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lamberts-lost-tooth
08-27-2008, 09:22 AM
Notebook: Reid needs to produce now
By Mike Bires
Times Sports Staff
Published: Wednesday, August 27, 2008 12:44 AM EDT



PITTSBURGH — Willie Reid doesn’t believe he’s in jeopardy of losing his roster spot. Still, entering his third season with the Steelers, he’s reached a critical point in his pro career.

His future with the Steelers could be in jeopardy if he doesn’t start producing. That’s why Thursday night’s fourth and final preseason game is so important to him.

Reid, a former Florida State star taken in the third round of the 2006 draft, will get plenty of action against the Carolina Panthers. With the starters expected to play only a series or two, and rookie Limas Sweed questionable with a sore knee, Reid will get his share of snaps at wide receiver.

He’ll also share time with Eddie Drummond on punt and kickoff returns.

“I’d like to think of myself as a versatile player,” Reid said. “I can do everything imaginable from covering kicks, to returning punts and kickoffs, to catching that critical third-down reception. I just want to show everyone the whole repertoire of what I can do.”

Reid did exactly that at FSU, where he’s one of the few Seminoles to ever score touchdowns by running with the football, catching passes and returning kicks.

But in his first two years with the Steelers, Reid has hardly played.

As a rookie, he was designated a game-day inactive the first three games of the season. Then when he finally played in an Oct. 8 game at San Diego, he suffered a season-ending foot injury.

Last year, he played sparingly in five games.

So far this year, Reid has held his own in his battle to nail down the Steelers’ No. 5 receiver spot. He leads the team with nine catches for 81 yards. But he has yet to return a punt or kickoff.

But that will change Thursday against the Panthers.

“I like returning both punts and kickoffs,” he said. “As long as I get the ball in my hands, I’m happy.”

DISAPPOINTED

As expected, center Sean Mahan was upset about losing his starting job to Justin Hartwig.

“What do you think?” Mahan said when asked how he felt. “I want to play. So of course it’s disappointing. I just have to move on and be ready to do whatever I can to help this team win.”

Mahan was signed last year via free agency and beat out Chukky Okobi for the vacancy created when Jeff Hartings retired. But this year, it was Mahan who got beat out by a free-agent acquisition.

“Sean took it like you would expect a professional competitor to take it. He wasn’t necessarily pleased,” coach Mike Tomlin said. “I’d be disappointed if he took it any other way. He’s like anyone else (out there). He’s a competitor. He wants to play and he wants to win.

But he is a professional. He understands what team football is about.”

Because he played guard in the past with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Mahan may also be used as a backup at that position as well.

INJURY UPDATE

After missing practice Monday with minor injuries, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (ankle) and linebacker James Harrison (shoulder) both returned Tuesday. So did running back Willie Parker, who was given the day off Monday.

All three are expected to start against the Panthers.

Parker, though, may not even get a carry.

Such was the case last year in the Steelers’ fourth and final preseason game against the Panthers in Charlotte, N.C.

Parker was on the field for the first play of the game _ it was a pass play _ and then called it a night.

“It could happen again this year,” Parker said. “But that’s OK. I’m ready. I’ve had enough of the preseason.”

Linebacker Larry Foote, who suffered a minor knee injury in Saturday’s win in Minnesota, won’t play against Carolina. Neither will rookie linebacker Mike Humpal who’s been out with a stringer.

Meanwhile, rookie safety Ryan Mundy (foot) has returned to practice this week and may play a few snaps Thursday.

Sweed missed practice for the second straight day and may not play against the Panthers.

ROSTER TRIMMED TO 76

The Steelers made another roster move Tuesday, placing tight end Cody Boyd on the waived/injured list.

Boyd had corrective knee surgery on Monday

After four roster moves Monday, the Steelers had until 4 p.m. Tuesday to cut one more player.

Tuesday was the NFL’s first of two mandatory cut-down days when rosters had to be reduced to 75.

But the Steelers are allowed to carry 76 players because Marvin Allen, a wide receiver from England, is a roster exemption. He’ll be international practice squad player this year.

The Steelers must cut their roster to 53 by 4 p.m. on Saturday

http://www.timesonline.com/articles/2008/08/27/sports/steelers/doc48b4d8320831c090187710.txt

DACEB
08-27-2008, 10:27 AM
Meanwhile, rookie safety Ryan Mundy (foot) has returned to practice this week and may play a few snaps Thursday.

That's great news, that I believe alot of us are rooting for this kid.

As far as Reid is concerned, he's definetly played, lately, like his spot is on the line. Good luck kid.

lamberts-lost-tooth
08-27-2008, 11:32 AM
Glad to see Mundy coming back ...but very dissapointed that Humpal is still inactive, I thought he might be able to impress if given the chance.

Steely McSmash
08-27-2008, 12:35 PM
So is Humpal setting the world record for longest stinger or what?

fansince'76
08-27-2008, 12:39 PM
So is Humpal setting the world record for longest stinger or what?

Probably won't matter after Saturday, as he more than likely won't make the final cut.

HometownGal
08-27-2008, 12:52 PM
I think Reid has played pretty well thus far in the preseason as far as getting open and grabbing the ball. If he can prove himself on K/P returns, he's got a spot on this team.

Texasteel
08-27-2008, 01:01 PM
I've said that I've given up on Willy this year. I would be very happy for him to make me eat my words.
Crows not bad with a little red wine.

lamberts-lost-tooth
08-27-2008, 01:02 PM
Probably won't matter after Saturday, as he more than likely won't make the final cut.

To be honest...I hope he makes the practice squad...but I know its unlikely.

Texasteel
08-27-2008, 01:05 PM
To be honest...I hope he makes the practice squad...but I know its unlikely.

Well you just broke my heart.

lamberts-lost-tooth
08-27-2008, 01:07 PM
I think Reid has played pretty well thus far in the preseason as far as getting open and grabbing the ball. If he can prove himself on K/P returns, he's got a spot on this team.

I agree...I liked what I saw ..and at this point if I had to pick between him and Baker...I would ahve to go with Reid.

Granted...some of that decision comes down to our drafting Sweed and downgrading the need for a tall red-zone reciever.

lamberts-lost-tooth
08-27-2008, 01:10 PM
Well you just broke my heart.

Never give up hope!!!!!... Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!

DACEB
08-27-2008, 01:17 PM
I think Reid has played pretty well thus far in the preseason as far as getting open and grabbing the ball. If he can prove himself on K/P returns, he's got a spot on this team.

I agree, he has played well. I must admit I gave up on the kid, but obviously the staff hasn't just yet. Maybe it's just taken him longer to get acclimated to the pro game, given his time out due to injury as well.

He must, IMO, prove something in the return game though to add value and solidify a roster spot. He has shown very good hands this preseason, hopefully they're just as good in the return game.

DACEB
08-27-2008, 01:21 PM
Never give up hope!!!!!... Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!

:sofunny: That just never gets old for me.

Would you believe my wife never saw 'Animal House'? :doh:

DACEB
08-27-2008, 01:23 PM
To be honest...I hope he makes the practice squad...but I know its unlikely.

Well you just broke my heart.

He'll make the PS, kids a player!

lamberts-lost-tooth
08-27-2008, 01:30 PM
:sofunny: That just never gets old for me.

Would you believe my wife never saw 'Animal House'? :doh:

LOL!!!!...I would wager my wife hasnt seen it either!!!!

SteelMember
08-27-2008, 02:57 PM
Maybe he needs to thank A.Smith for the added motivation.
Getting put on his a$$ might have knocked something back into place. Like his hands.:chuckle:

Smith is a bum*... he knocked him on his bum.:noidea:

Texasteel
08-27-2008, 03:19 PM
I agree, he has played well. I must admit I gave up on the kid, but obviously the staff hasn't just yet. Maybe it's just taken him longer to get acclimated to the pro game, given his time out due to injury as well.

He must, IMO, prove something in the return game though to add value and solidify a roster spot. He has shown very good hands this preseason, hopefully they're just as good in the return game.

As I recall he was a hell of a returner at Florida St.. If he could get that back and start catching a few balls he could help this team.

tony hipchest
08-27-2008, 03:30 PM
ive given him a pass cause of the horrible foot injury his rookie season. people got on him pretty hard cause we were still livid about ricardo colclough costing us the bungles game.

i like reid caus he is a poor mans santonio holmes. almost exact clone in height, weight, and speed. = perfect back up.

plus hes an excellent character guy. if he's cut bungles the pick him up in a nanosecond. he's also (cue the music) "son of a preacher man", and knows what hard work on a farm and in the fields, and maintaining good grades in school, is all about.

Steelman16
08-27-2008, 03:33 PM
plus hes an excellent character guy. if he's cut bungles the pick him up in a nanosecond.

Wait...isn't that an oxy-moron? :toofunny:

The Duke
08-27-2008, 04:28 PM
Reid as 5th receiver sounds good.

if any WR goes down (knocks wood) he could be helpful for the offense

To be honest...I hope he makes the practice squad...but I know its unlikely.

I hope he makes it to he PS. They haven't seen much from him in games, and it's never bad to have too many LBs

lilyoder6
08-27-2008, 05:03 PM
i think reid would be good good coming in on a 5 wr set and running a under-neath route and using his speed agianst the 5th string cb or who ever is covering him... and could be good in some wr screens being so small and quick...

wootawnee
08-27-2008, 09:10 PM
I think Reid is a huge big play receiver waiting to break out.......Every catch he made last year he showed alot of power and a big burst when he was running(reminds me of Andre Rison)......He had 2 huge first downs last year in 2 different games to sustain the game winning scoring drive......Veron Hayes did the same thing the Super Bowl year.....I miss him alot....He had a huge heart and made clutch 3rd down plays.....But he was Cowher's boy so he is gone......I hope Reid makes it ,cause he canl, if given the chance........He just has to see some balls tossed his way.....

Davison_K
08-28-2008, 12:38 AM
Probably won't matter after Saturday, as he more than likely won't make the final cut.

Maybe he's trying to gain time to learn the playbook by just sitting out the rest of the preseason (injured) praying that he gets a call to come back next year or a practice squad spot.:toofunny:

Galax Steeler
08-28-2008, 04:34 AM
I would like to see him do well and make it this year I have been one that has had my douhts about him but if he can improve this year I would love to have him for depth at wr.

cubanstogie
08-28-2008, 01:36 PM
I think Reid is a huge big play receiver waiting to break out.......Every catch he made last year he showed alot of power and a big burst when he was running(reminds me of Andre Rison)......He had 2 huge first downs last year in 2 different games to sustain the game winning scoring drive......Veron Hayes did the same thing the Super Bowl year.....I miss him alot....He had a huge heart and made clutch 3rd down plays.....But he was Cowher's boy so he is gone......I hope Reid makes it ,cause he canl, if given the chance........He just has to see some balls tossed his way.....

I hope you are right. I wrote him off after watching him try to catch a punt. Last year they should have put a tent around him because it was a circus on punt returns. I admit if he can hold onto the ball he could cause excitement, I just havent seen the reliable side of him. I liked Veron Hayes as well, but I think his knees were a big problem and doesn't have the cut back ability he once had.