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Thread: Steelers' O-line Set

          
   
   
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  1. #1
    Gold Standard
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    Steelers' O-line Set

    By Jim Wexell
    SteelCityInsider.com
    Posted Aug 20, 2007

    PITTSBURGH – Mike Tomlin likes to say he has eight starting offensive linemen, but the five he wants to play in the opener took the field at Monday’s practice.

    Considering their inconsistent play this preseason, the group might be dubbed “The Five Horses of the Apocalypse,” but for now they’re the Steelers’ 2007 starting offensive line. They are:

    Left tackle – Marvel Smith.

    Left guard – Alan Faneca.

    Center – Sean Mahan.

    Right guard – Kendall Simmons.

    Right tackle – Willie Colon.

    Sends chills, doesn’t it?

    “We’re going to continue to watch these guys,” said Coach Mike Tomlin in what did not come off as a vote of confidence.

    Tomlin said yesterday that long-time backup Chukky Okobi is one of his eight top players, but, according to two sources, second-year man Marvin Philip is making a strong surge of late. Philip could push Okobi off the roster by the end of camp.

    Colon is the new right tackle after a game in which he alternated every two series with incumbent Max Starks. Colon said his game has improved of late.

    “At the beginning of camp I was tight,” he said. “But after the Green Bay game I just said, hey, I’m going to let it out and whatever happens happens. So I’m seeing the whole picture. I’m not getting anxiety trying to attack everybody, so I feel pretty good.”

    Simmons is the starting right guard, but Chris Kemoeatu has made – and is still making – a strong push. Kemoeatu has been hurt by having to play left guard in place of Alan Faneca all spring, and then again through a stretch of training camp when Faneca was hurt. After Kemoeatu took reps at left guard with the first team, he took reps at right guard with the second team and that stymied the development of rookie fifth-round pick Cameron Stephenson, who’s strictly a right guard.

    Another question mark for the group is the backup spot at left tackle. Starks and Trai Essex performed poorly in their opportunities at the position. Undrafted rookie Jason Capizzi has impressed the coaching staff with his intelligence, size, strength and mobility, but is viewed as more of a practice squad candidate. But he’ll get an opportunity to improve that status in the next two weeks with what will be an increased workload.

    Well, there it is! What do you think of these 5? I still hope Jason Capizzi makes the team and don't think he could do any worse that Essex or Starks at left tackle. Like the Colon choice and that wasn't a surprise. Not sure about Mahan. Haven't been impressed with him yet. He doesn't seem to get a good push on running plays and the center of the O-line is critical for successful runs. If a O-line is weak up the middle it allow defenses to blow up running plays in the backfield.
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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    Well let's see..

    Left tackle – Marvel Smith. - no brainer

    Left guard – Alan Faneca. - same here, obvious choice

    Center – Sean Mahan. With the compeition at Center seemingly inconsistent at best from everything we've seen I kind of thought Okobi was going to get the nod but apparently he sees something in Mahan right now. This would be the only position that I think there could be potential change at before the season starts

    Right guard – Kendall Simmons. has had a really good camp and preseason hopefully he's getting back to form

    Right tackle – Willie Colon.Starks is as good as gone next year, Colon has all the tools to be a solid tackle for us for years to come. He'll have some growing pains we have to live through but his upside is solid

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    I think Mahan will come around and be a good addition to the OL. Now that we've finally got the 5, they can get used to each other in these next 2 games. We all already know thats one of the keys is knowing who will be next to each other on sundays. How they move, block, pull together, its got to be like a well oiled machine, everybody knowing each other tendencies, weaknesses and strengths.


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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    You know Okobi has got to be upset; waiting all this time for his real chance to start and then he looses out.

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    You know Chukky is pissed but there is nobody to blame but himself, and I don't think that one is over yet !! It's more important to get 5 working together !!




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    The left side of the line was a lock. I honestly thought Okobi had the center job. I'm so glad to see Willie Colon knocked Max Starks out of there.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Prosdo View Post
    The left side of the line was a lock. I honestly thought Okobi had the center job. I'm so glad to see Willie Colon knocked Max Starks out of there.


    Hartings > Mahan - For now I consider that position a downgrade.

    Starks < Colon - Big upgrade in performance and "nastiness" attitude.

    Other 3 positions are unchanged from last years line. I also think Capizzi would be a better option to back-up Smith at LT than Essex or Starks. With Faneca leaving next year there is no doubt that the O-line should be priority number #1 in next years draft. If we have the great season we anticipate having we would be picking in the portion of the 1st round where lineman are generally picked. IMO we are dangerously thin at O-line. The back-ups will more than likely be the scrubs that none of us like.
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    with mahan starting it's gonna be a down season, he ****ing sucks, i'm not saying that cause i like okobi, i could care less about okobi, i just like that pic of him sticking the middle finger with the superbowl ring on it lol, there's a reason we got mahan on the cheap, it's because he ****ing sucks at life lol, he is gonna be our down fall this season, he's gonna suck *** so bad he'll be replaced by week 4.........
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  9. #9
    Prosdo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackGold4vr View Post
    Faneca leaving next year there is no doubt that the O-line should be priority number #1 in next years draft.
    That's for sure. I may not like Faneca's attitude, but he is good at what he does. I see us drafting for the O-line and looking into FA a good bit. I just don't think the Rooney's and Faneca will work something out.


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    This weekend will be their first test then as a unit. Let's hope we some changes and a glimpse of what is to come in the regular season.

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