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Old 06-29-2009, 08:56 AM   #1
mmalone
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Default Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

Eighth of nine draft picks signs
Monday, June 29, 2009
By BOB LABRIOLA
Steelers.com

Its no simple thing for a rookie to win a starting job in the NFL, and its almost impossible to do if said rookie doesnt report to training camp on time. By signing a three-year contract with the Steelers on Monday, Kraig Urbik took care of the easy part.

Urbik, 6-foot-5, 328 pounds, was the first of three third-round picks made by the Steelers in the 2009 draft, and he became the eighth of their nine selections to sign a contract. Only No. 1 pick Ziggy Hood remains unsigned, with players due to report to training camp on July 31.

A veteran of 50 college starts at Wisconsin 34 at right guard and 16 at right tackle Urbik will arrive at his first NFL camp thrown into the mix at right guard, where the depth chart figures to list Darnell Stapleton and Trai Essex above him.

Stapleton made the team as an undrafted rookie in 2007, and his ability to play all three interior line positions is valuable to an NFL coach. When starting right guard Kendall Simmons injured an Achilles last Sept. 29 in a game against the Baltimore Ravens, Stapleton stepped in and filled the spot through the rest of the regular season and the march to the Super Bowl.

Essex, a third-round draft pick in 2005 as a left tackle in college, came close to being waived at the end of training camp in 2007, but since then has developed into a guy who has filled in capably when called upon. The Steelers thought enough of him to re-sign him this offseason after he had become an unrestricted free agent.

Urbik has an advantage over the 305-pound Stapleton in size and one in experience as a right guard over Essex, but rookies have a lot to overcome in terms of learning the offense and understanding how to be a professional.

Then again, the Steelers have something of a recent history of starting rookie offensive linemen. Simmons a No.1 pick in 2002 was the most recent example, and he was preceded by both Marvel Smith in 2000 and Alan Faneca in 1998.

I love him, said offensive coordinator Bruce Arians of Urbik during the draft. Big, tough, nasty type of guy who has position flexibility. This kid understands football.
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:00 AM   #2
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

Great news! 8 down, 1 to go!
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:03 AM   #3
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

This is good to hear now if we just can get Hood signed.
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:20 AM   #4
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

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This is good to hear now if we just can get Hood signed.
how many first rounders have signed? how about the other DL's?
Steelers may be waiting for a price range on hood.
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:28 AM   #5
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

Stafford and Sanchez are the only 2 signed right now. Great for Urbik to get signed.
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:48 AM   #6
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

lookin forward to Urbik providing some Depth at the Oline.. possibly even to start???
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:51 AM   #7
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

Cool. I know Ziggy will be signed before camp starts. The Steelers are the best at getting their people signed. Ziggy sounds like he wants to be a Steeler so I don't think he will hold out.
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Old 06-29-2009, 11:11 AM   #8
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

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Cool. I know Ziggy will be signed before camp starts. The Steelers are the best at getting their people signed. Ziggy sounds like he wants to be a Steeler so I don't think he will hold out.
i have the feeling the letters hood will be planted on top of many RB's and QB's
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Old 06-29-2009, 11:17 AM   #9
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

I can't wait for camp to start. Gonna be so interesting to see if Urbik can grasp things well enough to have a shot at starting by the 3rd preseason game.
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Old 06-29-2009, 11:23 AM   #10
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Default Re: Kraig Urbik Signs 8 of 9 signed

Wish I could go to camp. Too far away from Las Vegas though. Hope to hear lots of good things from people who can make it.
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