Rapid Report Late Edition

Apparently the honeymoon couldn't stall the rapid report but memorial day could.  Every opportunity I get to beat the younger brothers in a game of basketball I take.  I hope everyone enjoyed the food and the relaxing.  I had a great honeymoon, Ben got cleared to practice with the team and the Lakers and Celtics are in the finals.  And well other stuff happened too but this is a sports blog right?  

So without further delay, here are the rapid reports.

Steelers DE Ziggy Hood when asked the difference between his rookie year and now: "It's like a sigh of relief. I pretty much have the playbook down to where I can just focus on perfecting my skills on the field."

Ziggy getting more time won't be a bad thing.  I still have no idea what we are going to do with the NT position, but at least the DE looks like it had good young depth.  That will come in handy late in the season and hopefully A. Smith won't get hurt again but if he does, Ziggy will be counted on to make sure there is minor drop off.

Steelers rookie RB Jonathan Dwyer made a good run around right end and kept on running, drawing a "awesome!" and a fist bump from coachMike Tomlin.

Nothing but good news from this kid every time you hear from him, hopefully the same thing will happen when he puts on pads.  Our running backs situation could end up being one of the best in the NFL.  If S. Logan can mimic Darren Sproles any and Dwyer continues to impress we'd have a very formidable backfield that will make an impact even when Ben gets back.  A balanced offense is a deadly one.

Steelers K Piotr Czech did all of the kickoffs today. Last week it was Adam Graessle handling those duties.

We'll see how long this last.

Four players were used on kickoff returns today: RB Stefan Logan, WR Jason Chery, WR Emmanuel Sanders, and WR Antonio Brown. Logan and Sanders looked the most comfortable and confident.

I say Stefan Logan will still win this job and will be worked out as a RB this year in the offense, we need some speed at the position.  Its the punt returning we really need to look at, Logan didn't do so well at that for some reason.

Steelers WR Hines Ward is still not not practicing thanks to an injured hamstring. The three WRs who lined up today were Mike Wallace, Antwaan Randle-El, and Arnaz Battle.

Just an injury update.

RB Rashard Mendenhall said he prefers to have a fullback be his lead blocker instead of a tight end. "A fullback in the backfield can see a lot of things the tight end can't," he said.

<Insert B.A. comment here>.  Hopefully BA is humble enough to bury this TE idea for the running game and really institute good formations and play callings for the run that includes a FB on occasion.  I still feel we may need someone else to do this.

Top pick Maurkice Pouncey on working at his natural position of C after being at G most of the offseason. "Center is more about making all the calls," he said. "I need to work on it, but I was making them." It wouldn't be a surprise if top-pick Maurkice Pouncey could take over at center, provided he can be comfortable with the line calls. Pouncey list at G, but starting C Justin Hartwig is 32 and has been injury prone. 

This is good news.  Whatever makes for the best line possible is what I am for.  It just makes me wonder if this may push Urbik into contention with the RG spot with Essex and Foster.  That is if it happens.

New special teams coach Al Everest when asked about improving a unit that gave up four touchdowns last season: "The bottom line is we'll be better. Effort and desire are non-negotiable issues."

No where to go but up from what I saw last year.

Look for QB Dennis Dixon to get some work with the first-team offense this week. Coach Mike Tomlin has promised that every QB would get a look with the first team, but so far only Byron Leftwich has.

I think once Dennis gets his shot we'll see him stay there.  I think though it will be because of his pocket presence and quick delivery.  I don't want him to win it because of his legs, I want the legs to be an added threat to his passing abilities.


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