Welcome to cut-down day. Over 700 NFL players will get pink-slips today as rosters must be down to 53 men by 6:00 pm est. There is nonstop speculation over who might make or not make the cut for the Steelers. Let’s take a look at what’s being said around the block about your Pittsburgh Steelers.
Later today the 2013 Pittsburgh Steelers will be announced and Bob Labriola of the Steelers Digest pointed out just how different this team will be. None of the wide receivers or running backs have ever held the #1 spot professionally before, the offensive line has all the talent in the world but is still unproven, the defense has been consistently highly ranked in defensive stats but still needs playmakers who can take the ball away. And then there’s Ben Roethlisberger. With that man on the roster you never know what can happen. He could be the catalyst that could elevate the play of those around him and propel this team back to the level we all expect them to be or he could throw some really bad interceptions in the last few weeks, sealing their fate out of the playoffs. Labriola sums it up pretty well when he says,
“They are a flawed bunch with a franchise quarterback. In other words, compelling to watch and impossible to predict.”
Steelers Roster Cuts
Everybody’s got an opinion on the roster cuts about to happen today. Some, like Alan Robinson of the Trib, think that RB Felix Jones made enough of an impression in the last two preseason games to solidify his roster spot. Jones is just a little over a week away from probably losing his roster spot with the Eagles but has shown his abilities very well so far and has received praise from Coach Tomlin. Mark Kaboly of the Trib ran down his prediction for the Steelers 53. He suggests the Steelers cut rookie quarterback Landry Jones because of his practice squad eligibility (and you have to assume because of his horrendous playing ability at this point) and use that roster spot for depth at a different position. Kaboly points out that with veterans like Charlie Batch and Byron Leftwich before as Ben’s backups; there wasn’t the flexibility to do this with them so they might as well take advantage of it. Kaboly also suggests the team will carry 6 running backs, 4 wide receivers and 5 tight ends. Kaboly suggest the Steelers will keep 8 offensive lineman, including Guy Whimper. Maybe this was written before Max Starks was cut by the Chargers. I’d take Starks over Whimper any day.
Who are your predictions for the 53 man roster?
Tomlin on cuts
The Steelers announced on Friday afternoon that they wouldn’t be releasing the roster or the names of the players cut until Saturday afternoon. You have to think they already have an idea how the roster has shaped up, maybe they need to play a few rock, paper, scissors rounds before deciding. Makes you wonder if the players already know and they’re just keeping it under wraps until the official time. That could be hard to believe in this day and age with Twitter and all that news like that would be hard to keep under wraps. One follower posed a very valid question to Trib writer Dejan Kovacevic with this tweet:
.@Dejan_Kovacevic can you ask Mike Tomlin tonight if he unfollows a player on twitter before or after they get told they’ve been cut? thanks
— Mike Darnay (@MikeDarnay) August 30, 2013
It makes me imagine the 22 guys sitting on their recliners with their iPhones frantically refreshing the followers list on their Twitter app seeing if the numbers have changed. Scrolling through to make sure Tomlin is still following them.