Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Week 2 OTAs begin

As promised, I watched Rashard Mendenhall a little more closely today as the Steelers began their second week of OTAs.

Mendenhall looked good on the inside running plays and made an excellent cut on one play in particular, doing a nice jump stop and change of direction.

He looks like he's running with more confidence.

© I hadn't noticed it before, but former Canadian Football League star Stefan Logan was working as a wide receiver.

The 5-6 Logan, dubbed "Half-Pint" by his teammates, was an explosive running back in the CFL, but probably wouldn't have the size to contribute at that position in the NFL.

He'll be fighting a numbers game no matter where he lines up, but playing wide receiver would give him a better chance of making this team.

© The Steelers did some work out of a 4-3 defense at times today.

That should get the internet posters going.

© I almost forgot this one, but it was interesting.

Former center Jeff Hartings was in the building today and I barely recognized him. Hartings looks like he's down to about 220 pounds.

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Keisel-Hampton/Hoke-Smith-Woodley
Harrison - Farrior - Timmons


??

ABeJota88 said...

I´ve been reading this blog for a while since i first found it last year.

Just wanted to congratulate you for your job.

I am from Montevideo, Uruguay, down in south america, and i am a huge steelers fan.

Go steelers and keep on with the good job!

Jim said...

you cant tell us 4-3 and then not tell who was playing where....

Anonymous said...

Dale,

I've often wondered what it is teams look for during OTA's. You can't tell how linemen look or how well receivers handle contact until pads are put on during training camp. Are coaches looking for specific things? For instance, are they looking at how well the receivers can run routes?

Dale Lolley said...

It was all backup guys since a number of the starters weren't there. For all I know, it could have been a look team, but it was interesting since the two tackles were the two kids they drafted this year.
I'm sure the coaches are looking for crisp routes. They have a better idea of what a play is supposed to look like when they see it on film than I do standing there watching.
Mostly, they're going over plays and teaching the defensive scheme.

Dr Obvious said...

Dale: keep up the good work. This is great info that I haven't seen anywhere else.

Anonymous said...

Is it me or did we once have an oline filled with 3 pro bowl players: hartings, faneca and marvel but now we have Colon, kemo and hartwig.

Talk about a downgrade.

stlrnews said...

Dale - the 220 pounds for Hartings has to be a mistake, no? Did you mean 320?

I also wonder - is Logan lining up as a RB in a spread or really as a WR?

Thanks Dale.

Anonymous said...

Here he is, lost 50 pounds:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WeTwjFg4Ty4

Anonymous said...

stlrnews Hartings is our retired Center, that is why he is dropping weight.

I think you are getting him confused with our current center Hartwig, who I am sure weights alot more than 220.

Dale Lolley said...

No, Logan was split wide and working with wideouts.

Ben said...

Dale, are you as high on Mundy as the Trib seems to be? Can anyone really tell that much about a player from his OTA workouts?

Believe me, I'm rooting for the kid. It'd be great to have some young legs at safety. What do you think, Dale?

Thomas said...

ben I would think they are also going off of last season (training camp) and preseason games.

Ben said...

Thomas, thanks, but the article stresses that his work this off-season is what is impressing the coaches:

"But one thing that won't hurt Mundy is the favorable impression he has been making during the practices that resumed Tuesday at the team's South Side facility."

And they even go on to note that he did not have much of a chance to make an impression last pre-season:

"Mundy got little playing time during his first preseason. The 6-foot-1, 215-pounder logged fewer than 10 plays before sustaining a high ankle sprain in the Steelers' 2008 preseason opener against the Eagles."

So I'm just wondering if Dale has seen anything in the guy, and how seriously we can take the Trib's puff-piece.

Viz-Burgh said...

Two things about Mundy:

1.) While he got hurt early in the preseason, he did re-sign with the Steelers in early Nov. & spent the rest of the season on the practice squad. So the coaches have been seeing him for longer than a just TC & one preseason game.

2.) The reason he's "impressing" in OTAs is because he's running with the first team & holding his own. He and Ty Carter (IIRC) are running first team with Polamalu & Ryan Clark not in attendance. So unlike other rooks who are going against undrafted FAs Mundy is going against Ben, Tone, Heath Miller, Willie Parker, etc. and is doing pretty well.

adamg said...

I guess it was the year after Hartings retired he was on the Tunch and Wolf TV show. Tunch and Wolf starting talking about how much weight Hartings had lost and Jeff said he had trouble keeping weight on and was eating all the time when he played. He said one of the best things about retirement was he didn't have to eat all the time to keep his playing weight and that he was enjoying eating what he wanted when
he wanted.

Blount Trauma said...

Hey Dale,

Speaking of back-up safeties, is Ryan Clark going to play at Denver this year, or is he planning on staying home that week?

Dale Lolley said...

The doctors have told Clark it wouldn't be a good idea. We'll see. I wouldn't expect it. He could die, after all.

As for Mundy, he's a very bright kid. In fact, his teammates call him Wunderlic because he aced it. Add to that the fact that he's probably their most physically imposing safety. He reminds me of a bigger version of Ryan Clark.

Anonymous said...

so if everything goes well....Mundy starts against the broncos!!

I'm can't wait to watch him in preseason

Anonymous said...

If Mundy and Keenan Lewis both pan out that would give us a really big intimidating secondary, especially when you consider we have Troy and 6'1 Ike back there.

Not that Ryan Clark isn't already intimidating alot of people. I don't think Willis Macghee will go out for another pass against the Steelers the rest of his career without imagining Clark is coming to destroy him.

drinkyourmilkshake said...

Dale,

Not trying to contradict you but you are the first person I have seen that has reported that Clark will risk major health repercussions from playing in Denver, according an article in the NY Times before the Super Bowl, this was posted:

"I just (try to) live," Clark said. "They said I should be fine and I am praying that will be so. The only question is will I ever play in Denver again, and because they are on our schedule next year, we do have to travel out there.

"(Doctors) said I should be fine - their comforting words were, 'Well, the only organs it will affect, we already took out.'"

It would be interesting if you could get a little more scoop on his status for that game.

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/2009/01/27/2009-01-27_after_health_scare_ryan_clark_is_steeler.html#ixzz0Gob32WEC&A

datruth4life said...

Dale,

Based on what you've seen so far in shorts, what rookies do you think will make the active roster and who do you think will be on the practice squad?

Have read that Sweed's hands are still a little inconsistent. Do you think he'll win that 3rd WR spot ahead of McDonald and B. Williams?

Also, what are your thoughts on TE A. Johnson and the Tank? Any chance "Half-pint" S. Logan will win a spot as a returner?

Dale Lolley said...

Different doctors say different things.

It's way too early to judge rookies. Hell, most of them don't even know where to line up correctly on every play.

Haven't seen much from Johnson or Summers. Again, they're doing things right now that don't play much into their games. I want to see them both blocking and - in Summers' case - breaking tackles.

As for Logan, he's up against a numbers game.

adamg said...

Not to take anything from Ryan Mundy because a 29 on the Wonderlic is a good score, but to "ace" the test would be answering all 50 questions correctly within the allotted 12 minutes as Pat McNally did.

datruth4life said...

Dale,

What's this about P D. Sepulvada having another arthroscopic surgery on his right leg this past month after having the ACL in that same plant leg repaired twice? Not good news.

Are we talking about damaged goods here for our prized punter?

B said...

Most lineman usually lose weight after retiring, well...those that want to stay alive. Look at Mark Schlereth, he was a complete doughboy in the league and now he looks like a movie star.

Also, keep up the great work Dale. During these slow offseason times its good to have the views of an insider.

Dale Lolley said...

I understand that many linemen try to lose the weight, but I'm telling you, Hartings is the extreme. You wouldn't even know he ever played the game.