Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Hello again

After a two-day hiatus from the blogging world, I'm back. Sorry not to have the daily/multi-daily update you've become so used to, but sometimes things just can't be avoided. Only so many hours in a day.

The biggest news out of Latrobe right now is Darnell Stapleton's balky knee. The sore knee kept him out of practice on Monday and Tuesday morning and he was sent for an MRI.

But Stapleton was at lunch today with no brace on the knee, so that's probably a good sign.

I don't think it will matter, however, at the right guard position. As I said this spring, I think Stapleton's top competition at that spot will come from veteran Trai Essex, not rookie Kraig Urbik.

And, just a few days into camp, it's looking more and more likely that Essex will be the Steelers starting right guard this season.

If you're looking for more proof here, know that Jason Capizzi is spending a decent amount of time working at guard as well as tackle.

Capizzi has made some big improvements and even though at 6-9, he'd be the tallest guard in history, the team is beginning to look for that game day replacement for Essex - their Jack of all trades.

23 comments:

keevin said...

nice, i think Essex will quietly be a very nice upgrade over Stapleton

kelly said...

So who's getting the majority of the first team snaps at center now? Legursky or Shipley? Anyone else taking a shot? Getting pretty thin there.

SKINLEY said...

Dale...you're back! I was beginning to think you got swallowed up somewhere in Latrobe!

Anonymous said...

Dale,
Any word on deals with Keisel or Reed? I know team is saying probably no more but then I saw some reports saying both guys were in talks?

Anonymous said...

Go Capizzi IUP!!!

Anonymous said...

Wexell says Stapleton "may" be out for the season pending MRI.

Dale Lolley said...

We'll see with Stapleton. IMO, if they thought he'd be out for the season, he wouldn't be walking around up here without a brace on the knee or crutches.

Legursky is next in line at center. A chance for the kid to show something. I've watched him a little bit and he's not bad.

Anonymous said...

I think Wexell just basically said when Stapleton was asked if it was season ending, he answered he didn't know. Not sure he said he thought he was out.

No brace sounds like a good sign? But, I have no idea about those things.

Dale..any word on new contracts?

Viz-Burgh said...

I wasn't sure if Capizzi was being moved around just because they do that with so many of the young guys or if they were actually trying to prep him to be the gameday swing guy. I've been pulling for Capizzi since his first camp & hope this is his year to stay healthy & show what he's got.

Kolby said...

Dale,

I read on TIOPS that Stefan Logan is playing wide receiver not running back

how has he looked? Major longshot to make the team?

Thanks, keep up the great work

Anonymous said...

If capizzi ever gets a solid spot on this roster, i am getting his jersey...IUP represent

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the updates, Dale. You usually have an excellent blog, but it gets even better at camp time it seems.

Vaflyer said...

There is a lot to play out yet on this line. A LOT of young guys yet who they will need to decide about. Legursky, Shipley, Foster, Hills, Capizzi, Stapleton, and Urbik. If Essex does in fact win the job at RG, then each of these guys listed above are fighting for a job. We are still weakest at tackle, but if Stapleton doesn't end up on the DL, then he is probably the C, RG, LG replacement on game days. You then carry a tackle swing guy.

I feel like I am missing a lineman somewhere in the mix, but can't think of him right off hand.

Viz-Burgh said...

Vaflyer, are you thinking of Jeremy Parquet who dressed for a few games last year as the backup OG?

Dale Lolley said...

Nothing new at this point on contracts.

I wrote this spring on this blog about Logan playing some wide receiver. That's nothing new. They're looking at him as a wingback type.

adamg said...

Of the OL mentioned above, I see Legursky on the PS. Unless Capizzi or Essex can play center, Stapleton will dress on game days. That would leave Capizzi to back up at T with Essex also able to play there and Stapleton for G/C duty. Urbik will make the 53 man roster, but will spend the year inactive on game days.
Foster could well bump Hills and Shipley is on the 53/PS bubble.

Vaflyer said...

Viz-Burgh: No one in particular that I was thinking of. I did the list from memory and felt like I left someone who was in camp off the list who had a shot at making the team.

datruth4life said...

Dale,

I think the team will keep 9 OL this year and here they are: Starks, Kemo, Hartwig, Essex, Colon, Stapleton, Urbig, Capizzi, and Foster.

If they keep 10, then I think that leaves Hills, Legursky, and Shipley fighting for that final spot. Thoughts?

Tim said...

Dale,

This is from cbssports:

"Steelers OLB Bruce Davis looks much more aggressive in this his second season. Davis was a pass rushing beast in college and if he finally has this defense understood, it's another weapon in the arsenal."

This seems contrary to every other report I've seen, including yours, which seem to question if he'll even make the team, let alone become a "weapon." Are they way off? Or is there hope?

Vaflyer said...

Datruth4life:

I tend to agree with your prediction of 9. I am waiting to see what happens with Stapleton. If Stapleton is done for the year, then Shipley or Legursky gets the spot. Capizzi, Hills, and Foster all are fighting for 2 spots. If Capizzi shows he can play guard as well, he will have the inside track.

Dale Lolley said...

I have to wait and see with Stapleton before I guess on what happens with the other spots. That could open up a guard/center position.
I don't know who wrote the CBS snippet about Davis. From what I've seen, they're way off. Doesn't mean he won't get another year. We don't have a track record on Tomlin letting high draft picks go so I don't know which way he'd go there. But he seems like the kind that's willing to admit a mistake.

Anonymous said...

Dale, are you and Wexell the same person? You both write the same thing.

Dale Lolley said...

Last time I checked, no.