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Author Topic: Bad drafts  (Read 1298 times)
amwreck
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« on: September 09, 2013, 03:55:28 PM »

The Steelers build the team through the draft.  That has been known for a long time.  It had been successful for a long time as well.  However, if you go back and really look at the drafting that this team has done since 2007, I think we get a very clear picture of how we have gotten to where we are now.  Here is a good link for all of our drafts:

http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/pit/draft.htm

Patience is a virtue in Pittsburgh.  There is a desire for stability and there have been quite a few veterans that retire from this team that were also drafted by us.  However, even with that patience, we really expect results from players by their third year.  We love when a player is productive in their rookie season, happy when they are productive in their second, expect results in their third, and if not by your fourth, get gone.  So, to keep a team productive as a unit, you need to have some players from each draft that turn out well.  Those are the players that get second contracts and help to build longevity, stability, and consistency.

So, with that said, we should be looking at guys from the 2008 and 2009 drafts as being the core of this team by now.  They are the guys that should be playing on their second contracts and working their way towards becoming NFL legends and cashing in on huge paydays.  Who are those guys for the Steelers?

2008
(Name - POS - draft round, pick)

Reshard Mendenhall - RB - 1,23: No longer with us he was a serviceable back for us, but never was great.  He was kind of like Pegram, but without the Foster to make him as good.

Limas Sweed - WR - 2,53:  Head case, gone after two years.  On with his life's work.

Bruce Davis - LB - 3,88: He was with us for one year, then played for Oakland for two years.  Never was a starter and is out of football.

Tony Hills - T - 4,130: Was with us for one year, then had a year each with Denver and Indy.  Never was a starter and is out of football.

Dennis Dixon - QB - 5,156:  Was brought in to be a backup, but never really got to that level.  Started three games in his career because all of the other QB's were hurt.  Is now out of football.

Mike Humpal - LB - 6,188: Who?  Never even made the team.

Ryan Mundy - DB - 6,194: For being our last pick, it should be surprising that he was the second best player we drafted in 2008.

2008 is one of the worst drafts we've had.  Mendenhall was the only player that managed to become a starter in the league.  Mendenhall and Mundy are the only two that are still in the league.  I get missing on a guy late in the draft.  But missing on just about everyone in the draft?  That can leave a gap in a few years when you have to manage attrition.

2009
(Name - POS - draft round, pick)

Ziggy Hood - DE - 1,32: Good pickup.  This is his third year as a starter.  I'm sure it's debatable regarding how good he is relative to the round in which he was drafted, but looking at the rest of the names that I am typing in this post, we hit on Hood.

Kraig Urbik - T - 3,79: Third round pick, but only our second pick of the draft, Urbik never made the team.  He has been with Buffalo since 2010.  He's a starter, but I don't know anything about him.  Either we missed in drafting him, or we missed by cutting him.  Either way, it was a miss.

Mike Wallace - WR - 3,84: Looked like he was going to be great for us, but his production fell off.  He's better than a bust, but he's no longer with us, so that leaves a hole in the core of the team.

Keenan Lewis - DB - 3,96: This was a good pick.  Third round guy who was very productive by his fourth year with the team.  However, we failed to keep him around and we currently have a lack of depth in the secondary, especially since Cortez is hurt.

Joe Burnett - DB - 5,168:  Joe Burnett was not Keenan Lewis.  Only had one year in the NFL.

Frank Summers - RB - 5,169:  Journeyman running back that only plays for a team every other year.

RaShon Harris - DT - 6,205: Another "who the hell was that" player.  Played for two teams, but not in back to back seasons, and neither team was Pittsburgh.

A.Q. Shipley - C - 7,226: Thankfully we picked up Pouncey the next year.  Shipley never played for the Steelers and has only two active seasons in the league.

David Johnson - TE - 7,241:  For a seventh round pick, I have to admit that I like Johnson.  He fills his role with the team.  But he's not part of the core.  He's just a nice to have player that could be replaced by many TE's in the league.  He does get an extra little note as having been a starter for one year when we decided that he was our FB under Arians.

While the 2009 draft was better than the 2008 version, we only have one player out of 16 (6.2%) that is now a starter on the team from either draft.  Worse than that is the fact that only five of them became starters in the NFL at all.  You expect players from the first three rounds to become starters eventually, so the real busts were Sweed and Davis who never did anything.  Urbik may not be a bust for Buffalo, but he was certainly a waste of one of our picks, so... bust.  Wallace, semi-bust... he did some good stuff here before he started worrying about money and business while he was on the field.

I think those two years are why we find ourselves where we are now.  unfortunately, looking at the 2010 and 2011 drafts, I think we are really going to struggle to find our way out of this slump.  I really believe that we need to put more attention on free agency over the next two years to fill gaps for the long term.  In other words, we need to put money out there to pick up some quality players, not just stop gap players.  I have always been a fan of the Steelers' ability to build through the draft and I never look for them to make a big splash in the free agency market, but unfortunately, I think now is the time.
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amwreck
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« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2013, 08:57:57 PM »

By the way, although I think it's still too early to put a final grade on the 2010 draft, I think we can officially consider Sylvester a miss.  Being a 5th round pick in 2010 to play LILB, he should be stepping in for Foote now.  But, since he wasn't good enough to be kept with the team, we have a gap and need to rely on a rookie sixth round draft pick.  Maybe the guy will be good someday, but despite Tomlin's "maintain the standard" and "next up" mantras, how can you expect him to weather this storm?  Although, he is a Steelers linebacker, and with that always seems to come one bad ass swagger that makes them channel the still living soul of Jack Lambert.
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OglalaLakotaSteeler
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« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2013, 12:45:30 AM »

pouncy should not get a contract extension.

yes we have had bad drafts. woodly is a great pick. Timmons is more of a negative pick at lb as well as worilds. what in the worild were we thinking.
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FlatsSteeler
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« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2013, 07:15:05 AM »

Timmons a negative pick?Huh??What the F@#$$ are you smokin?Huh??Timmons is probably the Best Player on this DYSFUNCTIONAL team right now........Woodley is mediocre at best and can't stay healthy......
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MrFranco
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« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2013, 06:01:36 PM »

Good effort Ammy great post. And I concur. Bad drafting has caught up to us at this point. Too many early round picks on D-linemen on a 3-4? Thats just mass that can't be moved out of the way. Why waste 1st round picks on that? Also the FO knew Heath wouldn't be ready for some time. Why not draft a TE who could make some catches? And center was obviously a need with Pouncey getting injured every season. So you end up picking some guy off the scrap heap to fill that void.

In the salary cap NFL you have to draft well. And hope to get 4 years out of a good prospect before another team picks him up for big bucks. Otherwise you're sunk.
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OglalaLakotaSteeler
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« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2013, 12:29:53 AM »

don't see first round production out of him. almost seen it but no consistency. flat steeler. in reference to Timmons.
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FlatsSteeler
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« Reply #6 on: September 12, 2013, 08:02:50 AM »

I sort of agree on Timmons. He might be one of our better players now but he took a long time to get there.

I think in order for your team to stay good you need to draft two to three starters each draft, and you have to do it several years in a row. Those guys don't have to start right away, but they do have to reach that level in their third year.
In order for you to get better than you were, you have to also pull a few surprise future starters out of your later picks.
When your first rounders get cut or even take 3-4 years to become average (Ziggy) you drop dramatically.
Timmons took a few seasons to get there......that's almost ludicrous....He was a DE out of FSU drafted to be a OLB during his 1st few seasons he played every LB position in a defense that DOESN'T Start ROOKIES.....he replacer Harrison, Farrior, Foote, and Woodley over his first few seasons.....Finally he was converted into a ILB and has been playing that position WELL ever since.....no way is he a Draft Bust....that's insane.......
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LN Smithee
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« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2013, 08:32:10 AM »

I sort of agree on Timmons. He might be one of our better players now but he took a long time to get there.

I think in order for your team to stay good you need to draft two to three starters each draft,...

Timmons would've taken a lot of heat from the fans the first few seasons if not for the play of Woodley (2nd round same draft), who stole the spotlight and delivered big-time right out of the gate.

Part of the problem is LeBeau's system which in the free agency era just takes too long for many players to learn. Lewis is an example, by the time he's ready we get one very solid year out of him and then he's gone via Free Agency. It shouldn't take four years to find out a guy's a keeper....but we can't afford him.

It's also time for us to hit on another low-key free agent defensive player acquisition like we did with Farrior and then Clark. No one was doing cartwheels when we signed either of those two but they both became week-in week-out high quality players/leaders. Hopefully it would be a D lineman this time.
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s4e
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« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2013, 02:51:19 PM »

Smithee$$$. We aren't getting our bang 4 the buck by taking so long for development. Another way of looking at things, though. The Steelers from the 2000's on have tried to sign their own developed players, guys who are a part of the system. There's a problem with longevity in that it's tough on the guys on the bench. They don't get a chance to really prove themselves unless there's a major injury to the starter or he finally retires. Clipboard holding leads to a lack of desire. Guys accept camp and do enough to remain. It becomes a paycheck. The only time they really get fired up is when they see that the Steelers drafted someone high in the draft and plays their position. Then the twinkies gather dust, atleast for a while.

Intense competition breeds strength in a football team. A humorous, cliché driven coach who pats guys on the back left and right, but misses others, can cause an internal rift. It's possible that just as the fans are growing tired of Tomlin's lines, so are the players.
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Lori
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« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2013, 03:37:09 PM »

Watch it, s4e, or I'm gonna unleash some Hell!  Evil Grin

About LeBeau's system and players getting indoctrinated, remember when folks thought Polamalu was a bust for his first few seasons.  You really can't waste those first few years any more. 
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Lori
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« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2013, 11:11:16 PM »

Well, injuries and youth are making the pats's O appear very subpar even with the second coming of Jesus, marsha, and the "genius" and real draft phenom, belicheat.  Sound familiar regarding the injuries and youth lol.  Fortunately for them, they are playing the nyets and Geno tonight and will likely eek out a win.  

And there we have it. Geno just gave the game away.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2013, 11:48:23 PM by Lori » Logged
OglalaLakotaSteeler
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« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2013, 01:52:13 AM »

I didn't call Timmons a bust. never thought polomalu was a bust until maybe 08 season.......all the way to canton.


now geno atkins....I was rootin for him to be a steeler outta the draft....been nice.....sean lee.....bobby wagner....now how can us fans see this and not our front office........?
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