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83-Steelers-43
07-19-2007, 01:34 PM
Tomlin expects all rookies at start of Steelers camp
Thursday, July 19, 2007
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

(Published 1:25 p.m., updated 1:44 p.m.)

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin talks about the team at a press conference today.

Coach Mike Tomlin said today he believes every Steelers rookie will be signed and ready to go when he opens training camp at St. Vincent College Monday at 4 p.m.

"It is important, because the train starts moving at 4 o'clock on Monday. It's tough to get on a moving train if you haven't tried before. You like to have everybody on board before we take off.''

Five of the team's eight draft choices have come to terms and Tomlin indicated the remaining three will join them over the next few days. They include first-round pick Lawrence Timmons, third-rounder Matt Spaeth and fifth-rounder William Gay.

Tomlin said his goal over a training camp that lasts through Aug. 17 is a simple one.

"I want to come out of training camp a unified, hardened group that's ready to do battle.''

Toward that end, he has planned a heavy dose of twice-daily practices, the dreaded two-a-days many NFL head coaches have virtually eliminated in training camp. Tomlin has 15 scheduled, about twice what former Steelers coach Bill Cowher put his teams through. But seven of those practices are one-hour morning sessions that will deal mostly with special teams issues, although the entire roster will attend.

"I like the schedule, I put a great deal of time into developing it,'' Tomlin said. "I'm comfortable with it.

"We have some special teams work we'd like to focus on; they're shortened practices but at the same time you have to go through the mental process of getting yourself up and ready to take the field twice a day, even if there's not two full practices."

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07200/802879-66.stm

83-Steelers-43
07-19-2007, 01:38 PM
"We have some special teams work we'd like to focus on"

Does this involve releasing Colclough? Please?

Jman
07-19-2007, 01:42 PM
Does this involve releasing Colclough? Please?

Can someone say muffed punt?

:thud::thud::thud:

HometownGal
07-19-2007, 01:47 PM
"I want to come out of training camp a unified, hardened group that's ready to do battle.''


Wow! That is music to a Steelers' fan's ears! :cheers:

Can't wait for camp to get here and I can't wait to be there! :tt02:

83-Steelers-43
07-19-2007, 01:52 PM
Can someone say muffed punt?

:thud::thud::thud:

Over the last three seasons, you might want to make punt plural.....:wink02:

Da Steeler Soprano
07-19-2007, 02:02 PM
Five free agents came to terms? Did I miss the signing of Woodley and Baker???

83-Steelers-43
07-19-2007, 02:13 PM
Five free agents came to terms? Did I miss the signing of Woodley and Baker???

Woodley yesterday and Baker the day before.

Woodley Signing: http://forums.steelersfever.com/showthread.php?t=17979

Baker Signing: http://forums.steelersfever.com/showthread.php?t=17958

tony hipchest
07-19-2007, 03:12 PM
http://news.steelers.com/article/78381/


heres the link for the whole press conference. some good stuff. this little exchange with ed bouchette was kinda funny:



Why 15 two-a-days?

This is the first time that I had the pen. I am comfortable with it and I am happy with the schedule. I put a great deal of time into developing it and we are very comfortable with that. It is similar with some things that I have done in the past, but it stands on its own.

When there are one-hour mornings, what will those be?

Those are special-teams emphasis practices. Ed (Bouchette) you really do your homework. Two-a-days are not truly two-a-days. There are some special-teams work we would like to focus on. They are shortened practices, but at the same time, you have to go through the mental process to get yourself up and ready to take the field twice a day, even if they aren't full practices.


Evaluate Ben Roethlisberger's offseason?

I think he has had a very good offseason and I have enjoyed getting to know him, as it has been with a lot of the guys. I know he is very motivated and very competitive. I know on a personal note, he feels like he has some critics to answer, which is great. Anything that motivates people to be their very best is good. I expect big things from him. I am very pleased with where he is and how he has taken to the changes around here. He has behaved like a franchise quarterback.

Does he have to prove anything to you?

Absolutely. I think he is more concerned about proving some things to himself, as we all should be, but that doesn't separate him from anybody. I think we all have something to prove. It is awesome. That is what is so great about doing what we do for a living. You can never breathe a sigh of relief in this business. Every day that we come here, whether it be today, tomorrow or ten years from now, we all have something to prove.


Do you have one emotion that you're feeling?

I feel alive. I love this feeling. I love football and I would coach it year-round if I could. I am ready to go.

What do you plan on doing on this final weekend?

I don't know, I better ask my wife. It gets to this point in the summer where I just try to stack up as many brownie points as I can. Wherever she wants to go eat or wants to do, because on Monday I will get a little scarce.

What makes you ready for the pressure?

Pressure is funny to me. The standards that I set for myself, in terms of what I want to do are higher than any that anyone else can impose upon me. I don't ride that emotional rollercoaster and I don't encourage our guys to ride that emotional rollercoaster. True battles should be man versus himself, if that man is right-minded and that is the type of football team we need to have. Pressure should be a sidebar.

Are you ready for the media blitz?

I am starting to figure that out. I wish you guys luck, because I know you guys have to pin your ears back and do what you have to do. I am not overly concerned about that.


Is movie day gone?

We'll see. You guys are on the players payroll sometimes I think. You guys are very nice people, but if it was soft, you would complain about that. It is unbelievable.
get em mike!

83-Steelers-43
07-19-2007, 03:33 PM
Is movie day gone?

We'll see. You guys are on the players payroll sometimes I think. You guys are very nice people, but if it was soft, you would complain about that. It is unbelievable.

I've heard Steigerwald, Bouchette and Cook all comment on Tomlin's approach to TC this year and they are loving it. All three stated that this is what this team needs at this point in time (Cowher leaving, establishing yourself as a coach, etc. etc.).

It's not just the fans who are liking what Tomlin is bringing to this team.

Black@Gold Forever32
07-19-2007, 04:02 PM
Thats why I'm so excited about the change and thought it was time for a change.....Cowher spent a long time in one city after awhile a teams needs a new perspective.....

Black@Gold Forever32
07-19-2007, 04:06 PM
Does this involve releasing Colclough? Please?

I hear you 83.....Only problem if Ricardo is released then who takes his spot as the 4th corner? I know we drafted William Gay and I think he can maybe one day be a 3rd or 4th corner on this team but as of right now I don't expect him to contribute to much...Not that Ricardo has since he has been in the NFL....:sofunny::sofunny::sofunny:

Plus the fact the Steelers traded up in the 2nd round in the 2004 draft to pick Ricardo is another reason to maybe give Colclough one shot especially with a new HC.....

Just keep him away from the punt and kick returns.....:toofunny:

C-BusSteeler
07-19-2007, 04:19 PM
hopefully some Sepulveda trick plays will be devoloped during those Special Teams practices.....

Preacher
07-19-2007, 04:40 PM
Let me get this straight....

Our new coach has.....

1. Established two-a-days... an hour in the morning, FOCUSED on special teams, which the ENTIRE team must come out for...

2. Expects each player to have higher standards on themselves then anyone else would put on them...

3. Dodged the movie-day question rather smoothly, yet at the same time...

4. Neatly and smoothly told the press to stay in their place?????


Why did we ever hire this man as coach?? :wink02::wink02:


Dang, no wonder the Rooney's were impressed. Okay Tomlin... Let's see what you got!!

tony hipchest
07-19-2007, 05:02 PM
Why did we ever hire this man as coach?? :wink02::wink02:

Dang, no wonder the Rooney's were impressed. Okay Tomlin... Let's see what you got!!

i get so high reading his press conferences and interviews....

Does this have to be your toughest camp in terms of setting the tone?

I don't take that approach. That is not the way we want to go about it. It is the 2007 camp, and the 2007 season and we want to be the best that we can be. I'm not approaching this as a tone setter or looking at how this camp is going to compare to the future or even how it is going to compare to the past. Each year stands on its own. We have to be prepared to be our very best and that is how we approach it.


and although it will be hard...

I am not familiar with how it has been in the past, but it is going to be trying at times. There will be some adversity. That is what training camp is about and it is part of team building. It is supposed to represent what lies ahead. There is no doubt that there will be some challenges when we start playing football in the fall.

he is not going to be hard assed about it...

What is your approach to off-hours at camp?

I think that is okay. I think it is sometimes needed for sanity's sake. You have to ride off and have a meal outside of the facility. We are going to have a curfew and things of that nature because this is business, but there is nothing wrong with a guy going out and getting a burger to get away every now and then. There are going to be moments like that, just like there is at every camp. Players do it, coaches do it and I think we all need to do it every now and then.


i think he knows theres no need to be like a drill sgt. at boot camp...

Do you have any "hat days" planned? :helmet:....:cap:

Christmas may come a few times this year. We'll see. We are going to play that by ear, but I think that decision will become obvious too.:saintnick:


:tt02:

The Duke
07-19-2007, 11:56 PM
I hear you 83.....Only problem if Ricardo is released then who takes his spot as the 4th corner? I know we drafted William Gay and I think he can maybe one day be a 3rd or 4th corner on this team but as of right now I don't expect him to contribute to much...Not that Ricardo has since he has been in the NFL....:sofunny::sofunny::sofunny:

Plus the fact the Steelers traded up in the 2nd round in the 2004 draft to pick Ricardo is another reason to maybe give Colclough one shot especially with a new HC.....

Just keep him away from the punt and kick returns.....:toofunny:

Totally agree, give him a chance with the great secondary coach turned head coach, Ike's hoping to rebound, Colclough should have that attitude too......well not rebound more like begin in his case :flap:

Black@Gold Forever32
07-20-2007, 12:07 AM
Totally agree, give him a chance with the great secondary coach turned head coach, Ike's hoping to rebound, Colclough should have that attitude too......well not rebound more like begin in his case :flap:

Exactly sometimes a new perspective is all a player needs....So I really think Tomlin will do wonders for Ike this year and maybe he will finally get something out of Ricardo....In the five seasons Tomlin was secondary coach of the Bucs the Bucs led the NFL in INT's....Yes they had all-pro talents in that secondary like Barber and Lynch....But both of those players stated how some of the simple drills that focused on fundamentals made them better football players....So hopefully Tomlin can improve our corners...

83-Steelers-43
07-20-2007, 09:54 AM
Ike I can see stepping up this season. Colclough who is now going on his 4th year.........I'm not holding my breath. IMO, Coke is done. But, we shall see.

xXTheSteelKingsXx
07-20-2007, 10:02 AM
Yeah I see Ike having another 2005 preformance this season but I think Coke is out and Anthony Madison is our fourth corner.

Jman
07-20-2007, 10:11 AM
Haven't the Steelers also played the back-up SS / FS in the 3rd and 4th corner spots on Nickel and Dime situations?

xXTheSteelKingsXx
07-20-2007, 10:15 AM
Haven't the Steelers also played the back-up SS / FS in the 3rd and 4th corner spots on Nickel and Dime situations?

Yes normally Tyrone Carter and either Clark or Anthony Smith.

Jman
07-20-2007, 10:21 AM
Yes normally Tyrone Carter and either Clark or Anthony Smith.

Well there ya go...Dump Ricardo...Just kidding...He does need some polishing on the skills. :computer: Hopefully coach Tomlin can help him improve.

83-Steelers-43
07-20-2007, 02:22 PM
Tomlin time: Football, and not much else, at Steelers camp
By The Associated Press
Friday, July 20, 2007

Mike Tomlin has long said he would coach football 365 days a year if he could. The Pittsburgh Steelers are beginning to believe it.

The Steelers' training camps became relatively predictable during former coach Bill Cowher's 15 seasons, with a limited number of two-a-days and occasional practices called off to give the players a break or to take a trip to the movies.

When the Steelers start their first camp under Tomlin on Monday, the movies probably will be limited to film study sessions and days off will be virtually nonexistent, with none in the first 14 days. The only planned days off before camp ends Aug. 17 occur the day after each of the first three exhibition games.

"This is what training camps are about," Tomlin said. "They are not supposed to be pleasant."

Tomlin isn't saying whether he thinks the Steelers had it a little too soft a summer ago. Maybe he doesn't have to. Then, coming off a Super Bowl victory, the Steelers won only two of their first eight games following a relaxed training camp.

It appears obvious Tomlin didn't pay much attention to Cowher's camp schedule when he planned his own — except to retain the traditional, middle-of-the-afternoon workouts that have been a staple since Chuck Noll's days as coach from 1969-91.

Maybe it's fitting the Steelers will hold a majority of practices on Chuck Noll Field, where St. Vincent College will renew its football program this fall following a 45-year lapse.

"I'm not familiar with how it is has been in the past," said Tomlin, who said he took considerable time planning his first camp. "I really can't speak to that, but it will be trying at times. There will be some adversity."

Tomlin has multiple practices scheduled on 15 days, or about twice as many as Cowher did — though seven of the early practices will be devoted mostly to special teams. While some NFL teams have gotten away from multiple practices, they are common in the AFC Central.

Baltimore and Cincinnati have 12 two-a-days apiece, and both teams report to camp later than the Steelers do. Cleveland has six days with multiple practices.

Also, Tomlin will hold conditioning tests shortly after the players report Monday, while Cowher always held them a day later. The tests will be different from the 14 40-yard dashes that Cowher required, though Tomlin isn't saying yet what they will be.

Much like a year ago, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger may be the most-watched player in camp, though for entirely different reasons.

Last year, he was only weeks removed from a near-fatal motorcycle accident and there was doubt when camp began if he would be healthy enough to play immediately. Now, he is coming off the first poor season of his three-year career (18 TD passes, a league-high 23 interceptions) as he tries to get acclimated as quickly as possible to a refined offense.

New offensive coordinator Bruce Arians was the receivers coach under Cowher, and it appears he'll give more leeway to Roethlisberger than former coordinator Ken Whisenhunt did to throw on early downs and to check off plays.

"I know he is very motivated and very competitive," Tomlin said. "I know on a personal note he has some critics to answer to, which is great. Whatever motivates people to do their best."

Much like a year ago, there are relatively few open positions.

Second-year lineman Willie Colon will compete with Super Bowl starter Max Starks at right tackle and Sean Mahan, who can play multiple positions, will press Chukky Okobi at center. On defense, the most scrutinized player may be James Harrison, the undrafted linebacker who is penciled in to replace longtime star Joey Porter at right outside linebacker.

Tomlin became convinced during two minicamps and the offseason workouts this spring he doesn't have to worry about the Steelers being ready to work. A lot.

"They like to compete," he said. "They enjoy football is whatever form you present it to them."

On Friday, the Steelers signed third-round draft choice Matt Spaeth, the 6-foot-7 tight end from Minnesota who no doubt attracted Tomlin's attention when Tomlin was the Vikings' defensive coordinator. Spaeth was chosen as college football's top tight end last season.

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/s_518257.html

Jman
07-20-2007, 02:30 PM
Good to see a coach who doesn't put the QB under the bus.

83-Steelers-43
07-21-2007, 08:40 AM
Steelers training camp will have a job fair atmosphere
Saturday, July 21, 2007

By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Steelers training camp will take on the look of a job fair this summer.

Training camp has been rarely like this, at least not recently, because the Steelers report to Saint Vincent College Monday with more starting jobs open than they've had in years.

There are three openings on the offensive line and two in the secondary. That does not count others that may crop up as surprises, as new coach Mike Tomlin said the other day.

Could, for instance, a linebacker such as Arnold Harrison or rookie Lawrence Timmons challenge James Harrison's assumed progression into Joey Porter's job on the right outside? Often, anything goes under a new coach.

"I try not to paint a picture of what I think is going to happen," Tomlin said. "I like to stack the team along with everyone else and make it as strong as possible and go through the process of building it."

The openings occurred not so much because Tomlin is a new head coach. The retirement of center Jeff Hartings and the release of Porter meant there would be at least two new starters on a team that failed to make the playoffs after winning Super Bowl XL.

Other competition for starting jobs was created by young players pushing veterans: Willie Colon vs. Max Starks at right tackle, Chris Kemoeatu vs. Kendall Simmons at right guard, Bryant McFadden vs. Deseha Townsend at right cornerback, and Anthony Smith vs. Ryan Clark at free safety. Two veterans will compete at center, newcomer Sean Mahan and longtime heir apparent Chukky Okobi.

The Mahan-Okobi competition takes on a sidebar because both will be paid like starters. Mahan got a $17 million, five-year contract with a $4 million signing bonus to sign as a free agent. Okobi has a $2 million salary this season.

"I am one who believes that it will all become obvious," Tomlin said of the outcome of the competition. "Sometimes, I think if you are patient and don't rush to judge, decisions become obvious."

That would include some key backup jobs as well. There is the situation behind Willie Parker at running back, where a top backup and a third-down back must surface. The same player could hold down both. Veteran Kevan Barlow joins a mix that includes Verron Haynes and his reconstructed knee and Najeh Davenport.

"We have a good group of veteran guys back there behind Willie," Tomlin said. "It is known what they are capable of in this league. It is going to be very good competition.''

NOTES -- TE Matt Spaeth, the team's third-round draft choice from Minnesota, signed a three-year contract. He received a signing bonus of $564,000. Two rookies remain unsigned: LB and No. 1 pick Lawrence Timmons and CB William Gay, their second fifth-round draft choice. ... LaMarr Woodley's four-year contract included a signing bonus of $1,865,000. ... The Steelers hired Bob Tyler as controller. He replaces Jim Ellenberger, who left the team this summer after a long tenure. ... Luke Palko, the brother of former Pitt quarterback Tyler Palko, will serve as the team's new scouting intern. Luke Palko played wide receiver at St. Francis (Pa.).

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07202/803378-66.stm

83-Steelers-43
07-21-2007, 11:10 PM
No-nonsense Tomlin looks forward to camp
Sunday, July 22, 2007

By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In his first training camp, Chuck Noll told his players many of them would not be on the team long because they lacked the kind of talent he needed to forge a winner.

In his first training camp, Bill Cowher stopped practice in the middle one day, gathered his players around him and screamed at them so loud his words could be heard on the hillside around Saint Vincent College.

Mike Tomlin seems ready to continue the tradition tomorrow when his first Steelers team reports to training camp in Latrobe.

As were his two predecessors, Tomlin is young -- at 35, the same age as Cowher and two years younger than Noll when they became Steelers coaches. And he also appears ready to follow their paths as a tough, no-nonsense leader.

Even in the spring, players appealed to captain Hines Ward to approach the coach to go easier in no-pads practices. What's it going to be like in this training camp with 15 two-a-days and no day off until Aug. 6, the day after their first preseason game in Canton, Ohio?

"Probably a little heavier than they are used to,'' Tomlin said, almost gleefully. "It will give them something to whine about.

"I don't know too many active players that like training camp. They probably endure it. I did tell the group ... that it is going to be extremely tough. I am not apologizing for that. I am going to put that challenge out there to them because in a lot of ways it represents the journey that we are going to face this year."

Expectations for Tomlin's first season are not as high as they were for the Steelers the past two training camps, first when they followed a 15-1 season and a visit to the AFC championship game, and then a Super Bowl victory. Still, there is enough talent left from those two teams that last year's 8-8 record is not the expectation either.

As Ward noted in June, "Expectations are still high."

Like the change at the top, the change in personnel from last season is small in numbers, large in stature. Linebacker Joey Porter was cut and center Jeff Hartings retired. Both are former Pro Bowl players.

That opened up two jobs, and Tomlin has opened others, most specifically at right guard and right tackle. Several other jobs are in jeopardy because of younger players -- Bryant McFadden at cornerback and Anthony Smith at free safety -- coming into their own.

Tomlin, though, carries no nostalgia for his players into this training camp, so if some veterans do not perform up to expectations, they also could find themselves in a fight to keep their jobs.

"There are known position battles that everybody knows about, but there are also unknown position battles that are going to develop, because we are going to go into this thing with no preconceived notions," Tomlin said. "We are going to base our decisions on what we see in training camp."

It wasn't merely a management decision to release Porter, ostensibly for salary cap purposes. Tomlin quickly gave it his stamp of approval for competitive reasons as well after watching tape of Porter last season.

"Whether people are looking for comfort or if they find comfort in whether or not their jobs are mentioned as one being up for grabs, I hope they don't," Tomlin said. "I hope they understand what we have been saying to them all along. We are going to base our judgments off of what they do and not what they have done or what their reputations are."

Tomlin has a depth chart going in, but as he noted when he closed up shop in June, they are penciled in, subject to erasure.

"No job is secure," he said. "This is not a security business and if they are looking for security, they need to find a new line of work."

How Tomlin walks that fine line between being tough and too tough should be interesting as camp progresses.

"It is not going to be without ups and downs," he acknowledged. "It is not going to be smooth sailing, but we have to deal with it like champions if we want to be champions. So, I am looking forward to training camp. I am sure they are. I am sure at times, they won't but that is part of it. That is what NFL training camps are about. They are not supposed to be pleasant."

It appears there will be no day at the movies instead of practice for the Steelers this summer, as was an annual ritual of Cowher's.

"You define guys on how they play this game when they play it in pads," Tomlin said.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07203/803460-66.stm

nojobny
07-21-2007, 11:53 PM
I've heard Steigerwald, Bouchette and Cook all comment on Tomlin's approach to TC this year and they are loving it. All three stated that this is what this team needs at this point in time (Cowher leaving, establishing yourself as a coach, etc. etc.).

It's not just the fans who are liking what Tomlin is bringing to this team.

I'm a long distance fan so I don't get the daily onslaught of black & gold media. Has that been the concensus, that the fans don't like Tomlin?

All my Steeler fan friends are excited about the new blood. (of course we all live in NY, MA, NJ... so we don't see everything)

83-Steelers-43
07-22-2007, 10:55 AM
Has that been the concensus, that the fans don't like Tomlin?

No, the total opposite.

Going by the many local sports talk tv and radio shows, the media sports heads and the fans are loving Tomlin up to this point. I'm just hoping those same people give him the time and patience needed if we don't start out 3-0 this season.

Preacher
07-23-2007, 12:35 AM
No, the total opposite.

Going by the many local sports talk tv and radio shows, the media sports heads and the fans are loving Tomlin up to this point. I'm just hoping those same people give him the time and patience needed if we don't start out 3-0 this season.

Yep, Yep, and Yep...


Off the field, he is doing unbelievable. So let's just see what happens ON the field.