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$teelersRule
08-29-2008, 11:46 AM
Final WR spot down to Reid, Baker
Friday, August 29, 2008
By Gerry Dulac, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
In the end, it really won't matter that Limas Sweed, who almost had a great touchdown catch in the end zone, was wide open when he embarrassingly dropped a perfectly thrown pass from Byron Leftwich.

Sweed, a No. 2 draft choice from Texas, could drop an expensive vase in coach Mike Tomlin's home and still be guaranteed a spot on the 53-man roster.

The same cannot be said for Willie Reid, a former third-round pick. Nor for Dallas Baker. They are battling for the fifth wide-receiver spot with the Steelers, which becomes significant if there is an injury but has little impact on the outcome on any game.

It's not only because the Steelers hardly use a five-wide receiver formation. They already have a fifth receiver: tight end Heath Miller.

"You don't let it bother you," Reid said. "You just go out and play football."

"Honestly," Baker said. "I can't even tell you what will happen. I'm still wondering if I did enough to convince them."

Nonetheless, Reid and Baker each were vying last night to command the attention of Tomlin, who will determine their fates sometime in the next 24 to 36 hours.

The Steelers have until 6 p.m. tomorrow to reduce their roster to the mandatory 53 players, and this much is known: Reid and Baker will not be on the roster. Only one.

Eddie Drummond, a former Pro Bowl returner who also doubles as a wide receiver, has shown little as a return specialist to merit keeping him on the roster.

"My whole thing was to try and come out and make some plays this year," said Baker, who was on the practice squad last season. "I made some at the beginning. I wanted to make sure I made it harder for them to make a decision."

A week ago, it appeared Reid had secured his spot on the roster with a five-catch performance against Minnesota that included a diving 22-yard reception in the fourth quarter. It was easily his best showing since the Steelers drafted him in the third round in 2006.

Reid, of course, was not drafted to be a receiving threat, at least, not solely. His specialty was punt returns, something he did so well in college that he and Deion Sanders are the only players in Florida State history to amass more than 1,000 career yards on punt returns.

But since joining the Steelers, Reid has shown no evidence of that. What's more, since a sprained foot that ended his rookie season in Week 5, Reid seemed to lose the burst that made him such a dangerous, elusive returner, one who had 180 punt-return yards in the 2006 Orange Bowl against Penn State.

"I think it would have been a lot better if I played that first year," Reid said. "Since I didn't, I missed out on that experience. The big thing now is to catch up. You can learn all you want from a playbook. But you still have to go out and catch up."

Reid did little in last night's 19-16 victory against the Carolina Panthers, failing to catch a pass, returning a kickoff 26 yards and fair-catching a punt. Still, he finished the preseason as the team's leading receiver with nine catches.

But it wasn't so much what he didn't do as much as what Baker can do that could ultimately determine which player makes the team.

After dropping a pass last week against the Vikings, Baker acquitted himself, albeit modestly, with two catches for 35 yards against the Panthers -- the highlight being a 33-yarder over the middle to the Carolina 32, setting up the second of Jeff Reed's four field goals. Baker finished the preseason with eight catches for 115 yards -- second only to Reid -- and a 14.3-yard average.

But, when determining the makeup of their roster, if not their receiving corps, the Steelers like an intangible that Baker possesses, which Reid cannot provide: Baker is 6 feet 3, 210 pounds; Reid is 5-10, 192.

"I'm hoping it's a factor if it helps me make the team," Baker said. "But I don't think it matters. There are a lot of big guys. It's how you play on the field."

Gerry Dulac can be reached at gdulac@post-gazette.com.
First published on August 29, 2008 at 12:00 am




i vote Baker, he has not been around as long as Reid. i think Baker has a much higher ceiling if they are so even at this early point in Baker's career. Reid has been around longer so he should have that advantage... but its still pretty even.

Stlrs4Life
08-29-2008, 12:14 PM
Reid stays.

ejsteeler
08-29-2008, 12:16 PM
I agree. I think Ried will pick it up considerably this year. :cope:

SteelerSal
08-29-2008, 12:22 PM
I agree. I think Ried will pick it up considerably this year. :cope:

Makes a huge difference coming into camp healthy.

AZ_Steeler
08-29-2008, 01:18 PM
It's going to be Reid... no question about it!!! The dude showed up to camp with a chip on his shoulder and has performed! :bigthumb:

$teelersRule
08-29-2008, 01:56 PM
i dont think we could go wrong with either one of these guys. but like i said before i think Baker could become better than Reid. i do agree that right now Reid is the better player.

Dean Denton
08-29-2008, 02:13 PM
Yeah, i think its going to be Ried too.

greg1964
08-29-2008, 02:37 PM
Baker:

Reid is not you punt returner and kickoff ruturner:

Kickoffs: will be Moore and Mendenhall
Punt Return: will be Moore or Holmes

steelcitysfinestXL
08-29-2008, 02:42 PM
In my very unprofessional opinion, Ried has hit his ceiling here in Pittsburgh. Lets not forget he has always done very well in camp. Then shiat the bed whenever he was given gametime oppurtunies.

I was very high on both of these guys coming from big time college programs (UF & FSU). With Moore, Mende, Holmes and others available to return, i dont see much need for Reid. Baker, on the other hand, has good size, strength and natural abilities at the WR pos. If he earns the spot, i see a very "Nate Washingtom-like" career ahead of him. Where as Ried will be in this bubble position camp after camp!

K Train
08-29-2008, 02:43 PM
baker is a florida WR though....basically a lost cause

steelcitysfinestXL
08-29-2008, 02:49 PM
baker is a florida WR though....basically a lost cause

LOL, like Penn State runningbacks!? *cough* Larry Johnson *cough* Theres bound to be a diamond in the ruff at some point.

Dean Denton
08-29-2008, 02:52 PM
LOL, like Penn State runningbacks!? *cough* Larry Johnson *cough* Theres bound to be a diamond in the ruff at some point. Lets hope so...:yellowthumb:

K Train
08-29-2008, 03:10 PM
larry johnson is a ****ing clown without shields and roaf so theres the end to that argument...HOF oline makes anyone look good. Baker=bum, reid=bum....its our 5th reciever...if we have to count on them were in trouble

JensK
08-29-2008, 05:21 PM
larry johnson is a ****ing clown without shields and roaf so theres the end to that argument...HOF oline makes anyone look good. Baker=bum, reid=bum....its our 5th reciever...if we have to count on them were in trouble

Didnt most ppl think that about Nate aswell? :P

Really i don't care to much who we'll pick. Ive always liked baker, but i don't know if he is actually better than Reid.

K Train
08-29-2008, 05:46 PM
i didnt think that about nate, i knew nate was better than wilson the second i saw him play

jpele
08-29-2008, 08:12 PM
Reid was drafted for his return skills, after 3 years he still lousy at it. I see nothing but potential in Dallas Baker (the touchdown maker). My choice would be Baker..for some strange reason I think the Steelers will keep Reid

Zachintosh66
08-29-2008, 08:39 PM
Baker... hands down... *no pun intended

steelcityrockers
08-29-2008, 08:54 PM
Baker is simply a WR and nothing else. Reid, despite many of you haters, actually has value on Special Teams which is integral for a bottom of the roster type player.

ItAintEasyBeingPeazy
08-29-2008, 08:55 PM
I've bashed Ried with the best of them...but the guy did have a pretty ****** start so far, with the injury his first year and the kick return fiasco last year..i still think there is a slim hope that he can be a good player on this team..the guy didn't break all those records in college for nothing..it may be that he's just now getting a grasp of playing at the Pro-Level. Really at this point..after Ward and Holmes the WR spots are wide open.Did Nate Washington even show up for camp??:sleepysign:

steelcityrockers
08-29-2008, 08:58 PM
Washington had a pretty good caqmp if I remember ad has virtually locked up the 3rd receiver spot.

BlitzburghRockCity
08-29-2008, 11:04 PM
Baker is simply a WR and nothing else. Reid, despite many of you haters, actually has value on Special Teams which is integral for a bottom of the roster type player.

Reid has no value on ST, do you really want him back there after what he's done the last 2 years in the return game? I'd sooner have Chris Hoke back there returning kicks than let Reid anywhere near the return team..LOL


Washington had a pretty good caqmp if I remember ad has virtually locked up the 3rd receiver spot.

Yeah Nate has the 3rd spot on lock for sure, Sweed has the 4th one locked down.

BlitzburghNation
08-30-2008, 01:14 AM
It's going to be Reid... no question about it!!! The dude showed up to camp with a chip on his shoulder and has performed! :bigthumb:


:ditto:

MDSteel15
08-30-2008, 12:50 PM
LOL, like Penn State runningbacks!? *cough* Larry Johnson *cough* Theres bound to be a diamond in the ruff at some point.

You came up with Larry Johnson??? Shame shame.... FRANCO HARRIS

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Baker is simply a WR and nothing else. Reid, despite many of you haters, actually has value on Special Teams which is integral for a bottom of the roster type player.

Yeah, his value on special teams is fumbling the damn ball! He fumbled the ball 3 times in the season ender in Baltimore last year alone.... Thanks for you invaluble special teams play, Reid :cursin:

Friday133
08-30-2008, 12:51 PM
Reid had such a good camp, he got cut.


Steelers place Batch on injured reserve
Saturday, August 30, 2008
By Gerry Dulac, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The Steelers have decided to place veteran quarterback Charlie Batch on the injured reserve list, ending his season and ensuring that Byron Leftwich will be the top backup to Ben Roethlisberger the remainder of the year.

Also, the team has decided to release wide receiver Willie Reid, a former third-round draft choice, and former Pro Bowl return specialist Eddie Drummond as part of the cuts that will be announced later today by Coach Mike Tomlin. The Steelers have to get to a mandatory 53 players by 6 p.m. today.

As part of the process, the team is considering a trade that would involve one of their veteran backup offensive linemen -- tackle Max Starks, center Sean Mahan and tackle Trai Essex.

Batch, 33, had surgery to repair a broken right collarbone after he was injured in the team's first preseason game Aug. 8 against the Philadelphia Eagles. His contact with the Steelers expires at the end of the season, but he will still be paid his $1.355 million salary this season, even on IR.

Post-Gazette (http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08243/908349-100.stm)

MDSteel15
08-30-2008, 12:53 PM
Reid= bye bye...

steelcityrockers
08-30-2008, 03:32 PM
So Baker it is.