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 > Steelers Draft Central > ** The War Room 2012 **


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 Fever Presents...

Steelers Panthers

GAMEDAY
Sunday, September 21, 8:30 PM
NBC
Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 04-17-2010, 04:07 AM   #1
Galax Steeler
The Virginia Hillbilly
Supporter
 
Galax Steeler's Avatar
 

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Galax Va
Posts: 96,533
Gender: Male
Member Number: 3287
Thanks: 1,100
Thanked 3,323 Times in 1,411 Posts
My Mood: Lurking
Default One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

Many NFL coaches and scouts believe the second-most vital position on a pro football offense is left tackle. So essential is it that Michael Lewis devoted much of his best-selling book to the position in "The Blind Side." The Steelers, though, have ignored left tackles with their most-coveted draft choices seemingly forever.

They last drafted an offensive tackle in the first round 14 years ago. They last successfully drafted an offensive tackle in the first round 17 years ago. And the last time they drafted a left tackle in the first round, they moved him to guard within weeks at training camp.

The names in order of the above are Jamain Stephens (1996), Leon Searcy (1992) and Tom Ricketts (1989).

Ricketts, despite his failings, remains a footnote for the franchise because since the NFL merger with the AFL in 1970 -- and going back one more year to the arrival of coach Chuck Noll and his first draft in 1969 -- he has been the only left tackle drafted by them in the first round.

After calling Ricketts a "natural left tackle" when drafting him, he is the one they quickly moved to guard and bade goodbye after three frustrating seasons.

Therefore, in what might be called their modern era, the Steelers are 0-for-41 years in successfully drafting a left tackle in the first round.

Might that change Thursday night?

This draft is regarded among the best for quality and quantity at offensive tackle, especially left tackle. As many as five or six tackles could be drafted in the first round, all left tackles. Among them are Russell Okung, Trent Williams, Bryan Bulaga and Anthony Davis.

"I think it all goes back to the evolution of the passing game in college football, which trickles into the NFL," said Kevin Colbert, the Steelers' director of football operations. "I would say people are developing more offensive linemen, particularly pass-protectors which are usually left-tackle types."

The left tackle protects the "blind side" of a right-handed quarterback and almost always must block the best and most athletic pass rusher the defense can throw at him. The theory goes, if you have a great quarterback, you better protect him or he will not last long, and protecting him starts from his left.

"If your left tackle can handle their best guy one-on-one, you don't have to slide your protection, you don't have to chip him and you can get your back out on a release," explained Gene Smith, general manager of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

A weak left tackle needs help -- from a tight end, from a back, from the left guard -- and that can take away from protection elsewhere or keep potential receivers from running routes.

One reason the Steelers might not have selected a good left tackle in the first round is their position in the draft. When a team drafts in the second half or bottom third of the first round, they rarely get a chance at an elite left tackle because the NFL puts such a high priority on such players. Often, they are gone in the top 10 picks. Even drafting at No. 18 this year, the Steelers might not get a chance at the top four left-tackle prospects.

"If you have a good one, you better stay with him," said Tom Moreno, a pro scout for 35 years. "The most important thing on a team is quarterback. Beyond that, most teams would say the next thing you better have is a top left tackle."

It's not that the Steelers do not value the left-tackle position. Marvel Smith, drafted by them in the second round in 2000, started there for most of the decade before back problems forced his retirement.

Smith holds the distinction as the only Steelers left tackle to make a Pro Bowl since Noll arrived in 1969, and even before that. Smith made one, after the 2004 season. Noll has said he thought his left tackle during the team's 1970s Super Bowl era, Jon Kolb, did not get the credit he deserved and should be in the Hall of Fame. The fact remains, though, that Kolb did not make a Pro Bowl.

The Steelers have paid attention to the other positions along the line. They drafted two guards in the first round since 1999, Alan Faneca and Kendall Simmons. And they have had a string of great centers through the years, from Mike Webster to Dermontti Dawson to Jeff Hartings.

But their starting offensive line includes no one drafted in either of the first two rounds: left tackle Max Starks (third round), left guard Chris Kemoeatu (sixth), center Hartwig (sixth, by Tennessee), right guard Trai Essex (third) or Ramon Foster (undrafted) and right tackle Willie Colon (fourth).

"But we won with that group,'' Colbert noted.

"Sure, you want high picks if you could have them at every group, but that's not going to happen, especially when you're picking lower as we have over the years."

They might get their chance Thursday with the 18th pick or higher if they decide to trade to move up in the first round. If so, drafting a left tackle at No. 1 would be an historic event for the Steelers.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10107/1051234-66.stm
__________________
Galax Steeler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2010, 04:39 AM   #2
pete74
Super Moderator
Supporter
 
pete74's Avatar
 

Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: pittsburgh
Posts: 3,281
Member Number: 15921
Thanks: 94
Thanked 428 Times in 225 Posts
Default Re: One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

i would love to grab a good LT. starks could move to the right side and Colon can move to guard were alot of people think he can be a pro bowler
pete74 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2010, 09:11 AM   #3
SteelerFanInStl
Team Captain
 

Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 720
Gender: Male
Member Number: 2162
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

I'm sure that everyone would love to get a top LT in the first but most likely they'll all be gone well before we pick.
SteelerFanInStl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2010, 11:11 AM   #4
BehindSteelCurtain
Team Captain
 
BehindSteelCurtain's Avatar
 

Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 918
Member Number: 11279
Thanks: 1
Thanked 8 Times in 5 Posts
Default Re: One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelerFanInStl View Post
I'm sure that everyone would love to get a top LT in the first but most likely they'll all be gone well before we pick.
The power of trading up....It's truly an amazing thing.
__________________
BehindSteelCurtain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2010, 01:55 PM   #5
Steel Glory
Bench Warmer
 

Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 212
Member Number: 15586
Thanks: 35
Thanked 33 Times in 24 Posts
Default Re: One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

Some tackles fell last year. Who says it can't happen again?
Steel Glory is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2010, 05:28 PM   #6
El-Gonzo Jackson
Living Legend
 
El-Gonzo Jackson's Avatar
 

Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 9,216
Member Number: 8264
Thanks: 353
Thanked 2,218 Times in 1,092 Posts
Default Re: One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steel Glory View Post
Some tackles fell last year. Who says it can't happen again?
Exactly, Michael Oher was a #23 pick. Marcus McNeil was a 2nd round pick and Jeff Otah was something like #20.

It can happen, but I wont hold my breath that the Steelers take an OT in the 1st.
__________________
El-Gonzo Jackson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2010, 06:15 PM   #7
Texasteel
Living Legend
Supporter
 
Texasteel's Avatar
 

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Dallas, Tx
Posts: 3,638
Gender: Male
Member Number: 8323
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

I think by now most know how I feel about this. I am hoping that we can get one of them, but like Gonzo said, not counting on it.
__________________


Simply, The Chief.
Texasteel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2010, 11:57 PM   #8
Aussie_steeler
Head Coach
 
Aussie_steeler's Avatar
 

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 1,814
Gender: Male
Member Number: 5037
Thanks: 1
Thanked 16 Times in 6 Posts
Default Re: One of prized left tackles might be Steelers' target

Can you please find me a stud LT that can protect his QB 24/7?

I am sick and tired of seeing our 100 million dollar man taking hits on and off the field.
__________________
Aussie_steeler 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 Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:18 AM.


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