Why register with the Steelers Fever Forums?
 • Intelligent and friendly discussions.
 • It's free and it's quick. Always.
 • Enter events in the forums calendar.
 • Very user friendly software.
 • Exclusive contests and giveaways.

 Donate to Steelers Fever, Click here
 Our 2014 Goal: $450.00 - To Date: $450.00 (100.00%)
 Home | Forums | Editorials | Shop | Tickets | Downloads | Contact Pittsburgh Steelers Forum Feed Not Just Fans. Hardcore Fans.

Go Back   Steelers Fever Forums > Steelers Football > Pittsburgh Steelers


Steelers Fever Fan Shop

Doc's Sports Get FREE NFL Picks and College Football picks as well as Football Lines like live NFL Lines and updated NFL Power Rankings all at Doc's Sports Service.

Steelers

An important history lesson for you TRUE Steelers fans!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 12-29-2007, 08:51 AM   #1
HometownGal
Living Legend
 
HometownGal's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: The Burgh
Posts: 21,479
Gender: Female
Member Number: 2413
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Starks At LT The Right Fit

Good read on Max. I have seen some nice improvement from Max at LT over the last couple of games and am hoping it continues. It seems Max took off some weight, too, which I'm sure has factored into his mobility issues earlier in the season

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07363/845286-66.stm

Left tackle is just right fit this time for Starks

Saturday, December 29, 2007
By Gerry Dulac, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Max Starks is a natural left-hander who mostly played left tackle at the University of Florida, where his nickname was the "Undertaker" because of his family's mortuary business. It wasn't necessarily because Starks, who is 6 feet 8, planted opponents in the ground.

But there was little evidence of any of that during the preseason when Starks, a two-year starter at right tackle, was tried at left tackle as a potential backup for Marvel Smith. Starks looked uneasy and unsure at the position, giving up way too many sacks and feeling like he wanted to crawl in a hole.

"I didn't get a chance to practice at the position in the preseason," Starks said. "They said, 'Go play in the game,' and I was like ... uhhhh, OK."

Four months later, Starks is back at left tackle, getting ready to start his fourth game tomorrow in the regular-season finale against the Baltimore Ravens (4-11) at M&T Bank Stadium tomorrow. He will remain the starter, too, at least for the wild-card round of the playoffs and maybe longer, should the Steelers (10-5) advance.

Surprisingly, and perhaps amazingly, there has been no resemblance to the player who struggled at that position in the preseason. Starks has played so well that the back injury to Smith, along with the perceived dropoff in performance at left tackle, has been minimized, if not eliminated.

"He's picked up right where Marvel has left off," said Pro Bowl guard Alan Faneca, who plays next to Starks on the offensive line. "There has been no real drop in play, which is what you need from your sixth or seventh guy on the offensive line because [injuries are] going to happen. You got to keep on moving."

And the Steelers will have to keep on moving without Smith, a seven-year starter who had microscopic back surgery Thursday morning and might not play again this season. The surgery was performed by team neurosurgeon Dr. Joe Maroon.

Smith was already scheduled to sit out against the Ravens, even before his surgery. But he will not play in a wild-card playoff game next weekend at Heinz Field and won't return, in a best-case scenario, unless the Steelers advance to at least the second round.

That has put Starks back at left tackle, the position that is considered the most important on the offensive line because it protects the blind side of quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

"There's definitely a certain level of comfort playing the left side and being left-handed," said Smith, a third-round draft choice in 2004. "But there are a lot of left tackles in this league who aren't left-handed. For me, I feel a certain level of comfort going over there and being left-handed."

Smith missed back-to-back games earlier this season against the Miami Dolphins and Cincinnati Bengals because of a disk problem in his back. He returned for the 34-13 loss in New England and started the following week against Jacksonville.

But Smith allowed four sacks against the Jaguars, an abnormal total for a player who is considered the team's best pass protector. Coach Mike Tomlin said Smith was having back problems again, and this time the problem was even more extreme.

The pain was running down his leg, making it difficult for Smith to plant or push off. He was replaced by Starks for the last series against the Jaguars, and may not play again this season.

Starks has helped ease the loss, something not many thought possible when they saw him perform at left tackle in the preseason.

"You know, things are kind of flying around in training camp," Faneca said. "You're learning plays, you're adding plays, he's bouncing around from practice to practice, he's a left tackle, he's a right tackle, some practices he's both. You kind of lose that comfort value."

But that all changed in the regular season, beginning when Starks had to replace Smith as the starter against in a Nov. 26 game against the Miami Dolphins. Starks played well in his first outing, stuffing defensive end Jason Taylor, a six-time Pro Bowl selection, and holding him without a sack with the help of a sloppy field.

The following week, he was singled out by coach Mike Tomlin for the way he played against the Bengals' best defensive lineman, Justin Smith. Tomlin singled out Starks again this week for the way he played in the 41-24 victory against the Rams.

"Max is a professional," Tomlin said. "He executes some good sound technique. He's lighter than he was in the preseason. I am sure that is factor with agility and mobility. I appreciate Max's efforts. He is always ready to step up and deliver for his team."
__________________


The Anti-Wahoo
HometownGal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 08:54 AM   #2
Atlanta Dan
Resigned
Supporter
 
Atlanta Dan's Avatar
 

Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 15,446
Member Number: 728
Thanks: 2,664
Thanked 8,521 Times in 3,752 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

I do not know if Starks is the right fit so much as the only fit = you work with what you have, not with what you want

Assuming Starks does not do a face plant for the rest of the season, his recent play presumably raises his price beyond what the Steelers will pay
Atlanta Dan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 09:54 AM   #3
RJC
Bench Warmer
 
RJC's Avatar
 

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Continental United States...
Posts: 150
Gender: Male
Member Number: 6896
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

If he finishes the season strong, there is an outside chance that the front office cuts Marvel, and his ailing back, to resign Starks. He's bigger, stronger, healthier, and younger. If LT is he natural position, he needs to be played there. Marvel just may have played his last game as a Steeler.....
RJC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 09:59 AM   #4
Edman
Living Legend
 

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 5,793
Gender: Male
Member Number: 3261
Thanks: 225
Thanked 608 Times in 294 Posts
My Mood: Brooding
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

Which begs the question, why wasn't Starks tried out at LT earlier?
Edman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 10:17 AM   #5
Atlanta Dan
Resigned
Supporter
 
Atlanta Dan's Avatar
 

Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 15,446
Member Number: 728
Thanks: 2,664
Thanked 8,521 Times in 3,752 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edman View Post
Which begs the question, why wasn't Starks tried out at LT earlier?
Marvel Smith was drafted in 2000 and usually has played well - Starks was drafted to be a starter and LT was filled. As the P-G article stated, Starks was tried out as a backup LT in 2007 preseason games (although he claims he never practiced at the position) and was a disaster

Smith's back problems are a definite concern, but I do not think plugging in Starks at LT in 2008 is the answer - a bad OL situation keeps getting worse - at this point the entire left side of the line (Mahan, Faneca, Smith) may be gone for 2008.
Atlanta Dan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 12:49 PM   #6
OneForTheToe
Living Legend
 
OneForTheToe's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Steeler Nation
Posts: 3,360
Gender: Male
Member Number: 2408
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Atlanta Dan View Post
Marvel Smith was drafted in 2000 and usually has played well - Starks was drafted to be a starter and LT was filled. As the P-G article stated, Starks was tried out as a backup LT in 2007 preseason games (although he claims he never practiced at the position) and was a disaster

Smith's back problems are a definite concern, but I do not think plugging in Starks at LT in 2008 is the answer - a bad OL situation keeps getting worse - at this point the entire left side of the line (Mahan, Faneca, Smith) may be gone for 2008.
I agree ...... I am not sure he is worth breaking the bank for unless this is a career ender for Smith. Now if Starks is willing to sign for a couple hundred "sawbucks."

However, you have to figure that Pittsburgh West is interested in Starks. This might be a case of rebuilding this O'line from scratch with the exception of Simmons.
OneForTheToe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 02:20 PM   #7
19ward86
Head Coach
 
19ward86's Avatar
 

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Pittsburgh, Ohio
Posts: 1,987
Gender: Male
Member Number: 2717
Thanks: 1
Thanked 8 Times in 5 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

i have always been pro-starks but i want to see him at LG next year, just to see what he can do. look at him 6ft 7in 330lbs, as slower than big snack, sounds like the qualities of a guard.
__________________
[YOUTUBE]PGrTvNzGCZE[/YOUTUBE]
You must watch this video.
19ward86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 02:29 PM   #8
RJC
Bench Warmer
 
RJC's Avatar
 

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Continental United States...
Posts: 150
Gender: Male
Member Number: 6896
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

Next year the OL should look like this.
LT/Starks: Cut Marvel, his injury is most likely chronic. He's on the wrong side of the 30. Starks is bigger, stronger, and younger.

LG/Kemoeatu:Faneca walks. They ain't resigning him. Kemo brings some much needed attitude to an already docile group.

C/Simmons: Kendall slides to the left. and takes over for a horrendous Mahan. His athleticism allows us to pull in either direction.

RG/Colon: I like Colon's physical style. However, he has bad feet, and problems playing in space. Put him on a phonebooth, and let him be the brawler he wants to be.

RT/1st Rd Draftee: Draft USC's Sam Baker. Comes from a top program, and has a history of good production.

Mahan becomes the #1 backup at LG, C, & RG.

Hopefully Essex gets the axe. He's sucked since the day he was drafted. He's the reason as to why we should have kept Jason Cappizzi as a developmental project. We'll need to add another OG & C whether by draft of Free Agency....
RJC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 02:32 PM   #9
RJC
Bench Warmer
 
RJC's Avatar
 

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Continental United States...
Posts: 150
Gender: Male
Member Number: 6896
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

Quote:
Originally Posted by 19ward86 View Post
i have always been pro-starks but i want to see him at LG next year, just to see what he can do. look at him 6ft 7in 330lbs, as slower than big snack, sounds like the qualities of a guard.
He's listed at 6'8". You want a 6'8" OG? You know what that would do for throwing lanes? Visibilty beyond the LOS? He's a OT. Whether that be LT or RT, he's a OT...
RJC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 06:17 PM   #10
Bill
Water Boy
 

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Florida
Posts: 22
Gender: Male
Member Number: 8030
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: Starks At LT The Right Fit

He may be showing improvement, but I think opponents are putting way too much pressure on Big Ben. I think the entire line is at fault and I worry that Big Ben will get hurt if this keeps up.
Bill is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:56 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Shoutbox provided by vBShout v6.2.1 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.0.8 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd. Runs best on HiVelocity Hosting.
Navbar with Avatar by Motorradforum
no new posts