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Old 03-10-2011, 09:51 AM   #1
mesaSteeler
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Default Ed: Steelers Could Benefit From Lockout

(Admins - This is from PG+ but it was free for what ever reason(see URL) so I decided to post it. As you know I never post things from pay sites unless they are free. - mesa)
http://plus.sites.post-gazette.com/i...sports/steeler s/108553-ed-steelers-could-benefit-from-lockout

Ed: Steelers Could Benefit From Lockout
Wednesday, 09 March 2011 08:38
Written by Ed Bouchette

Good morning,

Would a long lockout benefit the Steelers?

It really would benefit no one if the lockout lasts into the season and people begin losing money, including those not directly paid by the NFL and its teams. But what about one that lasts, say, until mid-August? A longtime friend and colleague, John Czarnecki, offers that thought in a good piece for Fox Sports and as always offers excellent insight on why the Steelers might benfit from a long lockout, competitively.

He writes about those teams that a long lockout might hurt competitively and then he writes this about the Steelers:

Conversely, a team like the Pittsburgh Steelers, tough-luck losers of the Super Bowl, should be able to comfortably deal with a long-term lockout.

They were one of the oldest teams in the NFL last season and they return 11 starters who are 30 or older. This veteran group has taught well by Mike Tomlin, who demands physical, high-speed practices. They know what it takes to reach a championship game, many of them playing in three Super Bowls in the last six seasons. The league may not have liked the Steelers’ method of tackling at times last season, but no one questions the character of their players and the organization as a whole. This is a first-class franchise.

For example, an extended offseason will allow great Pittsburgh defenders like Troy Polamalu and defensive end Aaron Smith to heal at their own pace and not worry about scheduled organized team activities or mini-camps. Unlike the Bucs, these players know their defensive responsibilities inside and out. The Steelers are full of natural leaders on both sides of the ball.

As John wrote, it’s a veteran team with most starters in place. They also have a veteran coaching staff with only one new addition and even Carnell Lake played in the defense Dick LeBeau is still teaching. Compare that to what Cleveland might have to go through. Baltimore, the Steelers chief competitor in the AFC North, would find themselves in a similar position with a veteran team, a solid coaching staff and excellent front office. The same could be said for New England so there are other teams that would have an advantage too.

No one wants a lockout except, maybe, the other pro sports who might benefit. But if there is one and it goes into the summer, the Steelers might gain an advantage.

Here’s the link to Czarnecki’s story:

Click here: Work stoppage could stunt Tampa Bay Buccaneers' growth - NFL News | FOX Sports on MSN

Other stuff:

--- You said that the 18 game season is not about fan in seats but games on TV. But in that case, isn't the obvious move to add another bye or two? Giving players more weeks off would probably enhance safety, and even though the same number of games were being played more of them would be televised.
ME: I thought the idea of adding a week’s bye to a 16-game schedule was intriguing. But it’s not what the owners want. Not only would that thin the amount of available games each weekend, it would be dark in places that have the bye – like Pittsburgh, which hauls in some of the NFL’s best ratings on a weekly basis. There are 16 games during a normal week. Give four teams byes and it reduces those to 14. Give one to Thursday night, one to Monday night and one to Sunday and now you’re down to 11. Then you have to come up with a split for early afternoon and late afternoon games and double-headers on CBS or FOX each week. By the time you get down to the second afternoon game on CBS, it might be Cleveland vs. Cincinnati for a national audience and, really, no one wants to watch that.

--- YOU: Being an aficionado of New Orleans, are you doing anything for Mardi Gras? I went to LSU in the mid 80's-early 90's (now living in WI of all places), and am making red beans & rice, with King Cake for dessert. What did the Steelers give up in 2003 to trade up for Polamalu, and any chance they would ever move up that far again? Wishful thinking I know, but getting LSU CB Patrick Peterson and teaming him with Troy would result in a ridiculously athletic secondary. Lebeau probably wouldn't find time to sleep coming up with schemes for those two together. Thanks for all your had work.

ME: You asked me this question about Mardi Gras after 8 p.m. last night. I was already into my third hurricane. And none of that red beans and rice slop. It was all about the BBQ shrimp. As for Troy Polamalu and that trade in 2003 – that suddenly starts to sound old – they moved from No; 27 to No. 16 by merely trading a third-round draft pick. That, of course, was an excellent trade but when you give up a third-rounder, you are giving up a potential Mike Wallace, Emmanuel Sanders and, yes, Bruce Davis.

--- YOU: Jim in VT: Is it possible to imagine a more spoiled fan base than
> one that endlessly nitpicks in the wake of two Super Bowl
> appearances with one win in three years?

> Ed Bouchette: Or, 3 appearances in 6 years with two victories.

Or, two appearances including a win since the last time the Patriots
won even a single postseason game of any kind. But no matter, the
Patriots are still the Vegas favorites to win the Super Bowl next
year. And Belichick is the reigning AP coach of the year, while Tomlin
didn't garner a single vote, despite having to start a fourth string
quarterback* for a good chunk of the year, as well as the Offensive
Line of the Week Club.
* OK, that's not fair. Charlie Batch is a lot better, and more
experienced, than most fourth string quarterbacks. But you know what
I mean.
ME: Mike and Charlie will survive the insults.
--- I may come to regret this, but I am now on Twitter. I do not know what precisely that means but I opened an account yesterday – EdBouchette. Over the next few years I might learn how to, you know, use it.

--- More later.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:02 AM   #2
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Default Re: Ed: Steelers Could Benefit From Lockout

I tend to agree with this overall. But, just like other teams, weaknesses won't be addressed. We will have to live with our current DB situation as there will be no free agents available and a rookie 1st rounder won't have camp or practice time to prepare and contribute. Unless Butler is a star in waiting it will be Ike and BMac with Gay at nickel.

The way our line played at the end of the year, I'm OK with it although I'd hope they draft a tackle early.
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