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Mike Adams to Left Guard? Jim Wexell Certainly Thinks So


Mike Adams’ days as a left tackle during the 2013 regular were pretty much finished when the team gave first-team reps to Kelvin Beachum and signed veteran Levi Brown last week. Demoted to third-string on the blind-side, there is no way that Adams will ever see the field on the blind-side again unless a rash of injuries strike.

With two guys in front of him on the depth chart and a probable high round (first or second) left tackle prospect coming to this roster next spring, Adams might be wise to consider a position change or at least diversifying his skill-set in the very near future.

One person who subscribes to that particular notion is Jim Wexell of In fact, Wexell tweeted the following thoughts about Adams and a potential position change for the second-year tackle:



A far better run-blocker than pass-blocker, a move inside (or back to right tackle) could do wonders for the former Ohio State Buckeye. Although Adams’ 6’7″ frame might make it difficult for the former tackle to bend and gain leverage against squat three-techniques like Geno Atkins, his strength and agility would be far better served on the inside against slower defensive tackles than on the outside against quicker defensive ends.

At left guard, Adams would also be provided much more help in the pass-blocking department from whomever is lining up at center for the Steelers. This in turn would help to give the youngster more confidence at his new position, and also give Pittsburgh’s offensive line a far better option (Beachum, Brown, or a high draft pick) at the left tackle spot.


My Take on a Potential Move For Adams

Of course, for Adams to see any time at all at left guard, he will have to usurp Ramon Foster for playing time at the position. Even though Foster is dealing with a pectoral injury, the veteran is still “number one” on the depth chart.

In addition to Foster’s presence, Adams might even have to deal with Fernando Velasco or Maurkice Pouncey at left guard next fall as well.

As crazy as it sounds, I hope that the Steelers will give some consideration to not only keeping Velasco beyond this fall, but also let him battle Pouncey for first-team reps during the upcoming offseason. Velasco has arguably played the best of any of Pittsburgh’s offensive linemen this fall, and the loser of the proposed battle would kick over to left guard.

Remember, it was Pouncey who saw time last season at left guard when Doug Legursky had to enter the game due to injuries. Because Legursky was a better center than guard, the versatile Pouncey kicked over to the left side and did a fine job for the Steelers against the Ravens last December.

Competition aside, I hope that Adams will do his best to be as flexible as possible for the Steelers over the coming weeks. With 12 weeks left in the regular season, the Steelers’ brass will need to evaluate the younger players on their roster. After failing miserably at left tackle, it might serve Adams and the Steelers best to explore a potential position change.

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Tags: Fernando Velasco Levi Brown Maurkice Pouncey Mike Adams Pittsburgh Steelers Ramon Foster

  • Jimmy Stuart

    I chatted with Scott Sinclair about this very move, Brown may not be a dominate left tackle, but his addition provides depth and in turn, flexability. Now, if we could intergrate the 4-3 into our defensive scheme, we might be able to create some pressure and cause some turn overs.

    • Dom DiTolla

      While the defensive tackles are better suited for a 4-3 scheme (especially McLendon and Hood), who would play the weakside defensive end spot? They’d probably have to draft one.

      • Jimmy Stuart

        Dom, I was hoping we could intergrate the 4-3 with our base 3-4 this year to give the defense a spark.

        • Dom DiTolla

          How would it give the team a spark if it’s an entirely new scheme and the personnel isn’t at specific positions to run it at it’s highest efficiency?

          • Jimmy Stuart

            Dom, I don’t think we have the personnel to effectively run the 3-4, we don’t have the d-line to stop the run or collapse the pocket, I’m not saying abandon the 3-4, just change it up some. I get so fustrated when we rush 5 and don’t get to the quarterback. We get picked apart against the top line qb’s, I know we are “bend but don’t break”, “tackle the Reciever” defense, but why not sometime run a 4-3 cover 3, and breakup or challange the catch and get off the field.

          • Dom DiTolla

            I’m not sure changing the scheme in the middle of the season will solve anything. Without a competent weakside defensive end, this team will struggle to rush the opposing passer from a 4-3 scheme.

            If the team wants to run the 4-3 and rush the passer and stop the run with the down linemen on their roster, they had better acquire the personnel first, and they will have to wait until the offseason to do it.

  • Carl Eagan

    I think Gilbert should be considered for guard. Adam’s did a decent job at right tackle and Brown is a right tackle and never adjusted to the left side. Unfortunately Beachum is the best option for left tackle until the Steeler’s draft one.

  • Nick Kelly

    While Velasco has done a very nice job in pass protection at center, he has been a liability in the run game. I believe Pouncey is a bit overrated, but he is 3x the blocker Velasco is on the move in the run game.

    • Dom DiTolla

      I know I’d rather see the best pass-blockers on the field, and I’ll be interested to see what the front office does with Velasco once Pouncey returns.

      • Nick Kelly

        I think Velasco may be payed more by another team, even if Steelers wanted him. Not sure he’d be much of an upgrade over Foster anyways.