Originally Posted by lamberts-lost-tooth
If you have to get rid of one starter from last year (other than Hartings of course) I would rather find a place for Simmons at Center or Guard and get rid of Starks...Colon did an admirable job of filling at at tackle last year. Starks doesnt know how to bend at the knees. He is consistantly being knocked back. Wilie average 4.6 yards on the left side of the ball last year...and 3.7 on the right. I think Simmons wins the right guard slot by default since it appears that Kemo has had some problems taking in line assignments..and is probably better playing in a phonebooth. Mahan is the most athletic of the trio of Mahan/Okobi/Philip..(plus they paid him alot of money to just sit on the bench)...By cutting Starks and Okobi, the Steelers save about 4 mil a year. I look for both...along with Deshea to get walking papers this year. (Maybe not Deshea..but MAN it felt good to type that!!!!)
Starks is not nearly as bad as people make him out to be. He plays next to who I think is one of the 5 worst starting guards in the NFL in Simmons. Plus, as I said, Grimm wasnt the great OLine coach alot made him out to be. He only taught the fundamentals and didnt really work with his younger players. Starks has the strength, size and mean streak to be a dominant tackle. He needs alot of work on his footwork, but that is something that can be fixed with the proper teaching, which obviously Grimm couldnt do. I think there is a better chance Starks will get extended before he gets cut. Not to say he will be resigned, but if he does hit free agency, he will command alot of money on the open market.
I am with you on Okobi all the way. He is making too much money for a slow, short limbed center that isnt that strong. He has good technique, but thats about the only positive thing I have to say about him. Hopefully, he is gone by Labor Day.
I like Kemo, and if he could only learn the blocking assignements, he might be a great player. Unfortunately, he hasnt made much progression in that aspect over the last 2 seasons, so I wouldnt be surprised if this is his last year in black and gold, or even if he is cut during preseason.
One guy to watch out for is rookie Cameron Stephenson. Solid athlete that does everything well. A good pick up for them late in the draft.
As far as DeShea, I see no way he gets cut. We have absolutely no real depth behind Ike and BMac, and while DeShea may have lost some steps, he is still the smartest CB we have. Id still rather turn to him than rely on Coke or Gay, who are nickle backs at best. The only way I could see us dumping DeShea is if the Steelers do something very uncharacteristic of them and take Paul Oliver in the supplemental draft. He would have went in the first round had he come out, but since he is academically inellgible, he cant play college ball. I would be willing to give up a 2008 2nd rounder to get him. He isnt a bad kid, he just isnt great in the classroom.