PDA

View Full Version : An early open goodbye letter to Marvel Smith


Edman
11-18-2008, 06:15 PM
As if the point hadn't been driven home already when he opened his mouth about his contract (a big no-no in Pittsburgh), the mounting back injuries at 30+ seemed to have done their damage. I'd hate to say it, but Mr. Smith's days are numbered in the black and gold, or probably even his career. Back Injuries are no joke.

So, I'm going to thank him for a fine career in Pittsburgh. Thank you Marvel. You've been quite a professional on and off the field, and did a good job solidifying the Left Tackle spot and protecting Ben's blindside when healthy. Good Luck wherever you go.

Havik
11-18-2008, 07:49 PM
I hope the Steelers draft a LT in 2009. Both Marvel Smith and Max Starks have been horrible this year.

VTsteel
11-18-2008, 07:55 PM
I hope the Steelers draft a LT in 2009. Both Marvel Smith and Max Starks have been horrible this year.

Yes, we need a stud LT

T.Richardson
11-18-2008, 09:05 PM
I just hope they address the needs, no RB/WR in the first round please. We need linemen!

Preacher
11-18-2008, 09:42 PM
Our three interior lineman can take care of business for another year. We need to fix our tackles, then next year, work on LG and let Stapleton slide over to C.

PalmerSteel
11-18-2008, 10:27 PM
no questions asked, our 1st 4 draft picks next year need to be o-linemen and d-linemen, no matter who is available. its time to upgrade these positions badly or it is gonna bite us in the ass quickly before we know it (even worse than now).

Steelersfan4life0655
11-18-2008, 10:35 PM
i completely agree! we need to resolve our line issues and depth and i think starting on the top, meaning getting rid of oline coach then draft oline, hell i could care less if all 7 rounds went to a lineman. the line is whats making us not domniate on both side of the ball. If we can fix this problems, this steelers teams can be legendary!

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-18-2008, 10:56 PM
Our three interior lineman can take care of business for another year. We need to fix our tackles, then next year, work on LG and let Stapleton slide over to C.

Preach, what if Kemo leaves in free agency and Simmons doesnt recover in time to start next season??? That really leaves Hartwig, Colon, Hills, Stapleton, Parquet under contract for 2009.

Also, I like Stapleton, but he gets little or no push in the run game. He is a downgrade from Kemo, Hartwig or Simmons. IMO.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-18-2008, 11:02 PM
I hope the Steelers draft a LT in 2009. Both Marvel Smith and Max Starks have been horrible this year.

They can, but face it. If the Steelers pick around #25, then none of the top OT's that are worthy of protecting the $102 million man's blind side will be gone. Oh, I know the simple answer that everybody comes up with is ......TRADE UP, but it takes 2 to tango.

Look how rookie #26 pick Duane Brown has been this season. Steelers will likely overpay Max Starks or some other free agent to play LT, while they groom a rookie or expect Hills to play LT in the future. Ouch!

Steelman16
11-18-2008, 11:39 PM
Joe Thomas want out of Cleveland yet? :chuckle:

Blitzburgh_Fever
11-18-2008, 11:51 PM
Joe Thomas want out of Cleveland yet? :chuckle:

Gah, I wish.

randy06
11-19-2008, 03:02 AM
we need need NEED lineman

billybob
11-19-2008, 03:13 AM
I like Marvel too, couldn't we find a way to keep him as a back-up until he is ready to rejuvinate his life long goal. I know that is a far fetched notion, but he has meant a lot to us,and he could be an asset in the depth department. Look at Roye. Do not overlook what age can do for your depth.

Galax Steeler
11-19-2008, 04:37 AM
We need to get rid of Starx I can't beleive we payed him that kind of money.

SteelMember
11-19-2008, 08:06 AM
Steelers Notebook: Smith's ailing back still unresolved
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Offensive tackle Marvel Smith will miss his sixth consecutive game tomorrow, but he and the Steelers' doctors are still trying to determine whether he should have back surgery.

Smith had a diskechtomy in December to remove a herniated disk in his lower back that was jammed against a nerve. He said this spring that he felt great because of the surgery. But he left in the fourth quarter of the Steelers' game Oct. 5 at Jacksonville and has not played since.

Coach Mike Tomlin has said his recent back problems are not related to last year's.

"Marvel is still status quo," Tomlin said yesterday. Asked if he were going to have surgery, the coach said, "I don't know at this point."

Max Starks will make his sixth start tomorrow at left tackle in place of Smith.

If he ends up having another surgery, he will probably be placed on IR and let go after the season. imo. :wave:

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08324/928947-66.stm

XxKnightxX
11-19-2008, 08:36 AM
I seriously think that the steelers wanted to draft an OL in the first round, but the damn KC chiefs managed to not only draft cedric ellis, but also jump from the 2nd round to the late first and drafted Virginia guard/tackle Brandon Albert, and I think after that pick was made, the steelers were left with little OL talent to be drafted.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-19-2008, 11:19 AM
the steelers were left with little OL talent to be drafted.

Watch Bengals rookie OT Anthony Collins on Thursday. He was there in the 3rd round instead of choosing Bruce Davis.

Also, Carl Nicks is the starting LG in New Orleans. He was taken in the 5th and we could have had him instead of Tony Hills.

VTsteel
11-19-2008, 09:36 PM
Watch Bengals rookie OT Anthony Collins on Thursday. He was there in the 3rd round instead of choosing Bruce Davis.

Also, Carl Nicks is the starting LG in New Orleans. He was taken in the 5th and we could have had him instead of Tony Hills.


Great idea!

COACH PAUL ALEXANDER SAYS: "Anthony is a big, powerful guy - just the way we like them here - and I think he's equally effective as a drive blocker and a pass protector. He's solid and thick, and he's pretty polished. He's not like Stacy Andrews (current Bengals franchise player), who we knew was a long-term project when we drafted him. This guy (Collins) is well on his way."

http://www.bengals.com/team/player.asp?player_id=198

Give It To Abercrombie
11-19-2008, 11:24 PM
Watch Bengals rookie OT Anthony Collins on Thursday. He was there in the 3rd round instead of choosing Bruce Davis.

Also, Carl Nicks is the starting LG in New Orleans. He was taken in the 5th and we could have had him instead of Tony Hills.

As the draft progressed, I was convinced we were taking Collins until Davis' name was called. I screamed at the tv so loud I pooped a little. Remember expecting to see Nicks as well, though we'd take him in the 4th, was supposed to be a monstrously strong run blocking machine.

Not knocking the picks we made, I just don't see what they see I guess.

Steelers & I
11-20-2008, 01:01 AM
Free agency, don't forget about free agency. During his tenure, Coach Cowher picked up quite a few SOLID offensive linemen via free agency, Duval Love, Tom Newberry, Will Woolford, Jeff Hartings, Wayne Gandy. Very-solid pick ups that were acquired with reasonable financial terms. The draft alone will not work, the Steelers will have to sign a marquee-free agent-offensive lineman.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-20-2008, 11:55 AM
Great idea!

COACH PAUL ALEXANDER SAYS: "Anthony is a big, powerful guy - just the way we like them here - and I think he's equally effective as a drive blocker and a pass protector. He's solid and thick, and he's pretty polished. He's not like Stacy Andrews (current Bengals franchise player), who we knew was a long-term project when we drafted him. This guy (Collins) is well on his way."

http://www.bengals.com/team/player.asp?player_id=198

Here were some things written about Nicks in the Preseason....now he is the starting LG

The soft spoken, gentle giant is a 6-5 343 pound mild manner man off the field, and a nasty, take you head off kind of guy on the field. That’s just what the Saints offensive line needs. He has a chance to compete,” said Saints Coach Sean Payton.

Carl may also have the best nickname of any Saints Player – “I-Hop.” “At Nebraska they called me that, because I had so many pancake blocks. I love to pancake people,” said Nicks.

http://www.wwl.com/pages/2763857.php?

Man, I wish he was playing here at either RG or RT.

steelreserve
11-20-2008, 12:47 PM
I think after that pick was made, the steelers were left with little OL talent to be drafted.

If the only place you could find adequate linemen was in the first round or high second round, that means there would only be 40 or 50 guys capable of playing OL in the entire league at any given time.

But you find guys in the low rounds all the time. Look at the Giants, for instance. One of the best lines in football this year, right? They've got a couple starters from rounds 1-2, but the others are a third-round pick, a fifth-round pick and an undrafted free agent.

So yeah, you can spend high draft picks on linemen if you want, but it's no guarantee. We tend to do that once every few years. For now, I'm happy we're at least trying by picking a guy in the fourth round, and we found a nice surprise in Stapleton as an undrafted FA. Wouldn't be surprised to see us spend a couple of high picks on linemen this year (both offensive and defensive -- actually probably DL first) because we're pretty solid at most other positions. But if you don't have one of the top 15 picks in the draft to use on an OL, it's not going to kill you.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-20-2008, 01:48 PM
I agree with Steelreserve. At least you can find some serviceable players in later rounds.

Even if we picked Collins instead of Davis in the 3rd.....we would still have a couple young OT prospects in Collins and Hills. Hills might move inside to play Guard at some point anyways.

In the back of my mind I think the FO had an idea they want to extend Starks and Kemo, so it wasnt a priority. They were thinking more of having Davis ready for when Harrison's contract is up. Anyways, Marvel out and St. Clair in would be fine with me.

MasterOfPuppets
11-20-2008, 02:17 PM
Free agency, don't forget about free agency. During his tenure, Coach Cowher picked up quite a few SOLID offensive linemen via free agency, Duval Love, Tom Newberry, Will Woolford, Jeff Hartings, Wayne Gandy. Very-solid pick ups that were acquired with reasonable financial terms. The draft alone will not work, the Steelers will have to sign a marquee-free agent-offensive lineman. that was BEFORE,,,,the price of linemen went thru the roof......

steelreserve
11-20-2008, 02:59 PM
that was BEFORE,,,,the price of linemen went thru the roof......

Only the price of the hugely hyped ones that are obviously overpaid. No lineman, even a good one, is worth $8 million a year, and there's only enough cap space in the league to support so much of that foolishness.

There are only something like 10 linemen in the entire league who have the ultra-ridiculous $7M-plus deals, and maybe 20 or 30 can earn close to that before there's no more money left to blow on big contracts. But you don't need one of them. There are plenty of decent starting linemen out there for $3 million or even $2 million and under who will do a great job. Look at Hartwig. I think that's all we're paying him, and he's a big step up over where we were last year.

Honestly, if it was up to me, I'd continue to spend the money on the skill positions and do the best I could on the line. Because even if you think we've got the most atrocious, patchwork offensive line in the world this year, we're still 7-3. So whatever we're doing doesn't seem all that terrible.

Preacher
11-20-2008, 03:14 PM
Preach, what if Kemo leaves in free agency and Simmons doesnt recover in time to start next season??? That really leaves Hartwig, Colon, Hills, Stapleton, Parquet under contract for 2009.

Also, I like Stapleton, but he gets little or no push in the run game. He is a downgrade from Kemo, Hartwig or Simmons. IMO.

I think we need to keep Kemo in FA. Sign him and start him. Sure he has made some mistakes, but for the line we have and the problems we have, he is a good guy to keep around.

Stapleton may not get a lot of push in the run game. But he also doesn't give up ground.. either in the run OR pass game. I have only seen him beat a couple times whereas Simmons gets cranked in the pass protection and actually, isn't that impressive in the run game either. However, with the contract we signed for Simmons, you know we are going to keep him. Stapleton then gets to backup RG and C.

That STILL leaves us with the two tackles (which is the original point of my post) which need to be fixed in this offseason. I am guessing that the Starks experiment is about over. I wouldn't mind seeing Essex playing LT for a game or two since he did pretty good there when he played last year for a game or two.

All in all, we need to see 2 of the top 4 draft picks (provided there are the players to draft) going to these positions. I would rather have 2 of the top 3.

Steeldude
11-20-2008, 03:29 PM
i doubt the steelers will draft a T or G in the 1st round. i expect the steelers to draft either a RB, WR or TE in the 1st.

the steelers have only drafted 5 offensive linemen in the 1st round since 1980. that's 5 out of 28 drafts.

2002 - G - simmons (bust)

1998 - G - faneca (score)

1996 - T - stephens (bust)

1992 - T - searcy (score)

besides rienstra in 1986, there were no O-linemen drafted in the first round from 1969 to 1991. that's 5 first round picks spent on O-linemen in 39 years.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-20-2008, 03:38 PM
Preach, I agree that keeping Kemo is a good idea. I also like the idea of sliding Colon inside at guard, but disagree that Stapleton stalemating blockers is acceptable......those are the reasons we cant move the ball in short yardage situations.

I am not a fan of Starks game, but think they will make an effort to keep him. I would rather see a good veteran(like St. Clair, Stinchcomb, Columbo) signed in free agency, Starks and Smith let go and a rookie drafted.

The OT rotation next season could be Veteran, Hills, Essex and rookie (Loadholt, Boone, etc.)

Preacher
11-20-2008, 03:42 PM
i doubt the steelers will draft a T or G in the 1st round. i expect the steelers to draft either a RB, WR or TE in the 1st.

the steelers have only drafted 5 offensive linemen in the 1st round since 1980. that's 5 out of 28 drafts.

2002 - G - simmons (bust)

1998 - G - faneca (score)

1996 - T - stephens (bust)

1992 - T - searcy (score)

besides rienstra in 1986, there were no O-linemen drafted in the first round from 1969 to 1991. that's 5 first round picks spent on O-linemen in 39 years.

That is a little too black and white, isn't it?

While Simmons is DEFINITELY not at the level of Searcy or Faneca, he is also not at the level of Stephens.

Simmons was a very low (picked 30th) first round pick. While he hasn't out shined anyone else, he has played decently enough, IMO to be given a rank of average.

Preacher
11-20-2008, 03:49 PM
Preach, I agree that keeping Kemo is a good idea. I also like the idea of sliding Colon inside at guard, but disagree that Stapleton stalemating blockers is acceptable......those are the reasons we cant move the ball in short yardage situations.

I am not a fan of Starks game, but think they will make an effort to keep him. I would rather see a good veteran(like St. Clair, Stinchcomb, Columbo) signed in free agency, Starks and Smith let go and a rookie drafted.

The OT rotation next season could be Veteran, Hills, Essex and rookie (Loadholt, Boone, etc.)

IMO, Stapleton stalemating blockers is more acceptable then our RB's and QB getting blown up in the backfield, which has diminished considerably since Stapleton has come in. No, I definitely don't think he is a long term solution. I do, however, think that he has improved our line over Simmons this year.

I am not sure if Colon can handle the Guard position. I LOVE the kid's attitude. One on one, he has blown up some of our own LB's in practice according to what I have read. I just don't know if he can take on lineman. Maybe less space will help. However, those false start penalties MUST cease for him to be of help to us in the future.

Starks is just an enigma wrapped in a mystery meat sandwich. He is big, sometimes he has some great plays. Then he turns into a bonehead for a play or two. Granted, I think he plays better at LT then he does at RT. But I don't think that is his position.

Hopefully, our OT's next year will be (1) FA and (1) higher round pickup, plus Essex and maybe, Starks. I am comfortable with Starks on the bench, as a second stringer. He can put together a good game or two. Just not a good season. If he could, he would be starting for the team at the beginning of the season.

Steelers & I
11-20-2008, 03:59 PM
that was BEFORE,,,,the price of linemen went thru the roof......


Oh OK... that was also before the salary cap went through the roof, the Steelers didn't use a significant portion of their salary cap on ANY of the free agent linemen that I mentioned. Besides, they're paying Starks "PRO BOWL LEFT TACKLE MONEY" this year so whats your point? Next season, sign the best damn available free agent tackle and they'll still save money in comparison to Starks' current contract.

Preacher
11-20-2008, 04:06 PM
Oh OK... that was also before the salary cap went through the roof, the Steelers didn't use a significant portion of their salary cap on ANY of the free agent linemen that I mentioned. Besides, they're paying Starks "PRO BOWL LEFT TACKLE MONEY" this year so whats your point? Next season, sign the best damn available free agent tackle and they'll still save money in comparison to Starks' current contract.

No, they won't.

Everyone keeps forgetting the fact that all of Starks' money was a 1 year hit against the cap when they had the space to take the hit.

Now, if you sign a top FA tackle, that is a 2-3 million PER YEAR hit against the cap, ON TOP OF the building salaries of Ben, Troy, Ward, Santo's salary coming due, and Woodley's block buster salary that is going to have to be negotiated the summer after next (four year contract was signed by Woodley).

All of that being done by what is looking like a cash strapped owner who has had to purchase a much larger portion of the team.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-20-2008, 04:43 PM
IMO, Stapleton stalemating blockers is more acceptable then our RB's and QB getting blown up in the backfield, which has diminished considerably since Stapleton has come in.

Stapleton has quicker feet in pass protection than Simmons, but not the leg drive in run blocking. Having a guard that gets no push is like having a 225lb FB that cant block. We agree to disagree.

I am not sure if Colon can handle the Guard position.

Colon was a guard in College at Hofstra. Playing guard is for the big strong brutes with shorter arms and less lateral quickness than the OT. Much like Kemo, Colon fits this bill.

Starks is just an enigma wrapped in a mystery meat sandwich. He is big, sometimes he has some great plays.
Starks is a 4th year guy of unfulfilled promise. The scouting report on him in his draft year was incredible size, but not sure if he will put forth the consistent effort to be as dominant blocker as his size and athleticism suggest. That hasnt changed in 4 seasons and I wish they would move on.

Hopefully, our OT's next year will be (1) FA and (1) higher round pickup, plus Essex and maybe, Starks.
I would rather see (1)FA and a 1st round pick along with Hills and Essex..(Colon could always play OG and sub at RT in a bind) . ...

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-20-2008, 04:50 PM
BTW, here is an ESPN Chat from the Senior Bowl where Starks played.

Denis, San Diego: What is your thoughts on Max Starks playing left tackle? More out of necessity or will he get a shot to play there in the NFL?

Todd McShay: I think it was more out of necessity in this game. But he played very well. Starks helped himself this week. There have been questions about his aggressiveness and toughness but he showed more nastiness througout practice. From what I saw tonight, he was able to control the North DEs off the edge. I think Starks is a pefect fit on the right side because of his massive size and because of his upside, I think an NFL team will take a chance on him in the late 2nd or early 3rd round of the draft.

http://sports.espn.go.com/chat/chatESPN?event_id=4667

Questions about his aggressiveness and toughness back then and I still see him as the gentle giant that doesnt get focused to play on sundays. Hope Starks and Smith move on.

Preacher
11-20-2008, 04:52 PM
ElGonzo..

There isn't much here we are disagreeing with....

except that

1. You prefer a better push in the run, and I prefer to give Ben a bit better protection in the pass... yeah, agree to disagree, but in reality, we are on the same page, just looking at different options.

2. Colon at Guard... My only question is, does he have the strength? I would love to see him try it.

3. Starks... I remember, they said he wasn't mean enough. It's still his problem.

4. Hills, again, gotta see him at this level. But whether it is Hills or Starks, I do hope they are on the bench.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-20-2008, 05:08 PM
ElGonzo..

There isn't much here we are disagreeing with....

except that

1. You prefer a better push in the run, and I prefer to give Ben a bit better protection in the pass... yeah, agree to disagree, but in reality, we are on the same page, just looking at different options.

2. Colon at Guard... My only question is, does he have the strength? I would love to see him try it.

3. Starks... I remember, they said he wasn't mean enough. It's still his problem.

4. Hills, again, gotta see him at this level. But whether it is Hills or Starks, I do hope they are on the bench.

Preach, I got ya. On point 1, we are basically differing on whether we want a weaker quicker guy in pass protection, or a stronger less quick guy for the run game. Its essentially a Mahan-Hartwig situation and is what it is.

Colon has never been questioned strength wise. He benched 225lbs 28 times in his pro day and threw a great block last week on Chargers NT Jamaal Williams.

Hills has size and quick feet, but what I saw from him in college was he hit guys with his shoulder pads instead of using a punch with good hand placement. Run blocks well, but needs work in pass protection. I am betting that Hills can be the starting RT next season with this year of scholarship.

steelreserve
11-20-2008, 05:51 PM
No, they won't.

Everyone keeps forgetting the fact that all of Starks' money was a 1 year hit against the cap when they had the space to take the hit.

Now, if you sign a top FA tackle, that is a 2-3 million PER YEAR hit against the cap, ON TOP OF the building salaries of Ben, Troy, Ward, Santo's salary coming due, and Woodley's block buster salary that is going to have to be negotiated the summer after next (four year contract was signed by Woodley).

All of that being done by what is looking like a cash strapped owner who has had to purchase a much larger portion of the team.

On a slightly different note, I hate to say it, but this makes it seem all the more likely that we're not going to be able to keep both Harrison and Woodley after their current deals are up unless maybe we franchise one of them. And Ward .. well, if he doesn't fall to the #2 spot or take a cut because of age, he might find himself priced out of a Steeler uniform as well. Which also makes you wonder which of our DBs will eventually have to be cut loose for the same reason (probably Townsend and Clark) and whether we can afford to keep both Smith and Hampton on the DL for much longer -- or whether we can afford to replace them if we have to.

All of which makes finding an extra $2-3 million for an offensive lineman seem like the least of our problems. I guess there's a lot of truth to that saying that you have to win now with what you've got. Fricking salary cap.

Steeldude
11-20-2008, 06:20 PM
is rooney going to have any money to get any good free agents? i am of course referring too him buying out his brothers.