Insider Only Daily 5: Brady playing in week 1 impacted Steelers decision to sit Thomas



DHP_47561. Guys like Sean Rodriguez have an expiration date. Hopefully the Pirates found that out Monday afternoon.

Rodriguez was excellent in the Pirates three game series vs the Cardinals, going 6-for-7 with a home run, 3 RBIs. Clint Hurdle has a great admiration for Rodriguez and has admitted that himself. It wasn’t a shock to see Hurdle reward Rodriguez by putting him in the lineup Monday afternoon with the quick turnaround, but shortstop?

A position Rodriguez has made zero starts at this season and just three starts over the last three seasons.

In a game where the Pirates with a win were guaranteed to gain a game on the Cubs or Cardinals.

Rodriguez had a nightmare day, two errors, getting picked off in the ninth inning with the tying run at the plate. Those days happen but there’s always this infatuation to over-play the backup and it’s only a matter of time before players like Rodriguez get exposed when they get over-extended.

What also happened here is the manager put the player in a very uncomfortable position and that’s what has so many baffled by Hurdle’s decision.

2. Once Tom Brady’s suspension was officially lifted Wednesday, Steelers coaches determined on Friday there was no way Shamarko Thomas was fit to start the season opener with Brady at the helm, a source with knowledge of the situation says.

One of the biggest issues for the fourth year safety is how quarterbacks out-smart him with their eyes. He has no grasp of playing a cover-2.

The hope inside the organization is for Thomas to still transition into the starting strong safety spot early in the season, maybe as early as week 2, but this is a matchup with Brady now involved the Steelers saw as a potential disaster for Thomas that he might never recover from.

In comes the veteran Will Allen.

“He’s [Will Allen] smart and knows Want the Full Story? Get "Inside Access"

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William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at

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