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Stlrs4Life
04-07-2007, 10:52 AM
Tomlin effusive in praise of Taylor

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_501528.html (http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_501528.html)


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By John Harris
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Saturday, April 7, 2007

Don't look now, but new Steelers coach Mike Tomlin and cornerback Ike Taylor are becoming joined at the hip.

Tomlin has made a point of singling out Taylor as a player the Steelers can't do without, one season after former coach Bill Cowher removed Taylor from the starting lineup for five games for giving up too many big plays.

Instead of giving up on Taylor, Tomlin is building him up. At last month's owners meetings, Tomlin presented his case for Taylor to the national media, and even ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. is singing Taylor's praises.

"Here's a guy who could be a star who fell back," Kiper Jr. said. "He needs to have a big-time year."

Now more than ever, Tomlin needs Taylor to be successful.

In fact, considering how Tomlin has already gone out on a limb in support of Taylor, it isn't a stretch to say that Tomlin needs Taylor to have a big 2007 campaign.

"That's coming from the head coach, so that means a lot," Taylor said last week while taking a break at the Steelers' voluntary workouts. "A lot of people are saying one thing, and Coach Tomlin is saying, 'This is what I think.'

"We've got a new coach, a new season coming up, and I'm looking forward to it."

Of course, the Tomlin/Taylor love affair could vaporize if Taylor doesn't uphold his end of the bargain and become a shutdown corner again. However, there's plenty of evidence to suggest that Tomlin, a former secondary coach at Tampa Bay, knows what he has in Taylor, despite his dropoff in performance last season.

Taylor is one of the biggest and fastest corners in the NFL. He's a 6-foot-1, 191-pounder with long arms who ran a 4.28 40 at his college's Pro Day. He plays left corner in a league in which left corners are hard to find and more difficult to replace.

Left cornerbacks are almost as important as quarterbacks and left offensive tackles. Because most quarterbacks are right-handed, their first look is to the left side of the field. Left corners are expected to shut down the other team's top wide receivers, who more often than not, line up on the left side.

Wherever the other team's top receiver goes, that's where Taylor goes.

Taylor is also the team's highest-paid defensive back. The Steelers have made a significant financial investment in Taylor, and it's up to Tomlin to unlock his talent.

"I've got all the physical aspects. It's just preparing myself mentally 110 percent. Fundamentals -- that's all it really boils down to," Taylor said.

"I talked with (Vikings Pro Bowl safety) Darren Sharper. He played with Coach Tomlin (at William & Mary) and Coach Tomlin coached him in Minnesota (as the defensive coordinator). It was nothing but good words coming from Darren. He said you're going to get coached.

"He's going to do simple things with you, but that's what people kind of look over, the simple things, and that's Coach Tomlin's philosophy. That's what's in my head from the last thing Coach Tomlin said: It's all about the simple things.''

Bad season or not, like it or not, left side or right side, Taylor is the Steelers' best cornerback and Tomlin's pet project.

BlitzburghRockCity
04-07-2007, 11:42 AM
This is a good move by Tomlin. Ike's confidence was severely shaken last year so he needs all the support he can get. He's been putting in the time this year in the offseason and working hard to get better. I fully expect him to have a real good year for us.

introyitrust
04-07-2007, 11:56 AM
Great Article!
I have always been a fan/supporter of Ike. He has all the tools to be a shutdown corner and his work ethic is top notch. I fully expect Ike to bounce back this upcoming season.
It's also great to see Tomlin showing trust in Ike and building a professional relationship with him.

BlackGold4vr
04-07-2007, 12:34 PM
With some quality secondary coaching I too believe in Ike. This would lead you also to believe that CB is not going to be our first selection in the draft.

BlitzburghRockCity
04-07-2007, 12:40 PM
With some quality secondary coaching I too believe in Ike. This would lead you also to believe that CB is not going to be our first selection in the draft.

Maybe this would actually shut up the "experts" who keep saying we need to draft a CB in the 1st round. Well ok, maybe not :bluelol:

BBG7
04-07-2007, 01:08 PM
I'm glad to see Tomlin taking this approach with Ike. I wasn't happy with how Cowher handled him last year and I think the guy has a lot of potential to be great and hopefully Tomlin can make him just that!

BB2W
04-07-2007, 01:51 PM
I'm glad to see Tomlin taking this approach with Ike. I wasn't happy with how Cowher handled him last year and I think the guy has a lot of potential to be great and hopefully Tomlin can make him just that!I agree... :bigthumb:

Koopa
04-07-2007, 02:01 PM
Maybe this would actually shut up the "experts" who keep saying we need to draft a CB in the 1st round. Well ok, maybe not :bluelol:

doubtful, they still won't shut up about a move to a 4-3 even though, colbert and tomlin have said straight up they are committed to the 3-4

i like ike a lot, i look at this past season as his sophomore slump......he'll be back, and now that he has a good coach that actually gives a **** about him he'll be back better then ever

Stairwayto7
04-07-2007, 07:27 PM
This is a good move by Tomlin. Ike's confidence was severely shaken last year so he needs all the support he can get. He's been putting in the time this year in the offseason and working hard to get better. I fully expect him to have a real good year for us.

I agree he needs the confidence boost , and this was a SMART move by Tomlin. But if we don`t get pressure on the opposing QB, Ike and all our DB`s will suffer. I believe that was part of Ikes problems last season, and now our best LB is gone.

K Train
04-07-2007, 07:30 PM
our pass rush will be explosive next year with harrison and (timmons/spencer/moss) lol whoever

i hope ike has a pro bowl year to shutup all you doubters

kgreen
04-07-2007, 07:34 PM
Great Article!
I have always been a fan/supporter of Ike. He has all the tools to be a shutdown corner and his work ethic is top notch. I fully expect Ike to bounce back this upcoming season.
It's also great to see Tomlin showing trust in Ike and building a professional relationship with him.

Yeah, I agree however it is like the great Joe Paterno said: “Besides pride, loyalty, discipline, heart, and mind, confidence is the key to all the locks.” Ike needs a ton of confidence back. I'll be watching with keen interest to see if he plays the way he's been working this offseason.:popcorn:

BlitzburghRockCity
04-07-2007, 07:57 PM
If Ike keeps up the offseason workouts and training like he has so far he'll only improve himself all the more. With the new HC in his corner he's got no excuse but to succeed now :lol:

K Train
04-07-2007, 08:00 PM
i read a nice article about Ike working with Calvin Johnson.....johnson said he learned alot and had trouble playing with ike....he said he was very fast and a polished corner....which he is, hes big and fast......good things this year....and tomlin having so much faith in what he can do is HUGE

Stairwayto7
04-07-2007, 10:09 PM
our pass rush will be explosive next year with harrison and (timmons/spencer/moss) lol whoever

i hope ike has a pro bowl year to shutup all you doubters

I hope he does also. But our corners are only as good as our defensive front allows them to be!

Stlrs4Life
04-07-2007, 10:19 PM
I agree he needs the confidence boost , and this was a SMART move by Tomlin. But if we don`t get pressure on the opposing QB, Ike and all our DB`s will suffer. I believe that was part of Ikes problems last season, and now our best LB is gone.


That's for sure. That's why our LBers are so important.

RckyMtnStlrFan
04-07-2007, 10:26 PM
I agree he needs the confidence boost , and this was a SMART move by Tomlin. But if we don`t get pressure on the opposing QB, Ike and all our DB`s will suffer. I believe that was part of Ikes problems last season, and now our best LB is gone.

I completely agree! we need to pressure the QB. If we can't do that the CB's will have a bad year. That being said, I'm glad Tomlin is taking Ike under his wing. I think the confidence factor will be good for him.

Here's to Ike turning Tomlins confidence into a pro bowl season.:cope:

DIESELMAN
04-08-2007, 12:10 AM
Definitely a good move by Tomlin. Not only will this help Ike, it will also help Tomlin in the locker room with the rest of the players. By showing faith in a player who struggled last season, will go a long ways in showing the rest of the team how much Tomlin believes in this team.

strong D
04-09-2007, 07:14 AM
Ike will be just fine he is going to be a great cb this year

steelcurtaingal
04-09-2007, 08:16 AM
i like how tomlin is showing faith in taylor. taylor is a great corner, who had a not so great year. i look for him to have a great year. tomlin is really trying to help taylor redeem himself. i like that