- Some of this is understandable.
It’s been close to a generation since free agent defections were a rite of spring for the Steelers. This isn’t to minimize 2 of your top five defensive lineman while a third (Brett Keisel) remains unsigned. That’s news.
- But it doesn’t quite compare to the spring of 1997 when the Steelers lost Deon Figures, Willie Williams and Rod Woodson — their top 3 cornerbacks — in a single spring.
One Cam on the Defensive Line Isn’t Enough
While Carrington’s visit went well the Steelers apparently decided that one Cam (Cameron Heyward) on the defensive line isn’t enough, as they signed Camaron Thomasto a two year 4 million dollar contract.
Thomas is a big defensive lineman in the mold of Casey Hampton, weighing 330 pounds and standing 6’3”. For those of you who are into saber metrics, he graded out 49th of 64 NFL defensive tackles according to Pro Football Focus. ESPN’s Bill Polian graded Thomas at a “D” while grading Al Woods at a “C” however, Thomas signed for 1 million less.
Some in the press have been quick to suggest that Thomas’ arrival might push Steve McLendon to defensive end, but Steelers Digest editor Bob Labriola pour cold water on that:
It should be noted that Thomas started 11 games in 2013 only to be benched late in the season. While that’s obviously a concern , Thomas provides and immediate boost of depth.
Social media sites such as Twitter have erased the barrier between fans and players, and Steel Curtain Rising’s experience today was a prime example.
Apologies were rendered in a subsequent Tweet.