You're probably....well some of you (goddamn theres a lot of new faces around) wondering either "Who the hell are you?" or "Where the hell have you been?". Well, a number of things happened. I got too busy in real life (I apologise deeply for never finishing that BTSC Predict the Score Competition) and then I got sick, very sick. Im back, Im healthy again, and its time to contribute again. I missed you BTSC
The Steelers have long had a great tradition of finding some outstanding gems. Whether it be deep in the draft pool, and undrafted rookie, or a Free Agent who previously fell short of expectations with their previous team.
Steelers Front Office and Coaches alike have identified and developed the talents of players such as Ike Taylor, James Harrison, Willie Parker and many many more long before I began watching football, or even being born for that matter.
But no one is perfect. We all swing and miss at times, and the Steelers are no exception. Ricardo Colclough, Anthony Smith and Fred Gibson were all promising as rookies coming into the league, yet all floundered in a monster way with the Steelers, and all have since been on the unemployment line, and subsequently, their NFL lives have ended.
There are a few players on this team, still on our Training Camp rotations, who I feel it is simply time to cut them loose and give the hands on time to someone who can benefit from the added exposure and potentially be given a chance to shine where others have fumbled their chances.
Tony Hills came to Pittsburgh coming off an injury which saw his draft stock drop. Ever since being our 4th round pick in 2008.
Despite many Steelers being very high on Hills early on, he has shown absolutely nothing. He has failed to get on the field in two seasons, and routinely gets beaten and beaten badly in drills, at least, thats what I hear from more than a few sources of those who have travelled to Latrobe.
Reasons to dump him? He has shown no progression as far as I know. In terms of game-day Offensive Tackles, we have Flozell Adams, Max Starks, Trai Essex (who can cover Tackle and Guard) and Ramon Foster. Ramon Foster is another reason why Hills should be booted. Foster is a guy who came into the NFL undrafted with very little pedigree, one year LATER than Hills, and has already proved to be the goods as a very good project (Not to mention showing the ability to play both T and G).
Please. Let the Tony Hills experiment end. Cut him loose, and lets try our luck with our other guys.
I'll start that I hated this pick when we drafted him. He was a solid OL in College, but I felt he was never truly tested against power house defensive lineman in college. I've also seen footage of him from the Combine being absolutely monstered by the likes of B.J Raji (who is good yes, but so are the likes of Ngata, Rogers and Peko).
So far, Urbik has failed to even get close to true NFL gametime, again being beaten out by Ramon Foster for gameday rosters, not to mention we now have Maurkice Pouncy to command more attention from coaches. Unless new OL Coach Sean Kugler sees something more, cut him loose and let him try somewhere else.
If this guy is as soft as I've heard from Training Camp reports, then he is definitely not a fit for Steeler Football.
Other BTSC'ers may remember that I was one of the strongest campaigners for Sweed over the last few years. Here is where I draw a line on the sand. The recent injury to Sweed should be the last straw now. Yes he proved himself very capable of getting by Defensive Backs with his excellent burst and route running, but his hands were terrible. I tried my hardest to defend him, but after watching highlights, theres no excuse for a couple of them. Okay maybe most of them.
Based on all this, Sweed still has value. In a few years, providing Emmanuel Sanders plays out as planned (which I really think he will) there will still be an open third receiver spot when Hines retires, presuming we dont draft another 1st or 2nd round WR next year. Limas will still be only 26 next year when he returns.
But, I've had enough of this rollercoaster. Again we are hyped up, and again, we are disappointed. Which was a real shame. But its time to cut this horse loose.
No real dirt, of all the choices this is probably the one where I rely more on personal opinion rather than evidence of performance. I'm not sure entirely about Paxson's role in defensive drills, whether he is being trialled lining up at end, but hes listed and has played at Nose Tackle. Really? Hes sub 300 pound, that just doesnt cut it in the NFL. Top Nose Tackles are premium in this league and those tackles are all 330 pound with fries.
So hes too small for Tackle. We have Ziggy and Ra'Shon Harris for the long term hopefully as our heir apparent heirs to the DE thrones of Keisel and Smith, both of whom have plenty of years left in them. Unless he can make a solid transition over to DE, I dont see the point of trying to keep him as an NT, when its obviously he simply wont succeed at it based on his size and strength limitations.
Anyway, would love some input from you guys on these guys and any others you feel have run their time with the Steelers.
Cheers, hopefully I'll be back to my previous more active ways.