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Deb
08-22-2008, 11:30 AM
Sitting on the black-and-gold bubble
realfootball365.com


The Pittsburgh Steelers are halfway through the preseason, which means the next round of cuts isn't far off. With just a few moments left for some players to earn a roster spot, let's see who's sitting on the black-and-gold bubble.

Quarterback Charlie Batch

Batch has been a solid backup, mentor and extra coach in Pittsburgh, but his collarbone injury and the subsequent signing of Byron Leftwich have put the team in an awkward position. Batch is in the last year of his contract, so it doesn't make sense to put him on injured reserve this season. Meanwhile, rookie Dennis Dixon has shown the skills to earn a roster spot. That leaves the Steelers two choices: Keep four QBs or cut Batch. Retaining the extra quarterback seems like wasted roster space.

Safety Tyrone Carter

Carter has been with the Steelers since the 2004 season, but when he filled in for an injured Troy Polamalu last year, it was obvious that he wasn't of the same pedigree. If he was only competing with this year's sixth-round draft pick, Ryan Mundy, he may have the roster spot locked down. But the Steelers have been letting some corners take reps at safety, including Deshea Townsend, William Gay and Roy Lewis. Pittsburgh likes players who are flexible at different positions, so the organization could be willing to let Mundy develop if it has some others who could slide in if Polamalu gets hurt again. Carter's future with the team may rest on the relative health of the rest of the secondary.

Returner/receiver Willie Reid

The Steelers drafted Reid in the third round two years ago with the hope that he would specialize on returns. His rookie season was hindered by injury and last year's campaign was plagued by mistakes and lackluster performances. So far this preseason, Reid hasn't really done anything impressive as either a returner or receiver. Four Pittsburgh receivers -- Hines Ward, Santonio Holmes, Nate Washington and Limas Sweed -- are already all but guaranteed roster spots; to grab that fifth WR spot, then, Reid is going to have to finally live up to his rookie expectations in the return game and beat out Eddie Drummond, who currently appears to have an upper hand (but not by much).

Receiver Dallas Baker

There were high hopes for Baker coming into camp. The 2007 sixth-round pick turned some heads last season by making plays on the practice squad, and he spent a lot of time with coaches in the offseason learning more about the offense. When Pittsburgh cut wideout Cedrick Wilson, it left the door open for Baker. However, in the first preseason game, Baker was nowhere to be found against the Eagles. In last week's game against the Bills, he made more of an impact, snagging three catches for 57 yards. He's going to have to do that and more in these final exhibition games if he wants to convince the Steelers to keep him as a fifth receiver, especially because Baker doesn't contribute on returns.

*In other news, the five-year contract extension the Steelers gave defensive captain James Farrior this week means he'll be 38 when the agreement expires; who says Pittsburgh doesn't keep its older vets?

AZ_Steeler
08-22-2008, 01:07 PM
I personally don't see Batch on the bubble :dunno: He's still solid, everybody gets hurt every now and then and I would much rather see Charlie than Byron :2cents:

ejsteeler
08-22-2008, 01:17 PM
:ditto: I am definitely not a Lefty fan.....

Silverback 92
08-22-2008, 01:35 PM
Hoping Charlie gets better so we can say good bye Fat Albert !!

steelcityrockers
08-22-2008, 01:36 PM
Eh, they could/should put Batch on the PUP list. Gives them an extra roster spot. He would be eligible to return week 6 I believe and at that time they could make the decision to put him on IR, waive him, or let him return.

HUNT4SEVEN
08-22-2008, 07:35 PM
Hoping Charlie gets better so we can say good bye Fat Albert !!LOL u mean fat club foot albert:greengrin:

SteelerSal
08-22-2008, 09:56 PM
Carter will stay with the team as long as Troy is unable to get his butt on the field.:rant2:

steelcityrockers
08-22-2008, 10:10 PM
Carter is also decent on Special Teams. Kind of needed right now.

K Train
08-23-2008, 07:14 PM
id like to see baker make the team, i know carter will make the team, batch shouldnt make the team and will probably be cut and **** reid

Stairwayto7
08-24-2008, 09:06 AM
I think
Batch is still on the bubble, but I think it 60/40 in his favor right now.

Reid/Baker its one or the other. Reid may be a practice squad guy.

Carter. with all the uncertainties in Troy, his job is safe - ty

Zachintosh66
08-24-2008, 09:57 AM
Batch and Baker make it...

get the Ax out for Carter and Reid...

JB 67
08-24-2008, 12:10 PM
I think Reid is playing well enough to make the team and I think they should consider going with the younger Leftwich over Batch

AZ_Steeler
08-24-2008, 02:04 PM
It's going to be hard to cut Reid... he's been playing some awesome ball this pre-season and has looked really good! This is his third year, granted he hasn't played much the first two but this about the time a receiver starts to show what kind of receiver they are giong to be. :bigthumb:

Stlrs4Life
08-24-2008, 02:43 PM
Reid made the team last night.

SteelfordWexler
08-25-2008, 12:52 PM
Now that we've signed Roye, does Kirske make the team? I think there a chance one of the younger guys gets this last spot on the line.

Assume they keep 6 DL - Hamp, Smith, Keisle, Roye, Hoke and (Kirske, McBean, Eason or Paxson)

steelcityrockers
08-25-2008, 04:21 PM
Paxson can play ST (Wedge Buster) he could warrant an extended look.

SteelerSteve
08-25-2008, 09:43 PM
As far as Leftwich versus Batch, At first I thought Byron could come in here and be a very good back up, but I really havent seen too much from him and think that since Batch is already comfortable with the system that I dont think Byron should stay once Batch returns.:2cents:

SteelfordWexler
08-26-2008, 10:38 AM
As far as Leftwich versus Batch, At first I thought Byron could come in here and be a very good back up, but I really havent seen too much from him and think that since Batch is already comfortable with the system that I dont think Byron should stay once Batch returns.:2cents:

I think this is going to be a tough one that goes in favor of Leftwich. Batch is in the last year of his contract - and Dixon is too promising to risk sending to the practice squad. I don't see the Steelers keeping 4 QBs - and they won't go to the regular season with Dix as the #2 (probably)- but anything is possible.

AZ_Steeler
08-26-2008, 01:18 PM
What the Steelers are going to do with the backup QBs is probably the most intruging drama that has to be played out. I would imagine we'll see a lot of Byron and Dennison this Thursday. I would hate to see Batch let you go over an injury and Byron remain. I'm not a big Byron fan... he has a heck of an arm but I don't think he really knows how to use it. Dennis will probably never be the starter in Pittsburgh but he owuld be a good change of pace should anything ever happen to Ben.

My :2cents: Reid will make the team!!! :D

BlitzburghRockCity
08-26-2008, 02:54 PM
Now that we've signed Roye, does Kirske make the team? I think there a chance one of the younger guys gets this last spot on the line.

Assume they keep 6 DL - Hamp, Smith, Keisle, Roye, Hoke and (Kirske, McBean, Eason or Paxson)

6 DL is a logical assumption based on past experience; the top 3 are no brainers as is Hoke which leaves 2 spots left. If Roye does ok this week and shows he's still got some play left in him then I would think Travis is probably gone and it would come down to McBean & Eason getting the last spot. Eason looked real good in camp from what I saw and read so far.

Jocklife
08-26-2008, 03:03 PM
Hey Guys !!

Check out Jerome Bettis' interview he talks about Life after NFL and who he admires now in sport and outside sport....

http://jocklife.com