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SteelersCanada
01-29-2013, 02:58 PM
Bob Labriola ‏@BobLabriola

Steelers hire Jack Bicknell Jr. as their offensive line coach. He replaces Sean Kugler, the new head coach at UTEP.

Updates will follow.

update -- Since it's a slow news day and reports aren't really coming out yet, here's the offensive line stats for the regular season last year in which he was the OLine coach of the Chiefs.

http://www.nfl.com/stats/categorystats?seasonType=REG&offensiveStatisticCategory=OFFENSIVE_LINE&d-447263-n=1&d-447263-o=2&d-447263-p=1&d-447263-s=RUSHING_TOTAL_YDS&tabSeq=2&season=2012&role=TM&Submit=Go&archive=false&conference=null&defensiveStatisticCategory=null&qualified=true

update 2 -- Because I don't like Bouchette, I don't have PG Plus but if anyone is, there's an article there about this hiring. Feel free to post it if you're able to. But, here's what Dave is tweeting.

Steelers Depot ‏@Steelersdepot

Bicknell is versed in both the power & zone blocking schemes. #steelers

Mike Tomlin thinks a lot of Tom Coughlin and I bet he talked to him quite a bit about Bicknell #steelers

[I]I like the aspect that he ran the zone a lot at KC. We need to run more of that.

So, it looks like he's bringing a zone blocking scheme to Pittsburgh.

update 3 -- A little video of the hiring and some background information on Jack himself http://www.steelers.com/video-and-audio/videos/Steelerscom-Update-New-O-Line-Coach/85618ced-3d60-4b86-a82c-869a5eef8377?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

23 years of collegiate coaching experience is pretty good. Also, only giving up 28 sacks when he was the Asst. OLine coach of the Giants is a pretty nice looking stat as well.

GMU Steeler
01-29-2013, 03:07 PM
Chiefs O-line coach this year and the previous two years was the Giants assistant o-line coach. Coached o-line at Boston College before that and has some head coaching experience at Louisiana Tech. Not sure really what to make out of the move.

Riddle_Of_Steel
01-29-2013, 03:07 PM
Bob Labriola ‏@BobLabriola

Steelers hire Jack Bicknell Jr. as their offensive line coach. He replaces Sean Kugler, the new head coach at UTEP.

Updates will follow.

Hmmm...not a whole lot of info on the guy on the web. Was head coach when Doug Flutie made his mark in college. Coached some teams in NFL Europe.

On the surface-- does not sound like a suitable replacement for Sean Kugler but who knows?

MACH1
01-29-2013, 03:08 PM
The Pittsburgh Steelers have named Jack Bicknell, Jr. as their new offensive line coach, it was announced today.


Bicknell is entering his fifth season in the NFL as an assistant coach, having served as the offensive line coach for Kansas City in 2012 and as the assistant offensive line coach for the New York Giants from 2009-11.


ďI am excited to have Jack join the Pittsburgh Steelers,Ē Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin said. ďJack has a tremendous football pedigree and the background we were looking for to guide our offensive line in the upcoming years. I look forward to having him join our staff as we prepare for the upcoming 2013 season.Ē


Bicknell was part of a New York coaching staff that helped lead the Giants to victory in Super Bowl XLVI. In 2011, New Yorkís offensive line only allowed 28 sacks as the Giantsí offense ranked fifth in the NFL in passing. While in New York, Bicknell helped G Chris Snee and OL Shaun OíHara earn three selections to the NFC Pro Bowl team. In Bicknellís first season with the Giants, three offensive linemen were selected to the Pro Bowl, marking the first time since 1962 that three Giants from the same position group were selected to the NFLís all-star game.


ďThe Pittsburgh Steelers are one of the greatest franchises in the NFL," said Bicknell, Jr. "The Steelers have great tradition, great ownership and great leadership from the top to the bottom. For me to be able to come to a situation like this, it is really a dream come true."

http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/Jack-Bicknell-Jr-Named-Offensive-Line-Coach/7a4c94d9-eb14-4fd4-ac1c-75f6dce76dbb

Fire Arians
01-29-2013, 04:33 PM
good hire

stiller39
01-29-2013, 04:54 PM
Tomlin states that he liked how KC had good success running the ball against the AFC north teams. That a smart head coach imo.

sloppyjoe
01-29-2013, 04:55 PM
Hmmm...not a whole lot of info on the guy on the web. Was head coach when Doug Flutie made his mark in college. Coached some teams in NFL Europe.

On the surface-- does not sound like a suitable replacement for Sean Kugler but who knows?

thats good news, kugler sucked

harrison'samonster
01-29-2013, 05:19 PM
Tomlin states that he liked how KC had good success running the ball against the AFC north teams. That a smart head coach imo.

I like it!

steelfury02
01-29-2013, 05:33 PM
I like it!

same here - I'd like a chance to hear from the new hire about our O line's technique in run and pass blocking

sloppyjoe
01-29-2013, 05:44 PM
Tomlin states that he liked how KC had good success running the ball against the AFC north teams. That a smart head coach imo.

tomlin had no say into this hire

steelfury02
01-29-2013, 05:48 PM
tomlin had no say into this hire

curious as to why you say this/how you know this

sloppyjoe
01-29-2013, 05:52 PM
curious as to why you say this/how you know this

i got it from the same source you have that says tomlin made the decision

BKAnthem
01-29-2013, 05:54 PM
What Happened to Hunter Jr.?

steelfury02
01-29-2013, 05:56 PM
i got it from the same source you have that says tomlin made the decision

:rofl:here we go again . . .

WokeUpWithaWoodley
01-29-2013, 06:17 PM
The hiring of Jack Bicknell Jr. by the Pittsburgh Steelers Tuesday as their new offensive line coach means that we can probably expect to see a scheme slanted more towards zone blocking in 2013.

The Steelers primarily used a man/power scheme the last several years under the tutelage of Sean Kugler, who left to become the head coach of UTEP following the season, and that included a lot of straight ahead man on man and double teams with the occasional pull on the trap and counter.

While Bicknell is versed a little in the man scheme, he is better known for his affection for the zone scheme, which he ran a lot dating back to his time spent time at Boston College when he was their offensive line coach.

The zone scheme requires athletic lineman that can get off the ball quickly and out into space, and it creates running lanes with defensive players being forced to react on the move. The zone scheme is also less rules based than the power scheme and instead it focuses a lot more on technique. It is designed to open up lanes for a running back to choose from as opposed to being one that is focused on a specific hole or cutback.

The Steelers have drafted four offensive linemen early in their last three drafts in the form of center Maurkice Pouncey, Marcus Gilbert, David DeCastro and Mike Adams, so the zone scheme should favor their skill sets.

Last season with the Chiefs the Kansas City running game was effective against all four of the AFC North teams last season as they rushed for 214 yards against the Baltimore Ravens , 142 against the Steelers, 113 against the Cincinnati Bengals and 180 against the Cleveland Browns. This certainly did not go unnoticed by head coach Mike Tomlin and he said as much on Tuesday.

"They played the AFC North, and they ran the ball very well against all the teams in the AFC North," said Tomlin, via Steelers.com. "They ran the ball effectively against us when Jamaal Charles had a 100-yard game. That was attractive to me. The plan they were able to put together, the success they were able to have vs. some people we are going to see quite a bit was a selling feature."

Following the Chiefs game against the Steelers I broke down the stretch zone used by Kansas City in that game and you can see that write up with animated gifs here.

http://www.steelersdepot.com/2013/01/steelers-hiring-of-jack-bicknell-jr-as-the-offensive-line-coach-likely-means-zone-blocking-scheme/

SteelersCanada
01-29-2013, 06:57 PM
tomlin had no say into this hire

I hope for your sake you're kidding. If you're not, get your bullshit conspiracy theories out of this thread please.

wwhickok
01-29-2013, 06:57 PM
I like this hire. You could argue OL is a major need for upgrade for KC but the point suggested earlier that KC had success running the ball against one of the best defensive divisions in the league...good run blocking thats what we need.

harrison'samonster
01-29-2013, 07:17 PM
if the OL ends up playing poorly, sloppyjoe will be on here saying it's the last straw and Tomlin should be fired for hiring Bicknell as the OL coach

GoFor7
01-29-2013, 07:26 PM
First Haley, and now this guy. Good to see the Steelers are trying to copy the winning tradition of the Kansas City Chiefs!

steelfury02
01-29-2013, 07:26 PM
Sloppy Joe=Joe Flacco - I'm convinced of it

Joe finally makes it to the big show and he STILL can't get enough of the Steelers and their fans:chuckle:

C'mon Joe - only a few hours left until curfew - isn't there some free refreshments in the lobby or a gift shop you could be perusing?

steelfury02
01-29-2013, 07:30 PM
First Haley, and now this guy. Good to see the Steelers are trying to copy the winning tradition of the Kansas City Chiefs!

going by your assessment of what is valuable, transferable experience - Cowher should have never been hired. He did coach under Marty twice too - thought that would make him public enemy #1 to you

VaDave
01-29-2013, 08:23 PM
Did anybody start a fire Bicknell sticky yet???

Seriously, I'm all for a zone blocking system as it will help out young guys.

steelfury02
01-29-2013, 08:29 PM
Did anybody start a fire Bicknell sticky yet???

Seriously, I'm all for a zone blocking system as it will help out young guys.

I don't believe so lol - might save some time to also call it "Fire Bicknell, No Former KC Coahes, and NO thugs threat" - kind of a 3 in 1 that would cover a lot of ground lol

Kingmagyar
01-29-2013, 08:49 PM
His Zone Scheme is the key. I'm ecstatic we would be switching to it.

If he implements it; that alone will make the Steeler's offensive running game that much better. The linemen we have now fit perfectly into that style and I believe it will create less injuries, and allows for the release of Colon and not resigning Foster if need be. We will need to find the last piece of the puzzle that left guard position though.

Millers the sh!t
01-29-2013, 08:54 PM
I'm glad we made.a.change in o line scheme. I'm tired of seeing the lack of holes down after down, season after season. I hope this gets the run machine pumping again. This is 60% of our offensive woes and we will be much more.competitive with a running game. Zone blocking.should help set.up more successful screen plays as well.

casteeler
01-29-2013, 09:30 PM
Hopefully he works with these guys on their less-than-desirable run blocking

desertsteel
01-29-2013, 09:33 PM
tomlin had no say into this hire

Seriously? What are you smoking?

JVip
01-29-2013, 10:00 PM
I like the hire, but we need a back that will fit in the zone scheme.

Out of the three starting backs we had this year, Mendy is the only one who would truly fit into this scheme. I count myself as one of many who do not want him on the roster this coming year. For the zone technique you need a faster more agile back and neither Dwyer or Redman is that.

Also, I wonder how much Haley influenced this hire?

austinfrench76
01-29-2013, 10:50 PM
Zone blocking, not sure but probably can't get worse.

SteelersCanada
01-29-2013, 11:30 PM
Also, I wonder how much Haley influenced this hire?

Haley and Jack were in the Chiefs organization at separate times. He never coached under Haley and thus I would assume Haley didn't have a lot of input into it. I will say that Tomlin probably talked with Coughlin about him though and that was the final straw for him to be hired. If Coughlin would've given Mike anything less than a glowing report, I very much doubt he'd be our offensive line coach this year.

The dude has a Super Bowl ring and only let Eli get sacked 28 times as an Asst. OLine coach. I mean, he has to be doing something right. I also think it's a very good idea to implement the ZBS now that our line has four younger guys on it that have all shown their athletic ability and potential.

Man, Lattimore running behind this line gets me excited, I don't know about you guys.

Fire Arians
01-29-2013, 11:46 PM
I like the hire, but we need a back that will fit in the zone scheme.

Out of the three starting backs we had this year, Mendy is the only one who would truly fit into this scheme. I count myself as one of many who do not want him on the roster this coming year. For the zone technique you need a faster more agile back and neither Dwyer or Redman is that.

mendenhall

BLACK_AND_YELLOW
01-30-2013, 12:12 AM
Man, Lattimore running behind this line gets me excited, I don't know about you guys.

Same here hope we draft him in the 4th :tt02:

kan_t
01-30-2013, 12:21 AM
If the Steelers go zone blocking scheme, now I doubt they will keep Colon. Starks and Foster are likely be gone too.

wwhickok
01-30-2013, 06:24 AM
I really like this hire and I agree that I don't think Colon, Foster, or Starks are on the roster next season. While I would be really surprised to see us draft another first round guard I'm starting to think its not impossible.

steelfury02
01-30-2013, 07:22 AM
I really like this hire and I agree that I don't think Colon, Foster, or Starks are on the roster next season. While I would be really surprised to see us draft another first round guard I'm starting to think its not impossible.

I know what you mean, I have a feeling Starks or Foster will be back though out of simple needs for stability and depth. Plus, this is the 1 area that if Ben really wants something, you should give it to him. Take some of that Woodley money and give it to Starks I say.

Colon is history. Not enough production to warrant him staying if we were keeping the same approach anyways

El-Gonzo Jackson
01-30-2013, 09:36 AM
. Zone blocking.should help set.up more successful screen plays as well.

Please explain, I am confused. :noidea:

Screen plays involve O linemen releasing from pass protection to block for the RB getting the screen. How would a Zone Block system in which all 5 linemen move laterally to block in the run game, in unison, help to setup screen passes????

maddog78
01-30-2013, 09:48 AM
Hmmm...not a whole lot of info on the guy on the web. Was head coach when Doug Flutie made his mark in college.


He PLAYED at BC with Flutie. You're thinking of his dad.

VaDave
01-30-2013, 10:42 AM
Please explain, I am confused. :noidea:

Screen plays involve O linemen releasing from pass protection to block for the RB getting the screen. How would a Zone Block system in which all 5 linemen move laterally to block in the run game, in unison, help to setup screen passes????

Typically, zone blocking linemen are quicker to the point of attack, a talent needed to make screen passes work. Arians didn't use them much, and got similar results with the Bubble Screen, with much less work and effort reguired by the linemen.

Add to that we didn't have the linemen to get to the edge. Our offensive guards we've played over the years, sans DeCastro, are way too slow. Heck, they can't even get to the point of attact to hit a trap block in the 3-4 hole more than twice a game.

JVip
01-30-2013, 11:08 AM
I really like this hire and I agree that I don't think Colon, Foster, or Starks are on the roster next season. While I would be really surprised to see us draft another first round guard I'm starting to think its not impossible.


I think Beachum will be our left guard next year, The zone scheme favors players with his skillset.

Riddle_Of_Steel
01-30-2013, 01:39 PM
I am not sure why a ZBL scheme would be preferred, with the Olinemen we currently have on roster.

Aren't the Steelers' Olinemen right now known for being HUGE, lumbering, bulldozers best suited to a straight ahead man blocking scheme? They aren't known for being particularly agile-- hence the poor pass protection and high number of sacks every year (yes, and Ben's playing style as well).

El-Gonzo Jackson
01-30-2013, 02:06 PM
Typically, zone blocking linemen are quicker to the point of attack, a talent needed to make screen passes work. Arians didn't use them much, and got similar results with the Bubble Screen, with much less work and effort reguired by the linemen.

Add to that we didn't have the linemen to get to the edge. Our offensive guards we've played over the years, sans DeCastro, are way too slow. Heck, they can't even get to the point of attact to hit a trap block in the 3-4 hole more than twice a game.

Having more athletic and smaller ZBS type linemen is not a prerequisite for running a screen pass. A center typically may have to pull 20 yards laterally to get to the point of the screen. Pouncey, DeCastro, Adams, Beechum are all athletic enough to get to a screen block.

If that was the rationale of thinking that a ZBS will help us run screen passes....I think its a stretch.

I am not sure why a ZBL scheme would be preferred, with the Olinemen we currently have on roster.

Aren't the Steelers' Olinemen right now known for being HUGE, lumbering, bulldozers best suited to a straight ahead man blocking scheme? They aren't known for being particularly agile-- hence the poor pass protection and high number of sacks every year (yes, and Ben's playing style as well).

I dont think a ZBS is the answer, but most here want to because its different. The linemen on the roster now are perfectly capable of handling some Zone. They are athletic enough. I just dont think its in Haleys offense to go strictly zone, so I think it will stay man with some zone schemes in at times.

Its Jack Bicknell, not Alex Gibbs they hired.

sloppyjoe
01-30-2013, 03:13 PM
if the OL ends up playing poorly, sloppyjoe will be on here saying it's the last straw and Tomlin should be fired for hiring Bicknell as the OL coach


tell me then, who hired our last 2 oline coaches and our ST coach?

SteelersCanada
01-30-2013, 03:22 PM
tell me then, who hired our last 2 oline coaches and our ST coach?

Probably Mike Tomlin. Larry Zierlein was the coach before Kugler and now he's the head coach of UTEP. Now, our offensive line coach is Bicknell from Kansas City. I don't see what your point is.

harrison'samonster
01-30-2013, 03:28 PM
Probably Mike Tomlin. Larry Zierlein was the coach before Kugler and now he's the head coach of UTEP. Now, our offensive line coach is Bicknell from Kansas City. I don't see what your point is.

he has no point. it's a common technique of liars and bullshiters. they like to keep the argument going in circles telling as many lies as possible and never backing up statements with facts.

sloppyjoe
01-30-2013, 03:46 PM
he has no point. it's a common technique of liars and bullshiters. they like to keep the argument going in circles telling as many lies as possible and never backing up statements with facts.

the point is simple. topmlin has been responsible for hiring 3 guys since he's been here. all 3 have sucked.
he was too stupid to fire ariands so rooney had to do it. it was so embarrassing that tomlin had to have a press conference to say that he actually fired arians, not rooney.......how insecure do you have to be to asked the rooneys if it is okay if he actually took resposibilityu for the firing of his OC?
the rooneys saw how inept tomlin is, so they did the hiring of haley and i am sure they hired the new oline guy also. the rooney are starting to see how the standard is the standard with this clown they gave the HC to.

steelfury02
01-30-2013, 03:46 PM
he has no point. it's a common technique of liars and bullshiters. they like to keep the argument going in circles telling as many lies as possible and never backing up statements with facts.

he's even bullshitting who he is - a Steelers fan?

It's Joe Flacco playing mind games with us - GET OUT OF MY HEAD JOE

SteelersCanada
01-30-2013, 04:08 PM
the point is simple. topmlin has been responsible for hiring 3 guys since he's been here. all 3 have sucked.
he was too stupid to fire ariands so rooney had to do it. it was so embarrassing that tomlin had to have a press conference to say that he actually fired arians, not rooney.......how insecure do you have to be to asked the rooneys if it is okay if he actually took resposibilityu for the firing of his OC?
the rooneys saw how inept tomlin is, so they did the hiring of haley and i am sure they hired the new oline guy also. the rooney are starting to see how the standard is the standard with this clown they gave the HC to.

What you've just said is the most insanely idiotic thing I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this thread is now dumber for having read it. I award you no thanks, and may God have mercy on your soul.

sloppyjoe
01-30-2013, 04:12 PM
What you've just said is the most insanely idiotic thing I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this thread is now dumber for having read it. I award you no thanks, and may God have mercy on your soul.


lol..still sore from the ass pounding i gave you last week i see

SteelersCanada
01-30-2013, 04:14 PM
lol..still sore from the ass pounding i gave you last week i see

The ass pounding? Please, refresh my memory. The one in which you told me Woodley gained no weight because I didn't physically weigh him? Or the ass pounding in which I showed you that Woodley was on for 18.5 sacks prior his injury? Oh, that same ass pounding in which everyone else thought you were a lunatic and rambling on about nothing?

Man, that one hurt. I suggest you walk away with whatever self respect you have left before other people realize the stupidity just secreting from your mouth isn't a joke.

sloppyjoe
01-30-2013, 04:25 PM
The ass pounding? Please, refresh my memory. The one in which you told me Woodley gained no weight because I didn't physically weigh him? Or the ass pounding in which I showed you that Woodley was on for 18.5 sacks prior his injury? Oh, that same ass pounding in which everyone else thought you were a lunatic and rambling on about nothing?

Man, that one hurt. I suggest you walk away with whatever self respect you have left before other people realize the stupidity just secreting from your mouth isn't a joke.

can you show me where i said woodely did not put on any weight?
just the facts maam, just the facts......lol

ricardisimo
01-30-2013, 04:36 PM
Tone it down, boys. No pissing contests here, please. Makes the whole place stink. And let's get back on-topic. Thank you.

SteelersCanada
01-30-2013, 04:49 PM
Tone it down, boys. No pissing contests here, please. Makes the whole place stink. And let's get back on-topic. Thank you.

Gotcha.

Since Bicknell is (probably) going to implement a ZBS, I wonder if that means they're looking into Beachum at LG. He's certainly athletic enough and has the right skill set to fill the role. Just something to think about.

FrancoLambert
01-30-2013, 04:51 PM
Back to topic.

If Coughlin's recommendation sealed the deal, it probably indicates that Bicknell's a teacher and stickler for detail.
Just what a young offensive line needs.
His success vs. the AFC North can't hurt.

SteelersCanada
01-30-2013, 05:11 PM
A Q&A with Jack Bicknell Jr.

http://krasimirtsonev.com/pics/blog/articleTwitterIconSmall.jpgBob Labriola
Steelers Digest @BobLabriola

http://www.browsebiography.com/images/5/3639-jack%20bicknell%20jr.jpg

One day after being hired as the Steelers offensive line coach, Jack Bicknell Jr. already was digging into the task of replacing Sean Kugler. There were meetings with Mike Tomlin, with offensive coordinator Todd Haley, even with General Manager Kevin Colbert with the team preparing for the scouting combine and then the NFL Draft, but Bicknell still took a few minutes out of his day to talk with Bob Labriola.

Do you have a philosophy as an offensive line coach?

Itís a combination of all the things I just said. They have to be very smart, because thereís a lot going on. You have five guys who have to be able to mesh together, work together, and itís one area where you really have to be able to adjust on the fly. The opponent could start out in one defense, shift into another, guys walking around, whatever. You have to prepare, and then you have to be big enough and athletic enough to get the job done, which these days can be difficult. You have these huge three-technique defensive tackles, so you need some good size so as not to be overwhelmed, but you also have to be athletic enough and be able to move your feet to match up with those great athletes on defense.

After a game, is there a statistic that tells you the offensive line played well?

Rushing yardage. I always look to that. The protection stuff will take care of itself, but if youíre able to run the ball at people then that opens up everything else Ė you have the play-action game, youíre not in third-and-13 all day. The biggest thing I want to be able to do is run the football.

Is there a specific number thatís the dividing line between good-enough and needs-to-get-better?

You would love to get 5 yards a carry. That would be great. But whatís more important is how many yards did you gain on that team? Did you gain 250 yards? Thatís a pretty good day. Did you gain 50 yards? Thatís not good enough. Thereís a lot that goes into the stats, such as a back could have one long run and the rest of the time youíre getting your butt kicked. But if you can walk off that field and know that we just dominated the opponent physically, that is the most important stat.

What does it take to run the football successfully in the NFL?

You have to be multiple. You canít do just one thing. You have to have some different schemes. The running back, obviously, is a big part of it. You could block like crazy, and if you donít have a good back then youíre going to struggle. And then you have to have a cohesive unit Ė five guys up front all working together who really believe in being able to run the football. If you have enough in your scheme that you can present the defense with different problems, and then you have five guys working together up front Ė and then letís face it, those five guys have to be talented.

You have mentioned that the offensive line has to be made up of talented guys. Is there a skill-set you look for at each individual position Ė tackles, guards and centers?

The tackles have to have some length, and they have to be slightly better athletes than the other guys. You cannot have a tackle these days who canít move his feet. Thatís because of the guys theyíre blocking Ė you canít have Von Miller coming off the edge and not be able to move your feet. Then because the next week you might go against a player who is bigger and stronger, the tackles have to be able to match up against all types. Tackles have to have some length, long arms, be able to move their feet, almost like a basketball player out there playing football. The guards have to be more stout, wide, have some mass to them, and have toughness. Haloti Ngata comes to mind, and as a guard you have to be able to line up against him, so you have to have strength in your hips and legs, and be able to bend and squat and play with leverage. Center is similar to a guard, but he has to be a real smart guy, because heís the quarterback of the offensive line. They set the protection scheme, run and pass, for everybody. But all you need to do is look at Maurkice Pouncey and figure out what you want in a center.

What do you know about the group of offensive linemen that you will be inheriting here?

Iím just about to start looking at some real tape. When I was with some other teams, I studied and wrote up Maurkice Pouncey, and then I also traveled and worked out David DeCastro and Mike Adams. I feel pretty familiar with those guys. The rest of the guys, I really havenít delved into the tape yet. In general, I think itís a very talented group with a lot of young guys, a lot of guys who still need to develop and mature into NFL offensive linemen. Iím very excited about them. I know itís a very close-knit group. All of the things Iíve talked about earlier, I think this group has.

League-wide, do you think offensive linemen are too big?

You can get too big. Then again, itís not about being too big, itís about not being able to move. I donít necessarily like those guys who get huge and then they canít bend and move. And mainly it comes down to the run game, because sometimes those real big guys can stay in front of people and make them run around you, but if you cannot cut off on the back side of a run play, or you donít have the quickness to go and reach somebody, you start to get limited in the run game. I want to be able to have guys who can move, run, and have some quickness off the ball to be able to get into people.

There are zone-blocking teams, cut-blocking teams, different styles for different teams. Do you have a style?

You have to be able to be multiple. It depends on what you have offensively and what youíre facing defensively. Each game plan, each week, is different. With the Giants, we were more of a gap-scheme with big physical guys running power, and then when I got to Kansas City, we were more athletic, could move better and we had a running back who loved the outside-zone plays. A couple of things factor into this: what type of guys do you have up front, and also what type of running back do you have? If you have a big, physical back, you might tend more toward inside-zone and gap-scheme stuff, but if you have a back who can threaten the edge, that would open up more zone-scheme stuff. There are a lot of ways to go about it, but you have to know what you have on your team personnel-wise while also looking at the particular defense youíll be playing. Then you figure out whatís going to work.

Ben Roethlisberger is a franchise quarterback, which is a good thing, but it also means that he absolutely must be kept healthy for the team to have any chance at real success. Does that create a different mind-set for the offensive linemen?

Itís that mind-set everywhere. If youíre an offensive lineman, your job is to protect that guy. I always talk about how important the run game is, but protecting that quarterback is our No. 1 job. Thatís what we have to take deadly serious. I will tell my guys that if youíre going to mess something up in the run game, I donít want that, but at least the running back is used to trying to make a play and might be able to make a guy miss. But we canít mess anything up in pass protection. You canít make a mistake. You canít use poor technique and get beat right now. Thatís something you have to ingrain in the offensive line. We take pride in making sure that guy stays upright, and weíre going to do everything we can, scheme-wise and technique-wise, to make sure that happens.

http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/A-QA-with-Jack-Bicknell-Jr/61a61b73-f9d0-4f0c-b954-976205dc383c

teegre
01-30-2013, 06:38 PM
Tone it down, boys. No pissing contests here, please. Makes the whole place stink. And let's get back on-topic. Thank you.

Aww, man... I missed out on the pissing contest. Why didn't anyone call me???
Sincerely,
R.Kelly

WokeUpWithaWoodley
01-30-2013, 06:44 PM
Aww, man... I missed out on the pissing contest. Why didn't anyone call me???
Sincerely,
R.Kelly

Well played:chuckle:

WokeUpWithaWoodley
01-30-2013, 06:48 PM
A Q&A with Jack Bicknell Jr.

After a game, is there a statistic that tells you the offensive line played well?

Rushing yardage. I always look to that. The protection stuff will take care of itself, but if youíre able to run the ball at people then that opens up everything else Ė you have the play-action game, youíre not in third-and-13 all day. The biggest thing I want to be able to do is run the football.


http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/A-QA-with-Jack-Bicknell-Jr/61a61b73-f9d0-4f0c-b954-976205dc383c

Good to hear.

Now the only thing about this guy is mendy would prob work in his system, but no one knows where he will be. Can't wait for free agency so we can all stop assuming on positional needs in draft.

steelfury02
01-31-2013, 07:27 AM
Good to hear.

Now the only thing about this guy is mendy would prob work in his system, but no one knows where he will be. Can't wait for free agency so we can all stop assuming on positional needs in draft.

this - can't wait to hear who is gone, who is staying so we can focus on something else

Hawaii 5-0
02-10-2013, 12:26 AM
Steelers Sunday Spotlight: The Offensive Line ... changes in store

February 10, 2013
By Gerry Dulac / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

http://db66abc2c256b763aaef-ce5d943d4869ae027976e5ad085dd9b0.r76.cf2.rackcdn.c om/2013/40/279/david-decastro_420.jpg

Like center Maurkice Pouncey, David DeCastro -- last season's first-round draft pick -- epitomizes the long, lean body type the Steelers seek to employ on the offensive line.

The Steelers offensive line will have a different look in 2013, not just in personnel but also in execution.

At least, that is the intent of offensive coordinator Todd Haley and the team's new offensive line coach, Jack Bicknell Jr.

And for good reason.

If the Steelers are interested in running the ball more effectively -- something that didn't happen in 2012 -- they might have to do more than change the people who are blocking up front. They might have to change how they are blocking, too.

And that also would mean finding the right type of running back to fit the schemes that are being employed.

Despite a change in roster makeup to emphasize running the ball better, the Steelers went the other way last season, averaging just 3.7 yards per carry on the ground after averaging 4.4 yards per pop with basically the same personnel in 2011.

Offensive lines are sometimes graded on the protection they afford their quarterback, and, at times, that was much better in 2012 than it has been, especially in two of the games when Charlie Batch had to replace Ben Roethlisberger.

But the true measure of how a line performs is often determined by how effectively a team runs the ball. And that is something the Steelers did not do very well in 2012, other than a three-game span in the middle of the season when they had three consecutive games with a 100-yard rusher -- something the team had not done in five years.

Haley and Bicknell would like to change that. And they will start with injecting more youth, more athleticism and less girth in the offensive line.

When Haley was the head coach in Kansas City, the Chiefs had the league's No. 1 rushing attack with an offensive line that averaged less than 300 pounds. And, in an interview last week on the Steelers website, Bicknell said he doesn't like offensive linemen "who get huge and then they can't bend and move." He said he wants players who can move, run and have the quickness off the ball "to get into people."

That's one of the reasons the Steelers are expected to part ways with Max Starks, who was arguably the team's best lineman in 2012 and the only one to play every snap.

Tackles are responsible for allowing running backs to get to the edge and bounce outside, and how many times did you see a Steelers running back do that last season?

That is also not a good fit for guard Willie Colon, who was too thick to move at the team's top pulling spot. Colon, though, is not expected back because of his repeated injury problems.

Their expected departure will pave the way for the Steelers to start an offensive line that could have four, and possibly five, starters under the age of 26.

Marcus Gilbert, who missed 12 games last season with an ankle ligament tear, will likely replace Starks at left tackle. He will be 25 on Friday. Mike Adams, last year's No. 2 pick who missed the final five games with an ankle injury, is expected to start at right tackle. The Steelers do not want to use him at left tackle because Adams has had problems in pass protection -- something the Steelers cannot afford on Roethlisberger's blind side. Adams, though, is a very good run blocker and was the starter at right tackle when the Steelers had three consecutive 100-yard rushers. He is 22.

The team is set with Pro Bowl center Maurkice Pouncey, 23, and right guard David DeCastro, 23, who missed most of the 2012 season with a knee injury. Pouncey (6-4, 304) and DeCastro (6-5, 316) epitomize the long, lean body type the Steelers seek to employ on the offensive line.

The only question is at left guard, where 330-pound Ramon Foster finished the season as the starter.

Foster, though, does not run very well and is not an ideal fit for the team's primary pulling position. Plus, like Starks, he is an unrestricted free agent and might not be re-signed. That could pave the way for tackle Kelvin Beachum, last year's seventh-round pick, to be moved there.

In a season of injuries to many of their draft choices, Beachum was one of the team's most pleasant surprises. Not only did he impress the coaches with his ability to pass protect, he also showed an ability to get out of the edge and run block -- something the coaches want to see more of in 2013.

Beachum, 23, fits in perfectly with the team's desire to have lighter, more agile offensive lineman, and he could be moved to guard and given a chance to play there.

Doug Legurksy, who has started 17 games in his four-year career, would be re-signed to be the backup at center and guard. Legursky is also an unrestricted free agent.
But it might not just be a change in personnel that will affect the look of the offensive line.

The Steelers have been a man-blocking team almost exclusively since Chuck Noll ran the tackle-trap play in the 1970s. But Noll did that with smaller, quicker linemen who could move off the ball and use their quickness to execute blocks.

Today, most of the top running teams in the NFL use a zone-blocking scheme that requires the offensive lineman to block an area, not a specific man. Among them are Kansas City, Washington, Denver and Houston.

Bicknell used a zone-blocking scheme last season with the Chiefs, who finished fifth in the league in rushing after leading the NFL in 2011. Bicknell said the Chiefs used a zone-blocking scheme because they had a running back, Jamaal Charles, who liked to run outside-zone plays.

If the Steelers change to a zone-blocking scheme, then it will be imperative to find the type of running back who is patient, stretches the play and has good cutback instincts.

Right now, the Steelers' top running backs, Jonathan Dwyer and Isaac Redman, are physical backs who run inside and are more tailored to gap runs in a man-blocking scheme. Rashard Mendenhall and Chris Rainey are examples of running backs who can threaten the edge and are more suited to zone-blocking schemes. But Rainey is already gone and Mendenhall is expected to follow.

That will either force the Steelers to find a back to fit a zone-scheme style or continue with a man-blocking attack that suits Redman and Dwyer.

It will all be part of the change that is due to come on the offensive line.

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/sports/steelers/steelers-sunday-spotlight-the-offensive-line-changes-in-store-674173/#ixzz2KTGByS00

kan_t
02-10-2013, 03:37 AM
I agree that now the Steelers change to zone blocking scheme, Foster and Starks are likely gone. Beachum will likely be the starting LG and it also means that they will pick a OL in the draft for depth purpose.

I also want the Steelers to re-sign Mendenhall. It's a perfect time for the Steelers to buy low. He can be great under zone blocking.

El-Gonzo Jackson
02-10-2013, 04:37 AM
I dont see much changing. Bicknell will likely work with what he has in the big backs and run power man as base and then mix in some zone blocking in the run game. Pass protection is on the fundamentals and having good athletes like he has and working on their technique and reads as a unit.

Nothing revolutionary that I can see coming. Just a good replacement for the departing Kugler.

kan_t
02-10-2013, 04:57 AM
I dont see much changing. Bicknell will likely work with what he has in the big backs and run power man as base and then mix in some zone blocking in the run game. Pass protection is on the fundamentals and having good athletes like he has and working on their technique and reads as a unit.

Nothing revolutionary that I can see coming. Just a good replacement for the departing Kugler.

It depends if the Steelers think that their big backs can be every down backs. This year is the perfect time for them to change their blocking scheme to zone blocking. Good man blocking linemen on the team are either FA or potential cap casualty.

VaDave
02-10-2013, 06:11 AM
I dont see much changing. Bicknell will likely work with what he has in the big backs and run power man as base and then mix in some zone blocking in the run game. Pass protection is on the fundamentals and having good athletes like he has and working on their technique and reads as a unit.

Nothing revolutionary that I can see coming. Just a good replacement for the departing Kugler.

Good post. I agree. Changes will be incremental, and highly dependent of two factor, who settles in at LG, and if we can find a runner that would benefit from running zone blocking. Too bad Mendenhall more than likely is leaving because he'd be great at it.

Top end speed is not as important as acceleration, vision and anticipation. I'd like to think Redman could do it too, but I'm afraid he doesn't have the ability to plant his foot, cut, and blast off.

Not lining up 9-10 yards in the backfield would help too. ( who the heck came up with that anyway??)

Atlanta Dan
02-10-2013, 08:51 AM
P-G article states significant changes may be coming with regard to both the the members and blocking scheme of the O-line

The Steelers offensive line will have a different look in 2013, not just in personnel but also in execution.

At least, that is the intent of offensive coordinator Todd Haley and the team's new offensive line coach, Jack Bicknell Jr....

But the true measure of how a line performs is often determined by how effectively a team runs the ball. And that is something the Steelers did not do very well in 2012, other than a three-game span in the middle of the season when they had three consecutive games with a 100-yard rusher -- something the team had not done in five years.

Haley and Bicknell would like to change that. And they will start with injecting more youth, more athleticism and less girth in the offensive line....

That's one of the reasons the Steelers are expected to part ways with Max Starks, who was arguably the team's best lineman in 2012 and the only one to play every snap. Tackles are responsible for allowing running backs to get to the edge and bounce outside, and how many times did you see a Steelers running back do that last season?

That is also not a good fit for guard Willie Colon, who was too thick to move at the team's top pulling spot. Colon, though, is not expected back because of his repeated injury problems....

The only question is at left guard, where 330-pound Ramon Foster finished the season as the starter.

Foster, though, does not run very well and is not an ideal fit for the team's primary pulling position. Plus, like Starks, he is an unrestricted free agent and might not be re-signed. That could pave the way for tackle Kelvin Beachum, last year's seventh-round pick, to be moved there.

In a season of injuries to many of their draft choices, Beachum was one of the team's most pleasant surprises. Not only did he impress the coaches with his ability to pass protect, he also showed an ability to get out of the edge and run block -- something the coaches want to see more of in 2013.

Beachum, 23, fits in perfectly with the team's desire to have lighter, more agile offensive lineman, and he could be moved to guard and given a chance to play there...

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/sports/steelers/steelers-sunday-spotlight-the-offensive-line-changes-in-store-674173/

steelfury02
02-10-2013, 08:56 AM
P-G article states significant changes may be coming with regard to both the the members and blocking scheme of the O-line

The Steelers offensive line will have a different look in 2013, not just in personnel but also in execution.

At least, that is the intent of offensive coordinator Todd Haley and the team's new offensive line coach, Jack Bicknell Jr....

But the true measure of how a line performs is often determined by how effectively a team runs the ball. And that is something the Steelers did not do very well in 2012, other than a three-game span in the middle of the season when they had three consecutive games with a 100-yard rusher -- something the team had not done in five years.

Haley and Bicknell would like to change that. And they will start with injecting more youth, more athleticism and less girth in the offensive line....

That's one of the reasons the Steelers are expected to part ways with Max Starks, who was arguably the team's best lineman in 2012 and the only one to play every snap. Tackles are responsible for allowing running backs to get to the edge and bounce outside, and how many times did you see a Steelers running back do that last season?

That is also not a good fit for guard Willie Colon, who was too thick to move at the team's top pulling spot. Colon, though, is not expected back because of his repeated injury problems....

The only question is at left guard, where 330-pound Ramon Foster finished the season as the starter.

Foster, though, does not run very well and is not an ideal fit for the team's primary pulling position. Plus, like Starks, he is an unrestricted free agent and might not be re-signed. That could pave the way for tackle Kelvin Beachum, last year's seventh-round pick, to be moved there.

In a season of injuries to many of their draft choices, Beachum was one of the team's most pleasant surprises. Not only did he impress the coaches with his ability to pass protect, he also showed an ability to get out of the edge and run block -- something the coaches want to see more of in 2013.

Beachum, 23, fits in perfectly with the team's desire to have lighter, more agile offensive lineman, and he could be moved to guard and given a chance to play there...

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/sports/steelers/steelers-sunday-spotlight-the-offensive-line-changes-in-store-674173/

If the pass protect and run game improve with this scheme that results in consistent scoring - Beachum will look like the steal of the draft - this would be exciting. Nothing used in the past few seasons have given me that much confidence on that side of the ball, so why not take some more risks and play to strengths of the young guys -give them more trial by fire - I think we might just be pleasantly surprised with some of these moves.

El-Gonzo Jackson
02-10-2013, 09:47 AM
P-G article states significant changes may be coming with regard to both the the members and blocking scheme of the O-line
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I dont put much stock in what Gerry Dulac writes in February. I think he once wrote about a "Pony Backfield" with Willie Parker and Mendenhall. Wasnt Chris Rainey supposed to be the next Dexter McCluster??

So the O line is going to comprise of the young #1 and #2 draft picks and not Starks, Colon, maybe Foster. :coffee: not that big of a news story IMO.

TheVet
02-11-2013, 02:54 AM
Whatever Bicknell wants to do is fine with me. Gotta keep trying things until we find something that works - we've had six years of frustration with the OL at this point. Six years with our franchise QB running for his life, and no reliable running game. It's just amazing that we made it to two SBs without an NFL caliber line - no QB other than Ben would have been able to overcome that, and of course he needed the great defenses that LeBeau provided.

I don't think we're finished drafting for the OL, either. One guard position is a big question mark, and both of our high-pick young tackles have had issues.

lloydwoodson
02-12-2013, 04:37 AM
Whatever Bicknell wants to do is fine with me. Gotta keep trying things until we find something that works - we've had six years of frustration with the OL at this point. Six years with our franchise QB running for his life, and no reliable running game. It's just amazing that we made it to two SBs without an NFL caliber line - no QB other than Ben would have been able to overcome that, and of course he needed the great defenses that LeBeau provided.

I don't think we're finished drafting for the OL, either. One guard position is a big question mark, and both of our high-pick young tackles have had issues.

Tomlin and Arians chose to "protect Ben with weapons." In 2008 and 09 they drafted receivers and running backs instead of linemen despite the losses of Marvell Smith, Kendall Simmons, Jeff Hartings and Alan Faneca. 3 1st round OL and 1 2nd gone and not even an attempt was made to replace them.

It was horrendously stupid.

At the end of 2007 all those players were injury prone or gone. Nothing was done in the draft or free agency to fix the line.

67 calsteel
02-12-2013, 06:50 PM
Bicknell will work with what he got.

Keep Colon with a paycut of three million dollars.If we release him he is looking at a one year contract maybe two for far less money.If he doubts it ask Starks he will set him straight.


If we keep Colon,draft a rb and Michael Williams TE in the fifth round.We have the making of a power run game.

OFFset power run formation
LT Gilbert,C Pouncey,RG DD,RG Colon,RT Adams And Williams at te

Should cut down on 2TE formation until Heath is healthy enough to start.May miss a couple of game due to his injury.