Happy Friday to all of you once again and welcome to weekend.
Predictably, it was a very quiet week for the Pittsburgh Steelers with three weeks remaining before training camp gets underway in Latrobe. Unless running back Le’Veon Bell signs a new contract by July 17, things will likely remain quiet on the news front.
Not much is going on with me this past week outside of getting to go see Iron Maiden perform here in Las Vegas Monday night. I don’t get out much as many of you already know, but it was worth doing just that in order to see one of my all-time favorite bands.
For those curious about the condition of my father, he was back in the hospital this past week after his temperature elevated and his oxygen level dropped off. He’s also pretty much decided to forgo chemotherapy after consulting with a few doctors and that’s understandable considering his circumstances. Please continue to pray for him and my mother.
As usual, I have five questions for you to answer on this July Friday night and I hope several of you have time to do so. Training camp will be here before you know it, so please hang tight with us during this ultra-boring and slow time of the NFL offseason.
Peace and love, peace and love!
1 – What is your biggest fear when it comes to Bell getting a new deal?
a – Future injuries
b – Future suspensions
c – Drop off in play
d – Price tag
e – Other (please give reason)
2 – Should Bell’s potential new contract at least pay him one million more a season more than the Steelers currently highest paid offensive lineman, guard David DeCastro, whose yearly average is $10 million a season?
3 – True or false: 2017 will be Bell’s final season with the Steelers if he doesn’t sign a long-term deal by July 17.
4 – Is 2017 the final season for Steelers cornerback Ross Cockrell in Pittsburgh?
5 – Will former Steelers wide receiver Markus Wheaton have more than 44 catches in 2017 with the Chicago Bears?
Mea culpa for not posting a recap last week; had some personal business that had the be attended to.
Question 1 – Please Sir, we want some more. Almost everyone expects Ben to throw more than 13 deep touchdown passes this season. Perhaps it is anticipation of Martavis Bryant opening things up for himself, Antonio Brown and the other receivers. The predictions ranged from 12 to 25. The median response was 16 – one a game would keep Steelers fans happy especially if they are game winners.
Question 2 – Virtually no one agreed that Bud Dupree was the weakest Steelers starter. Eight of the none weaker starters were defenders. Jesse James was the only offensive starter named and he garnered 19% of the vote. Overwhelmingly, Vince Williams with 38% was singled out as the weakest starter. Four different defensive backs were named (Davis, Burns, Gay & Cockrell). Perhaps, pointing out the secondary as a concern among us and uncertainty as to who will be starting.
Question 3- A lot of people put his in the too hard to do box. Hard to project out five years and perhaps we don’t want to think about a Ben-less Steelers team. 27 different players were named; with a couple people unwilling to bet against James Harrison. The players who got h most mentions were Sean Davis (11); Artie Burns (9); Chris Boswell; Bud Dupree (8); Stephon Tuitt (8); Javon Hargrave (8); Ryan Shazier (8); TJ Watt (8); & BJ Finney (7). For context; last season the Steelers roster had 18 players who had 5 or more seasons playing in the NFL. Several such as Darrius Heyward-bey, Ricardo Mathews, Ryan Harris & Arthur Moats played for other teams.
Question 4 – By a 3 to 1 margin, respondents believe the Steelers defense will record more sacks will exceed JuJu’s receptions. Let’s hope that holds true and JuJu has a rookie season with over 50 receptions.
Question 5 – By a 2 to 1 margin; we took the under on Zach Orr recording over 100 tackles this season.