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BlitzburghRockCity
09-29-2011, 10:37 AM
During a conference call with Houston Texans reporters, Ben Roethlisberger was asked how he can have confidence in the offensive linemen the Steelers keep pulling off the street and plugging into the starting lineup.

He wasted no time correcting the assertion.

"Well, actually, the guys we've signed off the street are guys that have been here," he said.

With left tackle Jonathan Scott (ankle) and right guard Doug Legursky (shoulder) likely to miss Sunday's game, the Steelers will turn to a pair of backups Trai Essex and Ramon Foster who are quite familiar with the offense.

"I am not worried at all," center Maurkice Pouncey said. "If we just signed a guy and he had to come in and start this Sunday, it would be a little different."
That's not the case. Essex is a seven-year veteran who has played 62 career games. Foster started 10 games at right guard last year, including the Super Bowl. Having experienced backups is a luxury but also the product of recent instability.
"You feel they are vet guys, and you expect them to do well," left guard Chris Kemoeatu said. "There is no fall-off. ... They've been around."

But they're still backups, and that's not ideal for a line reeling from a poor performance at Indianapolis on Sunday, when it gave up three sacks and five more pressures and helped the team rush for just 68 yards. For the season, the Steelers are 22nd in sacks per pass play and 26th in rushing yards per attempt.

"As long as we don't overreact, we'll be OK," said Essex, who will start his first game at left tackle in more than four years. "Unfortunately, this has happened before to the Steelers, and we survived. We feel like we have a great situation here. Look at what we've done in recent years."

Last year, the Steelers had six starting line combinations and five linemen who played three or more positions during a game and they advanced to the Super Bowl, had a top-10 running back and gave up their fewest sacks in five years.

"This has been happening for three or four years now," Kemoeatu said. "And we still find a way to get it done."

In the offseason, the Steelers went through a major overhaul on the line. They opted not to bring back veterans Max Starks and Flozell Adams, instead choosing to re-sign Scott and Willie Colon. The latter tore his triceps in the first game and was lost for the season, and the former is likely out for a while. Only Kemoeatu and Pouncey remain from the line that started Week 1 at Baltimore.

Offensive line coach Sean Kugler is used to these kinds of problems. In 2009 with the Buffalo Bills, Kugler lost three starters and five linemen total to injured reserve. He was forced to field six tackle tandems and nine line combinations. He twice signed players and had them in the starting lineup four days later and once dressed an injured player as the sixth lineman in case of emergency.

The Steelers' case isn't nearly that extreme, which leaves them confident as they head to Houston.

"We have a lot of guys with experience in our room," Foster said. "We can pick up right where we left off when guys go down."

From the Trib (http://www.steeleraddicts.com/forum/Steelers%27%20O-line%20confident%20despite%20revolving%20door%20-%20Pittsburgh%20Tribune-Review%20http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_759265.html#ixzz1ZLe64BlP)

BlitzburghRockCity
09-29-2011, 10:39 AM
If you think about it, they do have a point. The Steelers and Sean Kugler are used to playing with a patchwork, musical chairs, offensive line that why not expect to be successful?

When you've had such a screwed up line for as long as the Steelers have had, and won 2 superbowls with it, you might as well just roll with the punches and take your lumps one week at a time.

Still though, wouldn't it be nice to have a solid starting 5 actually capable of playing together for an entire season and talented enough to keep the pressure off Ben every week?

LatrobePA
09-29-2011, 10:52 AM
Let's see what they can do, is it safe to say if these guys have a good game they could stay put??

BlitzburghRockCity
09-29-2011, 11:18 AM
At this point I'd be happy with 5 guys that can start and finish the same game, I don't care who they are, LOL.

The Texans are going to bring the pass rush, you can believe that. They will test Gilbert and Essex big time. I honestly think Foster, Pouncey, and Kemo can hold their own. As as they can do that and the backs or TE's can be used to help chip the outside pass rushers, it might not be AS bad.

That remains to be seen though. Plus if Foster does well, that give him a better chance to keep his job over Legursky in the future.

LatrobePA
09-29-2011, 11:22 AM
With the heat coming they need to roll Ben one way or another to avoid it. Honestly I think this group will perform well Sunday... If so it would me a slap in the face to even consider putting the other two stiffs back in there!

coldrolled
09-29-2011, 11:25 AM
Let's see what they can do, is it safe to say if these guys have a good game they could stay put??

lets see if BA can come up with a game plan to counter the bull rushes. maybe then we would have a chance to look better and save some OL players from injury. if not, and at this rate of blitzing hitting our line, ben will go down sooner than later.

SteelJunkie
09-29-2011, 11:44 AM
Ya we will have to see come game time. This might actually be the best line we fielded this year, with a little luck we might actually find something that resembles a line with all the shuffling.

LatrobePA
09-29-2011, 11:54 AM
Ya we will have to see come game time. This might actually be the best line we fielded this year, with a little luck we might actually find something that resembles a line with all the shuffling.

My thoughts exactly, if this line plays a solid game they need to stick w it!

LarryNJ
09-29-2011, 12:05 PM
You wouldn't expect anything other than those responses. Ben has always stood behind his line as he should.

Rampage
09-29-2011, 12:15 PM
You wouldn't expect anything other than those responses. Ben has always had to run for his life behind his line as he should.

Fixed for accuracy.

TampaSteelGirl
09-29-2011, 12:23 PM
Just get er done boys!!!!! :tt02:

steelchamp204
09-29-2011, 12:36 PM
You wouldn't expect anything other than those responses. Ben has always stood behind his line as he should.

I think its the only time he can stand behind before gameday :banana:

TampaSteelGirl
09-29-2011, 12:56 PM
One thing we can be thankful is that Ben is a big mobile QB..can you imagine if he wasn't???? I think it's admirable that Ben does stand up for his Oline...Peyton Manning was one to throw them under the bus....

SteelJunkie
09-29-2011, 01:03 PM
Ben's mobility saves him a lot. If you want a picture of a pocket passer getting killed every week just watch a Bears game. I dunno how much more abuse Cutler can take. lol

steelersbabex25
09-29-2011, 02:10 PM
They're confident? Good. I'm not.

tburg68
09-29-2011, 03:42 PM
Gilbert>Scott
Foster>Legursky

Gilbert>Essex

Overall, I don't think our O-Line is worse this week than last week. Hope they can stay healthy for a full game.

TampaSteelGirl
09-29-2011, 03:46 PM
Ben's mobility saves him a lot. If you want a picture of a pocket passer getting killed every week just watch a Bears game. I dunno how much more abuse Cutler can take. lol

I know!!! I kinda feel bad for Cutler...man then they blame him. HORRIBLE Oline there...I don't think we look that bad. Cutler is not as mobile as Ben though.

Farrior Fan
09-29-2011, 04:45 PM
With the heat coming they need to roll Ben one way or another to avoid it. Honestly I think this group will perform well Sunday... If so it would me a slap in the face to even consider putting the other two stiffs back in there!

IMHO Latrobe nailed it. We must roll Ben out to the side where Mario is not. Otherwise we should have BA charged with manslaughter. And if somehow this line puts on a decent showing then leave them be and go with it. Of course the old standard Tomlin may want to re-insert Scott when he feels better. If Max or Flo are able to stand up at this point I do not understand why we will not pick up at least one of them. Oh thats right our coach is as stubborn as Jerry jones. Killin me

connecticutsteel
09-29-2011, 10:21 PM
Roll out schmole out 3 step drop fire mix it up . Anyone remember that option play for the 2 point conversion we should try that this week

Speeed
09-29-2011, 10:51 PM
What else can he say! If I were Ben, I would put on a pair of Nike running shoes. He is gonna need them.

Honestly, I don't think we stand a chance against a team with a decent QB and good DL. Teams like the Jets, Ravens, etc. are gonna kill us. I wold love to be wrong, but at least for this year, I think that is the reality.

Regardless, I like surprises. I say we win the next 13 games!

steelersbabex25
09-30-2011, 12:06 AM
Was just watching the Pitt game, they rolled their QB out a whole lot and it worked really well for them. Kept thinking about how well it would work if the Steelers did it every once in a while.

TampaSteelGirl
09-30-2011, 10:26 AM
Was just watching the Pitt game, they rolled their QB out a whole lot and it worked really well for them. Kept thinking about how well it would work if the Steelers did it every once in a while.

I agree with ya here Babe....hoping Tomlin and BA watched as well.