Stephon Tuitt out for the season

 

Brutal News for the Pittsburgh Steelers Monday night as star Defensive End Stephon Tuitt has a torn pec and will be out for the season, ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports. Tuitt, 26, was having the most dominant season of his career, wrecking havoc against the run and was an instrumental force in the Steelers showing signs of potentially evolving into an elite defense this season.

Tomlin on Hodges: He has a moxie, savvy about him

 

The preparation is underway to get Devlin Hodges ready to start vs the LA Chargers and one thing Hodges has shown since Latrobe is that he’s not scared to wing it. “He has an awareness, moxie, savvy about him,” said Tomlin. “I like his demeanor. I like the steady-eddy attitude, approach. Fearless-ness is good,” Tomlin said of Hodges.

Mason Rudolph in protocol, Jaylen Samuels out a month

 

Seat getting hot for special teams coach Danny Smith? Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin cited the kickoff game for the second time in three days as a primary reason the Steelers came out on the losing end against the Ravens. “Field Position in first half set the stage,” said Tomlin. “I thought their kickoff team was significant with Tucker. Hanging the ball. We had difficulty because of his talents. We worked on a long field a lot. Tomlin downplayed the injury to Mason Rudolph being a reason the Steelers came up short. Tomlin cited “five pre-snap penalties on offense and defense” being right up there with the field position game as a key area that hurt the Steelers with Tomlin calling the pre-snap penalties “below the line.” INJURY BUZZ *”Mason Rudolph in concussion protocol. In building yesterday. Doing fine with communicating,” said Tomlin. There was no speculation from Tomlin thatRead More »

Steelers see some Jesse James in newly acquired TE Nick Vannett

 

With Vance McDonald dealing with a shoulder sprain, the Pittsburgh Steelers on Tuesday night agreed to trade a 2020 5th round-pick to the Seattle Seahawks in-exchange for tight end Nick Vannett. The 26 year old Vannett who is a free agent at seasons end, has 47 career receptions and 4 touchdowns. In 2018 Vannett had a career high 29 catches for 269 yards and 3 touchdowns. Through three games this season, Vannett has 3 catches for 29 yards. What the Steelers like of Vannett, a third round-pick in the 2016 draft, is that he has some Jesse James to him, though, the move has drawn immediate criticism with the 0-3 Steelers surrendering another 2020 draft pick.

The Optimist Angle: 8-8 Season still more likely than a disaster 4-12 type season

 

The stats don’t lie. An 0-3 start to the NFL season is almost always a death sentence for NFL teams. Especially for ones without a franchise caliber QB behind center. Only six teams have made the playoffs since 1980 after an 0-3 start with the 2018 Houston Texans being the sixth team to it. While Mason Rudolph is capable of keeping the Steelers competitive in games as he showed vs the Seahawks in week 2 and the 49ers Sunday afternoon, unfortunately for the Steelers Rudolph is no DeShaun Watson. There’s every reason to think the Steelers are done and they probably are, but in a conference filled with mediocrity with little separation after New England and Kansas City, there’s reason to still have some slight optimism that a 2013 type situation is going to be in play where Pittsburgh could get to around 8-8 and at least be in theRead More »

Biggest Disappointments in 0-3 Start: James Conner, Offensive Line

 

Conner, O-Line Top List of the Most surprise disappointments in 0-3 start There’s a number of reasons the Pittsburgh Steelers are off to an 0-3 start. The week 1 debacle vs New England highlighted glaring issues with this roster from the lack of playmakers on offense that is going to be a season long problem, to a talented defense that is a group of misfits from executing a complexed scheme with coaching that has shown no ability in elevating the group. Those two areas continued to be problems in the losses to Seattle and San Francisco, but what has been the most surprising development with the Steelers 0-3 start is the dreadful play of the offensive line and running back James Conner. If there was one position that was well down the list of worries going into the season, the offensive line topped the list. But, almost one quarter throughRead More »

Ben Roethlisberger fully expected to be ready for 2020 season

 

Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger had surgery on Monday in Los Angeles to repair torn muscle in his right elbow. “Once Ben returns to Pittsburgh, he immediately will begin working with the Steelers’ medical staff on his rehabilitation, and he is expected to make a full recovery and return to the field for the 2020 NFL season,” the Steelers said in a released statement. All in on Big Ben in 2020? Consultation with multiple specialists over the last week has given the Steelers and Roethlisberger great confidence there will be no physical issues in playing at a high level in 2020 and Steelers internally plan to operate that another year still exist to make a Super Bowl run with Big Ben under center. Roethlisberger will be 38 years old when the 2020 season starts.

Diontae Johnson to start opposite Smith-Schuster vs 49ers

 

Rookie WR Diontae Johnson has been elevated to the No. 2 receiver spot and will start opposite Juju Smith-Schuster vs the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. “They told me I’m starting from here on out,” Johnson said via 937 The Fan of the coaches after practice. Johnson who is a better route runner and playmaker with the ball in his hands, gets the promotion over Mason Rudolph’s favorite target James Washington. Veteran WR Donte Moncrief who entered the season as the clear No. 2, has been dropped to the No. 6 wide receiver for this week vs San Francisco.

Steelers deal 1st rounder for DB Minkah Fitzpatrick

 

Steelers betting on Rudolph How much the Steelers like Mason Rudolph in the short term to keep the team competitive in 2019 and the long-term in being the heir-apparent to Ben Roethlisberger is even more evident with the Steelers trading their 2020 first-round pick to the Miami Dolphins tonight for DB Minkah Fitzpatrick, the 11th overall pick of the 2018 draft. The bold trade for Fitzpatrick is the Steelers sending the message that Mason Rudolph is the future but that the organization is also not punting on the 2019 season and in a sense, trying to still maximize the Ben Roethlisberger window were Ben to return next season as the Big Ben of old. While the organization believes Rudolph will show the football world over the next couple months he is indeed the heir-apparent to Roethlisberger, the Steelers internally are also adamant there is still another year or two runRead More »

Ben Roethlisberger determined to return in 2020

 

Ben Roethlisberger announced in a released statement he has all intentions of coming back “stronger than ever” in 2020. “I’ve been informed that I need season ending surgery on my elbow to continue playing football at the level I expect’” Roethlisberger said in a statement. This is shocking and heartbreaking for me, to miss this much of a season and feel like I am letting down so many people. I can only trust God’s plan, but I am completely determined to battle through this challenge and come back stronger than ever next season. The Steelers committed three years to me this offseason and I fully intend to honor my contract and reward them with championship level play. I will do all I can to support Mason and the team this season to help win games. I love this game, my teammates, the Steelers organization and fans, and I feel inRead More »