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Old 03-05-2010, 06:11 AM   #1
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Default Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter


Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

http://nfl.fanhouse.com/2010/03/04/s...starter/#cntnt
3/04/2010 9:34 PM ET By JJ Cooper

Darnell StapletonJust two seasons ago, Darnell Stapleton was a starting guard for the Steelers in Super Bowl 43. Now, the Steelers have decided that he's not worth tendering a contract at less than $1 million.

Over at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's site, beat writer Ed Bouchette found the news unsurprising since Stapleton was going to have a tough time making the team. But it does seem a little puzzling because the Steelers didn't really have any big reason to let him go.

Stapleton missed the entire 2009 season with a knee injury, which was one strike against him. As a restricted free agent, the Steelers have to make a tender offer to retain his rights. There are a number of possible offers, with a low of $927,000, which would have brought Pittsburgh no compensation if Stapleton left. Under a million dollars is less than the average NFL salary and would have done nothing to blow the Steelers' self-imposed salary cap. Roster spots are cheap in the offseason when you have 80 spots.

While a sub-million dollar tender would have brought Pittsburgh no compensation if Stapleton left, it would have given Pittsburgh an extra insurance policy heading into training camp. Stapleton had virtually no chance of regaining his starting guard job with starters Trai Essex and Chris Kemoeatu returning as well as backups Ramon Foster and Kraig Urbik. But if starting center Justin Hartwig or backup Doug Legursky blows a knee in training camp, it would have been nice to have another veteran center around.

Now Pittsburgh will either need to draft/sign a rookie center for training camp or they'll need to teach one of their many guards how to play center for emergency purposes. Legursky is a solid backup, but the Steelers currently don't have any other backup lineman with a chance to make the team who has any experience at center.
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Old 03-05-2010, 06:31 AM   #2
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

I'm really shocked at this news, as I was hoping he would be taking Hartwig's place very soon. Looks like the Steelers have drafting a C high on their priority list.

Thanks Darnell and much luck!
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Old 03-05-2010, 07:35 AM   #3
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

What about Shipley. Is he even still on the roster? I for one would love to see this guy get a shot at center. I think he has Mike Webster tenacity. Anyone who watched Webster play knows as centers go he was not a big man but he was powerful and I think Ship could handle the job, but this is why I'm just a fan.
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Old 03-05-2010, 07:41 AM   #4
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

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What about Shipley. Is he even still on the roster? I for one would love to see this guy get a shot at center. I think he has Mike Webster tenacity. Anyone who watched Webster play knows as centers go he was not a big man but he was powerful and I think Ship could handle the job, but this is why I'm just a fan.
Shipley was picked up by the Eagels after the season, or about that time.
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Old 03-05-2010, 07:47 AM   #5
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

Wow, since when did we get so high on Essex and Foster that they don't even get any competition from the starter two years ago?
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Old 03-05-2010, 08:26 AM   #6
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

The O-line and the way the Steelers handle to O-line is and always will be a joke.
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Old 03-05-2010, 08:45 AM   #7
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

Stapleton is smaller and weaker of a run blocker than Legursky.....so he really wasnt needed on the roster. He is basically a younger version of Sean Mahan. A lighter, more agile O lineman that uses angles to seal instead of physically outperforming the defender. He is better off in the NFC where there are more 4-3 defenses.
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Old 03-05-2010, 05:05 PM   #8
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

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Shipley was picked up by the Eagels after the season, or about that time.
Didn't know. To bad.
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Old 03-05-2010, 05:15 PM   #9
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

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I'm really shocked at this news, as I was hoping he would be taking Hartwig's place very soon. Looks like the Steelers have drafting a C high on their priority list.

Thanks Darnell and much luck!
If thats true I like the kid from BC Matt Tennant he's a good player!
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Old 03-06-2010, 11:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: Steelers Saying Bye-Bye to Former Super Bowl Starter

i dont see it happening but if we spend anything higher than a 3rd rounder on a C i will not be too happy.
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