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Thread: Rookie Woodley big hit at OLB

          
   
   
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  1. #1
    2nd String Koopa's Avatar
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    Rookie Woodley big hit at OLB

    i'm really starting to think woodley will be starting by the end of the season, whether it be by injury or because he's just that damn good, and he's gonna end up on the list of great OLB's we've had, i hope it's not just training camp hype, cause i love everything i read about this dude

    While the first-round draft choice has spent the past five days standing around on the practice field, LaMarr Woodley has made more valuable use of his time at training camp.

    While Lawrence Timmons continues to slip further and further in his development because of a groin injury, Woodley continues to grow and grow in his transition from collegiate defensive end to NFL outside linebacker.

    "He's strong, man," outside linebacker Clark Haggans said. "He's got great explosiveness, and he plays with great leverage. He's only going to get better."

    Woodley, the Steelers' second-round draft choice, was such a dominant defensive end at Michigan he won the Lombardi Award as the college football's top lineman and the Ted Hendricks Award as the best defensive end last season.

    Now, he is trying to follow in a tradition of defensive ends who have made the transition to stand-up outside linebackers in the 3-4 defense --Jason Gildon, Joey Porter and even Haggans, the starter at left outside linebacker. Woodley is even wearing Porter's former jersey number (55).

    And while he still has a long way to go to get comfortable with formations and the nuances of pass coverage, Woodley certainly has shown the coaches he is very comfortable doing what he does best -- rushing the passer.

    "He's a good football player," linebackers coach Keith Butler said.

    "He's strong and he can move. We like the matchups we will get from him. He has shown he can do the things we thought he could do."

    Woodley has done them so well he has a chance to be a contributor this season in third-down situations, spelling Haggans and perhaps even James Harrison, the starter at right outside linebacker, to rush the passer.

    He will get a chance to put those skills on display Sunday night when the Steelers open the NFL preseason against the New Orleans Saints in the Hall of Fame Game at Canton, Ohio.

    "I'll probably go in there, give Clark a breather, and use my rushing skills and try to get to the quarterback," Woodley said.

    "It's a great opportunity. If stuff happens during the season, while you never wish anything bad on anybody, I got to be ready when I get called."

    Haggans, who has 15 sacks the past two seasons, says he is not upset by suggestions he might be replaced in third-down situations.

    "Doesn't bother me at all," said Haggans, a defensive end at Colorado State before making the transition to outside linebacker.

    "Whatever formula we need to win, if we're going to be successful at something, we have to do it full steam ahead. Him coming in, just rotating and keeping everybody fresh, is probably a good thing."

    Butler compared Woodley (6 feet 2, 264 pounds) to Harrison (5-11, 242) because both are small, quick and very strong.

    "He's quick and he stays low coming off the edge," said right tackle Max Starks, who usually goes against Woodley in practice.

    Woodley did that so well at Michigan he ranks second in school history in sacks (25) and tackles for losses (50 1/2). In addition, he has strong hands, using them to force a school-record 10 fumbles in his career.

    Of course, in the NFL, he will be going against offensive tackles who, for the most part, are bigger, quicker and stronger.

    "It's just using your hands and your technique," Woodley said.

    "You can't just overpower everybody. You have to use the technique you got."
    http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07213/805865-66.stm
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    Prosdo's Avatar
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    Everything I am hearing about this guy is very positive. He will be the rookie to make the greatest impact. Sounds like this guy is a great addition to the team.


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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Koopa View Post
    i'm really starting to think woodley will be starting by the end of the season, whether it be by injury or because he's just that damn good, and he's gonna end up on the list of great OLB's we've had, i hope it's not just training camp hype, cause i love everything i read about this dude



    http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07213/805865-66.stm
    I'm with ya Koopa, if Woodley continues to impress like he has so far they won't be able to keep him off the field. This dude could have easily been a first round pick so we essentially got 2 1st round talents in this years draft. If Timmons ever gets healthy we could be seeing the future of the Steeler linebacking corp unfolding right before our eyes.

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    OLD SCHOOL FOOTBALL
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    If Harrison can't stay healthy, you will see Woodley starting games this season.
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    GO STEELERS BRICKTOWN BEAST's Avatar
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    I hope Woodley can just stay on the field not just 3rd downs

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    Starter DIESELMAN's Avatar
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    Hes getting into the groove of switching over from DE to OLB
    His talent will put him into the lineup as well as all downs, LeBeau will know when its time and it should be by the 5-6 week
    You guys think we got a steal getting a first rd pick in the 2nd round? Check this out...I'm in a IDP dynasty league, we had our draft a few days ago....I got him in the 38th round of a 38 round draft with the next to last pick, pick #455


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    Personnaly i would like to see him beat out Haggans

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    i think he plays with a chip on his shoulder, hes making alot less money than timmons and its not everyday a team takes 2 OLBs in the first 2 rounds. Hes a very big guy at 264 to play OLB and hes gonna be great...start or not he will play alot this year

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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    I think he feels like he's got something to prove as well. He knows he could easily be a 1st round pick so Im sure that serves as some big motivation for him.

  10. #10
    BlacknGold Bleeder's Avatar
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    Definitely sounds like he will be playing more then Timmons, it's gonna be a little weird seeing a another 55 out on the field!!




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