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Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Tuesday's notes

Tuesday was a good day for the Steelers to get a lot of younger guys some work as a number of vets took off practice today.

One who didn't was defensive end Brett Keisel, who was back on the practice field for the first time in a few weeks after sitting out with a calf injury.

Willie Parker also went through some team drills for the first time since suffering a knee injury and it appears he'll be ready to go in Cincinnati in two weeks.

© As I said after the game at Jacksonville, Jeff Reed's calf injury isn't a big deal. Mike Tomlin said today that he expects Reed to be ready to go at Cincinnati - at least on PATs and field goals. They may have Mitch Berger – or somebody else – handle kickoffs.

Tomlin said Reed could have kicked a field goal at the end of the game in Jacksonville if needed. We'll never know.

So much for the TV wonks making a big deal out of that one.

© Tomlin said he expects Ben Roethlisberger to be at or nearly at 100 percent when the Steelers come out of their bye week.

© His reasoning for going with Trai Essex over Max Starks after Marvel Smith went down with cramps was because they felt Essex was better suited to handle Quentin Groves in pass pro than Starks.

The Jaguars knew the Steelers would be passing pretty much on every down and the coaching staff reasoned that Essex's foot speed would be better served to keep Groves at bay rather than Starks' size.

Tomlin said Starks is still the team's No. 3 tackle.

© Darnell Stapleton will continue to start at right guard.


adamg said...

I don't know why the announcers were making a big fuss out the Steelers going for two on the final TD. The fact is, the PAT didn't really help them. The PAT would only have made the score 27-21 where Jax need only kick a PAT, which is nearly 100% sure, to win. If the Steelers made the 2 pts and Jax proceeded to score a TD, then DelRio would have had to decide if wanted to go for the tie at 28(PAT) or win (2 pt try).

Frankly, I thought the worst decision was not winding the clock down once they got inside the 10 and making Jax use up their TOs. Leaving a team 1:50 and 2 TOs to get the winning TD is a ton of time.

kelly said...

"They may have Mitch Berger – or somebody else – handle kickoffs."

Who else could kickoff??

Anonymous said...

let's have troy kick it. if he can tackle a guy backwards and make a diving interception 8 yards away from where he's standing, he can totally get a touchback.

for that matter... can he play o-line?

Dale Lolley said...

Given Reed's injury, I think they wanted to go for the TD. He was telling them they could kick. They didn't want to chance it.

As for somebody else kicking off, they could sign somebody to handle kickoffs - Ernster did that for Denver for an entire season.

SC Steeler said...


Assuming both Parker and Davis are back for the Bengals game, what does that mean for Russell, Davenport, and McHugh? I'm hoping Russell and McHugh stay on the active roster and Davenport is either inactivated or cut.

Dale Lolley said...

Well, that's the million dollar question right now.
I'm not so sure Davis will be back for Cinci, so they'll have an extra week for that to sort out.
But I've gotta believe Davenport is the odd man out.

Alex said...

Carey Davis hurts the team every time he is on the field. Every carry he gets takes one away from a better runner.

Rashard (was better)

all better runners than Davis and the kid cant catch either.

And Mchugh is a better blocker too.

stillexile said...

Seriously, McHugh > Davis.

As a TE, he can catch and from what I've seen of his blocking, he reminds me a bit of Kreider in his younger days.

Just because Arians has a man-crush on Davis doesn't mean we *have* to keep him, familiarity be damned.

Fleabus said...

I have to think McHugh is going no where since he's the #3 tight end and gives versatility to any no-huddle packages.

Dale Lolley said...

McHugh won't be cut.
Davis won't be cut or down on game days. I agree that he shouldn't be lining up in a one-back offense, but he's an outstanding special teams player, the best of the running backs and one of the best on the team.

Patrick said...

I have to admit that I have questioned before, even last season, why Davis is on this team and what his role is. But if he is that good of a special teams player, then I'm all for it. Its not easy to see the contributions of a special teams player from your TV unless they deliver a major hit. Theres a lot more that goes on.

We don't need to to relive last year's special teams nightmares to see the reasoning or value of keeping an exceptional special teams player.

Alex said...

Davis has 2 tackles for the year, can he really be helping on special teams that much?

He better be blowing up wedges or something to make the roster on special teams play cause its not because he is tackling ball carriers.

Dale Lolley said...

He led the team with 17 special teams tackles last year.