View Full Version : Sanders unfazed by move to flanker

08-29-2010, 11:33 AM
Sunday, August 29, 2010

Too small.

Product of a pass-happy offense.

Steelers wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders heard the reasons why he wouldn't succeed in the NFL prior to the 2010 draft.

"I've been an underdog my whole life," the Steelers' third-round draft pick said. "I fed off of it."

If Sanders sounds like a certain wideout who has used the perceived underdog status to drive him, the Steelers will see if he can also play like Hines Ward today in Denver.

Sanders will line up at flanker, Ward's position, against the Broncos after playing primarily at split end.

The Steelers want him to learn both positions. They also made the switch because they have been pleasantly surprised with Sanders' blocking.

They'll get a better read on how well he can handle the grunt work that comes with playing flanker during the 8 p.m. game.

"We want to see if potentially he can block a guy the caliber of (Broncos safety) Brian Dawkins, who is going to be around or on the line of scrimmage," Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. "That's a daunting task for a young guy."

Sanders is undaunted about moving to flanker. The 5-foot-11, 180-pounder played the position at SMU, where set most of the school's receiving records.

If he shows the Steelers he can play flanker as well as split end at this level, it will only help him get on the field faster.

"That makes me more flexible," Sanders said. "If anything happens, I can go to any position."