knew that they were going to succeed more often than not. I don't see that same collective air of confidence or swagger under Tomlin. Instead, I see, based on their comments and body language, that they hope not to lose. IMO, this point has become increasingly evident the more Cower's players retire or leave via free agency.

  • "Master Blaster" wrote:

    Thanks guys.


    There is another point that I would like to bring to your attention and to get your feedback on: I have noticed and that there is a difference between the mindset of Cowher's teams vs Tomlin's. Cowher's teams had swagger. They entered a game expecting to win. They had unwavering confidence in their ability to impose their will on their opponent. When they lined up to run the ball they didn't care if the opponent knew they were going to run it because dared the opponent to stop them. They knew that they were going to succeed more often than not. I don't see that same collective air of confidence or swagger under Tomlin. Instead, I see, based on their comments and body language, that they hope not to lose. IMO, this point has become increasingly evident the more Cower's players retire or leave via free agency.



    I am not sure if it is coaching or player type / player mindset on this issue to be honest ...


    when Cowher left and Tomlin came in they went to BA at O Coord and the style of play was to transform and in doing so they also started to draft players to fit that persona more so than their prior persona as a run first team ... while in doing so they drafted guys they felt could do both pass block and run block but truth be told they got guys that instead of being good at one thing and dominate and the other they got jack of all trades guys who did both just so so ... no dominance in regard to anything about their game , big fat guys who one may think should be road graders proved to be just big fat guys who could not move their feet well enough to grade a sidewalk let alone a road and unless the play was right at them they could not adjust to the defenders counter move .....


    pass blocking in similar style if they locked on the defender early they are fine , but if they miss that opportunity they are huge liabilities ....


    Cowhers guys where maulers they got on you and pushed you back NOW instead of coming to a standstill with neither side getting a push , when momentum is stopped you have the ability to transition your approach as a rushing defender , that can not happen when you are pushed back on your heals ....


    so for me it is a player thing in that regard however this team never seems to be " coached up" with potential exception to Beachum ( whom I liked before we drafted him ) I see big things for this kid if he gets the proper coaching moving forward ( please let it be Tunch that gets the O-Line job )


    it all starts up front on BOTH sides of the football ...


    The Diesel is slowing late in games and I hold out very little hope for Hood moving forward so we need to pray Heyward is the guy we hoped Hood could be when he was drafted ....we can ill afford to have 2 weak links on the D-line ....

    "They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    Ben Franklin

  • "Master Blaster" wrote:

    Thanks guys.


    There is another point that I would like to bring to your attention and to get your feedback on: I have noticed and that there is a difference between the mindset of Cowher's teams vs Tomlin's. Cowher's teams had swagger. They entered a game expecting to win. They had unwavering confidence in their ability to impose their will on their opponent. When they lined up to run the ball they didn't care if the opponent knew they were going to run it because dared the opponent to stop them. They knew that they were going to succeed more often than not. I don't see that same collective air of confidence or swagger under Tomlin. Instead, I see, based on their comments and body language, that they hope not to lose. IMO, this point has become increasingly evident the more Cower's players retire or leave via free agency.


    This is my answer to that!! Never get tired of watching it. That was the turning point of that season.....In my opinion. :wink: 
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fa1TSaKmG2o


    Faneca, Hartings, Krieder, Miller, Tuman......all in on the blocking.


    With Porter, Ward, Bettis, Farrior, and A Smith, you can't help but have swagger.


    Porter was a mouth, but he backed it up. Ward would take a hit, jump up and get in you face and probably the most punishing blocking WR ever. Farrior and A Smith had a quiet confidence that comes from be great players and leaders. And Bettis, what can you say. Takes a cut in pay, to be part of something special.


    Just haven't seen any of the YOUNG guys stepping up into those rolls. Pouncey-maybe, Woodley-not really. Non of the running backs. A Brown-maybe.


    Maybe Tomlin should show that clip next year.

    "this place is a bit like Atlas Shrugged" ---Lemonhead


    "I think we're going to need a bigger boat"


    "Oh George, not the livestock"!

  • I agree that it does come down to the individual players, but at the same time, players tend to play according to their head coach's personality type. Cowher is a type A personality and he drafted players that were of like mind. His teams adopted his hard nosed, aggressive attitude and approach to the game.

  • "Lemonhead" wrote:

    Maybe Tomlin should show that clip next year.


     :reading: Maybe Tomlin should watch that clip for the first time before showing it to the players.


    I don't like finesse minded football or coaches that teach that style. I want my team to be feared by the opposition before the game even starts. I want my guys to own them, psychologically. I want that fear in their heads so much so that the opponents have that deer-in-the-headlights look during warm ups. I want them pissing themselves the same way Lambert and Green made their opponents piss themselves. I want the opposition to talk shit about the Steelers just like Dick Butkus did and then Mean Joe walked up to him and spit in his face, only to see Butkus shrink in fear. That's swagger and that's complete Ownage!

  • Something maybe to give us cause for hope. Love what he's done with Lewis and C Allen.


    Lake a key part of secondary’s success


    If there was an NFL award given to individual position coaches, Ryan Clark has no doubt who should be the recipient of the secondary coach of the year, none other than his own coach, Carnell Lake.
    Lake, in his second season coaching the Steelers’ defense backs, has guided the unit to be the number one pass defense in the NFL for the second year in a row.
    “I told him he is the defensive backs coach of the year this year,” said Clark. “When you think about the different people and lineup combinations he has had to use this year and us to finish No. 1 in pass defense is a huge accomplishment not only for us, but for Coach Lake.”
    The Steelers were without safety Troy Polamalu for nine games this season, while Ike Taylor missed the final five games of the year with an ankle injury. Cortez Allen started for Taylor and continued to grow, but he too was sidelined for a game while Taylor was out, and Josh Victorian, who spent most of the season on the practice squad, started against the Cowboys.
    Through it all, though, the secondary was consistent allowing just 185.2 yards per game, and the players give much of that credit to Lake.
    “He is an intelligent guy,” said safety Will Allen. “Just his wisdom of the game and how he approaches it, his mentality, he is a tough guy. It’s crazy because if you didn’t know him, he hardly says anything about playing. He is a competitor. He exudes that throughout the room.


    Read more
    http://blog.steelers.com/2013/…ombination-for-secondary/

    "this place is a bit like Atlas Shrugged" ---Lemonhead


    "I think we're going to need a bigger boat"


    "Oh George, not the livestock"!