Last season one of our outside linebackers , not named Harrison (gone now to the Bengals) was the recipient of many harsh words concerning the second straight season of underwhelming and subpar performance. Yes, we're talking about none other than LaMarr Woodley. An article last year by Pittsburgh Post Gazette writer Ron Cook showed and quoted several of Woodley's teammates claiming they were very unsatisfied with Woodley's performance and his physical shape. Quotes such as "He was awful. He tells us he works out, but we didn't see it. He wasn't in shape. That has to be a reason why he was always hurt."
Looking at those quotes would make any normal person become very angered and take an "I'll show you " type of attitude. But Woodley has taken a different approach. He has said it doesn't matter who said what and he isn't hearing it . "It doesn't bother me at all, " Woodley said Wednesday. "They're coming at the wrong person when they try coming at me. I don't listen to nothing. Playing football my whole life growing up, and you're in the spotlight, sometimes it comes with the good and the bad. You just have to know how to accept it. I'm one of those guys. I don't pay attention to much at all. I just go out there and do what I'm supposed to do. And these guys on the team know what I go out there and do each and every day."
You would think Woodley would use these statements as motivation coming into this season . Especially being that he will be counted on to produce as he has in the past (last 2 seasons excluded), but Woodley still disparages this thought. "No motivation at all," he said. "Somebody talking about me doesn't motivate me. I don't pay attention to it." Woodley doesn't even question who said it. Again, it doesn't matter. "I don't pay attention to that, I laugh at it," he said. "I make jokes about it. I told Maurkice Pouncey he said it. Every guy I see I say I heard you say that about me. I don't pay attention to that at all."
Let's hope the joking around is just a sign tat Woodley is ready to become the pass rushing force he has been known to be. Many hope that he is coming into this season in shape and healthy . Oh yes, he commented on that also . Woodley says he is healthy, recovered from the high ankle sprain that slowed him last year. "The ankle is great," he said. "A high ankle sprain just takes time to get off of it a little bit. After the season, I had time to rest on it and get off of it a little bit. During the season, you're fighting, trying to get back on the field and you kind of set yourself back and forth a little bit, but during the offseason I had time to let it heal."
With a healthy Woodley and the winner of the battle between Worilds and Jones , the Steelers outside linebacking crew will become a major force for the Black & Yellow this season and many more to come. Go Steelers!!!!!!!