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Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Steelers trade for Brown

The Steelers on Wednesday made a deal with Arizona for offensive tackle Levi Brown for a conditional draft pick, less than 24 hours after Baltimore made a deal with Jacksonville for LT Eugene Monroe for two third-day draft picks.

The move would appear to spell the end of the Mike Adams at left tackle experiment for the Steelers.

Adams was not only abused in last week's 34-27 loss to Minnesota, he looked lost in doing so.

Brown isn't a great player, but he's a solid run blocker. He's been skewered in Arizona over the years, but a large part of that is because the Cardinals took him with the fifth pick in the first round of the 2007 draft, passing on Adrian Peterson.

Brown is at least as competent as Max Starks had proven to be over the previous five or six years. But the Steelers decided to allow Starks to leave as a free agent. He's since been signed and released by two different teams - a sign that perhaps his skills are declining.

Brown is due to earn $3.6 for the remainder of this season. Arizona will pay $2.4 million of that, with the Steelers responsible for $840,000.

@ Rookie wide receiver Markus Wheaton had surgery to repair the broken pinky on his right hand, an injury suffered in the loss to the Vikings.

Mike Tomlin won't comment on when Wheaton might be able to return, saying only that he would be further assessed when his incision healed.


Anonymous said...

Dear Mike,

Each training camp, rather than practicing, the team takes a day off to go bowling or the movies etc., helps build team spirit and camaraderie. During the bye week, gather than the team together and watch the movie "the secret". Watch it a second time, with each player taking notes and writing down what he wants to accomplish.

The receivers can imagine themselves catching the ball, lineman can imagine blocking, the running backs running through open lanes, the defense tackling, the corner backs intercepting the ball, etc. Then for a few minutes before each practice, have the players continue the visualization process. If the veterans can't believe what is happening and the team does have talent, then it's all in their minds. The mindset needs to be corrected.

The fact that Ben said they were the worst team in football will become a self fulfilling prophecy, it's what they currently believe, but the problem is that all the games are now in the past, so how do you get ready for the next game? The Brown trade is nice, but the whole team needs a change of mental scenery.

Fresh2Def said...

Panic move? I am content in aiming for the #1 pick. Anything less than a Super Bowl is a waste of time. All the Steelers do by winning is lose draft position. I know it sounds asinine, but, really. No way is this team in its current state going to win a Super Bowl. Time to blow this roster up and start over for the future. They are in major cap trouble next year right? They are going to have to blow this thing up anyways.

Anonymous Brian said...

Can't hurt this season if they didn't give up more than a late-round pick. Can always ditch him if / when the roster is blown up b/c of cap in the offseason. Or maybe he'll be OK.

Need a pass rusher just as bad, I think. Maybe Adams can play defense.

phil said...

gotta assume Whimper goes out with a himself.

Anonymous said...

Second Day?

Please tell me you mean third day of the draft...

adamg said...

Levi Brown is a solid player and still only 29 years old.

Anonymous said...

Levi Brown is an abortion in a uniform. Total panic move by a team in disarray. A .500 record is the best case scenario for these schmucks.

DaveN said...

I could see giving up a 6th or 7th rounder. Anything more, and this is a total panic move for a team that isn't going anywhere this year (and most likely next year) anyway. As you and others have said Dale, Adams has only played 4 games at LT, and the last one was against a future HOF'er. You might as well continue to let him and the rest of the line play to see how, or if they progress the rest of the year, and then evaluate what they've got going into the draft. I understand they're desperate (and certainly acting like it), but let's not be short-sighted here.

Anonymous said...

Dale, don't you think this is more of a stop gap/depth thing in terms of Adams? The guy hasn't even started a whole season. Do you really think they've given up on him?

adamg said...

The Steelers obviously have no confidence in either Whimper or Wallace. Foster's hurt to some unknown degree. That leaves only Beachum and he could be starting. Then who? Brown is an established NFL OT who should bring some stability to a young group.

Anonymous said...

This is about one thing, protect Ben. It's a panic move that Ben won't see another two years if our LT keeps letting guys take hits on our Q.B. Adams still has potential but for now, the brass had to do something to protect their $$$$

All in all, we'll see if it was a good move, I can't see it being a negative move.


datruth4life said...

Dale, I understand the Steelers needing to do something at tackle but LEVI freaking BROWN? Arizona's OL is just as bad as Pittsburgh's but you give up a pick and take on his remaining $3.6M salary this year and $6M salary next year? (though he can be cut or restructured). Rather than seeing if Gilbert, Beachum or Long on the practice squad can play LT, you trade for another player who's been a turnstile most of his career and a high draft pick bust? This move also causes Colbert to restructure another deal this year thus hurting next year's cap that much more. Myself, I wonder if Brown wouldn't be a more effective guard than tackle, but that is not why the Steelers made this trade. Seems like a move that is the result of Colbert hitting his head. Thoughts?

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Ridiculous move. Not an improvement in any sense at LT, doubtful at RT.

Unless he's moving to G(not happening) this won't end well.

Anonymous said...

If the Steelers believe that Bell is the answer to the running game, focus on the run game and let Ben be a game manager, throwing only when necessary or take advantage of 8 in the box. Run blocking, theoretically, is easier than pass blocking as the OL becomes the punisher rather than the punishee. Since Brown's strength is run blocking, maybe that was one of the thoughts with the acquisition.

Dale Lolley said...

I don't have a problem with this move. Brown is at the point where Max Starks was at three or four years ago. He's a veteran who's not great, but he's not bad.
He was trashed in Arizona because he was the fifth pick in the draft. Had he been a fifth-round pick, nobody would have complained about him.

The disturbing thing about Adams' play in London was not that he got beat by a great player. But that he looked like a deer in headlights after a while. They obviously didn't think he was going to recover right away.

They want to keep Ben Roethlisberger healthy, not get him killed. Brown will help that.
It's not a panic move. It's a reality move. They gave up a conditional pick, which means likely a seventh. That's nothing.

DD said...

I live in AZ. Believe me, they may have a parade as a result of the Steelers' stupidity here. Ridiculous move that should be shunned. The only way this could work is.....well, there isn't a way. There is 6 yrs of film on Brown and not a single season was even close to NFL level. FOrget fire omlin. Get rid of COlbert ASAP!!!!

Justin Sabol said...
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Emac2 said...

Excellent move by the Steelers!

I'm really impressed that they went out of character here and made a trade!

Really impressed.

Dale Lolley said...

Brown's numbers in every season mirror those of Max Starks, DD, and Starks was considered the savior here.

Arizona fans don't look at Brown as just a player. They only see that he was the 5th pick in the draft - two spots ahead of Adrian Peterson. That's going to taint how you look at him. What happened to their offensive line in 2012 when he didn't play? Worst in the league.

Joe Jones said...

Dale, I need your opinion on this or am i crazy?

I was wondering what you would think about the idea of firing Tomlin and replacing him with Ken Wisenhunt and Grimm at season's end ??

Im not saying Tomlin deserves to be fired, but i think it's best that we move in a different direction, as his time in Pittsburgh is up. Just because we havent had many head coaches since Noll, doesnt mean we have to force the tradition with Tomlin, who has lost a lot of favor due to lack of efficiency on either side of the ball.

Grimm improves the offensive line, Wiz goes back to running the offense, but as a head coach, and the Steelers make amends with two Pittsburgh coaching heroes.

Do you think Ben would like it?
Because like it or not, we're at the point where making Ben happy is the only way we're going to succeed over the next quarter decade.

Dale Lolley said...

Not going to happen, Joe

Fresh2Def said...

I didn't say blow everything up including the coaches.

emac2 said...

I think fans are forgetting how bad our line is.

We don't need any pro bowlers to improve.

Brown and Velasco fill spots we ideally would have filled prior to the season as normal depth. I can't imagine what we would have paid prior to the season for two players like that.

As bad as they have played I'm excited to have two "left tackles" to fight for the spot that have enough potential the other has to wonder if he'll ever see the field again if the other guy takes advantage of his opportunity.

I have to think the winner is probably the guy that trades a couple hours of bar time for a couple hours of gym Time.

Anonymous said...

"Brown is at least as competent as Max Starks had proven to be over the previous five or six years."

Dale: Post the sack numbers for each.

"Brown's numbers in every season mirror those of Max Starks ..."

Post the sack numbers Dale.

Journalists tend to back up assertions with facts. The exception is when the facts don't support the assertions.

Post the sack number Dale.

Nate said...

This is a no risk move for the Steelers. The Cards are picking up all but $840K of his salary for this season, and the Steelers aren't on the hook for any of the bonus money in the future.

If things work out, the Steelers will have to pay $6 million to keep him in 2014. If not they can cut him.

The only thing the Steelers lose is that conditional, late-round draft pick. However, they should get a number of compensatory picks, which will probably include an additional 3rd rounder.

Remember what happened when the Yankees were so eager to ship AJ Burnett out of town, that they decided to pay a large portion of his salary?

emac2 said...

3 things you hear from a clueless steelers fan.

1. Fire Todd Haley

2. Fire Mike Tomlin

3. Sign Max Starks

Quit cheerleading for stupid causes. I can instantly dismiss any poster that thinks they are adding anything of value to a discussion when they this is all they have to say.

I don't care why you think it either. It's obvious those guys aren't getting results and should be questioned. You don't do it mid season and you don't help the situation or the enjoyment of the fans by crying like babies and acting like you know what you're talking about.

Anonymous said...

Here Dale, I'll help you along ...

Now I'm no mathematician, but by my count over the past 5 years ...

Starks: 22 sacks in 62 starts

Brown: 36.5 sacks in 64 starts

Anonymous said...

Emac2 said:

"I'm excited to have two "left tackles" to fight for the spot"

1 and a half left tackles, corrected it for ya.... or is that why you had "left tackles" in quotes?

Anon 8:57

Based on the stats, we better run the ball more.

emac2 said...

Yes - that was the reason for the quotes.

I like that it is within the realm of possibility that one of these guys turns into a legit left tackle. They're both young and have the required tools which is more than you can say for our other options.

Anonymous said...

"He was trashed in Arizona because he was the fifth pick in the draft. Had he been a fifth-round pick, nobody would have complained about him."

Well, he WAS a first round pick, so it's a valid part of the equation.

If a 5th rounder was as bad as Brown as been, people would have complained plenty. Early in Starks' he was incredibly soft for a guy his size and was a poor run blocker. He was "just a third rounder" and there was no end to the complaining in Pittsburgh about him(deservedly so).

What round the guy was drafted in doesn't change the fact that Brown is, indeed, not a good player at present. If he were a 5th rounder, or a 7th rounder, he still wouldn't be a good player. He IS bad. Maybe not "worst OT in the league" bad, but he IS bad.

marc said...

obviously, levi brown is not that good. would anyone expect to get a good LT midseason for a 7th round draft pick? i can only assume the move was made to get more playing experience on the line and to provide greater depth/competition. it's relatively cheap, so no big deal.

adamg said...

Here was the OL reported at practice: (L to R): Beachum, Whimper, Velasco, DeCastro, Gilbert. You don't believe the OL is better if it's Brown, Beachum, Velasco, DeCastro and Gilbert?

Anonymous said...

Hard to believe that three-fifths of the line has turned over in four weeks. The Steelers OL is cursed. Like the curse of the Bambino. It all stems from the decision not to pay Alan Faneca.

Dale Lolley said...

I'd love to know who was reporting that, because they broke the rules that we have to follow to view practice.

Only permitted to report those things if a player confirms it. And several of the linemen weren't in the locker room after practice.

As for the Brown/Starks comparisons, remember A. who Brown has been blocking for and B. who Starks was. Roethlisberger has much more escapability than the crap Arizona has started over the past few years.

In addition, Brown is much better as a run blocker than Starks.

Numbers are numbers. I choose to trust what my eyes tell me, not what somebody on some web site posted.

Anonymous said...

OL came from a report from the PG.

marc said...

dale, do you have any thoughts on the current o-line coach? how do the players feel about him? thanks.

Dale Lolley said...

And the PG was using Pro Football Focus numbers.

As for Bicknell, seems like a good guy the times that I've talk to him. Hasn't been here long enough for me to develop an opinion about whether he's a good coach or not.

Anonymous said...

Cuz all PFF does is post numbers. Those guys don't, you know, grind tape or anything.

I swear I'm not trying to be a jerk here, as I'm genuinely curious to know, but how many Cardinals games have you clapped eyes on in Brown's time in AZ, Dale? The guys at PFF have very likely watched all of them. They aren't just grading on blurbs collected from the internet and vapor. The also aren't looking at amorphous junk like "Oh...he's a waist bender with Coke machine feet." They're looking at results on tape. Was the play a succes or not and did said player execute. That's it.

Levi Brown is a bad player. Spin it any way you like.