The NFL scouting combine in
While the Steelers have usually been coy about draft intentions, Director of Football Operations Kevin Colbert and Head Coach Mike Tomlin surprised many in the local media when they tipped their hands and admitted their infatuation with two prospects.
“We really like [Georgia Tech Punter Durant] Brooks and [Missouri Tight End Martin] Rucker, and we’ll spare almost no expense to acquire both of these outstanding individuals. Well, hopefully we’ll save a lot of expense if we make these two part of our early picks, after all, punters and tight ends are like bus boys, how much do you really need to pay them out at the end of the night? But the point is, we like these guys. And we hope to improve these two positions in the upcoming draft,” reported Colbert from
While Colbert’s enthusiasm was echoed by Tomlin, many fans and local media are questioning the intentions of a front office that appears to be loading positions seemingly well stocked when there are glaring holes in the offensive line expected to grow worse as Guard Alan Faneca and Tackles Max Starks and Trai Essex are all unrestricted free agents.
Colbert deflected the criticism.
“Look at what [Punter] Daniel Sepulveda and [Tight End Matt] Spaeth did for us last year. Both had immediate impacts and made excellent contributions to the team. If we can find two more players like that this year, we’ll have four contributors on the team at important positions. And heck, who knows where the possibilities end. Why not experiment with a five tight end front line and a two punter back field? That way teams won’t know if you’re punting or passing on any given down. I think most Pittsburghers remember the success Pitt had a couple years back with the use of the quick kicks, why not replicate that in the NFL?”
“And with our shitty line, Lord knows we’ll need it next year,” mumbled Colbert under his breath.
When asked to repeat what he just said by Steelers beat reporter Ed Bouchette, Colbert replied, “oh nothing, I was talking to Mike. I asked him with closing time here, who needs another beer?”
Notes -- The Steelers pick 23rd in the first round of April’s draft…When asked why the Steelers changed philosophy in announcing the players they intend to draft Colbert replied “like anyone else is desperate enough to draft a punter or tight end in the first two rounds, puh-leaze.”…The Steelers announced former Stanford Coach Walt Harris had been hired in a newly created capacity of “third down consultant” for the upcoming season.