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mesaSteeler
05-26-2010, 12:02 AM
Steelers groom a different Worilds
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/print_682898.html
By John Harris
PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Rookie Jason Worilds interviewed with several teams prior to the NFL Draft that were impressed with his ability to play defensive end in a 4-3 scheme. So imagine Worilds' surprise when the Steelers selected him in the second round to play outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense.

"I really didn't know until they drafted me," Worilds said following Tuesday's voluntary practice. "A lot of the teams liked me at defensive end. I was really torn. The only thing I did know is that I had the ability to stand up and play linebacker. But as far as expecting it, no. It was a shock to me and my family when the Steelers called."

Worilds didn't expect to hear from the Steelers because he was interviewed by more teams that play a 4-3 (including Indianapolis, Tennessee, Jacksonville and New Orleans) than 3-4 teams.

His track record at Virginia Tech for sacking quarterbacks led him to believe he could become another pass-rushing specialist in the mold of the Colts' Dwight Freeney, who depends on quickness and agility to pile up sacks.

Instead, Worilds (6-foot-2, 262 pounds) has altered his expectations in an attempt to become the next James Harrison.

That would have been ideal, to be in the type of system where they really like to get after the quarterback, but I really couldn't ask for a better place," Worilds said.

"I'm a competitor. As long as I can be in a position that's within my skill set, I want to play ball. Standing up, I didn't think twice about it. I'm playing for a prestigious organization. I'm ready to roll."

Worilds has been asked to do more than rise out of his three-point stance and play linebacker. He's lining up on the right side after manning the left side in college and dropping into pass coverage.

He's also playing a new position while also learning a new defense.

"It's not really that big of a change," Worilds said of playing right outside linebacker instead of left defensive end. "My feet are set the same left foot up, right foot back as if I was on the left side. Really the only thing I'm doing now is standing up.

"Seeing the game from the other side of the field is like looking at the sky from one side of the street and crossing the street and looking at the sky from the other side. Once I got acclimated to that, it wasn't a problem."

Still, learning to play outside linebacker has its drawbacks for Worilds, who said he has his good days and bad days attempting to figure things out.

"It's a new position. I'm learning what to expect and how to read certain keys and putting myself in the best position to make plays," he said.

"I'm trying to pick things up, just trying to retain it all. One day you'll learn something new and mess up on the things you learned the day before. It's a work in progress."

Despite his inexperience, Worilds has a couple of things going for him. He's playing behind Harrison, who has been named to the past three Pro Bowls, so he's under no pressure to step in and start right away. He also plays a position where he can learn from veterans such as Harrison, James Farrior, Larry Foote, LaMarr Woodley and Lawrence Timmons.

Following yesterday's practice, Worilds did extra running with Farrior, Foote and Timmons.

"They've been extremely helpful," Worilds said. "How many Pro Bowls in that linebacker corps? How many years as starters under their belt? They definitely help in bringing me along.

"Hopefully, I've been able to show a work ethic. I come in every day and try to absorb as much as I can. Hopefully, I've shown a hunger to get better."

John Harris can be reached at jharris@tribweb.com or 412-481-5432.

Galax Steeler
05-26-2010, 04:27 AM
I don't think Worlids will have much of a problem adapting to his new roll. Once he figures out the system we will have another good linebacker ready to come in and make plays for us.

solardave
05-26-2010, 06:58 AM
Even though Harrison has low miles he is getting older and it's nice to know if the injury bug hits him we have a guy like Worilds who can back him up.

lamberts-lost-tooth
05-26-2010, 08:44 AM
I'm looking forward to seeing this guy play...He is possibly the most criticized of our draft picks and I hope he proves everyone wrong.

scsteeler
05-26-2010, 09:29 AM
I'm looking forward to seeing this guy play...He is possibly the most criticized of our draft picks and I hope he proves everyone wrong.

He will!

mikeyg
05-26-2010, 02:52 PM
I'm looking forward to seeing this guy play...He is possibly the most criticized of our draft picks and I hope he proves everyone wrong.

hope you are right (never wish for a pick not be great)

i think the criticism was why we took him when other BPA's may have been there and we clearly had / have DB/S needs - depth and DEPTH!

Psyychoward86
05-26-2010, 06:07 PM
The only thing i hate about us drafting 3 LB's is that we are letting Keyaron Fox go into free agency (almost) for sure. I really liked the way that kid played, and i thought he was borderline phenomenal at times when he filled in for Timmons. I think if another team picks him up next year (which they probably will), they are going to have a very, very happy defensive coordinator

pete74
05-26-2010, 07:49 PM
The only thing i hate about us drafting 3 LB's is that we are letting Keyaron Fox go into free agency (almost) for sure. I really liked the way that kid played, and i thought he was borderline phenomenal at times when he filled in for Timmons. I think if another team picks him up next year (which they probably will), they are going to have a very, very happy defensive coordinator

how do you figure? we drafted 2 OLB and 1 ILB. we have 2 old ILB'ers and need to replace at lease farrior soon. the ilb'er we drafted will probably never see the field and the 2 OLB'ers have nothing to do with fox's job

St33lersguy
05-26-2010, 07:53 PM
With Woodley and Harrison in the lineup, and with the low wear and tear from both he won't start for 5 years if he is even on the team for that long. The steelers had immediate needs on defense and yet they reach for a project that looked like drafting for the future

LVSteelersfan
05-26-2010, 09:15 PM
With Woodley and Harrison in the lineup, and with the low wear and tear from both he won't start for 5 years if he is even on the team for that long. The steelers had immediate needs on defense and yet they reach for a project that looked like drafting for the future

There is no way Harrison is playing another 4 years. This kid was picked to start either by next year or in 2 years at the latest. And the Steelers had absolutely no depth at that position. This was not a reach and it was a much needed position. As was the one to back up Woodley and the other one to replace Farrior who is getting way too old and slow of foot. This front office knows what it is doing. Perhaps next year there will be a NT worth picking to replace Casey. And they picked up two CBs last year so that was not a needed position like people keep saying. This was a good draft.

Psyychoward86
05-26-2010, 11:26 PM
how do you figure? we drafted 2 OLB and 1 ILB. we have 2 old ILB'ers and need to replace at lease farrior soon. the ilb'er we drafted will probably never see the field and the 2 OLB'ers have nothing to do with fox's job

Woodley, Farrior, Timmons, Harrison, Fox, and Foote are virtual locks to make the team. Worilds will almost assuredly make it too just by where he was drafted.

Yeah i agree with you, but i also dont want to get rid of "project" linebackers that we just picked up, even if it's just PS. That's a lot of linebackers

Galax Steeler
05-27-2010, 05:18 AM
There is no way Harrison is playing another 4 years. This kid was picked to start either by next year or in 2 years at the latest. And the Steelers had absolutely no depth at that position. This was not a reach and it was a much needed position. As was the one to back up Woodley and the other one to replace Farrior who is getting way too old and slow of foot. This front office knows what it is doing. Perhaps next year there will be a NT worth picking to replace Casey. And they picked up two CBs last year so that was not a needed position like people keep saying. This was a good draft.

Agreed and well said. Like you said Harrison will not be on the Steelers for the next 4-5 years. I see him playing one maybe two at the most. Worlids will give us fresh legs at the position. For those who have not watched Worlids play he has a motor and can get after the quarterback. Some will be surprised at how quick he can move.

pete74
05-27-2010, 05:36 AM
Woodley, Farrior, Timmons, Harrison, Fox, and Foote are virtual locks to make the team. Worilds will almost assuredly make it too just by where he was drafted.

Yeah i agree with you, but i also dont want to get rid of "project" linebackers that we just picked up, even if it's just PS. That's a lot of linebackers

i love fox and wouldnt mind seeing him start over foote or farrior next season. i took alot of heat on this board for saying this but harrison will be cut within 2 years and worilds was drafted to take his position. if harrison dosnt play at a very high level this season then this may be his final year but odds are he will be here for 2 more. gibson and worilds were both drafted so 1 can take over for harrison when the steelers cut him. his pay is just way to high and he is getting up there in age. its definatly nice having more then enough LB's then not enough

mikeyg
05-27-2010, 11:07 AM
Agreed and well said. Like you said Harrison will not be on the Steelers for the next 4-5 years. I see him playing one maybe two at the most. Worlids will give us fresh legs at the position. For those who have not watched Worlids play he has a motor and can get after the quarterback. Some will be surprised at how quick he can move.

is he as fast as Alonzo Jackson was?

XxKnightxX
05-27-2010, 11:45 AM
is he as fast as Alonzo Jackson was?

Hes a hell of a lot smarter than Alonzo Jackson, and lets not forget his college coach who is a very techinical and fundemental coach. His transition would be like Woodleys dont be surprised if he gets in some reps this season. It also allows LeBeau to add in special pass rushing packages on passing downs, something we needed since our marshmallow secondary was needing. Worilds Stood up in some plays at V tech and he was a stand up backer in HS when they went to 3-4 or 50 defensive formations.

mikeyg
05-27-2010, 12:05 PM
Hes a hell of a lot smarter than Alonzo Jackson, and lets not forget his college coach who is a very techinical and fundemental coach. His transition would be like Woodleys dont be surprised if he gets in some reps this season. It also allows LeBeau to add in special pass rushing packages on passing downs, something we needed since our marshmallow secondary was needing. Worilds Stood up in some plays at V tech and he was a stand up backer in HS when they went to 3-4 or 50 defensive formations.

i am just teasing some

i am not excited right now about this pick, given our needs and LB talents when he was drafted

we needed an interior LB if anything,first. Harrison and Woodley will be solid for years to come - Harrison for at least 3 more years.

Farrior is the one who is done and we are not prepared to say good by.

and our DB still needs improvement.

that is my only gripe - hope the kid is great and hope he is wrecking crew on ST's

XxKnightxX
05-27-2010, 02:29 PM
i am just teasing some

i am not excited right now about this pick, given our needs and LB talents when he was drafted

we needed an interior LB if anything,first. Harrison and Woodley will be solid for years to come - Harrison for at least 3 more years.

Farrior is the one who is done and we are not prepared to say good by.

and our DB still needs improvement.

that is my only gripe - hope the kid is great and hope he is wrecking crew on ST's

Yeah I understand your point in needs, but you have to put trust into the steelers Scouting System. They have boards and prospects set up that within a 2 to three year window. When you start drafting for the now immediately, you end up shooting yourself in the foot, by them drafting talent first and not addint immediate needs its not a draft failure. It shows their patience in prospects coming in the next few years as well as giving comfort and reassurance to the starting players. If the Steelers would of drafted a High round NT when signing casey hampton, im not sure but although it may seem nice to the fans and roster lineup. Casey may feel distracted by that and He will not give it his all because he feels like hes just a pawn more than an asset. Just some food for thought.

DanRooney
05-27-2010, 02:39 PM
Harrison will be the starter for at least 3 more years with the level he's been playing at. I guarantee it. Worilds will just see more reps increasingly in those years.

St33lersguy
05-27-2010, 04:13 PM
i am just teasing some

i am not excited right now about this pick, given our needs and LB talents when he was drafted

we needed an interior LB if anything,first. Harrison and Woodley will be solid for years to come - Harrison for at least 3 more years.

Farrior is the one who is done and we are not prepared to say good by.

and our DB still needs improvement.

Well said.

They should have drafted Sean Lee, he was a better player at a pressing need

XxKnightxX
05-28-2010, 02:12 PM
Sean Lee was an injury liability though with his knees.

steelerdave1969
05-28-2010, 03:36 PM
I'm looking forward to seeing this guy play...He is possibly the most criticized of our draft picks and I hope he proves everyone wrong.

I agree ole buddy. I like everything I hear about this guy except his injury history. But given his skills at rushing the passer I think we have gotten a gem to get primed and ready for taking over for Harrison or Woodley. I look for Woodley to be resigned and take Harrison's spot in the next year or so and Worilds to take his spot.