Ray Fittipaldo's Steelers chat: 6.12.17
powered byJotCast
Ray Fittipaldo
12:27
Not many starting positions are up for grabs. The slot CB role is open, maybe Ross Cockrell's outside CB spot. Honestly, that's about it. No starting roles on offense are undetermined.
Mats
12:27
Has WR Hunter a real chance to get a spot on the team, or do you think Coates will have a benefit because he was prior with the Steelers?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:29
I think Brown, Smith-Schuster, Rogers and Bryant have the team made. Coates, Hunter, Heyward-Bey and Ayers likely fighting for two spots. Coates would have the inside track if he performs well in camp and the preseason because I think there is big potential there, but the coaches were not happy with the way he performed last season.
Rob
12:29
Do you think the Steelers can learn anything from the Penguins winning the Stanley Cup back to back years?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:30
No, but they can have things reinforced that they already know, such as fighting through injuries, adversity, etc. That's part of the story of all championship teams.
MaNJ of Steel
12:31
Continued growth (and health) of DL has to factor into improvement in OLB and backfield, no? The interior line seems especially vulnerable.
Ray Fittipaldo
12:32
There is really only one interior spot on the O-line and that's nose guard, which is manned by the very capable Javon Hargrave. Tuitt and Heyward are strong ends. Is depth an issue? Sure. But a lot of teams are thin at certain positions. If Tuitt or Heyward goes down they'd be looking to Tyson Alualu or LT Walton to step up.
MaNJ of Steel
12:32
Are Ravens signing former Steelers DBs to pick their brains about AB, etc., or is the dearth of backfield talent so egregious?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:33
Their lack of depth seems to be the issue. They're actually OK with their starters, but man they would be in some big-time trouble if their starters went down.
Santa from North Pole
12:33
If M. Bryant stays healthy and trouble free all year...possible he has more receiving yards and TDs than Brown? (Sorry- I'm a fantasy football guy)
Ray Fittipaldo
12:34
He might end up with more TDs, but I would think Brown would still be the leader in receiving yards
Mats
12:34
Can you write in an contract (for Bell in this case) that if he uses any Drug his contract will be null and void and that he has to give some money back
Ray Fittipaldo
12:35
I don't think so because another team that wants to sign him would take that language out and use it as leverage.
SteelerSteve
12:35
Truly concerned about inside linebacker depth! Vince is slightly above-average and the guys behind him maybe slightly below! Do you see the Steelers picking up a veteran that pops free over the next month or so?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:35
Not so much before camp but maybe after camp once teams cut their rosters down to 53 players.
Zack
12:37
Someone like Kendricks in Philly would be a nice ILB cut we could snag for depth at the end of cuts...thoughts?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:38
He's not a bad player, but anyone they pick up would have to be able to step in and pick things up quickly.
Tin Curtain
12:39
With the secondary so young, isn’t it unrealistic to have such high SB hopes even with New England aside? When was the last time rookie and 2nd year players started in the secondary and helped win a Super Bowl? With Bens career slowly coming to and end in the next couple years, wouldn’t it have been wiser to pay a good free agent corner instead of the much maligned Tight End with concussion history? Sorry for the multiple questions, thanks for your time and love the chats!
Ray Fittipaldo
12:40
The NFL is a young man's game. Teams win with rookies and second-year players playing in big roles all the time. The Steelers won 10 games in a row with two rookies in their secondary last year. If not for New England they might have won 12 in a row and won the Super Bowl.
MaNJ of Steel
12:41
Actually, what about the LB the Jets just dropped? He's 32 but a solid player.
Ray Fittipaldo
12:41
A little too long in the tooth for me. And I don't think they need a run-stopping ILB. I think they need someone who is good versus the run but can also play vs. the pass if necessary.
BishkekSteeler
12:41
Do AV, Bell and Do It Tuitt all get done? And if not , who do you think will?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:43
I can't imagine them letting Tuitt hit unrestricted free agency. I think that will get done. They'll try with Bell, but I don't think they'll overpay at the RB position. Same goes for Villanueva. They're willing to pay him more than $615,000, but they're not going to overpay him, especially with them controlling him for two more years at a very low rate.
NC Steel
12:43
Has anyone noticed any drop-off i Ben's play yet? Seems clear he isn't as good at dodging defenders to extend plays. Is his arm still top-notch at this point?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:45
Anyone who is 35 isn't going to be as athletic as they used to be. The Steelers have invested in their O-line and in a coordinator who gets the ball out quick. That decreases the number of times he has to escape from would-be tacklers. And I haven't seen any dropoff in his arm this spring. Time will tell, but I don't have that concern now.
Kordell Stewart
12:45
With JuJu on board...steelers go 4 wide more often than last year (with Bell at RB)....or is Jesse James good enough that steelers likely to go 3 wide more often or about the same?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:46
The nice thing is they'll have options. James proved very capable last season of being able to stay on the field in all situations. But if the Steelers want to be a little more dangerous they certainly could employ more four-wide sets. I would think that would make opposing defensive coordinators a little more nervous.
TD STLRS
12:46
How's Cam Heyward's health?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:47
He has been a regular participant in OTAs and I would expect him to be out there at minicamp this week. He's not 100 percent, but he's working toward that
Bill
12:47
What are the chances Dobbs is no. 2 Qb
Ray Fittipaldo
12:48
I don't think the chances are all that high that Dobbs overtakes Landry Jones for the backup job.
Mats
12:48
Do you think the Steelers see as a mistake that they let Timmons go
Ray Fittipaldo
12:50
Only time will tell. He was getting older and the Dolphins were willing to give him $11 million in guaranteed money. Timmons was really good for a long time, but there might be more of an opportunity now for using more DBs in coverage schemes. They might be able to utilize a big safety where TImmons played or a cover guy who can tackle well. I valued Timmons' contributions, but I'm looking forward to seeing what Butler comes up with in his subpackages this season.
JamesinNYC
12:50
I agree with you at ILB you need a guy who can run and try to fill in for Shazier vs thumper to fill in for Williams, I trust Dirty Red to do that. Is that what they are looking at the safety they brought in to do?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:51
Daimion Stafford might be able to play in that role. Others will be vying for it as well.
PJ
12:51
Why can't the Steelers score TDs once in the redzone? They have the best RB, WR and OL yet when it is 3rd short in the redzone, settle for FG too often. What have you seen lately that will change that?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:52
Martavis Bryant will help with the red-zone offense as will Juju Smith-Schuster. Kevin Colbert and Todd Haley both mentioned his abilities in the red zone when they drafted him. You are right. That is an area that has to improve if the Steelers are going to win the Super Bowl.
Walter Abercrombie
12:52
Do you think Munchak will soon get (and take) an opportunity to go somewhere else and be a coordinator or head coach?
Ray Fittipaldo
12:53
Not really. He's never been an offensive coordinator and I don't often hear his name mentioned for another head coaching job. If he likes working here -- and I think he does -- I think he can stay until he decides to retire.
Tin Curtain
12:54
Everything going on with L Bell, the suspensions, the injuries, the rap songs, now the rumors of not reporting to camp..holding out and not signing his franchise tender. What’re the odds Le’Veon finishes his career elsewhere?
Connecting...