Nov 10, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) and the Steelers offense huddles before running a play against the Buffalo Bills during the first quarter at Heinz Field. The Steelers won 23-10. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Steelers Morning Huddle 2/18/2014

Steelers season goes all year long so whether we’re looking ahead to the start of free agency, predicting the possible draft choices, or looking around for mentions of your Black & Gold we’ve got you covered. Here’s what’s being said about your Pittsburgh Steelers around the block.

Tunch Ilkin on Mike Munchak

Tunch Ilkin is a former offensive lineman for the Pittsburgh Steelers and is now color analyst on the Steelers Radio Network. He’s also a close friend of newly hired offensive line coach, Mike Munchak. Tunch spoke with Bob Labriola of the Steelers Digest about the hire and about Munchak’s possible influence on the existing offensive line for the Steelers. The two guys have known each other over 30 years going back to both of their playing days, Tunch with the Steelers and Munchak with the Oilers. Tunch sees an upside in Munchak coaching each and every one of the players on the line, including Mike Adams.

“Munchack will teach Mike Adams how to be a pro. He’ll teach Adams how to prepare. He’ll teach Mike Adams how to get more out of himself than maybe even Mike Adams would think was there.” – Tunch Ilkin

Stay the course says Colbert

Scott Brown of ESPN explains that Steelers GM Kevin Colbert’s approach to the offseason is the same, whether the team is coming off of a Super Bowl victory or their consecutive 8-8 season like they are now. The consistency, Brown says, is what makes Colbert the “pulse” of the organization, who’s moves are rarely rash judgements or quick fixes. While most of Steeler Nation won’t ever agree on what the best moves are for the Steelers to make, they can all agree that the drafting must improve seeing as how there are no remiments from the 2008 draft class and only Ziggy Hood is left from 2009. The Steelers, along with the rest of the team in the league, might just be able to benefit from the extra 2 weeks they’ll get before this years’ draft. The draft is being toted as deep with talent so the more preparation that can be done, the better.

Woodley Economics

Ed Bouchette of the PPG explains to us that the economics of what the Steelers should do with LB LaMarr Woodley aren’t necessarily as complicated as they’re being made out to be. Here’s what it comes down to based on Bouchette’s figures:

Woodley is due $8 million in 2014, his cap hit is $13,590,000 and his future salaries and hits are $8.5 million ($14.09M) in 2015 and $9 million ($11.99M) in 2016. If they cut Woodley today, they have $14.17 million on the cap for the year and no Woodley, which gives them the chance to sign Jason Worilds. That’s cutting him for basically the same amount he would count again if you kept him, only you save his 2015 and 2016 cap hits in this scenario.

If you keep Woodley, you have him and his salary for now through 2016 and have to figure this crap out every year.

If you designate him to be cut on June 1st, he counts only $5.59 million against the cap, and they save the $8 million they don’t have to pay him. He would also count $8.98 million against the 2015 cap, but nothing in 2016.

The biggest decision to make will also involve Jason Worilds. They may not be able to wait till June 1st to re-sign him so saving Woodley for then might not be the best plan for that sole purpose. Otherwise, they’d have to spent the next few weeks restructuring and whatnot and have Worilds be basically their only free agent signing until they can afford more after June 1st.

So based on what Ed thinks, Woodley is most likely gone either by March 11th or June 1st.

What are your thoughts, Steeler Nation? Do you agree with Tunch’s high opinions on Mike Munchak’s possible influence on the offensive line? Do you have faith in Colbert’s “stay the course” plan for every offseason? What are the chances LaMarr Woodley remains a Steeler?

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Tags: Jason Worilds Kevin Colbert Lamarr Woodley Mike Munchak Pittsburgh Steelers Tunch Ilkin

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