View Full Version : Ex-Quip Lindsey agitated, motivated

05-05-2012, 11:10 PM
Ex-Quip Lindsey agitated, motivated
By Mike Bires mbires@timesonline.com | Posted: Saturday, May 5, 2012 8:05 pm

PITTSBURGH - Brandon Lindsey likes the way he looks in black and gold.

He envisions himself wearing a Steelers' uniform in games that count.

It would be a dream come true to play for the team he and his family root for every weekend during the NFL season.

But for that to happen, the former Aliquippa High School star must overcome long odds.

For starters, he's an undrafted free agent.

He also signed with a team well-stocked at outside linebacker.

"I have my foot in the door," said Lindsey, who'll be at team headquarters again today for the third and final session of the Steelers' rookie mini-camp. "But now I have to do the work. I have to do everything in my power to make this team."

Last weekend, Lindsey expected to hear his name called in the NFL Draft. He surely thought that one of the league's 32 teams would pick him in the later rounds. However, Lindsey wasn't one of the 252 players selected in the seven-round draft.

"I was disappointed. I was mad. I was in tears," said Lindsey, a starting defensive end at Pitt the past two seasons.

"My pride was hurt a little, not hearing your name called. But this gives me something to shoot for.

"I have to make the best of a bad situation. I have a big chip on my shoulder. I just have to be hungrier than the guy in front of me."

On the Steelers' depth chart, James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley are well-established starters at outside linebacker. Jason Worilds (second round in 2010) and Chris Carter (fifth round last year) are backups who were drafted by the Steelers.

If the Steelers keep only eight linebackers as they did last year - four inside, four outside - Lindsey might be able to stick around on the eight-man practice squad. If that were to happen, he'd be paid in the range of $88,000 for the year. Most importantly, he would be able to be part of the Steelers family. He'd be able to continue to learn and improve his techniques in the complex schemes of defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau. And virtually every year there are instances when a practice squad player gets promoted to the active roster due to injury.

When asked about the linebackers ahead of him on the depth chart, Lindsey said "I'll pick their brains as much as I can and get as good as I can come (training) camp time. Then we'll see what happens after that."

On April 28 when the draft ended, Lindsey and his agent were on the phone discussing his options as an undrafted free agent. Within an hour, he came to terms with the Steelers.

"We looked at some teams and their depth charts. We looked at my best possible scenarios," Lindsey said. "It came down to staying in my hometown and playing for the Steelers.

"It would mean a lot to me if I could play for the Steelers. My family and I grew up Steelers fans. My family would love nothing more than to see me play for the Steelers."

Right now, there are no guarantees that Lindsey will ever play a down for the Steelers. But like he said, he has his foot in the door.

Hawaii 5-0
05-05-2012, 11:41 PM
Brandon Lindsey to Steelers: Scouting Report and Analysis

By Barbara Bruno (Featured Columnist) on April 29, 2012


Pittsburgh wasted no time in signing rookie free agent and former Pitt Panther, Brandon Lindsey. A stand-up outside linebacker (or two-stance DE) with powerful hands and good spin when it comes to blockers, Lindsey is an aggressive player with significant growth potential.

Impressive in the tape that one can find, Lindsey made the All-Big East team in 2011 and ranked second in sack percentage in the nation.


Lindsey rushes the passer well even though he doesn’t have elite speed. Oh heck, he doesn’t even have good straight-ahead speed (40-times range from the high 4.7's into the low 4.9's).

But he does have quick football speed and can come off the ball with a good jump. He accelerates well towards the passer while still keeping his eyes in the backfield.

His vision also enables him to knock down passes while rushing the quarterback, and he excels at taking an aggressive angle on QBs and rushers to frequently great effect.

Lindsey was thrust into the starting role due to injury in 2011 and responded well to both the challenge and the opportunity, stepping up his game and gaining notice (Lindy’s Pro Football Draft).

Something that should never be overlooked in a football player: Lindsey has hands that are almost 11 inches wide. Wow.


That same aggressive spirit is also Brandon's greatest liability, since he can over-commit and miss the tackle while aiming for the big hit.

While Lindsey has the athleticism to move well in the flat, he really doesn't play the run at a pro level. There’s just no other way to put it that isn't mean. Even nfl.com called him “adequate.”

Although he seized the moment and played well when he became a starter, Lindsey reportedly tired when pressed to play every down (Lindy's). That and his tendency towards giving in to his own instincts and overplaying the ball will need to be addressed if he is to succeed in the pros.

He is a good athlete who can play very unevenly, but with enough potential that it might be possible to “coach him up.”

Potential Rookie Impact

Some agree that he has good hands (CBSSports.com), some even like his run-stopping prowess (Lindy’s) and some say he is explosive (MockingTheDraft.com). But there is a general air of hesitancy in most scouting reports regarding his overall readiness to excel in the league.

Considering that he served primarily as a standout reserve in college and that he has a lean frame, Lindsey may need some time to grow into a professional role. He’ll almost certainly bulk up and will need to improve conditioning and ball discipline.

If allowed to work into a rotation as a stand-up pass rusher, he may well break onto the field in 2012.

Otherwise, he’ll have to try to survive on special teams until he matures in terms of technique, judgement and strength.

One thing in his favor is consistent durability, which may give him the time he needs to develop.

CBSSports.com compared Lindsey to Steelers star LB LaMarr Woodley, which will be not only a thrill to Pennsylvania native Brandon, but should also serve as inspiration to earn that accolade alongside his new teammate.


05-06-2012, 03:53 PM
I hope the kid makes it!

05-06-2012, 07:21 PM
Always root for Pitt guys

Hawaii 5-0
05-06-2012, 08:50 PM
Always root for Pitt guys

I'm cheering for John Malecki too, but the odds against him making the roster aren't too good either.

Hawaii 5-0
05-07-2012, 12:41 AM
Steelers have Pitt QB Brandon Lindsey on free-agent tryout

May 6, 2012
Associated Press

PITTSBURGH—Brandon Lindsey spent last weekend gathered in a room with his family waiting for the phone to ring.

The former Pitt linebacker didn't expect to hear his name called in the first round of the NFL draft, or the second.

Then the third round passed. Then the fourth. Then the fifth.

At that point, Lindsey grabbed the remote and turned the TV off.

"I didn't want to hear it anymore," Lindsey said.

Instead he turned his attention to figuring out where he wanted to sign as a rookie free agent. The answer was stunningly obvious.

Lindsey spent five years in the same building as the Steelers, practicing on the same expanse along the Monongahela River. He often wondered what it would be like to walk through the door on the left — which leads to the Steelers headquarters — instead of the one on the right that leads to Pitt's football offices.

The reality is even better than he imagined.

"I'd been over here before but it's nothing like when you're a part of the organization," he said. "Now you know you're a part of their team and it's a great feeling."

One that is in stark contrast to the roller coaster Lindsey rode during his final year with the Panthers, who went through four head coaches — and a couple of interim ones — in the span of 14 months.

Lindsey was a second-team All-Big East selection at defensive end under Dave Wannstedt in 2010, only to see the coach who recruited him let go, leading to a series of missteps that culminated in Todd Graham bolting Pitt after just one season for Arizona State.

All that tumult hurt the Panthers on the field, and perhaps the professional prospects of the seniors. The draft came and went without a Pitt player being selected, the first time that's happened since 1999.

"I think it hurt us just not having the sense of home," Lindsey said. "We didn't feel like we had a place we belonged. You go from one system to the next to another one. It's hard for any 21, 22-year-old to get used to losing your coach two years in a row."

Lindsey did his best to pitch in during Graham's brief tenure, moving from end to "Panther" linebacker, a hybrid position that gave him the freedom to either stand up or get down in a stance on a given play.

All that shuffling around, however, came with great responsibility. Perhaps too much. Lindsey's sack total dipped a bit to 8 1/2, though his presence freed up things for the guys in front of him. Defensive linemen Aaron Donald and Chas Alexcih combined for 17 1/2 sacks while linemen keyed on Lindsey.

Though Lindsey believes switching positions "hurt my production" it also gave him perspective.

"I tried to make the best out of a bad situation," he said.

The constant moving made it difficult for NFL teams to project Lindsey at the next level. Does he pack on 30 pounds on his 6-foot-2, 250-pound frame to play end or drop a little weight to play outside linebacker?

The Steelers will have Lindsey stand up and try to find a spot behind veterans James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley.

The ranks behind the two Pro Bowlers are pretty thin — Jason Worilds is the only established backup — and Lindsey believes he's got a legitimate shot to survive the long journey from minicamp to the final 53-man roster in September.

"It doesn't hurt to play behind LaMarr Woodley and James Harrison," Lindsey said. "You can't learn behind two better players. Hopefully I'll be able to pick their brains and see how they go about their business, how they practice, how they play and that will rub off on me."