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83-Steelers-43
06-15-2007, 12:07 AM
Tomlin warns team to be ready for tough camp

By Mike Prisuta
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Friday, June 15, 2007

When the final organized team activity session ended Thursday, the Steelers were able to take it easy.

The respite will last until July 23 when training camp begins at St. Vincent College.

Coach Mike Tomlin warned that his team had better report to camp prepared to work.

"I told the group it's going to be extremely tough," Tomlin said yesterday before watching his players disperse. "I'm not apologizing for that. I'm going to put that challenge out there to them. I'm looking forward to training camp."

The players can look forward to an increased emphasis on two-a-day practices, "probably a little heavier than they're used to," Tomlin said.

"It'll give them something to whine about."

The OTAs and the two minicamps the team conducted this offseason were exercises in "multi-tasking," Tomlin said. The goals were to implement a foundation on offense, defense and special teams, emphasize "situational football" (third down, red zone, etc.) while creating "artificial adversity". The goal is to learn how players approach their jobs and glean insight as to "who they are."

The proceedings at St. Vincent will be about winning jobs.

The current depth chart features Chukky Okobi as the starting center, Ike Taylor and Deshea Townsend starting at cornerback and Ryan Clark lining up as the starting free safety.

But the current depth chart, Tomlin emphasized, is "in pencil."

"People want to establish depth charts at this time of year, so be it," Tomlin said. "They change. There are known position battles that will be talked about, but there are also unknown position battles that are going to develop because we're going to go into this thing with no preconceived notions. No jobs are secure. This is not a security business. They gotta play and perform."

The known battles include Okobi and free-agent addition Sean Mahan vying to become Jeff Hartings' replacement at center, Kendall Simmons attempting to hold off Chris Kemoeatu at right guard, Clark and second-year pro Anthony Smith fighting it out at free safety, and the threesome of Taylor, Townsend and Bryant McFadden competing for two starting spots at corner.

There will be potentially less-publicized competition at other positions such as right tackle, where second-year pro Willie Colon is pushing incumbent Max Starks.

"Absolutely, but Willie's pushing a lot of people," Tomlin said. "Willie's been one of the guys we've moved around quite a bit because we want to put him in position to get to that top five and get in where he fits in, if he's capable. Willie's played some guard. Willie's played some tackle. Willie's even tried center.

"Willie's going to push a lot of people."

The regular-season opener is Sept. 9 in Cleveland. The depth chart, presumably, will be in ink by then.

Until then, Tomlin is prepared to let competition dictate all that must be resolved before he leads his first NFL team onto the field against the Browns.

"I kinda like uncertainty at this time of the year," he said. "These guys are in the business of responding to challenges and answering questions. That's kinda the underlying theme that's involved in football."

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_512704.html

RoethlisBURGHer
06-15-2007, 12:47 AM
I like this,because Cowher's depth charts were always set in stone,unless an injury popped up.With Cowher,certain guys were gauranteed thier job and didn't have to fight for it.

Competition is good for the team,it makes everyone better.

The Duke
06-15-2007, 12:50 AM
Damn, this all sounds so exciting. Tomlin seems to know what he's doing and I completely trust him. I've never wanted for training camp to come faster, Tomlin is choosing the best of the best for the team.

"It'll give them something to whine about."
interesting...

tony hipchest
06-15-2007, 01:07 AM
"I kinda like uncertainty at this time of the year," he said. "These guys are in the business of responding to challenges and answering questions. That's kinda the underlying theme that's involved in football."
i almost wanted the rooneys to write a blank check to cowher because i got accustomed to the comfort and security of this time of year. its obvious cowher did too.

cowher never seemed to "like" or embrace, or thrive off of the uncertainty. we have alot more youngsters waiting in the wings than we have "cowher's (guys) veterans". it seems tomlin is better for the collective majority rather than the selected few.

Galax Steeler
06-15-2007, 03:20 AM
It sounds like they better be in shape for camp.

Atlanta Dan
06-15-2007, 08:37 AM
Sounds like the preseason games are going to be worth watching for the competition - no more of the set up last Augsut where the starters played about 2 series a game

TackleMeBen
06-15-2007, 10:55 AM
I cant wait for camp now. Coach T is going to make those boy cry for their mommy's by the time he is done with them ..lol..

stlrtruck
06-15-2007, 11:04 AM
It sounds like it is definitely going to be a demanding training camp. Something the players haven't had in a few years. I think it will be good for the players as individual starters and for the team as a cohesive unit!

1 month, 1 week, and it all starts.

paw-n-maul-u
06-15-2007, 11:51 AM
Nice article, although it'll probably be the last one like it for awhile. This span between now and camp is going to be booooooooooooooooooooooooorrrrringggg.


I do hope by the end of camp that mcfadden and smith > townsend and clark, but for this year atleast, I don't think it'll make much of a difference either way. youth/upside/athleticism or experience/technique/smarts ... pick your poison.

The only real important thing is getting Ben back on track. I don't really see any of these other position battles having too much impact regardless of who wins the job. However, Ben HASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS to play at that elite level again. Time to take off the training wheels, so to speak, and let the guy sling it around a few times.

So far it seems like all is well on the western front. Sure wish timmons could see a bit of action but I def. don't want him to risk chance of further injury. Hopefully everyone will be healthy by the time camp starts.

TackleMeBen
06-15-2007, 11:55 AM
The only real important thing is getting Ben back on track. I don't really see any of these other position battles having too much impact regardless of who wins the job. However, Ben HASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS to play at that elite level again. Time to take off the training wheels, so to speak, and let the guy sling it around a few times.

i agree with you on that one. its time to see if he really does have an arm like he displaced in the denver game in 06. by the way, i love your comment about taking off the training wheels off..lol :thumbsup:

polamalufan43
06-15-2007, 12:05 PM
Well, for this camp, everyone even at the positions not mentioned is going to have to work hard in a situation where they normally all but secured a starting position.


~Polamalufan43:tt02:

domthebomb228
06-15-2007, 12:52 PM
There will be potentially less-publicized competition at other positions such as right tackle, where second-year pro Willie Colon is pushing incumbent Max Starks.

"Absolutely, but Willie's pushing a lot of people," Tomlin said. "Willie's been one of the guys we've moved around quite a bit because we want to put him in position to get to that top five and get in where he fits in, if he's capable. Willie's played some guard. Willie's played some tackle. Willie's even tried center.

"Willie's going to push a lot of people."

Oh man... You guys seriously have no idea how good it feels to hear that. It's about time we got a few linemen with some enthusiasm. Next up: Chris Kemoeatu

Black@Gold Forever32
06-15-2007, 02:14 PM
Well training camp should be tough...No more movie days or a relaxed camp that Cowher was known for.....I don't want Tomlin to kill the player during training camp...But nothing wrong with a tough camp and alot of open competition.

onthebus36
06-15-2007, 02:46 PM
Reminds me of that old addage, "A gallon of sweat saves a pint of blood." A tough camp should breed discipline, fitness, and cohesiveness. All necessary for a championship caliber team.

And I'd like to try and win some pre-season games this year. I know they don't count, but I think not trying to win anything last year set a bad tone to start the regular season. We have a chance to get off to a fast start this year and Tomlin strikes me as the type of coach who will want to establish a tradition of victory early on.

stlrtruck
06-15-2007, 03:10 PM
Tomlin strikes me as the type of coach who will want to establish a tradition of victory early on.

I couldn't agree more with that statement. His mindset, at least from what I've read and heard, is that he doesn't accept anything else but the best for himself and for his team. Having him around has made me unexpectedly excited about the upcoming training camp at least a month a head of schedule.

It's very difficult to try to talk football in an office full of tampa bay bucs fans. They don't understand things like tradition, honor, discipline, and winning!!!

DACEB
06-15-2007, 04:51 PM
Oh man... You guys seriously have no idea how good it feels to hear that. It's about time we got a few linemen with some enthusiasm. Next up: Chris Kemoeatu

You beat me to the punch bomb, I'm starting to get a good feeling about the O-line!

onthebus36
06-15-2007, 05:13 PM
They don't understand things like tradition, honor, discipline, and winning!!!


Amen brother! It a shame how few people understand those core values not only in football but in life. A team will beat a group of talented individuals almost every time.

Okay... I'm off my soap box.

Preacher
06-15-2007, 07:09 PM
O.K...

I am starting to have a couple different thoughts from this article.

1. go back and look at the Steelers record for the first six games. It seems that we were always 3-3, 4-2, 2-4, etc. Why? Could it be because camp Cowher wasn't what it was all cracked up to be? I make a prediction that the Steelers will come out of camp sharper then any camp under Cowher. I do expect scheme mistakes and other things, it is a new system and a new coach. But even so, I expect that we will SEE a major difference.

2. Willie Colon? What in the world? Willie at Tackle, Wille at Guard, Willie at center? It seems that they are chomping at the bit to get him in. Which means that they see what he is capable of. Heck, if he is able to hold down all those positions, or even good enough to try out for all of them with serious looks at him playing there... And with that attitude of his... Why not Wille at Short yardage back? Willie as Fullback? Will as QB? Willie as coach!!! Yeah, I am playing a little... but if this is even half of what it is cracked up to be, we have a wildcard that could be used to plug many holes in the line for years to come.

3. Tomlin, "It'll give em something to whine about!" :sofunny: how in the WORLD could you not like a coach like that? Let's take a second look at what he really said. "The camp will be tough. I don't care. Start whining now, cause you KNOW WHAT IS COMING!" So much for coasting through camp. Oh yeah, and you KNOW... The first time Ward, Ben, Polamalu, Faneca, etc. gets moved to the second team because the backup is outperforming him... WOW. That'll light a fire under EVERYONE's rear end. At this point, I REALLY believe Tomlin will do it too.

4. From now till preseason will FLY for me... there isn't ENOUGH time. Sorry all.. But I am SO glad there is over a month still!! I have SO much to do...

SteelCzar76
06-15-2007, 09:15 PM
"I told the group it's going to be extremely tough," Tomlin said yesterday before watching his players disperse. "I'm not apologizing for that. I'm going to put that challenge out there to them. I'm looking forward to training camp."

The players can look forward to an increased emphasis on two-a-day practices, "probably a little heavier than they're used to," Tomlin said.

"It'll give them something to whine about."

The OTAs and the two minicamps the team conducted this offseason were exercises in "multi-tasking," Tomlin said. The goals were to implement a foundation on offense, defense and special teams, emphasize "situational football" (third down, red zone, etc.) while creating "artificial adversity". The goal is to learn how players approach their jobs and glean insight as to "who they are."

But the current depth chart, Tomlin emphasized, is "in pencil."

"People want to establish depth charts at this time of year, so be it," Tomlin said. "They change. There are known position battles that will be talked about, but there are also unknown position battles that are going to develop because we're going to go into this thing with no preconceived notions. No jobs are secure. This is not a security business. They gotta play and perform."

"I kinda like uncertainty at this time of the year," he said. "These guys are in the business of responding to challenges and answering questions. That's kinda the underlying theme that's involved in football."

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_512704.html



Deserve it,........"Nuff said" !:helmet:

fansince'76
06-15-2007, 09:16 PM
2. Willie Colon? What in the world? Willie at Tackle, Wille at Guard, Willie at center? It seems that they are chomping at the bit to get him in. Which means that they see what he is capable of. Heck, if he is able to hold down all those positions, or even good enough to try out for all of them with serious looks at him playing there... And with that attitude of his... Why not Wille at Short yardage back? Willie as Fullback? Will as QB? Willie as coach!!! Yeah, I am playing a little... but if this is even half of what it is cracked up to be, we have a wildcard that could be used to plug many holes in the line for years to come.

Willie as goal line TE? :chuckle:

nicesteel4life
06-16-2007, 10:27 PM
HELL YEAH! It's what it's all about, WORKING HARD at Camp, not walking through drills knowing your the starter. I'll be there the first day it's open to public, Go TOMLIN make um cry.....Atleast we will get the most out of them!

Preacher
06-17-2007, 03:19 AM
Willie as goal line TE? :chuckle:

LOL... Wille Colon as RB in short yardage? The MINI FRIDGE?

stillers4me
06-17-2007, 10:12 AM
i agree with you on that one. its time to see if he really does have an arm like he displaced in the denver game in 06. by the way, i love your comment about taking off the training wheels off..lol :thumbsup:

I love that line , too! It gives me a new line for the bungles fans when they go on and on about their elite qb and badmouth Ben.

"Are you kidding? Ben got us to the SuperBowl with his training wheels on!! What's Carson done for you?" :toofunny:

TackleMeBen
06-20-2007, 12:25 AM
I love that line , too! It gives me a new line for the bungles fans when they go on and on about their elite qb and badmouth Ben.

"Are you kidding? Ben got us to the SuperBowl with his training wheels on!! What's Carson done for you?" :toofunny:
he has eaten hot dogs and posted bail for his teammates :wink02:

Preacher
06-20-2007, 01:47 AM
he has eaten hot dogs and posted bail for his teammates :wink02:

Don't remind me. I am still trying to get that picture out of my minds eye!

SteelCityMan786
06-20-2007, 11:48 AM
I'm liking it. Make them work for it.

steelpride12
06-20-2007, 04:09 PM
well i never really had doubts but after i hear tomlin say that it gives me chills cuz he gunna push them hard! its a very smart idea to get there asses ready to go for another SB ring!

Smashmouth225
06-20-2007, 04:25 PM
HELL YEAH! It's what it's all about, WORKING HARD at Camp, not walking through drills knowing your the starter. I'll be there the first day it's open to public, Go TOMLIN make um cry.....Atleast we will get the most out of them!
Exactly this is definitely a good thing. I think on the Steelers O-line we have some youngsters like Willie C. and Chris Kemo that can unseat starters like Max Starks and Kendall Simmons. There is nothing wrong with competition.

nwksteeler
06-20-2007, 08:02 PM
I love it. This creates real competition and forces guys to get in great shape early or sit and watch their competion. Far too long have guys come in with their positions locked down overweight and not practicing, or continuously getting nagging injuries because of conditioning issues. This is great.

SteelCityMan786
06-20-2007, 09:28 PM
well i never really had doubts but after i hear tomlin say that it gives me chills cuz he gunna push them hard! its a very smart idea to get there asses ready to go for another SB ring!

Amen to your last statement Brother

TackleMeBen
06-20-2007, 10:40 PM
Don't remind me. I am still trying to get that picture out of my minds eye!

Preacher,

I am sorry to bring back those awful memories. when i am in church sunday i will ask for forgiveness..lol :tt02:

Preacher
06-22-2007, 01:49 AM
Preacher,

I am sorry to bring back those awful memories. when i am in church sunday i will ask for forgiveness..lol :tt02:


:sofunny: You better!!! :wink02:

TackleMeBen
06-22-2007, 10:01 AM
:sofunny: You better!!! :wink02:

while i am at it, maybe i will ask for a good season too :wink02:. without any injuries...lol.