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Thoughts on the roster with UDFA's and draft picks.

QB: Big Ben, Gradkowski and Landry. Pretty cut and dry, we have three. If Landry falls on his face or there is an injury Homestead is right down the street. With JP Wilson for camp we should be fine.

RB: Redman, Dwyer, Batch, Bell, LSH, McNeal. I like the top trio,(Bell/Redman/Dwyer) they have good well-rounded skills and all can break tackles. We need two, could carry all three if they fill other roles. The third-down back isn't an issue with the pass catching and blocking of those three, so really you are looking at ST to find your third and possibly fourth. I bet Redman and Dwyer would play ST, so I can only see us keeping more than those three if LSH wins for kick returns and ST. I don't give much chance at all to Batch or McNeal at this point.

FB: Will Johnson DJ backs him up from TE.

WR: Brown, Sanders, Cotchery, Wheaton, Burress, Brown, Woods, Dunn, etc. Lots of names here, and more I'm not even bothering to list. Brown, Sanders, Cotchery and Wheaton are all pretty much locks. Brown has size and return ability, which has value, he or Woods could make Cotchery expendable, but I don't think they'll drop Cotchery, he's our only WR with good experience. Dunn fighting for a roster spot as a returner should be interesting. He doesn't give any value at all as a WR.

TE: Miller, Paulson, Spaeth, Johnson, McCoy, Pianalto. Minus Miller to start I expect we plan to stand pat with Spaeth, Paulson and DJ. Otherwise they'd be trying to pick up someone (still could of course).

OL: Adams and Gilbert at Tackle, Decastro and Foster at Guard, Pouncey at Center is status Quo, and it would be nice to actually see that line on the field. Beachum is our only returning depth with much experience, Malecki got a tiny bit. I can't see us rolling into the season with 8 lineman from the 9 we have currently, so the UDFA's will have a good chance to make the squad. Golic JR has versatility and can play Tackle so he will get a shot, I love the hometown boy Farrell, but he's raw. Hubbard and Embernate are both decorated but need weightroom work, don't know if either could go this season. I. Wade could be a steal, he comes from good coaching and a line of NFL centers at his school, and Madsen had success in a ZBS at WVU. This position is the most likely to add a veteran in FA still, we'll see what happens. I really doubt any of the UFDA's are ready to go this year at any decent level.

DE: Hood, Heyward, Keisel is a solid three. N. Williams is not going to be a threat to A. Woods this season, and the UDFA's aren't the most impressive haul. Arnfelt was a leader and good character kid, but he probably isn't NFL material. Hagans switched schools to play DL, maybe he'll improve with coaching? In John Mitchell's presser about N. Williams he mantioned that Ziggy had some technique issues to solve, maybe some bad habits have stunted his growth (hope hope), and maybe this is the year Heyward puts it together with that motor and size. improvement will have to come from within here.

NT: McClendon, is the starter, Ta'Amu is still around and someone named Fangupo is on the roster. UDFA's Hunter and White could compete for depth here, I like White.

OLB: Woodley, Worilds, Jones, Robinson, Carter at OLB. The preseason monster Robinson and C. Carter will have a fight to make this squad. That should be fun to watch, I don't expect anything out of UDFA Alan Baxter, unless they meant him to transition to ILB.

ILB: Timmons and Foote are here, Spence is probably not coming back (when Butler says it will be a miracle for him to play at all again, not great odds.) Sylvester will hopefully bounce back. V. Williams isn't the guy you want on the field right now, but he is smart and should be a ST guy, so he has a good chance to make it. Brian Rolle is a futures contract, and while he did start in Philly (injuries) they cut him for poor ST play. Not a good sign. M. McFadden and Kion Lewis are also on the roster. Depth is a huge issue here, without much cap to sign players (and in e season if there is injury) we might have to rely on some unproven men to step up.

CB: Taylor, Allen Gay are the initial top three, we could see them work like Taylor Gay and Lewis did two years ago, or Allen could win the #2 job outright. I'm betting on the first. After them you have C. Brown in his ever important third season, ST demon Van Dyke and last years pleasant surprise Victorian. Should be an interesting fight. Lake has a project in Hawthorne, so I don't expect a roster spot for him this season.

S: Clark and Troy come back for their ninth season together, and that is pretty impressive. Their reserves are gone, and there's some new blood in the water. R. Golden is a bit of a favorite here, paired with S. Thomas we have potentially good depth, although little experience. Their only real competition is DCS, but his athleticism hasn't translated yet, slim chance that light suddenly comes on.

ST: Butler Punts, Suisham kicks, and the fight of the century for LS duties: The reigning heavy-weight champ Greg Warren vs the Hawaii kid Luke Ingram. Get your training camp seats early, that's going to be a good one.

Roster prognostication:

QB: Roethlisburger, Gradkowski, Landry

RB: Bell, Redman, Dwyer, LSH

FB: W. Johnson

WR: Brown, Sanders, Cotchery, Wheaton, Brown

TE: Spaeth, Paulson, Johnson (Miller takes someone's spot)

OL: Gilbert, Decastro, Pouncey, Foster, Adams. Beachum, Malecki, Golic/FA

DE: Keisel, Hood, Heyward, Woods

NT: McClendon, White, Ta'Amu

OLB: Woodley, Worilds, Jones, Robinson

ILB: Timmons, Foote, Sylvester, Williams

CB: Taylor, Gay, Allen, Brown, Victorian, Van Dyke

S: Clark, Polomalu, Golden, Thomas

ST: Warren, Suisham, Butler

Return specialist: Reggie Dunn (he may be listed at WR, but you won't see him running routes)

Offense: 24

Defense: 25

ST: 4

Look for OL, and ILB help to be sought out. Don't know if we can grab anyone, but those positions aren't in great shape depth-wise. People want Max at veteran minimum, but my B-i-L sees him at UPMC and he says Max has been smart with his money and might not be willing to risk anymore nerve-related injuries for veteran minimum. I can understand that, but dang I'd love to know he was available.

This team is a really good one with no injuries, with the wrong injuries it could be Keystone Cops out there.

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