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mesaSteeler
08-25-2009, 09:05 PM
Ed Bouchette's Steelers chat transcript
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09237/993148-66.stm

Ed Bouchette: Welcome all. Sorry I'm a tad late. I ran out to practice to check on things and so I could report that Ben Roethlisberger is practicing. He is out there in pads, helmet and taking snaps with the other quarterbacks, although not Dennis Dixon. Let's go

Katmandu: Hi Ed. Hope you had a swell off-season!! Your gut felling on who makes the 09-10 team among Ratliff, Logan, McDonald, Bruce Davis, Ramon Foster, Redman, Summers and Brandon Williams.

Ed Bouchette: Ok, let's take a stab at that. Making it: Ratliff, McDonald, Foster, Redman, Summers. On practice squad: Davis, Logan. Don't take that to the bank, though, because things can change. If Logan continues what he did the other night, they'll put him on the team. Davis is touch-and-go at this point.

James_Taipei: Do you think there is anyway that Shaun McDonald doesn't make the opening day roster? It would seem a little risky to defend a Super Bowl title with a second year pro and a rookie as your top two backups.

Ed Bouchette: I think McDonald will make it, but he's not a lock.

polamalu43: Ed, if Deshea Townsend moves to safety, does Ratliff become the 3rd corner?

Ed Bouchette: Ratliff can play safety too, as can William Gay.

Hines_in_the_Hall: Does Stefan Logan take a roster spot solely as a return specialist? Why not use him as a 5th (or 6th) wide receiver too, since he'll be on the roster anyway?

Ed Bouchette: If he makes the team, he could be used as a wide receiver or running back, but they would not use him much at either position unless there are injuries.

Jacque_Strap: How does the battle for the 3rd WR position stack up at this point? Could we see two guys sharing the position (like Sweed/Wallace), and used according to their individual strengths?

Ed Bouchette: Yes, I believe they could. Sweed gets the early nod as the No. 3 man, but if Wallace continues to develop, he could push for more and more playing time.

hinestheman: Ed, how different is Art III from Dan? Are things philosophically likely to change with Dan being gone from day to day operations? Or are father and son pretty much on the same page? Also, who's the next of kin to take over after Art III?

Ed Bouchette: Art III is a dentist in Florida, son of Art Jr. Confused yet? Art II is the Steelers president and while he and his father share philosophies, they are different men and I'm sure Art will do some things that perhaps his father might not and vice versa. But I would not expect any major changes.

Will_from_Freehold__NJ: How's Ben's foot, any new updates?

Ed Bouchette: I just started the chat with an update and there should be one on PG breaking news by now too. Ben is fine. Seemed to limp a little while practicing.

Will_from_Freehold__NJ: Welcome back Ed! Special teams, if Stefan Logan is our answer for decent kickoff & punt returns & if Sepulveda continues to book kicks like he has, I feel the Steelers special teams will be a strength this year. Do you you think Logan has a chance to stick, especially if he does well this week?

Ed Bouchette: He certainly has a chance and I agree that special teams will improve this year. They improved last year except for the return game and getting a good return man may be all they need to help there.

Luv_Dem_Stillers_n_at: Good afternoon Ed. Thanks as always for the great inside information. Any word on how much, if at all, Ben will play on Saturday? I'm sure he won't see much action in the last preseason game.

Ed Bouchette: I would not discount him playing as long as the rest of the first team offense plays. His foot seems fine today, and there are four more days until they play.

polamalu43: Ed, Does Ramon Foster have an avantage over Capizzi and Hills because he can play guard as well tackle?

Ed Bouchette: Yes, I believe Foster has the team made. He has been playing mostly guard with the Steelers.

steelercam: Love your insight and articles. Is there any chance of Ryan Clark being signed to an extension or do you think Mundy can be ready in a year?

Ed Bouchette: I thought Clark might be one of the players they target for an early signing, but I'm told if they do go after one more player on an extension, Brett Keisel will be that player.

Steeler_Fan_In_Cen_CA: Ed, I know it's still early, but when can we start complaining about the O-line? Charlie had no time to throw and there were no holes for Mendenhall.

Ed Bouchette: Funny, there was one big hole for Willie Parker when he ran untouched 3 yards into the end zone in the first quarter.

SJSteeler: Ed, What's up with the D? Very few 3 and outs; many drives of more than 12 plays, many 3rd and long conversions ...

Ed Bouchette: Actually, I think it's time for one big Steelers Nation panic regarding the defense. After all, what did they do last season? Calm down everyone. The defense has been on the field for 5 series and if you saw my story Monday, you'll remember Casey Hampton talking about how they do not even watch film of opponents in the preseason, nor scheme.

rustyb: Ed, I saw where Peter King had Ryan Clark as the highest value free agent after this season. What kind of contract do you think he gets? Do you see him with the Steelers?

Ed Bouchette: I believe the Steelers will try to re-sign him even if they do not do so before the season.

MWoodyM112: Besides the Big Four at LB (Harrison, Woodley, Farrior, Timmons) do the Steelers plan on rotating the other backups in during regular season games?

Ed Bouchette: No, they're not big on rotating linebackers the way they do defensive linemen. Usually, three linebackers play the whole game -- Woodley, Farrior and Harrison. This year, you might add Timmons to that list.

Realist_Steel: Ed, any chance of seeing Ziggy running down on kick coverage like Keisel did in his early years?

Ed Bouchette: No

Free_Tank_Carter: When will the first cuts be made?

Ed Bouchette: A week from today, but only 5 will be cut.

Tprod: Ed, Has Burnett made enough plays to make the team as a cornerback, because he fumbled twice on punts?

Ed Bouchette: I once thought he had the team made and while he still may, he's put some doubts in some people's minds.

HerewegoSteelers: Hello Ed. What do you think the chances are of having a rematch this year of Super Bowl IX, with the Steelers playing against Favre and the Vikes? The Vikes may be the best team in the NFC now. And we surely look promising.

Ed Bouchette: I wondered that myself after the Vikings signed Favre. I don't think Favre will hold up that long, though.

MWoodyM112: Ed, Why didn't you get on and ride the bus with Chris Mortensen from ESPN?

Ed Bouchette: I'm holding out for my own bus.

FL_Steeler_Fan: Afternoon Ed. What's views on Mendenhall? Do you feel he has shown improvement, or too early to tell? And whats the latest on "The Tank?

Ed Bouchette: I've seen no improvement nor lack thereof from Rashard Mendenhall and, yes, it's way too early to put a grade on him. Tank may be missing out. He had a groin injury and did not play Saturday night. However, they do want him to make the team and will give him every opportunity to do so.

HerewegoSteelers: What are the chances that the OL will be significantly improved this year, and how well do you think the Steelers running game will do this year compared to last?

Ed Bouchette: I don't know about the "significant" part; I believe they would be happy with improvement. If Willie Parker and Rashard Mendenhall stay healthy, the ground game should do better than their No. 23 ranking last season.

Luv_Dem_Stillers_n_at: If the cuts were today, would you think they'd keep Frank the Tank or Isaac Redman?

Ed Bouchette: It's possible -- possible -- that they could keep both.

mesaSteeler
08-25-2009, 09:06 PM
cbusstiler: Do you think Ben plays this Saturday?

Ed Bouchette: Yes.

ARK: Splitting hairs here, but why do the Steelers look so bad when executing a screen play? I've heard that they are no better in practice.

Ed Bouchette: It's been a mystery for a long, long time. My only thoughts are that perhaps Ben Roethlisberger is not comfortable throwing screen passes.

MWoodyM112: Who is the biggest surprise that should make the roster?

Ed Bouchette: Ramon Foster. He was an undrafted tackle from Tennessee playing guard, where the Steelers had their second pick and third-round draft choice, Kraig Urbik.

Amos_P_Swanson: Are the pre-season sacks by Ziggy Hood more him being out of scheme/position, or is he progressing that well?

Ed Bouchette: The coaches seem very happy with Ziggy's progress.

ddawson4hof: What's up, Ed. I live in Texas so I miss watching you on DirecTV. With Ratliff stepping up in the secondary, do you think both rookie corners make the squad?

Ed Bouchette: Keenan Lewis will make it and when push comes to shove I believe Burnett will too. There's room for good corners and I think Ratliff will make it -- he also can play safety, and did so in Cincinnati.

OldSchoolPatriotFan: Do you think the "do over" option will work in the new Cowboy Stadium or will the scoreboard have to be raised?

Ed Bouchette: I'm sorry, you must have lost your way from the Cowboys chat down the street.

MWoodyM112: Big Ben needs 26 yards during the regular season to go over 15,000 for his career. Are there any other big milestones that might be reached this season for the Steelers, besides a possible Super Bowl repeat?

Ed Bouchette: If Hines Ward catches 200 passes, he will hit 1,000 receptions in his career.

Steeler_in_the_Bayou: Brett Kiesel seems an odd choice for the next to receive an exstention. Would he be your choice?

Ed Bouchette: No, my choice would be me.

Eric_Green: Ed, the Steelers tried to sign T.J. Duckett a few years back. If released by the Seahawks, would the Steelers have any interest as their short yardage back. Although Seattle was terrible last year, I believe they led the league in 3rd and Short conversions.

Ed Bouchette: I would think not. That dog doesn't hunt anymore.

rustyb: Hello Ed, Do you think any teams will have interest in Plex after he serves his jail term? Has he played his last NFL game?

Ed Bouchette: I believe Plax will be 34 for the 2011 season, which would be his next after his jail term. I would sign him. He's not a bad guy, just makes knucklehead mistakes. I think he might have a few more years in him when he gets out.

rustyb: Ed, What do you think of the comments made by the Redskins secondary coach that Landry is a better safety than Polamalu? Are you kidding me?

Ed Bouchette: Seems to me Bruce Arians said Ed Reed was better than Polamalu two years ago. Doesn't matter.

rustyb: Ed, How will the playing time be distributed for the Buffalo game? Will this be the longest the first team plays? Who will get most of the snaps at QB?

Ed Bouchette: Yes, this should be the longest the first teams play. In past years, they've played into the third quarter. I would think they might not play quite as long Saturday but still get some extensive play.

dallas_stiller: Did Kemoeatu play last Sat night. NFL network carried the 'Skins broadcast and they said Legursky started at guard?

Ed Bouchette: He did not play, and if you read the Post-Gazette, you would have known that a long time ago.

atlsteel: Ed, do you think Sonny Harris will make 53-man roster?

Ed Bouchette: He's got a good shot.

Steeler_in_the_Bayou: Any waiver players on other teams the Steelers may be interested in?

Ed Bouchette: There are no players on waivers right now. Cuts still a week away.

steeltowncanada: Hi Ed, does Tony Hills have a shot at making the roster?

Ed Bouchette: Yes, I think he will be on the team.

Eric_Peagram: Several national media outlets reported Ben had an Achilles injury. Any truth to that?

Ed Bouchette: Were those the same ones that said the Steelers were the most likely team to sign Michael Vick?

Steeler_in_the_Bayou: Ed, Martin Nance seemed to have a real connection with Ben in college. Will he get any real time in these games and if not how do they cut guys without ever getting a good look at them?

Ed Bouchette: They see them in practice, which of course is not ideal compared to games, but Martin Nance is a very long shot to make the 53-man roster, but a candidate for the practice squad.

Amos_P_Swanson: Is Urbik in trouble to make this team?

Ed Bouchette: I don't think so, he'll get a year as a No. 3 draft choice to show what he can do.

Ed Bouchette: Thanks, all. Must run now. Look for some big, new things here over the next week.
First published on August 25, 2009 at 2:13 pm