Tag:Pittsburgh Steelers
Posted on: July 29, 2010 6:32 pm

Steelers sign Flozell Adams

Flozell Adams and the Steelers have aggreed to terms, according to a report from Jason La Canfora at NFL.com on Thursday.

Adams, who worked out for Pittsburgh last month , should start at right tackle for Pittsburgh, replacing the injured Willie Colon, who was lost for the year after tearing an ACL during an offseason workout.

Flozell isn't an elite tackle at his age anymore, but he's not that bad either -- were it not for the Dallas Cowboys' faith in Doug Free, it's unlikely he would have even been an option for Pittsburgh to sign.

Additionally, given Adams' ability to run block, he should be provide a boost to a team that will be without Ben Roethlisberger (and therefore a strong passing game) early in the season.

-- Will Brinson

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Posted on: July 28, 2010 7:46 pm

Steelers make important but unheralded move

Steelers front office leader Kevin Colbert is not a household name. But you could argue that the 11-year director of football operations is the most important figure in the Steelers organization. In Colbert’s run, the Steelers have enjoyed utter stability and, of course, two Super Bowl titles. Today, the team announced that Colbert, 53, has received a five-year contract extension. Financial terms were not released.

Colbert’s brilliance is that the front office he oversees truly does draft for the future. The Steelers consistently take rookies who fit their system, groom them as backups for a year or two then put them on the field only once they’re ready to blossom into standup starters or stars. Examples of players who have taken this path include Rashard Mendenhall, Mike Wallace, Willie Colon, Chris Kemoeatu, Lawrence Timmons, Troy Polamalu, LaMarr Woodley and Ike Taylor.

This type of foundation-building model hinges not only on shrewd talent evaluation, but wise salary cap management. With so many cost-effective veterans on the roster, very rarely do the Steelers have to lean heavily on a rookie. (The last time they did was with Ben Roethlisberger in 2004; Pittsburgh went 15-1 that year.)

--Andy Benoit

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Posted on: July 24, 2010 9:12 am
Edited on: July 24, 2010 9:19 am

Kaye Cowher dies

Some sad news to report out of North Carolina. Kaye Cowher, the wife of former Steelers coach Bill Cowher, died Friday at the age of 54 after succumbing to skin cancer.

Read the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette obituary at this link .

The two met at North Carolina State where Kay and her twin sister Fay – who later appeared together in a Wrigley Doublemint gum commercial – were basketball players. And apparently, pretty good ones. From the story:

Tall at 5-foot-11, Mrs. Cowher displayed an inside power game that made her one of the first young women in her home state to receive a college athletic scholarship.

Her teams at North Carolina State went 21-3 and 29-5, respectively, winning the inaugural Atlantic Coast Conference women's basketball title in 1978 with a 9-0 record and ranking No. 3 nationally.

Faye and Kaye later played for the Women's Professional Basketball League, where Mrs. Cowher was among the pioneers in the early days of Title IX. They played one season with the New York Stars and two with the New Jersey Gems, competing against notable stars Carol Blazejowski and Nancy Lieberman.

--Josh Katzowitz

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Posted on: July 23, 2010 1:53 pm

Steelers confirm Tomlin extension

Earlier this month, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported the Steelers had given coach Mike Tomlin a three-year contract extension. You might remember our post about it from July 13.

Today, the Steelers finally got around to announcing it.

The only difference from the initial report: the Steelers say it’s actually a two-year deal with an option for 2013.

“Mike Tomlin has proven to be one of the top head coaches in the National Football League in a relatively short time,” Steelers’ president Art Rooney II said in a statement. “His unique ability to lead the team and motivate individuals have been key factors in our success over recent years.”

Said Tomlin in a statement: “I have been blessed to have the opportunity to be the head coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers. I am excited to have the opportunity to live and work in this great city, and to focus on the true matter at hand, which is winning football games and bringing another Super Bowl title to Pittsburgh.”

--Josh Katzowitz

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Posted on: July 23, 2010 1:08 pm

Dennis Dixon's agent makes some noise

D. Dixon during Pittsburgh's offseason workouts I’m not sure how much help Dennis Dixon’s agent is providing him when he complains about the amount of first-team reps Dixon received in the offseason.

Jeff Sperbeck told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review he doesn’t understand why Dixon didn’t get more work with the first-team offense in order for the coaching staff to analyze his development. Sperbeck also isn’t sure why veteran Byron Leftwich is ahead of Dixon on the depth chart to compete for the No. 1 spot in lieu of the suspended Ben Roethlisberger.

In reality, Sperbeck comes across like an unruly – and unreasonable – father bitching at the peewee coach and asking why his son isn’t playing.

"I think Dennis should be given an opportunity to start," Sperbeck told columnist John Harris. "He's been there going on three years. He knows the offense. He's familiar with his teammates. He's ready to go. I don't understand why after Byron's been gone a year, they would bring him back and start him ahead of Dennis. To me, it should have been Dennis' job as the No. 1. He was No. 2 last year. Byron was not even in the picture."

Leftwich played only three games last year, leading the Buccaneers to an 0-3 record. The year before, he backed up Roethlisberger in Pittsburgh. Dixon, meanwhile, started an important game against the Ravens with major postseason implications and was fairly efficient though the Steelers took a 20-17 overtime loss.

Dixon also has won the support of his teammates, like third-string QB Charlie Batch and LB James Farrior. But I don’t think an agent whining does him much good.

--Josh Katzowitz

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Posted on: July 21, 2010 5:34 pm

Steelers sign a tackle (and it's not Flozell)

It’s official (or virtually official): Flozell Adams will not be a Pittsburgh Steelers in 2010. The Steelers put right tackle Willie Colon on IR today (Achilles) and signed former Jet Adrian Jones. A. Jones

Jones was a fourth-round pick in ’04. He started 44 games in New York, was cut in 2007, then reunited with Herm Edwards in Kansas City, where he started 10 games in’08. Last season, he was out of football altogether.
Jones will likely be the No. 2 backup tackle behind Tony Hills, which means he may not be active on Sundays. Jonathan Scott could start at right tackle, though given the rich depth inside, the Steelers would be wise to slide right guard Trai Essex back to his original tackle position.

-- Andy Benoit

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Posted on: July 20, 2010 7:00 pm

Woodley is unhappy

If Pittsburgh LB LaMarr Woodley sounds disappointed that the Steelers chose not to adjust his contract, meaning he’ll make $550,000 in the final year of his original four-year deal – $90,000 more than he made last season – it’s because he is disappointed. Or pissed. Whichever you prefer.

In an interview with Yahoo! Sports’ Michael Silve r, Woodley said he found it strange that, despite recording 29 sacks in the first three years of his career, the Steelers didn’t off him a raise.

“It’s kind of jacked up,” Woodley told Silver. “Everything I’ve ever done for the Steelers, on and off the field, has been positive. Sometimes you don’t get the same thing back in return.”

Woodley could be one of a handful of players who really get screwed by the potential of next year’s lockout. Here’s hoping he’s been saving his money.

With the uncertainty of next year’s season and with what the next Collective Bargaining Agreement will contain, Woodley might be missing a chance to cash in before the NFL journeys into next year’s unknown.

Tennessee gave RB Chris Johnson more money Monday, though he still had three years left on his original deal. Other teams have performed similar services for their players. Don’t think Woodley hasn’t noticed.

“I’m not going to lie – I was a little disappointed that they didn’t offer anything at all,” Woodley said. “I felt that was a little weird. I guess they decided they’re going to sit back and wait for the CBA and all that to play out.

“You look around the league and you see different teams getting stuff done with their players in similar situations, and you think, ‘What, the Steelers don’t care about me?’ Stuff like that goes through your mind.”

More from Silver’s story:

As for what happens after 2010, Woodley doesn’t sound especially committed to Pittsburgh, which may be a moot point. In theory, the Steelers can apply the franchise tag to keep Woodley from becoming an unrestricted free agent. As a hybrid outside linebacker/defensive end, Woodley likely would command a one-year salary in the $12 million range under the current system.

Then again, with the CBA set to expire next March, there’s no guarantee that the device still will exist once a new deal is negotiated.

“They’re kind of looking at a franchise tag, but it’s a pretty risky gamble,” Woodley said. “If there is no franchise tag … I guess I can play for 31 [other] teams now. That’s what it boils down to. If they’d wanted to keep other teams from getting a crack, they could’ve tried to do so.”

Sounds like a divorce, at some point, is forthcoming.

--Josh Katzowitz

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Posted on: July 13, 2010 7:44 pm

Deshea Townsend looking for work

Veteran cornerback Deshea Townsend is still unsigned as a free agent. Townsend has toggled between being the No. 2, 3 and 4 corner for the Steelers for all 12 seasons of his pro career. The Steelers no longer have a need for him; Ike Taylor and Bryant McFadden are a rock-solid starting tandem, and William Gay and second-year pro Joe Burnett provide depth.D. Townsend

There have been whispers that the Patriots could be interested in Townsend, but New England is five-deep at the cornerback position already. Townsend will be 35 before Week 1. Still, he told the Pittsburgh Tribune Review that he was surprised he wasn’t retained by the Steelers this offseason.

"I did kind of expect to be back, just to add some depth at the position," Townsend said. "They know there's a player out there they don't really have to teach the system, that can come in and play."

Though eager to play, Townsend is not spinning:

"I've always looked at the entire picture, understanding this game is not going to last forever. It's always been a business for me," Townsend said.

"I want to play one or two more years. But if it doesn't happen, I have a lot of other stuff going on with health care and doing a lot of work with my foundation."

--Andy Benoit

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