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Old 07-28-2008, 09:40 AM   #1
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Default Steelers' offensive line could be better

Steelers' offensive line could be better
By Scott Brown
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Monday, July 28, 2008

Casey Hampton showed up at training camp overweight Sunday, and the Steelers placed the veteran nose tackle on the physically unable to perform list.
Hampton is listed as 6-foot-1 and 325 pounds. The Steelers didn't release how much the lineman is overweight.

By contrast, Max Starks arrived at St. Vincent College looking considerably lighter than his listed weight of 345 pounds, and the right tackle excelled in the conditioning run that Hampton failed to finish.

Starks was one of several offensive linemen who reported to preseason practice in optimum shape.

The physical condition of the linemen charged with protecting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger isn't the only reason why a unit that allowed 47 sacks last season may be better in 2008.
Willie Colon said the linemen are more receptive to Larry Zierlein's coaching than they were a year ago, and that could translate into a more cohesive unit.

Colon, who will try to fend off a challenge by Starks for the starting job at right tackle, said the departure of seven-time Pro Bowl guard Alan Faneca via free agency allowed Zierlein to assert his control over the linemen.

Faneca and Zierlein had some history prior to last year, as the latter coached the former for two seasons when they were at LSU in the 1990s. And Colon said Faneca did anything but try to sabotage Zierlein in the coach's first season in charge of the Steelers' offensive line.

But Colon added, "You can't teach an old dog new tricks, and that's sometimes how it goes. Alan's gone ... coach Zierlein is the boss now, and that's the way it's going to be."

Colon declined to go into specifics regarding the differences between Zierlein and former offensive line coach Russ Grimm or why it took time for players to embrace what Zierlein has been teaching.

Said Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, "From a human nature standpoint, we're all resistant to change."

The players may have been even more resistant to the change that came when the Steelers hired Tomlin to be their head coach, considering they were only a year removed from winning the Super Bowl and were used to doing things a certain way.

"When somebody comes in and tries to change you, as a veteran guy, you want to be coachable, but at the same time, you're going to resort back to what comes natural to you," said wide receiver Hines Ward, who also had a new position coach last season.

"For the younger guys, it's who do you listen to? Do you go with the veteran guy that's been doing it for so many years, or do you go out and do what the coach is really trying to tell you to do? It comes down to really trusting your coach."

Colon said Zierlein has gained the trust of the offensive linemen and the backing of veterans such as left tackle Marvel Smith and right guard Kendall Simmons.

"They're buying into it," said Colon, who started every game at right tackle last season, "and we need them to buy into it the most because they're leading us, and we're going to follow them.

"We spent all spring and at OTAs learning what (Zierlein) wants us to do, and we've just got to come in here and perfect it."



http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_579742.html
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Old 07-28-2008, 10:54 AM   #2
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

this just in:

Steelers could win the superbowl

Steelers could sign Lebron James to be a WR

Steelers could sign Terry Bradshaw to coach QBs

I can truly care less about what could happen. I dont and wont believe it until they prove to me by showing me that our o-line can get enough push to be able to run the ball when it matters. Or not allow a shit load of LB to jack up Ben. I know sometimes it is Bens fault for holding on the ball too long but I didnt see Brady get sacked 47 times last year and he holds the ball for a long time and he cant break tackles, or run away from defenders.
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Old 07-28-2008, 11:55 AM   #3
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

Better?

Better than...

A stick in the eye?
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Old 07-28-2008, 12:31 PM   #4
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

I like what I'm hearing here, though. And it sure 'splains some things if this is all on the up and up...
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Old 07-28-2008, 12:35 PM   #5
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

Quote:
"You can't teach an old dog new tricks, and that's sometimes how it goes. Alan's gone ... coach Zierlein is the boss now, and that's the way it's going to be."
so he's saying the line may be better off with the young guys, interesting.

maybe what they needed after all is to get a better understanding of the system, and they should have it by now.

As long as our QB doesn't spend half of the day on the ground it's ok
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Old 07-28-2008, 12:50 PM   #6
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

Kind of shows me that Faneca didn't buy in because he thought Grimm should have been the Head Coach and maybe had some history with coach Z.

So to summarize our O line was like this:
LT, Smith- injured back
LG, Faneca sulking and being difficult with the new coach
C, Mahan- constantly overpowered
RG, Simmons- got his contract and played average
RT, Colon- new starter, not sure who's lead to follow....new O line coach or veteran all pro Faneca

Pretty sure the new O line will be better if healthy.
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Old 07-28-2008, 02:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

Sounds like healthy and in the right mind set now.
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:59 PM   #8
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

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Originally Posted by revefsreleets View Post
I like what I'm hearing here, though. And it sure 'splains some things if this is all on the up and up...
Sure does...

You know... I had a sneaky suspicion that kind of thing was happening!!
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Old 07-28-2008, 05:49 PM   #9
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

Was Mahan calling the signals for the line, or was Faneca? Enquiring minds want to know!
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Old 07-28-2008, 05:55 PM   #10
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Default Re: Steelers' offensive line could be better

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Was Mahan calling the signals for the line, or was Faneca? Enquiring minds want to know!
I thought ben was doing it
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