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They’ve Blown It All Sky High – And New Little Big Board, Draft Preview
Off-Season News: I listened to this song after finding out that the Pittsburgh Steelers had blown a huge hole in the team, Hines Ward, Aaron Smith and James Farrior were not only great on the field, but in the Lock Room. They have no replacement for them.
Hines Ward – I really felt bad watching his forced retirement speech. He was willing to restructure his contract. We lost not only a great receiver but a de-facto Wide Receivers Coach. This future Hall of Famer deserved way better. Release Hines and keep Jericho Cotchery? Really? A former Offensive Team Captain gone.
Aaron Smith – This was bound to happen. He has been injury prone and missed almost entire seasons. He was a great Steeler and great leader. Another former Team Captain (Defense) gone.
James Farrior – The Steelers QB of the front seven and multiple year leader in tackles. Yes, he is 36 but he still has some gas left in the tank. Larry Foote or James Farrior? You got to be kidding me. Another former Team Captain gone.
These are horrible decisions. They seem to be made out of a sense of desperation to clear salary cap space. Never make a decision out of desperation, even if you are in a desperate situation.
Other players gone: In good riddance Chris Kemoeatu, Bryant McFadden, William Gay and other minimal contributors.
Big Bummer: We lost back up NT Chris Hoke, neck injury, retired.
Bruce Arians to Todd Haley
From a Doofus to a Prick. When I heard Arians was gone I was elated. When I heard Colts Owner Jim Irsay say Arians was a potential Head Coach prospect I laughed so hard I passed a cheese sandwich through my nose. I haven’t even eaten a cheese sandwich in 2 years. Even school children in Pittsburgh know that he isn’t fit to coach Pop Warner League. And now Todd Haley? He has a huge ego, a lousy attitude and loves being a prick on the sidelines. I can’t wait to see the hissy fits he and Big Ben will have during games. Football should be entertaining, right? Another bad off-season move.
Enough Already – Little Big Board
|Rd 1 – OL or NT||Rd 2 – CB||RD 3 NT or OL||Rd 4 – S|
|Jonathan Martin OT Stanford||Stephon Gilmore CB S. Car.||Alameda Ta’amu NT Washinton||Harison Smith S Notre Dame|
|Riley Reiff OT Iowa||Alphonzo Denard Nebraska||or||Aaron Henry FS Wisconsin|
|Matt Kalil OT Stanford||Josh Robinson CB UCF||Kevin Zietler OG Wisconsin||Rashard Hall S Clemson *|
|David DeCastro OG Stanford||Jayron Hosely CB Virg. Tech||Ricky Wagner LT Wisconsin||Trumaine Johnson FS Montana|
|or||Jamell Fleming CB OK||Lucas Nix OG-OT Pittsburgh||Chase Minnifield CB-S Virginia|
|Dontari Poe NT Memphis||Brandon Brooks OL M of O|
|Rd 5 – WR||Rd 6 OL||Rd 7 K or DB||Free Agents|
|Marvin McNutt WR-QB Iowa||Nate Potter OT-OG Boise St.||Carson Wiggs PK/P Purdue||Jake Stoneburner TE Ohio St.|
|A.J. Jenkins WR Illinois||Michael Brewster C-OG OSU||Blair Walsh Georgia PK||Tony Dye SS-FS-CB UCLA|
|Greg Childs WR Arkansas||Adam Gettis G-C Iowa||Drew Butler P-PK Georgia||Hebron Fangupo NT BYU|
|Danny Coale WR-P Virg. Tech||Josh Oglesbay OL Wisconsin||Bryan Anger P California||Delvin Johnson NT Marshall|
|Derek Moye WR Penn St.||Don Barclay OL WVU||or||Darius Fleming OLB Notre Dame|
|Blake Gideon FS Texas||Matt Conrath DE Virginia|
|Case Keenam QB Houston|
|Kellen Moore QB Boise St.|
|Randy Bullock PK Tex. A&M|
Rd 1 – Jonathan Martin OT Stanford – An athletic, Intelligent and very mobile LT for Andrew Luck. As a pass protector he mirrors his man very well and has the vision to pick up stunts. He was used in a variety of ways run blocking, pulling inside on certain plays, switching from LT to RT at times. He was used as a decoy at times to make the other team think that they were running in his direction. Since they are moving Marcus Gilbert to LT (Good Move) Martin could anchor the other side of the line at RT. He is a plug and play guy coming from Stanford’s pro-style system.
Rd 2 – Stephon Gilmore CB South Carolina – He was asked to play off more in S.C’s conservative Defense, but he seemed to welcome man to man coverage. Since the Steelers always switch it up he could thrive under Dick Lebeau. Unless the Steelers ‘cut’ Lebeau to bring in defrocked DC Greg Williams to play the ‘Invisible Coordinator.’ William Gay and McFadden are gone and we need help at this position. Ike Taylor was torched by Ledaryius Thomas in the playoff game.
Rd 3 – Alameda Ta’amu NT Washington – Casey Hampton is injured, Chris Hoke is retired. We need a run stuffer for the middle of the DL. Alameda has had a rap for inconsistent play, but he is strong and mobile for a big guy and should be able to be coached up.
Rd 4 – Harrison Smith S Notre Dame – Smith put himself on the radar with a strong combine. On field he displays great anticipation, vision and ball skills. He also has the size and physicality to play in the box.
Rd 5 – Marvin McNutt WR-QB Iowa – Give Me My Slash, Damn It! I’ve been begging for one of these guys for the last three years. McNutt, a former QB is 6-3 and 213, a solid pro-ready possession receiver. Yes, have some.
Rd 6 – Nate Potter OL Boise St. – I had him at round 2 previously, but he had two injuries this season that hampered his play and Combine performance, so I think he might fall. If healthy he would be a solid addition to the OL.
Rd 7 – Carson Wiggs PK-P-KOS Purdue – This strong legged versatile kicker seems custom made for Hines Field (Yes, I know, I’m renaming it). We need a permanent solution for this position plus he gives you a reserve punter.
The Steelers now have gaping holes on the OL, DL, DB, WR and Special Teams. These additions would help to plug some of those gaps.
NFL Free Agency – … um, … Well, You know?… (Cue the Jeopardy theme)… The Steelers are doing their usual ‘Free Agency, what’s that?’ Dance. Players they could and should go for….. Hines Ward, no wait he was forced into retirement… James Farrior… oops, my bad… (Cricket sounds).
As usual the Steelers have let any decent Free Agent get picked up by other teams. They wonder why they got their ass handed to them by the Ravens twice last year and why the Patriot’s consistently out perform them. The Pats and the Ravens always try to IMPROVE themselves through both the Draft AND Free Agency, while Steelers seem content to recreate the same team. It is no longer good enough.
A Featured Columnist for the Pittsburgh Steelers on Pittsburgh Blitz. "JB Steel" is the resident Draft Guru and the premiere Armchair GM here at the Blitz and is an avid fan of the Steelers, Pens, and Pirates.
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