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  1. #1
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    Post Steelers Offensive Linemen await their fates

    http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09049/949849-66.stm


    Offensive linemen await their fates
    Wednesday, February 18, 2009
    By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
    The early plans the Steelers have for remaking their offensive line should be known over the next 10 days as they either try to sign or ignore the five veteran free agents who work there.
    The agent for one, starting guard Chris Kemoeatu, expects to meet with the Steelers this week and believes an offer will come out of it.
    "I would hope so," said Ken Vierra. "Having not spoken with them yet, I don't know where they're at, but he's one of the better guards in the league, he's 26 and has room for improvement. If you have one of the better guards in the league, you try to keep him."
    Vierra will arrive tomorrow in Indianapolis, where team personnel gather this week for the annual scouting combine, and plans to talk to the Steelers there.
    Kemoeatu joins three veteran tackles -- Marvel Smith, Max Starks and Trai Essex -- as unrestricted free agents if they do not sign by Feb. 27. Tackle Willie Colon will be a restricted free agent.
    Kemoeatu replaced former Pro Bowl guard Alan Faneca, who left after the 2007 season as a free agent. He started every game and earned $1,417,000, the amount he received in a one-year contract tendered him by the Steelers last year when he was a restricted free agent.
    The sides tried to come to a longer contract term last year but were unable to do so for a player entering his fourth season and first as a starter.
    "I did have talks with them," Vierra said. "To be honest with you ... we were talking about a guy who never started. How do you put that together?"
    Vierra said Kemoeatu wants to stay with the Steelers.
    "He absolutely really loves the city of Pittsburgh and, when you win the Super Bowl, everything is awesome. I need to find where they're at and where they're headed. They have a lot of things to do out there, and Chris Kemoeatu is only one of them."
    The Steelers have made linebacker James Harrison, the NFL's defensive player of the year, their priority, even though he has one year left on his contract. They started negotiating with his agent, Pittsburgh's Bill Parise, two weeks ago and continue to work on an extension.
    The Steelers have until tomorrow if they want to place their franchise or transition tags on any unrestricted free agents.
    Ed Bouchette can be reached at ebouchette@post-gazette.com.
    First published on February 18, 2009 at 12:00 am




    1 of the better guards in the league? Far from it, he's no the worst though.

    I'm A "Champion"

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    Veteran DanRooney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stlrs4Life View Post

    1 of the better guards in the league? Far from it, he's no the worst though.

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    For every one of the 4 free agents they resign that is one less roster spot for a NEW O-lineman. They will resign no more than 2 of these guys and as few as 1 of them. I am hoping they keep Max Starks and throw the rest back. I want 1 free agent and 2 high draft picks!
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackGold4vr View Post
    For every one of the 4 free agents they resign that is one less roster spot for a NEW O-lineman. They will resign no more than 2 of these guys and as few as 1 of them. I am hoping they keep Max Starks and throw the rest back. I want 1 free agent and 2 high draft picks!
    I wouldn't mind seeing Kemoeatu back either.

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    2nd String DBR96A's Avatar
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    I can picture Dan Rooney sitting in a big wooden chair and having each offensive lineman led into the room by a pair of guards. Rooney would then extend his arm out with his thumb pointed sideways. After about 15 seconds, he would either turn his thumb up or down, depending on whether or not he wanted to keep each lineman. Those linemen that receive "thumbs down" would then be led off by the guards and systematically executed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackGold4vr View Post
    For every one of the 4 free agents they resign that is one less roster spot for a NEW O-lineman. They will resign no more than 2 of these guys and as few as 1 of them. I am hoping they keep Max Starks and throw the rest back. I want 1 free agent and 2 high draft picks!
    I say boot all of them to the curb except Starks. Move Colon to RG, and draft Mack and let him play LG for a year or two. Pick up a tackle in the draft, and look for one via FA, they have the cap room this year to do that. Tony Hills should still be a solid option to back-up at lesat the LT.

    Do you think we trade up in the draft to try and get a possible starter in the 1st round?

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    Rookie Free Agent drucifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DBR96A View Post
    I can picture Dan Rooney sitting in a big wooden chair and having each offensive lineman led into the room by a pair of guards. Rooney would then extend his arm out with his thumb pointed sideways. After about 15 seconds, he would either turn his thumb up or down, depending on whether or not he wanted to keep each lineman. Those linemen that receive "thumbs down" would then be led off by the guards and systematically executed.

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    Out of all the lineman, Kemoeatu is the most likely to stick around. He does have a good upside and is a mauler in the run the game when he gets going. I was worried going into this year because he didn't appear to be light enough on his feet to be able to pull and get out in front of the backs but he got a lot better as the year went on. I wouldn't mind seeing him stick around and solidify that LG spot. As for the rest of them Starks would be the only other one that would be decent to keep around if for no other reason than depth at the Tackle position. Let him fight it out with a draft pick or FA. I would like to see Colon move to right guard and fight it out with Stapleton for that spot. Simmons is worthless but he just signed an extension before last season so he's not going anywhere either unfortunately.

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    Draft Pick vtwin_gary's Avatar
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    i know we're going to keep colon for at least another year but jeesh will someone please teah him how to count. he had more false starts the the whole rest of the line together.

    ohh crap he just moved.

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