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Friday, September 02, 2011

Post-Carolina thoughts

The Steelers made it through their final preseason game without any major injuries, which was the best they could hope for.

They also got some nice contributions from players who had been out throughout most of the preseason, Emmanuel Sanders and Cortez Allen.

Sanders wasn’t an unknown commodity and the Steelers knew he would be a contributor in 2011. They just weren’t sure when after he had two offseason foot surgeries.

But Sanders had four catches for 60 yards, showing he’s ready to roll in the opener at Baltimore.

Allen, meanwhile, is a raw rookie who had missed the team’s first three preseason games. The fourth-round draft pick showed his athleticism, recording two tackles and defending three passes, including one that he batted into the air for teammate Will Allen to pick off.

There’s now no way the Steelers can risk trying to slip Allen onto the practice squad.

Fellow rookie Curtis Brown also showed some nice coverage skills, while last week’s star, Crezdon Butler had an up-and-down game, making a couple of nice plays, but also allowing a touchdown – though safety help over the top would have helped.

© Morty Ivy also made a strong case to stick on the roster, at least as a special teams player.

Ivy had a team-high nine tackles, a sack, a pass defense and a quarterback hit.

One would think that Stevenson Sylvester is safe, but could Ivy push Larry Foote off the roster?

That’s doubtful as well, but it shows you the kind of tough decisions the Steelers face in the next two days.

© It was about time for Jason Worilds to show up in a game and he finally did.

Yes, he was unblocked on his sack, but he showed nice burst throughout the game getting down the line of scrimmage.

I liked the sense of urgency he played with and would like to see more of it.

© Jonathan Dwyer, welcome to the team.

Again, like Worilds, I liked the sense of urgency I saw from Dwyer. Mike Tomlin likely noticed as well.

© David Johnson looks much quicker in the open field than previous No. 2 tight end Matt Spaeth, even if he doesn’t offer Spaeth’s height.

Then again, it would be difficult not to look quicker than Spaeth.

He’s a better blocker as well – again, something that isn’t all that difficult.

© Wesyle Saunders has wrapped up the No. 3 tight end position.

© I don’t see how the coaching staff can cut Corbin Bryant, but looking at the numbers at other positions, it will also be difficult to keep him.

That will also leave a tough decision between Chris Hoke and Steve McLendon.

McLendon still has some practice squad eligibility, which could mean he's headed there again.

Bryant, however, would get scooped up in a heartbeat.

© The Steelers look like a team that can't wait to roll into Baltimore in a little over a week.


PatRick said...

As I was sayin, Ike Redlands ain't showed me nothin.
And dat Cortez Allen I don't what u is talkin bout. He didn't even catch that tip. He should get cut for dat. Why u all wooryi. Bout 4th rd picks when we got all pro gay out there.

Anonymous said...

I bet one of the reasons Carolina wants to play us every year (besides the ownership connection) is so they can get a first hand view of our scrubs so they can be sure to get some of our best outcasts. They did it with Sonny Harris after all. I couldn't count all of the times Carolina's announcers said their team was waiting to pick up cast off's from other teams. We seem to have an abundance of talent, as usual and we will be letting a few good players go to other teams.
I am pimping for Donovan Warren hard. I hope we keep the guy even though it is a numbers game at corner. He always seems to be in the right position and after only having spent 6 months with the steelers, he seems to have a better feel for the defense than William "where did the receiver go" Gay. I say ditch Gay and keep Warren.

Mrs. Isaac Redman

Patrick said...

so glad that was the first comment.

one preseason game (the least meaningless preseason game at that) against the panthers and the guy who no one would claim is now a lock to make the team?

And above poster. You are a straight up little girl (think of the word that rhymes with witch, cause if you use bad words Dale blocks it, but not if you post completely worthless nonsense). You come onto the internet to talk nonsense, you get beat up as a kid? Seems like it.

Steve-O said...

The three veterans I see headed for the cut list are:

1. Larry Foote (he's not what he used to be which was solid but never special)

2. William Gay (he still gets beat consistently and has no upside left)

3. Chris Hoke (Absolutely love the guy but his time has come and gone)

I look forward to your final 53

Anonymous said...

Dale, there's no way they'll let McFadden start against the Ravens, is there!?

sleelcan said...

Guys I would LOVE to see get cut: 1. Battle(They have plenty of guys to do his role on special teams, and need his roster for 7dl). 2.Gilmore(Johnson proving capable as a#2, and Saunders is showing too much raw ability to cut.) 3.Hoke(Still need more youth on the DL McClendon and Bryant provide it) 4.Foote.(Stevenson and Ivy prvide quality depth, and $$$ saved).5 Gay, very average and plenty of promising youth behind him. (Somehow I doubt all thid happens).

adamg said...

Wesley Saunders finally showed up. He caught what was thrown to him including that nice TD. I noticed him blocking with a sense of purpose as well.

Larry Foote stays. Tomlin won't go into the season with all inexperienced back ups at LB.

If one of the young CBs could also play safety, I'd say Will Allen would be cut. I think Gay will be caught in the numbers game.

The offense could be really good. They have a bunch of weapons, 2 big RBs, 5 quality WRs, Miller at TE.

The starters on D are getting old, but there are some good-looking young players on the roster now, too.

Anonymous said...

they usually keep 9 DBs right? they should just carry 1 backup safety

Donovan Warren
Curtis Brown
Crezdon Butler
Cortez Allen

then keep 2 out of McFadden, Mundy or Gay

cut Gay unless u dont trust McFaddens health

Anonymous said...

^ oops forgot Will Allen and K lewis. Might have to keep 10 dbs

Warren or Lewis can play safety in a pinch

James said...

Steve-O, etc. I completely agree with everyone on your cuts. The Steelers have to continue to transition to keeping younger players, and this year we could do that without losing to much. I am also for keeping Donovan Warren over Will Allen, b/c the kid can play. Alas, Tomlin trusts his veterans, and I trust him so we are probably stuck with Gay, Allen, Hoke, and Foote for another year. At least the steeler problems are good ones to have.

marc said...

couldn't watch the game, but in the highlights i noticed how well our receivers were blocking downfield. it's amazing how important that is and how poor some teams can be at it.

also, no reason to keep gay, foote, or hoke. steve-o is dead on.

they should've released gay last season actually, but i get the coach's paranoia regarding vets and rookies. time to give the young guys room to grow though.

i'm excited for this season. the team has a good mix of vets and young guys. they are a deep, fast and talented team. should be fun.

i will be interested to see how the ravens attack the steeler's D. if they do the same ol' double tight end formations and dump offs to rice i just don't see the ravens scoring too much.

Vaflyer said...

My thoughts:

QB is only about what you do with Dixon and Lefty? Can you move Dixon? Can you cut then resign Lefty later?

RB - Dwyer earned it. Moore should worry about next year as Batch can play that role.

WR - To keep Battle or not? That is the question. For

TE - Does anyone really think Gilmore, a veteran of 10 years, is going to be gone week 1 or week 2 or picked up on waivers? I keep Saunders.

OL - Hills, Foster, C. Scott, and K. Williams all stink, but we must get 2 out of them. I look to the waiver wire and keep Hills and Foster...for now.

Dline - Hoke, the vet or McLendon, the youth. I think we keep Hoke one more year, but personally, I wish we would keep McLendon.

LB - Foote stays this year. Carter is gone if someone is waived we like better. I think we only keep 8. Ivy and Harvey go PS. Next year this 2 deep needs upgraded. Farrior is getting old and Foote needs upgraded.

CB - Personally I keep all the CBs we can. We might need to in order to have enough guys who don't have pulled hammies. In addition, with this pass happy world we live in, I think it is almost required.

S - C-Smith hasn't done enough to take Allen's or Mundy's spot.

P - I keep Sep. Yeah the averages on distance are about the same, but I think Hang Time is different.

adamg said...

I won't be surprised if the Steelers work out a deal with Leftwich where they release him injured, then re-sign him when he's healthy enough to play. I seem to recall they've already done this with Batch.

I think they keep Sepulveda. I think if they were that happy with Kapinos, who was already signed for this season, they would have let Sep walk as a UFA instead of re-signing him. And, you have to be careful not to overrate kicking distance in the summer due to the warm weather when all kicks carry well.

Anonymous said...

There's going to be at least 1 veteran cut, it happens every year. And don't get me wrong I'm all for keeping young talent, but let's not get too caught up in the "potential" of guys who are playing against other career backups.

datruth4life said...

DaTruth's final 53:

3 QBs - Ben, Batch, Dixon

4 RBs - Mendy, Redman, Memo, Dwyer

3 TEs - Heath, D. Johnson, W. Saunders

5 WRs - Ward, Fast money (M. Wallace), All About da money (A. Brown), Easy Money (E. Saunders, Jerricho Cotchery

9 OLs - J. Scott, Big Juicy, Pouncey, Bronco Legursky, W. Colon, M. Gilbert, T. Essex, R. Foster, T. Hills

6 DL - A. Smith, Keisel, Big Snack, Z. Hood, Cam Heyward, S. McClendon

9 LBs - Deebo, Farrior, Timmons, Woodley, Worilds, Foote, Sly Sylvester, C. Carter, M. Ivy

11 DBs - Ike, BMac, W. Gay (praying 4 D. Warren instead of Gay but ... ), K. Lewis, C. Butler, C. Brown, C. Allen, Troy P., Clark, W. Allen, R. Mundy

3 STs - Suisham, Sepulvada, G. Warren

My final 53rd spot between DE Corbin Bryant, WR A. Battles and LB Morty Ivy goes to Morty Ivy because of special teams. Everyone says Battles is such a great special teams player but I never see him make any plays on teams and he didn't catch a pass this past year. With these 5 WRs and TE's like Miller and Saunders, he ain't catching any passes this year as well.


Kevin said...

da truth - love that lineup, well done

except I would replace Gay with Donovan Warren. The Steelers did start Warren at CB in the 2nd or 3rd preseason game. I think they like him

no reason in keeping 10 OL when the 10th guy likely sucks, unless they pick up a vet who has been released

adamg said...

Hokie might still sneak in there, but think you've pretty much nailed the roster, datruth. Good job.

datruth4life said...

All, I would GLADLY repolace W. Gay with Donovan Warren. I do not know if the coaching staff would, but I would do it in a heartbeat.

adamg said...

Liked what I've seen of Warren, but the coaches might think twice about going into the regular season with so many young CBs. Warren is probably a better candidate for the PS.

Patrick said...

One of these DB's won't make it: Gay, C. Allen, C. Butler, or Lewis.

Its most likely between Allen or Butler. Maybe whoever gets cut makes the PS but I don't see all of them making the final 53.

Anonymous said...

^ Lewis is 100% making the team

you are an idiot Patty

Vaflyer said...

I like what you did DaTruth. The battles for spots are pretty simple to identify.

QB - What you do with Lefty.

WR - Do we keep Battle.

TE - Vet or youth

NT - Vet or youth

LB - 8 or 9?

CB - Like Warren enough to keep him?

My prediction below is what I think the TEAM will do. If it was me, I would do this:

QB: Ben, Batch
RB: Mendy, Moore, Red, Dwyer
TE: Miller, Saunders, Johnson
WR: Ward, Wallace, Brown, Sanders, and Cotchery
OL: Scott, Kemo, Pounce, Leg, Colon, Hills, Foster, Gilbert, Essex
DL: Smith, Keis, Hay, Hood, Hampton, and McLendon
LB: Harrison, Farrior, Timmons, Woodley, Foote, Sly, World, Carter (although I would watch waivers)
S: Troy, Clark, Allen, Mundy
CB: Ike, McFadden, Lewis, Butler, Allen, Brown, Warren, and Gay.

One of Battle or Ivy...? Both are special teamers only, so I would have to make punt coverage the priority, do a depth chart, and chose the one that made the most sense. Kickoff coverage is senseless to worry about.

Specials: Shuis, Warren, Sep

Patty said...

One of these players isn't making the team, you decide:

Big Ben, Mendenhall, Redman, Polamalu, Woodley

Patrick said...

if Lewis is a lock, then Gay must be gone if you guys want all the young DB's making it.

Lewis barely saw the field last year. And for whatever reason the staff won't cut Gay. So you would have to lose one of the young guys/blog superstars which would cause mayhem much like many of you last year with Thad Gibson.

Anonymous said...

We didn't sign Gay to cut him in favor of rookies who have played less than 2 preseason games, everyone needs to get it through their heads that Gay is our #3 CB, end of story. We don't cut very many vets, Steelers show loyalty to their guys...And the thing with Warren is that he really only stuck out to me because he is aggressive and a sound tackler. I look for him to be Practice Squad this year. Cortez Allen might have stole the roster spot from Warren, unless Warren can play safety too, I don't know if he does though?..

Kevin said...

aren't Carter and Ivy both inside LBers? or can one of them play outside?

I dont see them keeping 9 LBers with 6 of them being ILBers. Although Timmons could always play OLB in a pinch

Kevin said...

^ nevermind, i now realize Carter is an OLB

i didnt notice him that much this preseason

any thoughts on him?

DD said...

Ivy released. This team's allegiance to old ass players like Foote is a detriment. Ivy has waaay more upside and will be snatched up by end of the day (if that is allowed). Horrible move.

Eric T said...

DD: We have Timmons and Sylvester ahead of Ivy at his position. Keeping a vet backup is not hurting our long term future, especially in a year where there was no mini camp and an abbreviated training camp. Vet knowledge will be worth more this year with the lack of reps to go around.

Steve-O said...

Ivy is a decent journeyman player but there isn't much difference between Ivy and Foote so Foote gets the nod with his experience... for now.

On th bubble:

Will Allen
Ramon Foster
Jeremy Kapinos
Jonathan Scott