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mesaSteeler
11-01-2009, 09:01 AM
Steelers Fans Need to Be Patient with Ziggy Hood
http://nfl.fanhouse.com/2009/10/31/steelers-fans-need-to-be-patient-with-ziggy-hood/
Posted Oct 31, 2009 10:07PM By JJ Cooper (RSS feed)

When the Steelers lost defensive end Aaron Smith for the season, it wasn't too much of a shock that the Steelers turned to veteran Travis Kirschke instead of first-round pick Ziggy Hood.

But now that Kirschke is also likely to be sidelined for next Sunday's Broncos game, it looks like the Steelers would turn to Nick Eason next week as the starter instead of Hood. Essentially the Steelers are saying that Eason, who battled Sunny Harris for a spot on the roster during training camp, is a better bet as a starter than the Steelers first-round pick this year.

That would normally be a sign that the first-round pick is on the path to being a big-time bust--first-round picks should be contributors, not the No. 5 defensive end on a team that normally carries five defensive ends.

But with Dick LeBeau's defense, it's just part of the tradition. Whether it's the complexity of the blitz schemes or the extreme emphasis on every player carrying out their assignment, rookies very rarely find they can contribute on the Steelers defense.

The best example of this steep learning curve is safety Troy Polamalu. As a rookie, Polamalu looked like a bust. He didn't play all that much, and when he did, he seemed to always be the guy being picked on. A year later, he was a key reason the Steelers went 15-1 during the regular season.

It was a similar story with 2007 first-round pick Lawrence Timmons and second-round pick LaMarr Woodley. Both spent most of their rookie seasons on the bench, then both turned into solid contributors in their second year. Chris Hope is now a Pro Bowler with the Titans, but it took him a couple of years to earn a starting job in Pittsburgh. In fact, you'd have to go back to 2001 first-round pick Casey Hampton to find the last time a Steelers defensive rookie has made a significant impact as a starter.

So Steelers fans shouldn't worry too much about Hood's inability to get into the starting lineup. Hood may not be ready to make a big impact this year, but we won't really know what the Steelers got in him until next training camp.

Fire Haley
11-01-2009, 09:07 AM
At least our 3rd rd pick is playing.

I still say we should have taken Rey Maualuga. Can I say that here?

madtowndrunkard
11-01-2009, 09:15 AM
In most cases I'd agree with the premise of this article. There are a few positions on the field though that require less mental effort. The DE in the 3-4 is one of them. You cannot compare playing safety or ILB to playing DE in a 3-4. That's just ridiculous. That's like comparing then center to the QB. The two positions are not the same and one requires alot more mental preparation then the other. Hood has no excuse for not playing. He's a dissapointment to say the least. If he cannot handle the mental aspects of playing DE in the 3-4 then he's brain dead.

If Hood were playing LB I would not care that he can't even beat out a practice squad guy.

There is no excuse for Hood. He's a 1st round pick. He should at least be the #2 back up to Smith..... he's not even the #3 back up. I wonder if he's putting in the work. The fact that he cannot even beat out Eason makes me wonder if DL thinks he's lazy. Maybe he can turn it around next year? Who knows, but as for his rookie year he's a bust. We need Hood to play. We need a capable DE now more then ever...yet our 1st round pick can't even get on the field. There is no way to sugar coat that...and NO it is not the same as Troy P or Timmons.

El-Gonzo Jackson
11-01-2009, 10:03 AM
I'm really shocked that more Steeler fans are not complaining about Hood. This is actually a lot of patience for Steeler fans ......IMO.

Most called Timmons, Mendenhall and even Santonio Holmes a bust by week 8 of their rookie seasons. Its pretty much expected that very few rookies are gonna be big impact guys for the Steelers. That is why I am always a big fan of planning ahead and expecting guys to step up in their 2nd year and contribute. That being said, there is no replacement for Hampton.......so I think he gets tagged or extended next season.

X-Terminator
11-01-2009, 11:28 AM
In most cases I'd agree with the premise of this article. There are a few positions on the field though that require less mental effort. The DE in the 3-4 is one of them. You cannot compare playing safety or ILB to playing DE in a 3-4. That's just ridiculous. That's like comparing then center to the QB. The two positions are not the same and one requires alot more mental preparation then the other. Hood has no excuse for not playing. He's a dissapointment to say the least. If he cannot handle the mental aspects of playing DE in the 3-4 then he's brain dead.

If Hood were playing LB I would not care that he can't even beat out a practice squad guy.

There is no excuse for Hood. He's a 1st round pick. He should at least be the #2 back up to Smith..... he's not even the #3 back up. I wonder if he's putting in the work. The fact that he cannot even beat out Eason makes me wonder if DL thinks he's lazy. Maybe he can turn it around next year? Who knows, but as for his rookie year he's a bust. We need Hood to play. We need a capable DE now more then ever...yet our 1st round pick can't even get on the field. There is no way to sugar coat that...and NO it is not the same as Troy P or Timmons.

Were you paying attention AT ALL during the preseason? Everyone to a man, from Tomlin on down, were impressed by how well Hood played and how quickly he picked up the system. And, oh yeah, he was hustling down the field last week on Woodley's fumble return for a TD.

The Steelers do not believe in rushing rookies into the lineup. Period. That is the only reason why he is not starting. It has eff all to do with anything other than that.

truesteelerfan
11-01-2009, 11:32 AM
I think that it would be nice to at least see him in every third series or so, yes, he'll make some mistakes, but some game experiences will help speed along his development. If he's sticking out like a sore thumb, then fine, play Nick, but as we saw in the preseason, he has some great natural ability he just needs more experience in this system-which means he needs to play. Not a bust, way too early to think of that kind of talk I agree, but he's also making a lot of money and should earn some of it.

madtowndrunkard
11-01-2009, 11:52 AM
Were you paying attention AT ALL during the preseason? Everyone to a man, from Tomlin on down, were impressed by how well Hood played and how quickly he picked up the system. And, oh yeah, he was hustling down the field last week on Woodley's fumble return for a TD.

The Steelers do not believe in rushing rookies into the lineup. Period. That is the only reason why he is not starting. It has eff all to do with anything other than that.

Like I said, not all rookies are the same.

I totally understand why most Safeties, DB's, LB's, etc don't play much in our defensive system. Those positions require more mental preparation. I'm sure the plan was to allow Hood to learn this year behind Smith. Well Smith is hurt, his back up is hurt, and still Hood can't get on the field. We NEED Hood right now. If he cant' get on the field now, then there is a problem. You cannot deny that. You are lying to your self if you think the coaches are OK w/ the fact that our first round pick can't even beat out Eason on our dept chart.

Troy P was the #2 back up.....so was Holmes and Timmons in their rookie year. Woodley, Ben, Heath, and Hampton had no problem starting. Gay was on the field most of last season. This belief that rookies don't start for the steelers just isn't accurate. Hood should be starting over Eason - period.

Pre season means nothing...if it did Hood would have been the #2 back up to Smith. Coaches also don't always tell the truth about players. What are the coaches going to say? He can't pick up the play book? If he knows the defense and he still can't play then he's physically or technically flawed. Maybe he's got so many issues DL is rebuilding him technically? Who knows. What ever it is you cannot be happy that our #1 pick is that far down on the depth chart.

Psyychoward86
11-01-2009, 12:19 PM
At least our 3rd rd pick is playing.

I still say we should have taken Rey Maualuga. Can I say that here?

It's only a matter of time until he gives the Bengals off the field trouble like he did for his college team

tony hipchest
11-01-2009, 12:41 PM
Like I said, not all rookies are the same.

I totally understand why most Safeties, DB's, LB's, etc don't play much in our defensive system. Those positions require more mental preparation. I'm sure the plan was to allow Hood to learn this year behind Smith. Well Smith is hurt, his back up is hurt, and still Hood can't get on the field. We NEED Hood right now. If he cant' get on the field now, then there is a problem. You cannot deny that. You are lying to your self if you think the coaches are OK w/ the fact that our first round pick can't even beat out Eason on our dept chart.

Troy P was the #2 back up.....so was Holmes and Timmons in their rookie year. Woodley, Ben, Heath, and Hampton had no problem starting. Gay was on the field most of last season. This belief that rookies don't start for the steelers just isn't accurate. Hood should be starting over Eason - period.

Pre season means nothing...if it did Hood would have been the #2 back up to Smith. Coaches also don't always tell the truth about players. What are the coaches going to say? He can't pick up the play book? If he knows the defense and he still can't play then he's physically or technically flawed. Maybe he's got so many issues DL is rebuilding him technically? Who knows. What ever it is you cannot be happy that our #1 pick is that far down on the depth chart.

eason is experienced. hood is a rookie making a position change, trying to learn the most complex defense in the world.

plus he is a back up to keisel on the right side. hood is not smiths replacement.

even great college left tackles spend a year on the right side while they develop and learn.

j. ogden comes to mind. theyre even doing the same w/ m. oher.

keep in mind, hood wasnt a need based pick. we dont need him to play right now. he was selected because he was the best player available.

thats why the steelers are so good.

MasterOfPuppets
11-01-2009, 12:47 PM
i wonder why mcbean couldn't even make the steelers roster, but yet is starting on the 3rd ranked rush defense ? :noidea: ...by logic that must mean kirshke, hoke and hood must have some big trade value ....

steelerchad
11-01-2009, 12:54 PM
Agreed, that I think Hood will be fine. 7 games into his career, I'm actually surprised the guy is getting on the field at all.
Think about what you're saying when you think Hood should be ready to step in and play right now. He's on the Superbowl champion #1 rated D by far last year. And 7 games in, he should be just as good and seasoned straight out of college as the guys that have been there for years. If that were the case, I'd be concerned about both the skill and simplicity of our D.
Yes he was a first round pick, the last pick of the first round. I also have no doubt that if given the chance he'd make some plays right now, but I would also bet that he'd make some mistakes. And that is why he's not starting.

SteelC7
11-01-2009, 01:01 PM
ya rookies never start for the steelers their rookie years. woodley made some contributions his rookie year, 5 or 6 sacks comin off the bench, and 2 more in the playoff loss to the jackoff jaguars, and timmons just barely cracked the starting lineup this year, and hes been hurt all year and wen hes played hasnt looked good, so unless u guys wanna start callin timmons a bust, then dont say hood is a bust. i think the articles right, we gotta be patient, expect big things NEXT year

X-Terminator
11-01-2009, 01:22 PM
Like I said, not all rookies are the same.

I totally understand why most Safeties, DB's, LB's, etc don't play much in our defensive system. Those positions require more mental preparation. I'm sure the plan was to allow Hood to learn this year behind Smith. Well Smith is hurt, his back up is hurt, and still Hood can't get on the field. We NEED Hood right now. If he cant' get on the field now, then there is a problem. You cannot deny that. You are lying to your self if you think the coaches are OK w/ the fact that our first round pick can't even beat out Eason on our dept chart.

Troy P was the #2 back up.....so was Holmes and Timmons in their rookie year. Woodley, Ben, Heath, and Hampton had no problem starting. Gay was on the field most of last season. This belief that rookies don't start for the steelers just isn't accurate. Hood should be starting over Eason - period.

Pre season means nothing...if it did Hood would have been the #2 back up to Smith. Coaches also don't always tell the truth about players. What are the coaches going to say? He can't pick up the play book? If he knows the defense and he still can't play then he's physically or technically flawed. Maybe he's got so many issues DL is rebuilding him technically? Who knows. What ever it is you cannot be happy that our #1 pick is that far down on the depth chart.

Dude, I am not going to get butt-hurt because Hood isn't starting in his rookie season, and I'm certainly not going to label him a bust, which you basically are doing. Besides, just because he isn't starting doesn't mean he isn't going to play, because the Steelers like to rotate their linemen and with both Kirschke and Smith out, that means he's going to play quite a bit. Plus, as Tony mentioned he is learning a whole new position, coming from a 4-3 defense in college to a complicated 3-4 in the NFL, something that is NOT easy to do. What you are doing is exactly what this article mentions - like most Steelers fans, you do not have any patience and expect rookies to be All-Pros their first season. With few exceptions it simply does not happen.

mulldog24
11-01-2009, 04:22 PM
I don't know what alot of you folks think of Eason but I actually think the guy is a pretty solid DE. He is expierenced and knows the system better than Hood at this point and as X-terminator mentioned we rotate guys in alot and keep a fresh D-line in the game. In saying that I think Hood will have plenty of playing time in the game to learn and grow, after all he is a rookie and will have time in the future to be a starter. Hood will be fine they will bring him along the Steeler way.

fansince'76
11-01-2009, 05:02 PM
Patience is not in this fanbase's vocabulary, by and large. If draft choices, particularly higher round choices, don't start immediately and play like future HoFers from snap one, they are labeled a bust and a waste of a draft pick.

XxKnightxX
11-02-2009, 12:48 AM
Like I said, not all rookies are the same.

I totally understand why most Safeties, DB's, LB's, etc don't play much in our defensive system. Those positions require more mental preparation. I'm sure the plan was to allow Hood to learn this year behind Smith. Well Smith is hurt, his back up is hurt, and still Hood can't get on the field. We NEED Hood right now. If he cant' get on the field now, then there is a problem. You cannot deny that. You are lying to your self if you think the coaches are OK w/ the fact that our first round pick can't even beat out Eason on our dept chart.

Troy P was the #2 back up.....so was Holmes and Timmons in their rookie year. Woodley, Ben, Heath, and Hampton had no problem starting. Gay was on the field most of last season. This belief that rookies don't start for the steelers just isn't accurate. Hood should be starting over Eason - period.

Pre season means nothing...if it did Hood would have been the #2 back up to Smith. Coaches also don't always tell the truth about players. What are the coaches going to say? He can't pick up the play book? If he knows the defense and he still can't play then he's physically or technically flawed. Maybe he's got so many issues DL is rebuilding him technically? Who knows. What ever it is you cannot be happy that our #1 pick is that far down on the depth chart.

Uhhhhhh.....no
Actually I am happy he's that down on the depth chart. We just won the super bowl for crying out loud he's the 32nd pick not the 3rd overall. Give the kid some damn time.

FourThreeMafia
11-02-2009, 01:21 AM
At least our 3rd rd pick is playing.

I still say we should have taken Rey Maualuga. Can I say that here?

You can say it, but you realize he wouldnt be starting or playing much outside of STs either, right?

LeBeau's defense is too complicated for rookies to excel. Mauluaga looks decent in Cincy;'s defense....he would be number 4 ILB as a rookie with us behind the LT, Potsie and Fox. Mauluaga still struggles in play recognition and pursuit. He looks good right now, but he is only starting in Cincy because their LB corps (aside from Glass Jaw Rivers) was pathetic..

In the long run, Rey could be the better player, but its still way too early.

I trust Hood will come along just fine. He has a great work ethic and is very smart. Im not worried.

Galax Steeler
11-02-2009, 03:51 AM
I say you will see Hood playing more as the year goes on and probably just might be starting by the end of the year. As fate has it you will not see a rookie starting for the Steelers but in this case I will say yes by the end of the year.

HometownGal
11-02-2009, 06:49 AM
eason is experienced. hood is a rookie making a position change, trying to learn the most complex defense in the world.

plus he is a back up to keisel on the right side. hood is not smiths replacement.

even great college left tackles spend a year on the right side while they develop and learn.

j. ogden comes to mind. theyre even doing the same w/ m. oher.

keep in mind, hood wasnt a need based pick. we dont need him to play right now. he was selected because he was the best player available.

thats why the steelers are so good.

:applaudit::applaudit::applaudit:

Couldn't say it ANY better. :drink:

Steelers Since '75
11-02-2009, 07:57 AM
Posting on this board to say a rookie with the Steelers is a bust just shows how little you know about the team. The Steelers do not start rookies unless they are forced to... that is why our high draft picks do so well for us down the line... the Steelers GROOM their players. Rookies are schooled not just in the game but in life and how to represent yourself and the organization in a proper way. We don't throw immature showboaters on the field... the Rooneys instill a family value and a team mentality... KIDS coming out of college lack this maturity and they don't see the field until they can handle the pressure... that is why we have such a long standing history of winning.

solardave
11-02-2009, 04:34 PM
At least our 3rd rd pick is playing.

I still say we should have taken Rey Maualuga. Can I say that here?

No you can't.LOL The fact that the Bengals picked him tells me he has to have some character flaw. You wait it'll turn up sooner or later.:wink02:

solardave
11-02-2009, 04:37 PM
In most cases I'd agree with the premise of this article. There are a few positions on the field though that require less mental effort. The DE in the 3-4 is one of them. You cannot compare playing safety or ILB to playing DE in a 3-4. That's just ridiculous. That's like comparing then center to the QB. The two positions are not the same and one requires alot more mental preparation then the other. Hood has no excuse for not playing. He's a dissapointment to say the least. If he cannot handle the mental aspects of playing DE in the 3-4 then he's brain dead.

If Hood were playing LB I would not care that he can't even beat out a practice squad guy.

There is no excuse for Hood. He's a 1st round pick. He should at least be the #2 back up to Smith..... he's not even the #3 back up. I wonder if he's putting in the work. The fact that he cannot even beat out Eason makes me wonder if DL thinks he's lazy. Maybe he can turn it around next year? Who knows, but as for his rookie year he's a bust. We need Hood to play. We need a capable DE now more then ever...yet our 1st round pick can't even get on the field. There is no way to sugar coat that...and NO it is not the same as Troy P or Timmons.

Sorry coach Lebeau. I didn't see you standing there.

solardave
11-02-2009, 04:45 PM
Like I said, not all rookies are the same.

I totally understand why most Safeties, DB's, LB's, etc don't play much in our defensive system. Those positions require more mental preparation. I'm sure the plan was to allow Hood to learn this year behind Smith. Well Smith is hurt, his back up is hurt, and still Hood can't get on the field. We NEED Hood right now. If he cant' get on the field now, then there is a problem. You cannot deny that. You are lying to your self if you think the coaches are OK w/ the fact that our first round pick can't even beat out Eason on our dept chart.

Troy P was the #2 back up.....so was Holmes and Timmons in their rookie year. Woodley, Ben, Heath, and Hampton had no problem starting. Gay was on the field most of last season. This belief that rookies don't start for the steelers just isn't accurate. Hood should be starting over Eason - period.

Pre season means nothing...if it did Hood would have been the #2 back up to Smith. Coaches also don't always tell the truth about players. What are the coaches going to say? He can't pick up the play book? If he knows the defense and he still can't play then he's physically or technically flawed. Maybe he's got so many issues DL is rebuilding him technically? Who knows. What ever it is you cannot be happy that our #1 pick is that far down on the depth chart.

Sounds to me like we need to cut Hood, Lebeau,and Tomlin. We will see more of Hood before the year is up. Hell everyone I know thought we should scrap the entire O line at the beginnin:popcorn:g of the year and now what are we saying. Let the coaches coach. If we knew as much as we thought we did we wouldn't be here.

Fire Haley
11-02-2009, 09:10 PM
In the long run, Rey could be the better player, but its still way too early.
.

I was thinking of him as Farrior's replacement - he can't last forever.

Ziggy has 1 whole official tackle in his 3 games - we could replace that.

HometownGal
11-02-2009, 09:16 PM
Steelers fans on the average aren't patient with any of their players so really - why would they break "tradition" and be patient with Ziggy? :banging:

solardave
11-03-2009, 05:51 AM
Steelers fans on the average aren't patient with any of their players so really - why would they break "tradition" and be patient with Ziggy? :banging:

If Aaron Smith was not on IR I'm not sure this would even come up. So in this case "patience" is relative. Calling Ziggy Hood a bust less than halfway through his first season. Come on, really?

HometownGal
11-03-2009, 06:31 AM
If Aaron Smith was not on IR I'm not sure this would even come up. So in this case "patience" is relative. Calling Ziggy Hood a bust less than halfway through his first season. Come on, really?

Huh? :doh: Obviously you missed the sarcasm in my post. :banging:

sharkweek
11-03-2009, 07:46 AM
I was thinking of him as Farrior's replacement - he can't last forever.

Ziggy has 1 whole official tackle in his 3 games - we could replace that.

You can say it, but you realize he wouldnt be starting or playing much outside of STs either, right?

LeBeau's defense is too complicated for rookies to excel. Mauluaga looks decent in Cincy;'s defense....he would be number 4 ILB as a rookie with us behind the LT, Potsie and Fox. Mauluaga still struggles in play recognition and pursuit. He looks good right now, but he is only starting in Cincy because their LB corps (aside from Glass Jaw Rivers) was pathetic..

In the long run, Rey could be the better player, but its still way too early.

I trust Hood will come along just fine. He has a great work ethic and is very smart. Im not worried.

Even if he Rey has potential to be a bigger NFL star we still made the smarter gamble investing in replacement talent for our DL. Coming off a superbowl win one of our team's few weaknesses was an aging DL, our LB corps is the best and deepest in the league.

madtowndrunkard
11-03-2009, 10:08 AM
You can say it, but you realize he wouldnt be starting or playing much outside of STs either, right?

LeBeau's defense is too complicated for rookies to excel. Mauluaga looks decent in Cincy;'s defense....he would be number 4 ILB as a rookie with us behind the LT, Potsie and Fox. Mauluaga still struggles in play recognition and pursuit. He looks good right now, but he is only starting in Cincy because their LB corps (aside from Glass Jaw Rivers) was pathetic..

In the long run, Rey could be the better player, but its still way too early.

I trust Hood will come along just fine. He has a great work ethic and is very smart. Im not worried.

Lebeau's defense wasn't too complicated for Woodley. It wasn't too complicated for Gay or Hampton either.

I don't think I made my point clear..... I don't have any issue at all with Hood not starting. I by no means expected him to start nor did I expect him to have a great season statistically. The issue I have is how far down the depth chart he is. The coaches were very quick to say "NO Hood is not close to ready" After Smith went down I expected to see more of Hood. Now two 2 DE's are down and still Hood will be lucky to get a handful of plays. IMO the fact that Hood is not a head of Eason on the depth chart does say that Hood is not having a good rookie year. His rookie season so far has been a bust.

As a player or draft pick - of course I'm not ready to call him a bust. I think you need 3 off seasons to declare a player a bust. If by his 3rd season he's not starting then yea he's a bust. Right now he's been disappointing.

My guess is he has serious technique issues. He's raw and needs a year or two to learn how to play football in the NFL. If you can't expect your first round pick to at least be #2 or #3 on the depth chart then there is definitely something wrong.

steelreserve
11-03-2009, 10:48 AM
keep in mind, hood wasnt a need based pick. we dont need him to play right now. he was selected because he was the best player available.

Yeah ... the best player available that we NEEDED. If you think it's just coincidence that we were in dire need of new defensive linemen and we just happened to draft a defensive lineman, I want some of that stuff you're smoking. There were a few other guys who you could argue were "better" -- particularly a couple of MLBs and RBs, maybe an OL or two -- but we didn't need them as much.

Anyway, I don't see how it's even possible to label someone a bust in their first year. That's pretty shortsighted.

On the other hand, I don't think there's anything wrong with wishing you saw more out of him right now. He IS supposed to be the future of the line, and he DID come with high expectations, so, the sooner the better, right?