View Full Version : Brett Keisel, Ike Taylor & Mike Wallace Absent From First OTA
05-22-2012, 01:07 PM
Brett Keisel & Ike Taylor Join Mike Wallace As Players Absent From Steelers First OTA
Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012 by Dave Bryan
We already passed along the news that Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu is present for the first OTA session of the 2012 season that got underway today in Pittsburgh and now we are getting word from Mark Kaboly of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review of players that are not present or are not participating in addition.
Kaboly reported via Twitter that defensive end Brett Keisel and cornerback Ike Taylor were not present for the first organized activity and that linebacker Jason Worilds and guard Ramon Foster were present but did not participate on Tuesday. Also present were nose tackle Casey Hampton and running back Rashard Mendenhall, but both are still recovering from knee surgeries to repair torn ACLs that they both suffered late in the season. Kaboly says that Mendenhall did look good though and that both were working feverishly on the side. Wide receiver Mike Wallace, as expected, was not present on Tuesday and is not expected to be in attendance for any of the OTA sessions or the team mini-camp as he has yet to sign his one-year restricted tender offer. Also missing on Tuesday, as expected, were first and second round draft picks David DeCastro and Mike Adams, who are unable to attend because of school requirements. Also missing the Tuesday session due to school requirements was fourth round draft pick Alameda Ta'amu per Kaboly.
While we do not know the reason that Keisel was absent, it likely signals that he is still trying to recover from the severe groin injury that he suffered in the AFC Wild Card game against the Denver Broncos. Taylor normally works out in South Florida at this time of year with trainer Tom Shaw and we hope to get clarification as to whether or not that was his reasoning for his absence in the future.
Both Worilds and Foster might be recovering from some sort of minor injuries and I will attempt to get Kaboly to clarify what indeed is ailing both of them. Kaboly did add via Twitter that unrestricted free agent tackle Max Starks was at the Steelers facility getting his knee checked out by the trainers as he has been in town for the charity golf tournament that he helps put on that took place on Monday. Starks said last week that he likely would not be ready by the start of training camp and that he has yet to hear from the Steelers organization in regard to him being re-signed in the future.
05-22-2012, 02:22 PM
surprising to hear mendenhall was present. good news.
05-22-2012, 02:46 PM
Keisel and Ike get some Vet slack....No issues there
05-22-2012, 03:28 PM
Keisel and Ike get some Vet slack....No issues there
Agreed, especially Keisel, that groin injury is pretty bad.
05-22-2012, 06:41 PM
Ike was just late arriving in town, As for Wallace, i say he will be signed soon and have a monster year
05-22-2012, 07:02 PM
Pittsburgh Steelers 2012 Day One OTA Practice Recap
Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012 by Dave Bryan
The Pittsburgh Steelers completed day one of their first OTA session of the 2012 season and there are quite a few things to report. Below is a recap of the first day of organized team activities.
Players not working Tuesday were Mike Wallace (holdout), Ramon Foster (hamstring), Jason Worilds (undisclosed), Brett Keisel (undisclosed), Ike Taylor (late arrival), Rashard Mendenhall (knee), Casey Hampton (knee), David DeCastro (school), Mike Adams (school) and Alameda Ta'amu (school). The three rookies and Wallace were not present as expected. Taylor got into town late and will participate on Wednesday. There is no word yet as to why Worilds or Keisel were not working. Keisel could still be recovering from his groin injury. Foster told me he strained his hamstring last week, and that it is nothing major. Hampton and Mendenhall worked on the side with trainers and Mark Kaboly reported that Mendenhall was doing quite a bit of straight ahead running today.
As far as players that missed time last year, Maurkice Pouncey (ankle), Doug Legursky (shoulder), Marcus Gilbert (shoulder), Curtis Brown (knee), Emmanuel Sanders (foot/knee), Baron Batch (knee), Willie Colon (triceps), James Harrison (back) and LaMarr Woodley (hamstring) are all reportedly moving around well. Harrison told Jim Wexell that he is closer to being normal and back to where he was before his back surgeries last offseason. The back evidently caused him quite a bit of problems last year according to the Wexell report.
Your starting offensive line left to right on Tuesday was Trai Essex, Colon, Pouncey, Legursky and Gilbert with Jonathan Scott getting reps with the starters as well according to Kabol]y, who thinks Essex got the nod over Scott because of his seniority. Pouncey says he is a big fan of the new offensive playbook according to Mike Prisuta and added that the new offense is going to be a lot different, and that it will have a lot more running plays. Prisuta also quoted Pouncey as saying, "We might run it a lot more in the red zone." Pouncey also thinks Colon is going to be a monster at left guard and that Gilbert doesn't care which side he is on as he just wants to play.
Sanders was the punt returner on day one, but said he isn't sure about kickoffs just yet and that it is a one day at a time situation. He also said in an interview that the new offense is built around a lot of play action so as to get the ball in guys hands in order for them to get a lot of yards after catch.
Troy Polamalu was present and plans on attending all of the OTA sessions and the mini-camp this offseason because the team has lost a few leaders on defense and they need him around more. He was very humble per usual and added that he hopes to improve his play this year.
As far as Wallace goes, Mike Tomlin termed it a short term misery the team must get through and stated that he visited with the restricted free agent last week. It was also made known via the media that Wallace now has his playbook. Perhaps Tomlin is eluding to deal being struck soon or that Wallace plans on signing his tender and going from there. It is hard to really tell based on his quotes, but a few are speculating a long-term deal may be close. We shall see.
Ben Roethlisberger talked to the media today and perhaps the biggest thing to come out of that was his comments that the new offense relies on him staying in the pocket more and getting rid of the football quicker so that he does not take as many hits this year. He also mentioned that his receivers need to not get frustrated. He admits it will be a challenge to not let his instincts of scrambling to extend plays take over.
Rookie running back Chris Rainey is very fast in shorts according to a few. No surprise there.
Free agent Max Starks was at the facility according to Kaboly to get that knee of his checked out. Also spotted Tuesday was Chris Hoke, who reportedly has lost quite a bit of weight since he announced his retirement.
05-22-2012, 07:19 PM
^ good post. you have to have a running threat to be effective in the red zone, this goes for any team.
i always thought with the amount of fast, quick wr's, and now chris rainey out of the backfield, ben doesn't have to chuck the ball 30 yards downfield for plays to happen. quick hitters and play action will do just fine, look at the tennessee game.
and i hope the speculation about a long term mike wallace deal is correct.
05-23-2012, 02:10 AM
Steelers Day 1 OTAs Recap
May 22nd, 2012
The Steelers opened up their first round of OTAs today. As expected Mike Wallace was not in attendance. Wallace was in town to meet with Mike Tomlin last week though and he got his playbook. Wallace will wait as long as he can to sign his tender. He can not wait that long though. With a new offense he will have to get in tune with Roethlsiberger and the other wide receivers.
The practice went off with no one getting injured that we know of. Though there were a few guys absent. Brett Keisel was not at practice. Neither was Ike Taylor but he will be on the field tomorrow. He just arrived late to the facility and missed today. The only other players missing were the rookies who were not allowed to attend. That would be Mike Adams, David DeCastro and Alameda Ta’amu. The Steelers did have a few players sit out with prior injuries. Ramon Foster had a hamstring. Casey Hampton and Rashard Mendenhall were on site but neither is able to practice.
Here are some other notes from practice today:
Starting Offensive line consisted of Trai Essex, Willie Colon, Maurkice Pouncey, Doug Legursky and Marcus Gilbert. Gilbert was lined up on the right side. That looks like it is where he will play. That means when Adams and DeCastro return they will likely move into the open positions of Right Guard and Left Tackle.
Ben Roethlisberger seems extremely frustrated. He is not picking up the offense as quickly as he would like. He likened things to his rookie year when he knew one read and then ran for his life. He is joking about it but you can see the frustration on his face when he talks.
Everyone else seems really happy. Emmanuel Sanders came out of practice ready to go and excited about his role. The offensive line seemed happy to especially Center Maurkice Pouncey. Everyone seems to be moving a long and happy with what is going on except Roethlisberger. He will get it with time. As happy as everyone else is with what is going on though he may feel more pressure because he is the one not getting it.
The offense seems to be Play Action oriented which means the Steelers will be running the ball. It may not be heavily but it will be more often. This passing game is made off of quick passes where guys can run after the catch or play action where guys get open after the fake. Roethlisberger will be expected to get rid of the ball instead of holding onto it.
All in all it was a good first day. Any day of mini camp or OTAs without an injury is a good day. The team will be back on the field tomorrow and we will learn more about what things are going to look like next season.
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