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View Full Version : Pouncey locks up starting spot for Steelers


pete74
08-26-2010, 04:18 PM
The Pittsburgh Steelers have announced the first round selection C Maurkice Pouncey has become the #1 center on the depth chart. The selection of Pouncey in this year’s draft seemed like a perfect fit for the versatile lineman. The Steelers had originally thought they would start Pouncey at right guard but in off season workouts, the Steelers decided they would move him to the center position and try to earn the starting spot over Justin Hartwig.

Pouncey told reporters, “It put a big smile on me. I ain’t gonna lie, but I just need to go out there and practice every day. I want to stay humble. I’m happy about it. I just want to stay humble and keep working at it”.

Head coach Mike Tomlin told the media, “Maurkice Pouncey has done a nice job with every opportunity we have given him thus far. We continue to give him more opportunities”.

pete74
08-26-2010, 04:20 PM
According to the Post-Gazette, Maurkice Pouncey did not share reps yesterday with the first string at center with veteran Justin Hartwig…he took all of them. The Steelers have been very impressed with his progress and are giving him a chance this weekend to start against Denver’s Pro-Bowl nose guard, Jamal Williams. This will give the coaches a really great look at what we can expect to see from the rookie.

Steelers nose tackle, Casey Hampton had this to say about Pouncey:

“A lot of centers you play against are either quick and weak or they’re strong and not quick. He’s got both. He’s quick and he’s really strong. He recovers real well. He does a good job staying on his feet. I think he’s going to be a good player.”
No rookie since Heath Miller has become a starter by opening day

pete74
08-26-2010, 04:23 PM
Today is a good news/bad news day: good news for Maurkice Pouncey, bad news for Justin Hartwig.



The gifted rookie practiced with the Steelers' first-team on Wednesday and took every snap, leading one to conclude that he will be the team's opening-day center and the first Steeler rookie starter since Heath Miller in 2005.


Pouncey will start Saturday night at Denver, slugging it out with always-tough Broncos nose guard Jamal Williams, and that should be an interesting gauge on where he stands. But from all reports, Pouncey is absolutely ready for prime time. Said Casey Hampton of his new teammate:
"A lot of centers you play against are either quick and weak or they're strong and not quick. He's got both. He's quick and he's really strong. He recovers real well. He does a good job staying on his feet. I think he's going to be a good player."


Pouncey is so quick, his defensive teammates say, that he can make an early mistake and recover to make the block.


"With a center, man, you can't teach that," Hampton said. "If you got that, it helps a whole lot. That's the downfall of a lot of centers, getting beat quick, because guys are so close on you. But he's so athletic, he recovers and stays on his feet. That's the other thing about him, he's hardly ever on the ground."
But with good news comes bad news, and that is aimed in the direction of Justin Hartwig, who is not taking his demotion well. Practicing exclusively with the second-team on Wednesday, Hartwig refused to answer questions after practice, a good sign that he is pretty ticked about the move. With a salary due of more than $2 million in 2010, I'd place Hartwig squarely on the bubble as camp continues; I know the Steelers appreciate an able body with versatility, but if Hartwig doesn't want to be here, giving him $2 mil to mope in a role he doesn't accept isn't helping anything except his bank account.

Riddle_Of_Steel
08-26-2010, 04:39 PM
I feel bad for Justin Hartwig...but it's all business, and he has to realize that.

I for one am glad that Pouncey took the starting position, but I am thankful for the two years Hartwig gave us. Some of the guys in uniform are better than others, but the one thing they all have in common, is that they are all giving it their all on every play.

pete74
08-26-2010, 04:56 PM
i feel bad for hartwig as well but i feel better for pouncy and the team. our line was way to bad last year and it starts with hartwig. this is a major upgrade and the begining to us controlling the line once again like we used to

MasterOfPuppets
08-26-2010, 05:01 PM
:applaudit: .....now the only problem is essex probably keeps the RG spot...:doh:

Steelerfreak58
08-26-2010, 05:02 PM
Move Hartwig to RG if he has the feet to pull.

mikegrimey
08-26-2010, 05:03 PM
I don't feel bad for Hartwig.

This is good news, won't fix our oline this year but hopefully this is a start to patching up our weak interior.

scsteeler
08-26-2010, 05:12 PM
i feel bad for hartwig as well but i feel better for pouncy and the team. our line was way to bad last year and it starts with hartwig. this is a major upgrade and the begining to us controlling the line once again like we used to


So true we have not had decent center since Hartings. If Pouncey is the one the line should benefit greatly from this. I notice pouncey being able to open up lanes in the run a game against the giants.

pete74
08-26-2010, 06:02 PM
So true we have not had decent center since Hartings. If Pouncey is the one the line should benefit greatly from this. I notice pouncey being able to open up lanes in the run a game against the giants.

exactly and this is still very very early in his carear. he will only get better

MasterOfPuppets
08-26-2010, 06:37 PM
Move Hartwig to RG if he has the feet to pull.

my guess is hampton was talking about hartwig here...

"A lot of centers you play against are either quick and weak or they're strong and not quick.

i doubt if hartwig is any quicker or marginally stronger than essex. essex is without a doubt a better pass blocker.

SteelersinCA
08-26-2010, 07:19 PM
Trade hartwig?

LVSteelersfan
08-26-2010, 07:35 PM
I do not feel sorry for him. He was a weak stop gap at best. If he is cut, it is no big deal as there are a couple of people who can come in and play center in an emergency. BUT, there will be no emergency. It is time for some other team to lose one of their critical players. Steelers have had more than their fair share the past few years.

stb_steeler
08-26-2010, 08:19 PM
Any one lookin for a Hartwig jersey?.......Go Pouncy! :tt02:

OX1947
08-26-2010, 08:29 PM
I dont feel bad either. The center position has been a disaster ever since Hartings retired. Pouncey is playing like a pro bowler right now. This guy could be the next great center. very happy...

MasterOfPuppets
08-26-2010, 08:33 PM
Trade hartwig?

i hope so... i'm sure he's pissed off enough that'll he'll ask for one. i'd give him permission to shop himself around. a 7th rd pick is better than nothing. :noidea:

Fire Arians
08-26-2010, 09:24 PM
I do not feel sorry for him. He was a weak stop gap at best. If he is cut, it is no big deal as there are a couple of people who can come in and play center in an emergency. BUT, there will be no emergency. It is time for some other team to lose one of their critical players. Steelers have had more than their fair share the past few years.

I don't feel sorry for him either. he sucked i don't care what anybody says. saying he's better than mahan is like saying puke smells better than shit

http://bleedblackandgold.com/blog/2010/07/01/hartwig-worst-nfl-center/comment-page-1/

SteelKnight
08-26-2010, 09:35 PM
I feel bad for Justin Hartwig...but it's all business, and he has to realize that.

I for one am glad that Pouncey took the starting position, but I am thankful for the two years Hartwig gave us. Some of the guys in uniform are better than others, but the one thing they all have in common, is that they are all giving it their all on every play.

True True. I just hope he makes the team. I'll only feel sorry for him if he gets cut.

Riddle_Of_Steel
08-26-2010, 11:37 PM
I don't feel sorry for him either. he sucked i don't care what anybody says. saying he's better than mahan is like saying puke smells better than shit


Well, I can definitely tell you have no qualms about expressing your opinions strongly (hateristic screen name, Nazi hat on Arians, and no compassion for guys we all probably once cheered for)...but I tend to be thankful for the effort the guys DO put in to try and be the best for however long they were here.

That said, I am VERY GLAD that Pouncey is going to be our starting Center. I have been saying for a while that Hartwig was our Oline's achilles heel. He gets shoved into the backfield on most plays, can't seem to disengage from defenders to pick up blitzers, and generally isn't very good. A better Center will make the two Guards on either side of him that much better (as they won't have to be constantly compensating for his weak play), which will in turn help out the Tackles. It spreads outwards....

He IS better than Mahan was, but I agree with your analogy....hard to compare two things that stink almost equally.

Downbylaw
08-29-2010, 09:35 AM
Max Starks told Jay Glazer with a week left in camp that he didnt think that Pouncey was readly to start yet. I wonder what that is all about? Loyalty to a fellow lineman (Hartwig) or............????