IX-Here comes a little controversy from former Steeler Larry Foote. In a recent Q&A with the Detroit Free Press, he said that the Lions training camp is more physical than the camps he participated in when he was with the Steelers. While Foote seems to be trying hard to make positive statements about the Lions, he also calls the team "dysfunctional" and also claims that the Lions' new defensive coordinator, Gunther Cunningham, is "missing a couple screws." It seems to me that Foote has been more talkative this offseason than he was the entire time he was with the Steelers. Thanks to longtime contributor PixburghArn for the tip on this article.
X-If you believe that 2nd year Steelers receiver Limas Sweed is going to make a big impact with the Steelers this season, you may want to read this glowing report from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. On second thought, you might not want to read it, since it has already raised my expectations so high for the former Texas Longhorn standout that it will be impossible for him to live up to the hype in my mind. From this article and a few other reports on training camp it really sounds like Limas Sweed is in command of the battle for the Steelers number three wide-out.
XIII-Some hack blogger was interviewed for the Good Point Blog about the Steelers, the Wildcat, and Dick LeBeau. The hack thinks that part of the Steelers success over the years can be attributed to their ability to think outside the box and not follow the trends of the NFL. According to Jim Wexell's twitter account their is a strong push for Dick LeBeau to get into the hall of fame, and Wexell says he will be following up with more details about it over at the Steel City Insider. Wexell also said Darnell Stapelton is going in for MRI's and when questioned about whether he could miss the entire season, he responded "I don't know."
XIV-Speaking of Behind the Steel Curtain's favorite beat writer Jim Wexell; you should read his free article from Steel City Insider about his initial training camp observations. In his article Wexell points out that Rashard Mendenhall has failed to consistently show he can hit holes and run up the middle the way that he was projected to do coming out of college, but he did show some signs of it later on yesterday. He also brings up an interesting comparison of how the Steelers front office and coaching staff have disagreed on their evaluation of players on the offensive line in recent years, including Willie Colon and Max Starks.
XL-For those of you who are completely convinced that Willie Parker will be packing his bags in 2010 you might want to read the Post Gazette's argument that Parker has been one of the top backs in the NFL over the last four seasons. For those of you who want some statistics to back up why Willie Parker is one of the best backs in Steeler history take a look at this paragraph:
"His 791 yards rushing [last season] gave him 4,803 in his four seasons as a starter, making him one of only a handful of runners to reach such a level. Parker topped 1,200 yards in each of the seasons before last, something no other Steeler has ever done. He is third on the Steelers' career rushing list with 4,989 yards, has the team record with 223 yards in a game and also holds No. 3 with 213. His three 1,000-yard seasons rank No. 3, 6 and 8 in club history.
XLIII-Steelergurl has spent the weekend at training camp and provided another re-cap of how the camp went. One thing that she brought up that I meant to share yesterday was Tomlin was again wearing a black cap, black shirt, and black pants during the practice to show his commitment to his players and prove that he is feeling the burden of the outside heat as much as the players are.