Mike Tomlin, Dick Lebeau, Bruce Arians, Keither Butler, Sean Kugler, all names that we are familiar with that should be given credit for the success of the Steelers not only in 2010 but recent years past as well. (For Kugler this is his first year with the Steelers). The person we should be thanking as well and acknowledging as an integral part of the Steelers success is Kevin Colbert. As the Director of Football Operations for the Steelers, Colbert is instrumental in any and all personnel moves for the team. If there’s a draft pick to be made, or a Free Agent to be aquired, he is involved in the process.
We as fans are somewhat spoiled by following such a great organization. One that prides itself on building through the draft, staying true to their principles, and above all else finding players that are high character. In a day and age when the “win now” and “buy me a championship” mindset runs rampant, the Steelers always stay mindful of their business process and values. 6 Super Bowl wins, and the opportunity for a 7th tells us they are doing a pretty darn good job.
1st Round Draft Picks under Colbert:
2010 Maurkice Pouncey C Florida
2009 Evander (Ziggy) Hood DE Missouri
2008 Rashard Mendenhall RB Illinois
2007 Lawrence Timmons LB Florida State
2006 Santonio Holmes WR Ohio State
2005 Heath Miller TE Virginia
2004 Ben Roethlisberger QB Miami (OH)
2003 Troy Polomalu S USC
2002 Kendall Simmons OL Auburn
2001 Casey Hampton DT Texas
2000 Plaxico Burress WR Michigan St.
Not bad for a list of first round picks! 8 of 11 still Steelers and all have had impact! Plaxico was a big part of the offense while he was here. Kendall Simmons was the starting guard almost from day one until injuries caught up with him. Santonio Holmes was a Super Bowl MVP. HOlmes did have some issues at Ohio State, but the Steelers took a chance and it paid off for awhile.
The list of notable later round players and free agents is pretty impressive as well, to say the least.
Ike Taylor (fourth round), Brett Keisel (seventh), Larry Foote (fourth), Chris Kemoeatu (sixth) and Willie Colon (fourth), all Super Bowl starters. William Gay (fifth) became a starter last year. Free agent rookies Colbert has signed included Chris Hoke, James Harrison, Flozell Adams, and Willie Parker.
Credit also goes to the Steelers scouting staff who works year around to find quality prospects for Colbert & Coach Tomlin to consider. Overall, as we sit here counting the days until Super Bowl XLV, let’s remember to be thankful for not only our players, assistant coaches, & Mike Tomlin, but also the Steelers front office. Well respected around the league as one of the best in the business.