Ray Fittipaldo's Steelers chat
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A.B
12:27
If laderius green lives up to his potential and martavis returns to the form he was playing at before the suspension do you see the offense averaging 30 points?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:28
Again, everything looks good on paper in May. But there are question marks at almost every skill position other than QB and Antonio Brown.
Busstop
12:28
What are your thoughts on Bettis losing his analyst position, and the state of ESPN in general? What led to their current state?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:29
Bettis one of many to lose their job. Don't take this the wrong way, but there are all sorts of people who need jobs more than Bettis or any other retired NFLer do.
JF
12:29
HAHA. I didnt say I heard they are going to carry an extra LS...I asked you if you thought they would. I just hear that Warren is healthy.
Ray Fittipaldo
12:29
No one in the history of the NFL has ever carried an extra long snapper.
JayBird
12:29
I'm still concerned about the middle linebacker spot as well as the corner spot going into this year. Are these valid concerns?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:30
Yes. You can't address all your areas of concern in the draft.
JamesinNYC
12:30
1 bone half dozen dogs at WR and competition throughout the draft. Competition being the buzz word from the front office, my question is did they think it was lacking in the past or due to generally set roster it was just the way it fell?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:32
We all watched the AFC title game and saw how the offense struggled. The pats took Brown out of the game and the Steelers didn't have any viable options. Rogers is a nice player, but he's a fourth or fifth WR. Hamilton was lucky to be on an NFL roster last season. Ayers showed some potential but he's pretty much a carbon copy of Rogers, a small slot guy. They added a big target who can help in the red zone and converting third downs. I think they were missing that last season without Bryant.
Andy
12:32
I can't believe they went into this year with Cockrell as their starting corner even though they gave him a lower tender and obviously don't think he's starter material. Is this a mistake? What happened?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:33
You know, they did make it to the AFC title game with Ross Cockrell starting all 19 games they played. He's not an ideal guy to move forward with if you want to play more man, but he did OK in his role last season. They just think they have to improve and become more versatile in their coverage schemes.
alphonso
12:33
The Bus lost his job at ESPN. Any chance he comes back out of retirement.....
Ray Fittipaldo
12:33
Maybe Merrill Hoge can be his lead blocker.
Steve L
12:34
Is our defense finally going to have the players to be able to successfully morph from a 3-4 to a 4-3 in game, considering the addition of alualu on d-line and hopefully better cb's that can play man coverage more?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:34
They play some form of the 4-3 a lot in nickel and dime situations already.
Jimbo65
12:34
Everyone talks about beating New England but it seems to me that the best way to do that is to get them the heck out of New England for the AFC Championship. Who knows, maybe they'll falter during the season this year. Maybe they'll lose to Buffalo twice. HA!
Ray Fittipaldo
12:34
Wishful thinking Jimbo. Waiting for the Pats to implode is not a winning philosophy.
JayBird
12:35
It seems the past couple of years that the Steelers have gone back to selecting high character / high quality guys regarding their draft selections. Are they hitting their stride with drafting?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:36
I pointed that out in a story last week. I don't think it was a coincidence. We'll see if the nice guys can play in the NFL, but they did seem to bring in some people with high character.
A.B
12:36
Do you feel as if Vince Williams can be a match up problem against teams like the patriots in the passing game?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:36
Yes and I think that's why you'll see the Steelers playing nickel and dime even more than they have in the past. That means those Dbs had better be able to tackle.
jvan
12:36
Special teams have been a big let down for years. Usually leave the other teams with good field position. Any help in site?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:37
If the draft picks can play on special teams that might help. They certainly could use it.
Clef
12:37
I think Connors is a good draft pick. I am hoping runs the ball to give Bell a rest. What do you think will happen?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:38
I think 7-10 touches a game for Conner on offense while trying to limit Bell's touches to 20-25.
Jimbo65
12:38
Come on Ray, I'm betting on 4 Patriot losses this year. You with me.
Ray Fittipaldo
12:38
Um no. I'm betting on another 15-1 and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.
JerseySteel
12:38
Will Sutton get a chance to return punts and let AB just focus on receiving?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:39
They've been trying to find a replacement for Brown on punt returns. Sutton was a punt returner at Tennessee. We shall see. If you watch Brown on punt returns he's pretty smart about it. Almost never puts himself in danger. Knows how to get out of harm's way and he's not shy about fair catching.
P6brit
12:40
Has Tomlin discussed changing up his game week routine to address the yearly 3/4 game skid against bad teams the Steelers seem to go on? Could be the difference between a home vs away play-off game versus the Pats.
Ray Fittipaldo
12:40
I'm quite sure they discuss that sort of thing every offseason. Talk is cheap though. You have to go out and do it.
Steelerfan
12:40
Hi Ray. If the Steelers added Revis at a price that is a reasonable would you like or hate the move and why? Seems like it couldn't hurt
Ray Fittipaldo
12:41
Wouldn't hate it. Just don't think they'll do it.
Mike D
12:41
With the selection of Sutton and Artie Burn's ability to play zone and man on the outside. Do you expect the Steelers to stay in their zone cover 2 + Tampa 2 scheme predominately still and only implement man against the Patriots or balance out the two schemes throughout the season?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:41
Mix and match. You can't just decide to play man coverage once or twice a season. You have to get those guys comfortable with it.
Guest
12:42
We should stop talking about NE and Tom Brady, and just concentrate on the games in our division. Are we going to sweep Baltimore this year, a team much improved. Cincinnati and Cleveland much improved. What do you see our division record being ?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:43
While I like what Cincy and Cleveland did, I don't see any reason the Steelers shouldn't sweep them again this year. In that scenario splitting with the Ravens wouldn't be all bad. A 5-1 division record is good enough to win the division most years.
Bob
12:43
Do you know if Golson is set to be a full participant in OTA's? Is the concern about him that it will take longer for him to rehab the foot or is it that he may never fully recover?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:43
My understanding is he's ready to go. He needs to be if he wants to be in the mix at CB.
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