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lamberts-lost-tooth
04-28-2008, 08:41 AM
Steelers stockpiling weapons
By John Harris
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Monday, April 28, 2008

Fans of offensive football, rejoice. The Steelers more than adequately addressed their skill position needs when they drafted Illinois running back Rashard Mendenhall and Texas wide receiver Limas Sweed with their first two picks.
"I feel good about those two guys because I do believe they are weapons," Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. "I feel fortunate that they were sitting on the board."

On the second day of the draft, the Steelers got around to patching some of their holes on defense. Unfortunately, they didn't get around to acquiring younger players in the trenches, unless you count the Steelers taking UCLA defensive end Bruce Davis in Sunday's third round and announcing that he'll play linebacker.

As for acquiring more interior linemen to help stop the likes of Jacksonville's Fred Taylor on key third-down situations, the Steelers struck out.

"It is impossible in any year to address the entire team. There's going to be positions you don't draft," director of football operations Kevin Colbert said. "Quite honestly, I'd love to get a player at every spot, but that's unrealistic."
One round after selecting Davis, the Steelers selected their only lineman of the draft with the 130th overall pick -- Texas offensive tackle Tony Hills, who missed the end of his senior year after breaking his leg.

While discussing Hills' future with the Steelers, assistant coach Larry Zierlein was asked about a current player on the roster who is expected to contend for a starting job in 2008.

Chris Kemoeatu's star is on the rise.

In the team's strongest endorsement of Kemoeatu to date, Zierlein said the left guard job is Kemoeatu's to lose.

"Chris is going to get the shot," Zierlein said. "I'll tell you what: I have a lot of confidence in that guy."

Zierlein's explanation for the Steelers' faith in Kemoeatu, a sixth-round pick in 2005, offered insight into the team's draft strategy of bypassing linemen early.

"He was ready to play last year," Zierlein said. "He was ready, and Kendall (Simmons) kind of won the thing, but it was close. When we came out of training camp, preseason games, the grades were close. But this kid is ready to play."

Kemoeatu, the heir apparent to departed veteran Alan Faneca, shores up a position that wasn't addressed in the draft.

And while the loser of the Sean Mahan-Justin Hartwig competition at center is expected to receive a look at left guard, it will probably be as Kemoeatu's backup.

Prior to yesterday, the coaches rarely mentioned Kemoeatu's name.

Now he has a good chance of starting.

"The thing I told him (Kemoeatu) the other day, 'It's obvious to me, when you see blitzes, you understand it all. Just become a little more vocal,'" Zierlien said. "He understands things. I like him, I really do. I think he's going to be a good player."

Seeing is believing.


http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_564644.html

TackleMeBen
04-28-2008, 08:51 AM
its nice to see them stockpiling weapons, but what good are they going to be if ben is laying on his back?

HometownGal
04-28-2008, 08:55 AM
its nice to see them stockpiling weapons, but what good are they going to be if ben is laying on his back?

C'mon, hon - aren't we getting a little ahead of ourseves by assuming that the OL is going to suck this season? We have no idea and we won't until TC is just about over and we've played a few preseason games where we are with the OL. There are a lot of "what if's" about that line and we don't have crystal balls to be able to predict that the line is going to suck or succeed.

Jman
04-28-2008, 08:55 AM
its nice to see them stockpiling weapons, but what good are they going to be if ben is laying on his back?

With some of the new options, Ben has more targets to get it out of there quickly. I think the WR and RB positions are play-making positions and should help Ben with getting rid of the ball more quickly. Would I have liked to see the Steelers go after lineman? Sure! But the draft didn't play out that way for them. They took what was left and I think they did a great job working with what they had available. I'm excited about next season.

Dino 6 Rings
04-28-2008, 08:57 AM
its nice to see them stockpiling weapons, but what good are they going to be if ben is laying on his back?

Without Mahan getting destroyed at center, and without Faneca or a guard having to help on the inside instead of helping the tackles on the outside, the line should be better. It all starts at the Center position and they addressed that bringing in the veteran Hartwig. Now with him anchoring the line, the gaurds can play their assignments first and that will spread out to the tackles for our blocking schemes. Plus, with 2 more weapons, Sweed and Moore, on 3rd downs, Ben will have more people to throw the ball to, with Moore being a really good hands back on 3rd down.

Again, I stress, its great to question not drafting lineman, but who at the 23rd pick would have "fixed our problems" or what trade made sense to go up to get a tackle when we already have 3 high payed tackles on the roster?

TackleMeBen
04-28-2008, 09:00 AM
C'mon, hon - aren't we getting a little ahead of ourseves by assuming that the OL is going to suck this season? We have no idea and we won't until TC is just about over and we've played a few preseason games where we are with the OL. There are a lot of "what if's" about that line and we don't have crystal balls to be able to predict that the line is going to suck or succeed.
i am going ahead thinking they are going to suck so when they dont, i will be overjoyed..lol..

TackleMeBen
04-28-2008, 09:02 AM
Again, I stress, its great to question not drafting lineman, but who at the 23rd pick would have "fixed our problems" or what trade made sense to go up to get a tackle when we already have 3 high payed tackles on the roster?

i am not questioning the 23rd pick, b/c that is going to be a great steal.. but the other picks i am having issues with.. maybe with the exception of Sweed, b/c we all know that ben wanted a tall WR:flap:

lamberts-lost-tooth
04-28-2008, 09:20 AM
its nice to see them stockpiling weapons, but what good are they going to be if ben is laying on his back?

It looks more and more like the plan is to shuffle players....If I had to guess, in the end we will see:

LT: Smith/Hills
LG: Colon/Simmons
C: Hardwig/Legursky (I hope)
RG Kemo/Mahan
RT Starks/Essex

TackleMeBen
04-28-2008, 09:25 AM
It looks more and more like the plan is to shuffle players....If I had to guess, in the end we will see:

LT: Smith/Hills
LG: Colon/Simmons
C: Hardwig/Legursky (I hope)
RG Kemo/Mahan
RT Starks/Essex

i am really hoping that the new center is what was missing from the OL. i am tired of cringing everytime i see a defender in the backfield and ben running for his life. if not,well i guess we are in for a long season, giving the fact that we have a very hard schedule..

revefsreleets
04-28-2008, 09:36 AM
Well, there it is. All the OL talk was smoke, and they were looking for weapons all along. When I suggested this inanother thread, I was told I was wrong, but it sure sounds like the Steelers FO thinks their OL is going to be vastly improved this year.

LVSteelersfan
04-28-2008, 10:41 AM
I was raging yesterday especially with the pick of Dixon but on reflection and a good nights' sleep I am going to go with the idea that the FO knows what they are doing. If they think Hartwig will solidify the Center position and Kemoatu (sp) can do the job, then perhaps we made the right picks after all. I still don't understand the Dixon pick but I don't really have time to follow college football and Pro football both, so I can't say I ever saw Dixon play. He was supposed to be on track for the Heismann Trophy so I have to think good thoughts about that pick although he won't play this year at all. Perhaps the next Randle el.

rdsovchen
04-28-2008, 10:56 AM
its nice to see them stockpiling weapons, but what good are they going to be if ben is laying on his back?

Hopefully he will be lying on his back watching them scamper in for a touchdown!:tt02:

louisvillecards
04-28-2008, 11:07 AM
I was raging yesterday especially with the pick of Dixon but on reflection and a good nights' sleep I am going to go with the idea that the FO knows what they are doing. If they think Hartwig will solidify the Center position and Kemoatu (sp) can do the job, then perhaps we made the right picks after all. I still don't understand the Dixon pick but I don't really have time to follow college football and Pro football both, so I can't say I ever saw Dixon play. He was supposed to be on track for the Heismann Trophy so I have to think good thoughts about that pick although he won't play this year at all. Perhaps the next Randle el.

He wont play behind center just like Ward and Randle-El he is a athletic qb ,i see him being converted to wide out , that mo-fo can flat out run.

Elvis
04-28-2008, 12:03 PM
It looks more and more like the plan is to shuffle players....If I had to guess, in the end we will see:

LT: Smith/Hills
LG: Colon/Simmons
C: Hardwig/Legursky (I hope)
RG Kemo/Mahan
RT Starks/Essex

Werent they just saying in the article that it was Kemos' job to lose at LG?
If you go by the way they made it sound it would be like this right?

LT Marvell Smith/Essex/Hills
LG Kemo/Mahan
C Hartwig
RG Simmons/Colon
RT Starks/Essex

memphissteelergirl
04-28-2008, 12:17 PM
C'mon, hon - aren't we getting a little ahead of ourseves by assuming that the OL is going to suck this season? We have no idea and we won't until TC is just about over and we've played a few preseason games where we are with the OL. There are a lot of "what if's" about that line and we don't have crystal balls to be able to predict that the line is going to suck or succeed.

It looks more and more like the plan is to shuffle players....If I had to guess, in the end we will see:

LT: Smith/Hills
LG: Colon/Simmons
C: Hardwig/Legursky (I hope)
RG Kemo/Mahan
RT Starks/Essex

There might be some truth to that, LLT. Perhaps the issue is to revamp roles rather than replacing guys altogether. Like HTG said, we will see come training camp.

El-Gonzo Jackson
04-28-2008, 12:36 PM
It looks more and more like the plan is to shuffle players....If I had to guess, in the end we will see:

LT: Smith/Hills
LG: Colon/Simmons
C: Hardwig/Legursky (I hope)
RG Kemo/Mahan
RT Starks/Essex

It could happen, but that is 10 O linemen and the Steelers in the past have only carried 9. I HOPE Mahan is gone and Legursky backs up at G/C......but I BELEIVE that Essex will be the odd man out and Colon will stay at backup RT.

Galax Steeler
04-28-2008, 12:49 PM
He wont play behind center just like Ward and Randle-El he is a athletic qb ,i see him being converted to wide out , that mo-fo can flat out run.

:sofunny::sofunny:

El-Gonzo Jackson
04-28-2008, 01:05 PM
He wont play behind center just like Ward and Randle-El he is a athletic qb ,i see him being converted to wide out , that mo-fo can flat out run.

Ron Brown was a WR for the Rams in the 80's and an Olympic medalist at 100m.....that mf could run too, but he was not a good wr.

Dixon was drafted to play QB, not be the next Slash, Randle-El or anything like that, so dont worry about the QB with the reconstructed knee being a WR.

lamberts-lost-tooth
04-28-2008, 01:08 PM
It could happen, but that is 10 O linemen and the Steelers in the past have only carried 9. I HOPE Mahan is gone and Legursky backs up at G/C......but I BELEIVE that Essex will be the odd man out and Colon will stay at backup RT.

I'm with you ...If one has to go...its gotta be Essex or Mahan.

El-Gonzo Jackson
04-28-2008, 01:11 PM
He wont play behind center just like Ward and Randle-El he is a athletic qb ,i see him being converted to wide out.

The Steelers QB coach Ken Anderson thinks otherwise according to the press conference.

Any plans for him to be a receiver?

No, we’re looking at him as a quarterback


http://news.steelers.com/article/88793/

yinzer-inseattle
04-28-2008, 02:13 PM
so dont worry about the QB with the reconstructed knee being a WR.

Even with a bad wheel, I bet Dixon could out run Cedric Wilson. Unless of course Wilson's ex was running out in front of them:toofunny:

Seriously though, in his bio I read that Dixon has experience at tailback and flanker. So it's a lot more than just speed. Trust me Dixon is not the next Dwight Stone.

El-Gonzo Jackson
04-28-2008, 02:37 PM
Even with a bad wheel, I bet Dixon could out run Cedric Wilson. Unless of course Wilson's ex was running out in front of them:toofunny:

Seriously though, in his bio I read that Dixon has experience at tailback and flanker. So it's a lot more than just speed. Trust me Dixon is not the next Dwight Stone.

Dixon was timed at 4.49 before the knee injury and Cedrick Wilson ran a 4.55 in his draft year, but what does it matter?

On NFL.com it says he was a 3 year starter at Oregon, a 3-year starter at QB in highschool and ran a 4.49 in 2005. Nowhere does it say he wants to play WR, has experience playing WR, or the Steelers want to convert him to a WR. Just that he has a 4.49 40 time before the injury. Good for a QB, but average for a WR that can run patterns.

Dixon posted the fastest clocking in the 40-yard dash (4.49) of any quarterback in the history of the Oregon program. His 3.81 timing in the 20-yard shuttle during spring drills in 2007 was the third-fastest mark among Oregon all-time passers.
http://www.nfl.com/draft/profiles/dennis-dixon?id=748

The only people saying Dixon is gonna play WR are the draftniks, bloggers and Steeler fans that want to see another Stewart or Randle El.

Dino 6 Rings
04-28-2008, 02:46 PM
Disclaimer to above post. At no point in the history of the Steelers do I ever want to see anything like another Stewart. Thank you.

Dino 6 Rings
04-28-2008, 02:49 PM
however, in the 09 season, I can foresee a 1st and goal, from the 8, where Ben takes a seat in a game we have well in hand and Dixon comes in to run some "wildcat" type formation from the shotgun with Mendenhall on one side, Holmes wide left, Ward in the Slot and Sweed split Right, with Miller at TE.

Yeah...stop that fools!!!!

I can hear the future D-coordinator of the Browns crapping his pants and thinking "oh man, they are going to run up the score on us, better sell my house"

Steel_Bus_24
04-28-2008, 04:13 PM
however, in the 09 season, I can foresee a 1st and goal, from the 8, where Ben takes a seat in a game we have well in hand and Dixon comes in to run some "wildcat" type formation from the shotgun with Mendenhall on one side, Holmes wide left, Ward in the Slot and Sweed split Right, with Miller at TE.

Yeah...stop that fools!!!!

I can hear the future D-coordinator of the Browns crapping his pants and thinking "oh man, they are going to run up the score on us, better sell my house"

Yeah I did kind of get that image...but I think we might use em more in running out the clock.... Mendenhall and Dixon both know the option read.....but does our lineman???

If they do/could we could become better at killing some clock late in games

millwalldavey
04-28-2008, 04:19 PM
Disclaimer to above post. At no point in the history of the Steelers do I ever want to see anything like another Stewart. Thank you.

Amen brother, amen.

xXTheSteelKingsXx
04-28-2008, 07:04 PM
Werent they just saying in the article that it was Kemos' job to lose at LG?
If you go by the way they made it sound it would be like this right?

LT Marvell Smith/Essex/Hills
LG Kemo/Mahan
C Hartwig
RG Simmons/Colon
RT Starks/Essex

I don't think that Kemo is fast or athletic enough to play left guard in our offense. Remember we primarily pull the left guard and Chris is a big boy at 344lbs.

SteelerFanInATL
04-28-2008, 07:17 PM
its nice to see them stockpiling weapons, but what good are they going to be if ben is laying on his back?

I've got faith in the direction they are going. This explains exactly why we did what we did. And knowing is half the battle.

NJarhead
04-28-2008, 07:20 PM
I've got faith in the direction they are going. This explains exactly why we did what we did. And knowing is half the battle.

Uh-oh, I said that too and got hit with a quote from Yoda. :laughing:

TackleMeBen
04-28-2008, 07:39 PM
I've got faith in the direction they are going. This explains exactly why we did what we did. And knowing is half the battle.
as darth vader would say. i find your lack of faith disturbing.

The Duke
04-28-2008, 07:41 PM
as darth vader would say. i find your lack of faith disturbing.

darth vader??? now you have just gone to the dark side :flap:

TackleMeBen
04-28-2008, 07:43 PM
darth vader??? now you have just gone to the dark side :flap:
i love darth vader... :flap:maybe that is what our OLine needs to do... go to the dark side..lol

Black@Gold Forever32
04-28-2008, 08:29 PM
Well, there it is. All the OL talk was smoke, and they were looking for weapons all along. When I suggested this inanother thread, I was told I was wrong, but it sure sounds like the Steelers FO thinks their OL is going to be vastly improved this year.

I don't know if they were looking for weapons all along since the weapons fell to them in each round......lol

I'm sure if Brandon Albert or Ryan Clady fell to 23 then they would have thought about drafting them....I'm sure those 2 were among the Steelers top 23 players they had on their draft board for the first round.....

The Steelers drafted best available in rounds 1 and 2....I always love that way of drafting....Mendenhall easily was the highest rated player left at 23...I just wonder if Albert or Clady were rated above Mendenhall on their draft board...Doesn't really matter now but it would be interesting to know...

revefsreleets
04-29-2008, 08:27 AM
I base that on the fact that they took Dixon at 5...they were on the clock for about 3 seconds when they made that pick, too. In my entry into the draft contest, I had them taking RB in 1 and WR in 2, and that's exactly what they did. I just don't think they were thinking OL as much as most seem to think.