Seriously, with all the Steeler draft picks over the years, you'd think Pittsburgh fans would have learned by now. But I suppose that some people need to be reminded again, so here it goes.
Remember the draft bust of 2000? He was a 6-5 WR that caught 8 passes, no touchdowns and looked lost doing it. Many Steeler fans said he was a huge draft bust. The next year he gained 1,008 yards receiving and turned into a superstar before he shot himself in the leg. His name is Plaxico Burress.
Remember the draft bust of 2003? He looked absolutely lost even in preseason games. Many Steeler fans said he was a huge draft bust. Now he's a 5 time Pro-Bowler and considered perhaps the best at his position. His name is Troy Polamalu.
Remember our draft bust of 2007? He was a skinny LB who couldn't even get on the practice field. He's your starting LB this year, having played so well in part-time duty last year he beat out a long-time Steeeler LB for the job this year before it even started. His name is Lawrence Timmons.
Now does any of this mean that Rashard Mendenhall will be great? No, because each player must make his own way. But when he's had the chance, he's run pretty darn well in preseason games. Does anyone remember the 15 carries for 79 yards last year against the Vikings? Or the 21 for 79 against Carolina? How about this last game where he averaged over 5 YPC against the Redskins? His problem last year was holding on to the ball. Have we heard about that problem again this year? Nope.
Simply put, Steeler fans, we should have learned by now to be patient with our #1 choices. Some fans have been quick to call 3 guys this decade draft busts and 3 times (provided Timmons doesn't regress this year) those fans have been proven wrong. Mendenhall has run well and shown potential in the few chances he's had. We should know better than to make rash judgments by now.