Heading into the Pittsburgh Steelers second week of OTA practices of the 2013 season it had been speculated that Mike Adams might receive reps at the left tackle position after Marcus Gilbert manned the spot last week. However, according to two sources, things remained status quo with the offensive line on Tuesday.
While it is still early in the offseason, it certainly appears as if the left tackle spot is Gilbert\’s to lose at this point as he attempts to succeed Max Starks, who played every snap at the position last season.
Gilbert, the Steelers second-round selection out of Florida in the 2011 NFL Draft, started the first five games of the 2012 season at right tackle before succumbing to a right ankle injury in the Week 6 game against the Tennessee Titans that ultimately cost him the rest of the season.
After Gilbert went down injured, Adams took over as the starter at right tackle for the next six games until he too succumbed to an ankle injury in the Week 12 game against the Cleveland Browns that kept him sidelined for the remainder of the season.
As I wrote in an earlier post, in the five full games that Adams started and played every snap in last season, the Steelers had their most success running the football. During those five games, they rushed for 694 yards on 147 rushes for a very robust 4.72 yards per rush. The team of course went 4-1 in those five games with the lone loss coming against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 11.
With the Steelers expected to run a lot of the outside zone in 2013 with new offensive line coach Jack Bicknell Jr. now on board, Adam\’s run blocking ability and ability to move better out in space than Gilbert can might be the primary reason that he remains on the right side.