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View Full Version : Steelers will monitor Mendenhall's workload; all 3 backs to get work



BlitzburghRockCity
09-08-2010, 11:37 AM
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10251/1085829-66.stm


Three years after Mike Tomlin ran Willie Parker until his wheels came off, he will take a more prudent approach with his new horse at running back.
Rashard Mendenhall, who emerged from Tomlin's doghouse to lead the Steelers with 1,108 yards rushing last season, will start and also serve as the prime third-down back, as he did for the second half of last season.
Holding down those two jobs on a team that does not have another back with a strong pedigree and has acknowledged a need to pay more attention to the ground game can mean overwork. Ask Parker, whose leg was broken on his 321st carry of the 2007 season, a season that began with Tomlin saying he would run Parker until his wheels came off. Tomlin, in his first season as Steelers coach then, might have learned something from the experience. He said Monday that Isaac Redman will get the first chances in short yardage and that Redman and veteran Mewelde Moore will be used if Tomlin determines Mendenhall is being overused.
"Rashard is our feature runner. He's good in about all circumstances you put him in. He's had a good training camp and preseason. He's good with the ball in his hands, he's good with the blitz pickup out of the backfield. We like how his game is shaping up in that it's well-rounded. He's an emerging player. He's becoming a veteran player. We're going to call on him."
But ...
"We are going to monitor his touches simply because that's the appropriate thing to do this early in the season. He is going to be in; he is capable of staying in on third downs. But, of course, we're also capable of inserting a Mewelde Moore or even an Isaac Redman for that matter.
"We're going to be thoughtfully non-rhythmic here as we get started but for different reasons, one to preserve Rashard to be inclusive to the contributions of those men."
Redman earned a nickname of "Red Zone" in the preseason as a rookie for his ability to gain the short yards needed for first downs or touchdowns, yet he did not make the team in '09. He continued his progress this summer to the point he will be given that role.
"Isaac Redman is going to have an opportunity to be featured in that area," Tomlin said.
"He's been very good in that area in the two-plus years he has been here, largely in preseason. We are going to give him the opportunity to see if he can excel."


Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10251/1085829-66.stm#ixzz0yx8nw4Ic

BlitzburghRockCity
09-08-2010, 02:19 PM
I can remember Tomlin saying they were going to ride Willie Parker till the wheels fell off. Well, the wheels did fall off so I'm glad they are going to try and keep Mendenhall fresh for the long haul. Although one wonders if Arians will be able to come up with a game plan to incorporate all those backs plus keep the ball in the air. With Dixon starting at QB Im guessing they are going to try and run as much as they can to keep the pressure off Dennis. If the running game isn't successful though it'll be plan B, whatever that is.

SnakeEyes43
09-08-2010, 02:43 PM
With Dixon starting at QB Im guessing they are going to try and run as much as they can to keep the pressure off Dennis. If the running game isn't successful though it'll be plan B, whatever that is.

That's what worries me though...hopefully those backs can make some plays or it may get ugly if all the pressure is but on DD to keep us in the game.

LatrobePA
09-08-2010, 05:44 PM
Two or three good runs by Dixon will back the pressure off a bit...

Root4Stlrs
09-08-2010, 06:58 PM
I can remember Tomlin saying they were going to ride Willie Parker till the wheels fell off. Well, the wheels did fall off so I'm glad they are going to try and keep Mendenhall fresh for the long haul.

Hey diddle diddle Willie up the middle was not a good strategy. I hope they follow through with the idea of not running Mendenhall to death. I may be totally off base on this, but think our o line will be better this year. :imho:

BlitzburghRockCity
09-08-2010, 07:11 PM
Two or three good runs by Dixon will back the pressure off a bit...


Reports during the 3rd preseason game said that Arians was very upset that Dixon took off on some of his runs instead of staying in the pocket. I just hope Arians gets the 2x4 out of his rear end and realizes you can't make Dixon into somebody he isn't. It's fine to encourage him to do his reads and try to pass; that's essential in the training of a young QB who's used to running. However in Dixon's case and knowing how stubborn BA is, Im anxious to see how Dennis will handle the game and the pressure that NFL defenses will bring.

LatrobePA
09-08-2010, 08:01 PM
Good stuff, I agree BA needs to cover his eyes and let the kid do what he does...4 games, that's all we need!

KSSteelerfan
09-09-2010, 01:54 AM
I can remember Tomlin saying they were going to ride Willie Parker till the wheels fell off. Well, the wheels did fall off so I'm glad they are going to try and keep Mendenhall fresh for the long haul. Although one wonders if Arians will be able to come up with a game plan to incorporate all those backs plus keep the ball in the air. With Dixon starting at QB Im guessing they are going to try and run as much as they can to keep the pressure off Dennis. If the running game isn't successful though it'll be plan B, whatever that is.

Plan B would be to run Rashard until the wheels come off.:yesnod:

coldrolled
09-09-2010, 07:22 AM
Reports during the 3rd preseason game said that Arians was very upset that Dixon took off on some of his runs instead of staying in the pocket. I just hope Arians gets the 2x4 out of his rear end and realizes you can't make Dixon into somebody he isn't. It's fine to encourage him to do his reads and try to pass; that's essential in the training of a young QB who's used to running. However in Dixon's case and knowing how stubborn BA is, Im anxious to see how Dennis will handle the game and the pressure that NFL defenses will bring.

if dixon can make all 4 games, i bet that each game he plays he runs less out of the pocket each game. just getting more experience and reps in the games he will hang longer in the pocket. he needs to learn the position as a nfl QB.. this is the only way that will happen. let him run and shoot and then settle in. he will get better each game. to bad were not starting off with the bills then the bucs that would have helped too. go dennis...:cope:

SteelerEyeZ
09-09-2010, 07:48 AM
Great Read....Love what they said about Redzone Redman