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Old 09-02-2009, 11:03 PM   #1
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Default Steelers' starters to be used sparingly

Steelers' starters to be used sparingly
Buzz up!
By Scott Brown, TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Thursday, September 3, 2009
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_641270.html

The starters will play sparingly tonight against the Carolina Panthers, and their main objective for the Steelers' final preseason game would appear to be to simply get it over with. Starting right tackle Willie Colon, however, said there is a benefit to getting some snaps against the Panthers' defense. Carolina, like previous preseason opponents Buffalo and Washington, plays a 4-3 defense. That is the same base front the Steelers will encounter next Thursday when they open the regular season against the Tennessee Titans at Heinz Field. "I think this game is another dress rehearsal," Colon said of tonight's 8 p.m. contest. "For us, it's a great opportunity to see how things work in that 4-3 scheme, so I think it's big for us." The starters are not expected to play more than two series against the Panthers.

Limas Sweed is trying to hold off rookie Mike Wallace for the No. 3 job at wide receiver. Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians hinted earlier this week that the competition will continue during the season. He added that both will play no matter who are the No. 3 and No. 4 wide receivers behind starters Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes. "It might be 3A and 3B depending on our package, what we're asking out of those guys," Arians said. "I'm not saying either one's beat the other one out. They'll both play a lot." Sweed leads the Steelers in the preseason with an average of 15.3 yards a catch and has caught seven passes for 107 yards. Wallace has caught four passes for 58 yards and averaged 29.5 yards on a pair of kickoff returns.

If center/guard Doug Legursky has not locked up a spot on the 53-man roster following the loss of Darnell Stapleton (knee) for the season, he can probably do so with a solid showing tonight. Legursky, a second-year man out of Marshall, will play primarily at guard against the Panthers because he has worked more at center during the preseason. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin compared the 6-foot-1, 315-pound Legursky to Stapleton earlier this week. Arians echoed similar sentiments. "He's doing outstanding," Arians said of Legursky, who spent most of last season on the Steelers' practice squad. "He's a position-flexible guy, he's been in our system and we like Doug a lot." Legursky has started two preseason games because of injuries: one at center, and the other at left guard. "He's taken advantage of an opportunity," Tomlin said.

The sprained ankle that will keep starting inside linebacker Lawrence Timmons out of tonight's game -- and possibly out of the regular-season opener -- may create an opportunity for safety Ryan Mundy. Mundy, a Woodland Hills High graduate, could play in Timmons' position, which is a linebacker/safety hybrid, when the Steelers go to a dime defense in passing situations. Mundy, a practice-squad player a year ago, is trying to make the Steelers as a backup safety. The 6-1, 209-pounder could help his cause by showing he is capable of playing where Timmons does in the dime. "I'm actually quite excited about watching a guy like Ryan Mundy potentially get some snaps at that position," Tomlin said.

Digits

268 -- Return yards Stefan Logan has amassed in two preseason games.

3.0 -- Yards per rush the Steelers have averaged in three preseason games.

4.1 -- Yards per rush the Steelers have allowed in three preseason games.
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Old 09-02-2009, 11:15 PM   #2
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Default Re: Steelers' starters to be used sparingly

268 -- Return yards Stefan Logan has amassed in two preseason games.

That, ladies and gentlemen... is quite amazing!
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Old 09-02-2009, 11:34 PM   #3
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Default Re: Steelers' starters to be used sparingly

I always hate the last pre-season game. I know the starters don't play much but the guys fighting to make the team probably go that extra the last game and I'm always nervous to lose some player killing depth. No major injuries and hopefully none at all. But if there is some then keep them minimal.
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Old 09-03-2009, 02:42 AM   #4
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Default Re: Steelers' starters to be used sparingly

so they're still trying to convince us that Sweed doesn't have the #3 locked up.
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Old 09-03-2009, 04:28 AM   #5
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Default Re: Steelers' starters to be used sparingly

I agree - let's just get this over with - no new injuries.
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Old 09-03-2009, 05:52 AM   #6
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Default Re: Steelers' starters to be used sparingly

Quote:
Originally Posted by Killer View Post
I agree - let's just get this over with - no new injuries.
Well said no injuries lets go Steelers.
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