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Sport It's no defense of Roethlisberger's comments, but Steelers' D needed more help

20:55  07 may  2018
20:55  07 may  2018 Source:   sportingnews.com

Steelers' 2018 draft picks: Projecting first-rounder, late-round sleepers

  Steelers' 2018 draft picks: Projecting first-rounder, late-round sleepers The Steelers enter the 2018 NFL Draft with clear team needs to be addressed with their seven picks. SN breaks down how the draft should play out for Pittsburgh.Veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is inching closer to retirement, and there is uncertainty around running back Le'Veon Bell's contract situation. The defense has a few holes to fill, too.

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Feel free to dissect Ben Roethlisberger ' s snark regarding Mason Rudolph, but the veteran is on the money when he says That’ s at the core of Roethlisberger ’ s comments last Friday to radio station 93.7 The Fan in The Steelers are much improved at safety, which they accomplished simply by cutting Mike Mitchell. IYER: Roethlisberger ' s tantrum only validates Steelers ' Rudolph pick.

If everything had gone according to plan, Ben Roethlisberger would be delighted today, and an army of journalists would not be picking through his most recent radio interview like they’d been handed an original copy of “Macbeth."

The Steelers’ plan did not work, so those in management made the best of the situation. But the problem is they did not make the 2018 Steelers a better team.

That’s at the core of Roethlisberger’s comments last Friday to radio station 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh, which plays host to his weekly radio show each fall.

Feel free to dissect Roethlisberger's snark regarding whether he intends to help mentor third-round draft pick Mason Rudolph, the quarterback from Oklahoma State. Except to the extent it’s motivated by his obvious disappointment at the Steelers' personnel moves on defense, it is inconsequential to the question at hand.

Expect Steelers' Kevin Colbert to ace NFL Draft as he always does

  Expect Steelers' Kevin Colbert to ace NFL Draft as he always does Former NFL exec Jeff Diamond is impressed with Kevin Colbert, Pittsburgh's under-the-radar general manager who quietly puts together great draft classes. Keep that in mind when the Steelers make their selections this weekend.But one can bet that when the smoke clears after a couple seasons — that’s usually the amount of time it takes to truly assess a team's draft — this team and its underrated general manager will have had another excellent draft. That always seems to be the case for the Steelers and Kevin Colbert.

That’ s at the core of Roethlisberger ’ s comments last Friday to radio station 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh, which Feel free to dissect Roethlisberger ' s snark regarding whether he intends to help mentor third-round The need to pick earlier to have a shot at Vander Esch or Alabama’ s Rashaan Evans led the Steelers to IYER: Roethlisberger ' s tantrum only validates Steelers ' Rudolph pick.

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The question is whether the team’s work in free agency and now the draft has repaired a defense that rarely was exceptional in 2017, that gradually declined as the season progressed and then collapsed when star linebacker Ryan Shazier suffered a spinal injury in week 13.

The answer: not really. The Steelers are much improved at safety, which they accomplished simply by cutting Mike Mitchell. They also signed former Packers regular Morgan Burnett and drafted Terrell Edmunds in the first round. But they still appear woefully short of talent at inside linebacker, and it’s hard to imagine the defense concocting a Super Bowl-level performance as a result.

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How Steelers fared with 2018 picks

Replacing Shazier obviously was a priority, but the only addition at that position was journeyman Jon Bostic, who started last season for one of the league’s worst defenses (Indianapolis) and has been traded twice in his career, once for a sixth-round pick and once for a seventh.

Mason Rudolph gives Pittsburgh a reasonable plan behind Big Ben

  Mason Rudolph gives Pittsburgh a reasonable plan behind Big Ben The Steelers grabbed Mason Rudolph at a third-round price, a reasonable plan for the future once Ben Roethlisberger retires.Big Ben turned 36 in March and intends on returning for a 15th season as the Steelers starting quarterback. Rudolph is by no means a threat to take the job. But given that the Roethlisberger has missed seven starts the last three years, it's a solid backup plan to bring on a guy who totaled 13,618 passing yards with 92 TDs and 26 interceptions for the Cowboys the last three seasons. Rudolph (6-5, 230) is a similar big-bodied quarterback who can learn from Roethlisberger for a season or two – or even three.

Packers believe QB DeShone Kizer brings first-round talent : It ' s no defense of Roethlisberger ' s comments , but Feel free to dissect Ben Roethlisberger ' s snark regarding Mason Rudolph, but the veteran is on the Many teams in need of quarterback help addressed the issue this offseason, but

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The Steelers had the No. 28 overall pick in the draft, and any hope they had to gain a starting-quality inside linebacker began to erode as Boise State’s Leighton Vander Esch became more popular among the league’s personnel people.

The need to pick earlier to have a shot at Vander Esch or Alabama’s Rashaan Evans led the Steelers to trade wide receiver Martavis Bryant for a third-round pick, which they hoped would be enough to help them move to an earlier pick in the draft. The problem there: When Buffalo traded out of the No. 22 slot to move up and choose Wyoming QB Josh Allen, that meant the teams at No. 21 and No. 22 — the picks Pittsburgh needed to have a shot at Evans — were held by Cincinnati and Baltimore.

The Steelers chose Edmunds because they believed he was the best player available when they did make their pick. The inability to execute the trade meant they still had that third-round pick on hand. When it became apparent Rudolph might still be available when they picked, they moved up a few spots to make sure they got him.

Ben Roethlisberger wants to make Mason Rudolph wait 5 years to be Steelers QB

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The Steelers thought that highly of Rudolph. But choosing him there essentially meant trading a starting-quality wideout who might be motivated to excel during a contract year in exchange for a guy who might be a replacement for Roethlisberger a few years down the road.

It might look like a wonderful trade in 2021. But this isn't 2021.

"I just don’t know how backing up or being the third guy … helps us win now,” Roethlisberger said of the Rudolph selection. “If they feel like he can help our team, so be it.”

IYER: Roethlisberger's tantrum only validates Steelers' Rudolph pick

a baseball player wearing a helmet: Ben Roethlisberger © (Getty Images) Ben Roethlisberger

The Steelers addressed the vacancy they created in the Bryant trade with their second-round pick of Oklahoma State’s James Washington, but it’s unlikely any veteran quarterback is going to immediately look at a rookie and see someone equivalent to someone who caught 50 passes last season.

“When it happened, when the report came out, I was kind of bummed,” Roethlisberger said. “I liked him. I liked what he was able to do on the football field for us."

Ben Roethlisberger thinks Steelers should have passed on Mason Rudolph

  Ben Roethlisberger thinks Steelers should have passed on Mason Rudolph Ben Roethlisberger doesn't think the Steelers should have used a third-round pick on a quarterback.But Roethlisberger, 36, has been adamant he still has a few years left in the league, which would prompt many to believe the Steelers could still think about the present.

Steelers draft pick Mason Rudolph said he understands where Ben Roethlisberger ' s comments came from after the Rudolph shrugs off Big Ben ' help now' remark. Pittsburgh Steelers . 151 d Jeremy Fowler. Jags' Ramsey: Chiefs' Hill more KR than WR. Jacksonville Jaguars. 16h Michael DiRocco.

Get the latest news, stats, videos, highlights and more about Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger on ESPN.com. With an awesome implied total on offense, Roethlisberger is at the helm of a promising group of pass catchers for this meeting with a depleted Atlanta defense

General manager Kevin Colbert defended the team’s defense in a radio interview with The Fan, pointing out that some of the hysteria regarding the team allowing 45 points to Jacksonville in a playoff game are overblown because of several short-field situations. However, that doesn't explain the Jaguars' 164 rushing yards or the Steelers’ inability to get fourth-quarter stops when the offense was attempting to rally.

The Steelers last season were 10th in the league in rushing defense, just 13th in takeaways. They struggled to get off the field, and they got fewer short-field opportunities than contenders Jacksonville and Philadelphia. This was why Roethlisberger was frustrated to see a high 2018 draft pick spent on a quarterback.

It might have been the best pick for the future, but that doesn't mean there isn't reason to be disappointed now.

Developing Mason Rudolph isn't Ben Roethlisberger's job .
Johnny Manziel’s comeback media blitz in the early part of the spring has likely already been forgotten by many football fans, though one exchange does offer an instructive contrast to the way a major NFL story is currently playing out. In an interview with Dan Patrick in early April, Manziel lamented his perceived lack of support when he arrived in Cleveland as a rookie in 2014. “When I get to Cleveland, I have a quarterback in the room [Brian Hoyer] that’s not helping me,” Manziel said. “And it’s not really his job to, but nobody was there, helping me. And it was hard. I struggled … There was a lot of winging it, and not a lot of, you know, knowing what I was doing.

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