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Old 05-17-2012, 08:50 PM   #1
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Default Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

Thursday, May 17th, 2012 by Dave Bryan

The recent report by Ed Bouchette stating that second round tackle Mike Adams is in the plans of the Pittsburgh Steelers to get the first crack at the starting left tackle spot is not earth shattering news in nature, especially when you look at the potential candidates currently on the roster that could compete for the job. What is kind of mind blowing though is that if indeed that comes to fruition, and first round pick David DeCastro starts at right guard, it would mean that two rookies would be starting on the Steelers offensive line when they line up week one against the Denver Broncos.

This would be the first time that this feat has occurred since at least 1978, and there is a good chance that it dates even further back than that. I have only been able to pull the Steelers week one starting offensive lines dating back to 1979, so that covers the last 33 seasons. Dating back to 1979, only three rookie offensive linemen have cracked the week one starting lineup for the Steelers and they were: Tom Ricketts at left guard (1989), Marvel Smith at right tackle (2000) and Maurkice Pouncey at center (2010). That leaves two positions on the offensive line that the Steelers have not had rookies start at since at least at least 1978, and both of those positions are left tackle and right guard, the positions that Adams and DeCastro aim to start at respectively.

Mike Webster, Dermontti Dawson and Alan Faneca were all drafted by the Steelers, but none of the three started week one of their rookie year. Webster has long been enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Dawson will join him in that distinction later this summer and Faneca will not be too far behind in getting that honor as well.

I have stated since the Steelers drafted DeCastro that I believe he is a plug and play guard right from the get-go. I would be shocked if he is not the starting right guard in Denver. Really shocked. Adams, on the other hand, I have my reservations about. He has the tools and prototypical size, but I worry if he will be ready to protect the blind side of Ben Roethlisberger against the Broncos. While the Steelers might be claiming that starting two rookies on the offensive line is their plan in Denver, the odds are certainly against it happening. It might even make Super Bowl era history for the Steelers should it occur.

It sure is fun to go back and look at all of these names over the years and please feel free to pass along the week 1 starting offensive lines from 1966-1978 if you are absolutely positive about them.

Pittsburgh Steelers Week 1 Starting Offensive Lines 1979-2011

YEAR LEFT TACKLE LEFT GUARD CENTER RIGHT GUARD RIGHT TACKLE

1979 Jon Kolb Sam Davis Mike Webster Steve Courson Larry Brown
1980 Jon Kolb Ray Pinney Mike Webster Steve Courson Larry Brown
1981 Jon Kolb Craig Wolfley Mike Webster Steve Courson Larry Brown
1982 Ray Pinney Craig Wolfley Mike Webster Steve Courson Larry Brown
1983 Ted Petersen Craig Wolfley Mike Webster Steve Courson Larry Brown
1984 Tunch Ilkin Craig Wolfley Mike Webster Blake Wingle Larry Brown
1985 Pete Rostosky Craig Wolfley Mike Webster Terry Long Tunch Ilkin
1986 Ray Pinney Randy Rasmussen Dan Turk Terry Long Mark Behning
1987 Craig Wolfley John Rienstra Mike Webster Buddy Aydelette Terry Long
1988 Craig Wolfley John Rienstra Mike Webster Terry Long Tunch Ilkin
1989 Craig Wolfley Tom Ricketts Dermontti Dawson Brian Blankenship Tunch Ilkin
1990 John Jackson John Rienstra Dermontti Dawson Terry Long Tunch Ilkin
1991 John Jackson Brian Blankenship Dermontti Dawson Carlton Haselrig Tunch Ilkin
1992 John Jackson Duval Love Dermontti Dawson Carlton Haselrig Tunch Ilkin
1993 John Jackson Duval Love Dermontti Dawson Carlton Haselrig Leon Searcy
1994 John Jackson Duval Love Dermontti Dawson Todd Kalis Leon Searcy
1995 John Jackson Tom Newberry Dermontti Dawson Justin Strzelczyk Leon Searcy
1996 John Jackson Will Wolford Dermontti Dawson Justin Strzelczyk Bernard Dafney
1997 John Jackson Will Wolford Dermontti Dawson Brenden Stai Justin Strzelczyk
1998 Will Wolford Roger Duffy Dermontti Dawson Brenden Stai Justin Strzelczyk
1999 Wayne Gandy Alan Faneca Dermontti Dawson Brenden Stai Chris Conrad
2000 Wayne Gandy Alan Faneca Dermontti Dawson Rich Tylski Marvel Smith
2001 Wayne Gandy Alan Faneca Jeff Hartings Rich Tylski Marvel Smith
2002 Wayne Gandy Alan Faneca Jeff Hartings Oliver Ross Marvel Smith
2003 Marvel Smith Alan Faneca Jeff Hartings Kendall Simmons Todd Fordham
2004 Marvel Smith Alan Faneca Jeff Hartings Keydrick Vincent Oliver Ross
2005 Marvel Smith Alan Faneca Jeff Hartings Kendall Simmons Max Starks
2006 Marvel Smith Alan Faneca Jeff Hartings Kendall Simmons Max Starks
2007 Marvel Smith Alan Faneca Sean Mahan Kendall Simmons Willie Colon
2008 Marvel Smith Chris Kemoeatu Justin Hartwig Kendall Simmons Willie Colon
2009 Max Starks Chris Kemoeatu Justin Hartwig Trai Essex Willie Colon
2010 Max Starks Chris Kemoeatu Maurkice Pouncey Trai Essex Flozell Adams
2011 Jonathan Scott Chris Kemoeatu Maurkice Pouncey Doug Legursky Willie Colon

http://www.steelersdepot.com/2012/05...arting-week-1/
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Old 05-17-2012, 09:48 PM   #2
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

I hope this turns out to be the right move...
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Old 05-17-2012, 10:11 PM   #3
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

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I hope this turns out to be the right move...
well it's not set in stone yet, but this is just what the coaching staff wants to try. Adams starting is assuming that he comes into training camp and impresses the coaching staff.

I'm sure they'll either 1) shuffle the roster back to the original plan (gilbert at LT / colon at RT), or 2) Give max starks a call if Adams isn't ready. But they seem pretty high on him.

nothing they're saying right now is guaranteed. after all, tony hills was considered the starting guard in 3rd week preseason, then he gets cut after the final game. Much can happen in the next 3 months.
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Old 05-17-2012, 10:13 PM   #4
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

i highly doubt the coaches have chiseled the starting lineup in stone. they are just giving the job to adams , colon, pouncey , decastro , gilbert , and its theirs to lose.
in interviews with kuglar he specifically said they'll put the 5 best blockers they have in the starting lineup. they've got months to figure out who those 5 are and what position they will play.

looks like FA beat me to the stone reference....
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Old 05-18-2012, 02:22 PM   #5
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

5 Steelers Ready To Breakout In 2012, Part I: Offense

May 18th, 2012 at 2:00 pm by DomSteelers



About a week ago, FoxSports.com’s Alex Marvez constructed a list of N.F.L. players which could be poised have potential breakout seasons in 2012. The list had one player for each team, and Wide Receiver Emmanuel Sanders made the list as the Steelers’ representative. With Marvez’s list in mind, I thought it would be a good idea to discuss five more Steelers’ players on the Offensive side of the ball which could be ready for breakout seasons.

1. David DeCastro

How or why the top rated Offensive Guard in The 2012 N.F.L. Draft fell to the Steelers at #24, I will never know. Still, I am not going to complain, because Offensive Guard was one of the Steelers’ biggest needs, and had been since Alan Faneca left town when the 2007 season ended. The expectations will be high for DeCastro, and the starting Right Guard spot will be his to lose. Yet I feel like the Rookie from Stanford will answer the bell, and instantly upgrade Pittsburgh’s Offensive Line. DeCastro was an absolute monster at Stanford who has the ability to dominate in the running game, can pull and trap well, hold his own extremely well in pass-protection, and even has room to add onto his ridiculously big frame (6’5″ 316 lbs.). DeCastro started 39 games over the course of his collegiate career at Stanford, and his extended experience as a Lineman in a Pro Style Offense which had a firm dedication (as well as a great deal of success) to the Run Game should not be overlooked as well. The former Cardinal was given future Hall of Famer Alan Faneca’s number #66 and will be counted on to be the rock at Right Guard for at least a decade.

2. Heath Miller

I am sure many of you readers are saying, “Heath Miller? He made the Pro Bowl in 2009. Why is he on this list? How did he make a list of breakout players?” Well, I put Heath on this list because I see him as possibly enjoying a career year with the Steelers as he enters his 8th season with the team. Hopefully, new Offensive Coordinator Todd Haley will use Miller (2011: 51 Catches, 631 Yards, 2 TD’s) in the role Ken Whisenhunt used him in during his first two seasons, and like Haley used Tony Moeaki in Kansas City during the 2010 season: a prime Red Zone target. If this is indeed the case, Miller could enjoy games like he did against the Patriots last season, except on multiple occasions in 2012. Over his first three seasons combined, Miller amassed 21 Touchdown receptions and was one of Big Ben’s most reliable Red Zone targets.

I will admit, with the emergence of Santonio Holmes, Mike Wallace, Antonio Brown, and the other Wide Receivers, Miller’s targets have gone down over the last couple seasons in scoring situations, as well they should. Still, the fact that a 6’5” 265 lb. mammoth of a man that can run with Safeties and has the best hands on the team should not be catching only 2 TD’s per season (4 over the last two). Because of the explosiveness of Wallace and Brown, Miller will likely be singled up or an afterthought when teams key on those two. Pittsburgh needs to make these teams pay, and Miller could be a huge benefactor.

3. Isaac Redman

With Rashard Mendenhall sidelined for likely the first half of the season, and almost zero experienced depth behind him, Isaac Redman will get his opportunity to put a stranglehold on the “RB1” position. Redman set career highs in Rushing Yards (479), Carries (110), and Rushing Touchdowns (3) last season, and should be one of the hungriest players on the team to carry over some positive momentum from 2011 into 2012. Much like Fast Willie Parker, Redman is a former Undrafted Free Agent. And much like Fast Willie, Isaac earned his way onto this roster due to grit, hard work, and developed his skills on the Practice Squad for an extended period. Granted, I see Chris Rainey as the team’s eventual 3rd Down Back, and he will likely force Redman off the field in those situations this season because of his explosive and pass-catching skill-set. Yet as I stated before, Redman finally has his chance, and for a determined Undrafted Free Agent like him, any open window to shine will be met with 100% effort, and a white-knuckle grip on the job with a “take on all comers” attitude.

4. Emmanuel Sanders and/or Jerricho Cotchery

I know this is cheating a little bit, because the title reads “5 Steelers,” yet the player which will have a breakout season will be the winner of the battle between Emmanuel Sanders and Jerricho Cotchery for The #3 Wide Receiver slot. I’ve stated it many times, but Heath Miller and the slot WR’s this season could enjoy enormous seasons due to the attention which opposing Defenses must pay to Mike Wallace and Antonio Brown respectively. The middle of the field will likely be open because of both speedsters outside the numbers, and the Steelers can eat Secondaries alive with mismatches on the inside.

Sanders (2011: 22 Catches, 288 Yards, 2 TD’s) and Cotchery (2011: 16 Catches, 237 Yards, 2 TD’s) are both intelligent and savvy route-runners, both have solid athletic ability, and most importantly, both have reliable hands. The only big issue with these two players will be their collective healths, because both were dinged up last season and only late in the year appeared to contribute on a regular basis. If you can remember back to 2010, Sanders emerged as a steady target for Big Ben as the season progressed, and health permitting, he could resume that role in 2012. If not, the veteran Cotchery can fill in and do an adequate job and pick up those tough 1st Downs to keep drives alive. Plus, with a full offseason to learn the new Offense and work with Ben under his belt, Cotchery could revert back to his successful ways in the slot like when he was with the Jets.

5. Mike Adams

The second Willie Colon came public with the news that he was moving to Left Guard, two thoughts crossed my mind: 1. Yahoo! Colon is moving to his more natural position. 2. It is now time to see massive (6’7″ 323 lbs.) Rookie Mike Adams in action. Adams will definitely have his plate full because it is not common for many Rookies to start at Left Tackle for a contending team in Week 1 of the season. Still, the Steelers must have supreme confidence in Adams and the hope that he cleaned up his act off the field, because he will likely be answering the bell Week 1 now.

In terms of pure talent and athletic ability, only Matt Kalil of Southern California in my opinion was a better Left Tackle prospect than Adams in this past April’s Draft. Adams had a good deal of experience at Left Tackle at the college level (23 starts), and most importantly could have a chip on his shoulder for the rest of his career due to where he was drafted. If Adams is motivated enough to play for his hometown team and prove all his doubters and detractors wrong, look out, because the Steelers might have found a blind-side protector for Ben.

http://nicepickcowher.com/2012/05/18...e/?repeat=w3tc
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Old 05-18-2012, 03:05 PM   #6
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

The great news is that Max STarks will be out there when healthy as a very nice security blanket! Adams could learn from him if need be and we would have some nice luxuries along the line unlike previous years. Any line with Johnathan Scott anywhere near it, is not an NFL caliber line IMO.
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Old 05-18-2012, 03:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

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The great news is that Max STarks will be out there when healthy as a very nice security blanket! Adams could learn from him if need be and we would have some nice luxuries along the line unlike previous years. Any line with Johnathan Scott anywhere near it, is not an NFL caliber line IMO.
I'd love to bring Max in for security and injury protection. I think he's a decent LT option. Scott is garbage. If Adams doesn't earn the start, Max can hold it down until he's ready.

If Adams works at LT, that pick turns out to be a great one, as one pick fixes 2 spots on the line. Colon moving to LG to replace Kemo along with the DeCastro pick should give us a strong starting 5. That said. We have a new offensive coordinator and probably 3 of 5 lineman in new spots. It will likely take a little while to gel. This could be a growing pain kind of year offensively.
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Old 05-18-2012, 03:23 PM   #8
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

Starks price tag is to much...Play the young ones....Its not like they have much to live up to, mistakes will happen as they learn.
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Old 05-18-2012, 04:59 PM   #9
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

Starks has no leverage. If he can be acquired for veteran minimum, which is highly possible, then by all means sign him and release Scott and eat the $500,000 in dead money that would go with it.
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Old 05-18-2012, 05:05 PM   #10
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Default Re: Rookies DeCastro & Adams Look To Buck Steelers History By Both Starting Week 1

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Starks has no leverage. If he can be acquired for veteran minimum, which is highly possible, then by all means sign him and release Scott and eat the $500,000 in dead money that would go with it.

Jonathan Scott will not be released quite just yet, first he will be given along with Trai Essex and Mike Adams the opportunity to win the starting LT position. I believe only if all three fail that the Steelers will then look to re-sign Starks and cut Scott.
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