Skip to content

Steelers making changes on both lines

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Tomlin directs his team's play in the third quarter of play against the Minnesota Vikings during their NFL football game at Wembley Stadium in London Reuters

The Steelers are the very model of stability, a team that prides itself on building through the draft and being solid across both lines.

Those two pieces of conventional wisdom aren’t holding up well, so the 0-4 Steelers are making some changes.

Coach Mike Tomlin told reporters he was benching left tackle Mike Adams and defensive end Ziggy Hood for this week’s game against the Jets.

That’s a 2012 second-rounder and a 2009 first-rounder to the bench.

Either Kelvin Beachum or trade acquisition Levi Brown will play left tackle, while Cameron Heyward (their 2011 first-rounder) will replace Hood.

“[Heyward] will play more and deservedly so,” Tomlin said, via By Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “I think he’s been really solid. Both guys will continue to play. We just want Cam to play more than he’s been playing and to assure that we’re going to put him in the starting lineup.”

As to the offensive line shuffle, Tomlin has been fiddling with that for weeks. He has rotated Beachum in for Adams and right tackle Marcus Gilbert during games, effectively trying to shame them into playing better.

“Absolutely I do,” Tomlin said when asked if Adams would have a role in the future. “The most important thing is not what happened to him. It’s how he responds and moves forward. I think it will define his career. It’s time for Mike to roll the sleeves up and go to work.”

The same could be said of their drafters, who haven’t lived up to the team’s traditional standards in recent years.

Permalink 61 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Home, Pittsburgh Steelers, Rumor Mill
61 Responses to “Steelers making changes on both lines”
  1. steelerfanjo says: Oct 8, 2013 1:17 PM

    Hey Mike Tomlin… As long as Todd Haley is calling the plays, it won’t matter.

  2. steelerben says: Oct 8, 2013 1:20 PM

    Something’s got to give. The team isn’t going to lose every game. Hopefully with some changes on the line, a bit more of a running game, and the defense finally generating a turnover the Steelers can upgrade to mediocre. If not, then at least the improved draft position should help fill some of the glaring holes on the team.

  3. xgarcia22 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:20 PM

    REBUILDING

  4. fc187 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:22 PM

    Maybe they should make changes closer to the top?

    The guy picking the players and the guy preparing them to play.

  5. jasndc75 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:23 PM

    Please fire Tomlin now.

    -Steelers nation

  6. claudegirwho says: Oct 8, 2013 1:27 PM

    Haley is the least of the steelers problems right now. Begin with Tomlin

  7. crownofthehelmet says: Oct 8, 2013 1:29 PM

    This is why MT is the greatest coach in the NFL. Instead of blaming the team woes on anything else that moves, a la Harbs, MT just quietly goes about his business.

    Shortly after this announcment, Dumervil put in a vaction request for Oct 20th, citing anxiety issues.

  8. bengalguy says: Oct 8, 2013 1:32 PM

    TRAINWRECK!!!!

  9. Joemontanaflacco says: Oct 8, 2013 1:34 PM

    “It’s time for Mike to roll the sleeves up and go to work.”

    I’m sure he’ll do a fantastic job sitting on the bench. “Gatorade anyone? A fresh towel? Oh, no. You sit! I’ve been on my butt all day.”

  10. thesportgenius says: Oct 8, 2013 1:34 PM

    If not for the Jags, the Steelers are the worst team in the AFC…Time to “blow it up.”

  11. andrederay says: Oct 8, 2013 1:42 PM

    Everyone that is an expert who is saying changes should be made at the top and that Tomlin should be fired. Who should be the coach? And don’t say Russ Grimm or Bruce Ariens. If you are a true Steeler fan from the city of Pittsburgh, then you know Tomlin is not going anywhere. I can remember when Cowher had 2 straight losing seasons in the middle of his career, and almost everyone wanted him gone but he didn’t go anywhere. And the end result was a Super Bowl win. So for everybody talking smack that want the coaches gone, you can stop wasting your breath.

  12. pooflingingmonkey says: Oct 8, 2013 1:50 PM

    The last place Steelers have a long raod in front of them. Lol.

  13. harrisonhits2 says: Oct 8, 2013 1:52 PM

    steelerben says:

    Something’s got to give. The team isn’t going to lose every game.
    _________________

    I don’t know I haven’t looks at the Steelers full schedule.

    Do you have a game with the Jags, Bucs or Giants ? If not they could go 0-16.

  14. jdubkc says: Oct 8, 2013 1:56 PM

    Haley’s nick name: THE COOLER
    Chiefs actually sent him in as a covert operation team lead. Worked better than expected.

  15. williamshatnerstoupee says: Oct 8, 2013 2:11 PM

    andrederay, good post. FINALLY someone gets it.

  16. Joemontanaflacco says: Oct 8, 2013 2:12 PM

    “Shortly after this announcment, Dumervil put in a vaction request for Oct 20th, citing anxiety issues.”

    He’s joining some friends in Pittsburgh for a cooking class. They’re going to make pancakes out of the Steelers’ OL and QB. Bon Appetit!

  17. 3yardsndust says: Oct 8, 2013 2:17 PM

    Kevin Colbert: You’re fired, bud.

  18. steeelfann says: Oct 8, 2013 2:31 PM

    The drafting has been:

    “Below the line”, or
    “Not up to the standard”, or…….

  19. flaccodelic says: Oct 8, 2013 2:33 PM

    crownofthehelmet says:
    Oct 8, 2013 1:29 PM
    This is why MT is the greatest coach in the NFL. Instead of blaming the team woes on anything else that moves, a la Harbs, MT just quietly goes about his business.

    Shortly after this announcment, Dumervil put in a vaction request for Oct 20th, citing anxiety issues.

    6 23

    Yes, quietly going 0-4 and changing up his starters on both lines in a desperate attempt to stop the bleeding is all very convincing evidence that Tomlin is the best coach in the NFL.
    What do the Ravens have to do with this anyway? Oh that’s right, they took the Steelers mojo a couple years ago and haven’t looked back.

  20. Deb says: Oct 8, 2013 2:37 PM

    This isn’t about who’s calling the plays–it’s about who’s executing them. And there’s not a lot we can do about that once the season’s underway. Since both the offensive and defensive lines are sieves, making the adjustments Tomlin mentioned is a good stopgap measure. But we need to make some significant personnel changes in the coming off season. And we need to examine whether Colbert has lost his Midas touch as Donahoe did before him.

  21. bobzilla1001 says: Oct 8, 2013 2:39 PM

    steelerfanjo:
    Please explain how Haley’s offense is significantly different from Arians’ offense? To be honest, I don’t see much difference, other than personnel. Arians had more to work with.

    Tomlin also said at his press conference that he has no intentions of giving up on Mike Adams.
    The Steelers have invested too many early draft picks and a ton of bonus money on this O-line to scrap it and start over this early in the careers of Adams, Gilbert and DeCastro. I find it fascinating, however, that the line’s brightest star, Pouncey, has been so easily replaced. Trade bait, perhaps?

  22. hakunamangata says: Oct 8, 2013 2:39 PM

    Wow Steeler fans, as a Ravens fan I can think of nothing better than if you got rid of Tomlin. Two super bowl appearances and one championship doesn’t buy you much does it these days?

  23. bobzilla1001 says: Oct 8, 2013 2:48 PM

    hakunamangata:
    You kinda have to be here to see all of Tomlin’s blunders. His latest inane decision was taking his team to London on a Friday for a game scheduled for Sunday. Tomlin thumbed his nose at jet lag, and that cost his team a probable win.
    Tomlin has been doing strange things ever since his arrival in 2007, when he inherited a ready-made Super Bowl contender… Now that you’re up to speed, better worry about your team.

  24. jf203 says: Oct 8, 2013 2:54 PM

    Who cares ? The Steelers are a NON-FACTOR in the 2013 NFL season a sidenote a piece of trash on the side of the road

  25. theuglitruth says: Oct 8, 2013 2:59 PM

    Todd Haley wasn’t in the draft room when these turnstiles were drafted! #truth

  26. shotgunformation5wide says: Oct 8, 2013 3:02 PM

    More 4 & 5 WR sets … Dress Moye this week and play him in the Red Zone … please!!!

    Are we gonna be the last team to realize NFL rules have changed that promote more passing!?

  27. cguy7 says: Oct 8, 2013 3:16 PM

    All I can say to the Steeler nation is thanks for that 3rd round pick this year! Looking better by the week and so is Nickles Banner. Hard to rebuild when you fritter away draft picks. Draft all OL,DL, and secondary and you might be back in a couple of years. Might want to look for a QB too, because by the time this team gets better, Ben will be in the hospital or broke down from that shady o-line…

  28. wearethesteelers says: Oct 8, 2013 3:20 PM

    Tomlin isn’t going anywhere. Snap out of it, Nation. Everyone is overreacting.

  29. jr4real says: Oct 8, 2013 3:31 PM

    “Those two pieces of conventional wisdom aren’t holding up well, so the 0-4 Steelers are making some changes.”

    No, as usual, this was probably written by someone who knows little about football. The conventional wisdom still holds true. The implementation of the wisdom is where the issue is. but of course you would have to make more out of it.

  30. steelerben says: Oct 8, 2013 3:33 PM

    harrisonhits2:

    Raiders 10/27 and Buffalo 11/10 are both very winnable.

    And then there are the divisional games. Even in seasons where one of the teams isn’t very good, division games in the AFC North tend to be close. Close games are winnable.

    Dolphins 12/8 (in Pittsburgh) and Packers 12/22 could be wins, as well.

    6-10 or 7-9 are not impossible for this team, if they can get moving in the right direction sooner than later. Chances of making the playoffs are pretty slim, barring some major turnaround on offense or if the defense remember how to get pressure on the QB and generate turnovers.

    This coming offseason is going to involve a lot of difficult cuts. But so have the past couple, as well. The team is in transition and the young talent is developing in some places and not others. One thing that will not happen is firing Tomlin. Keep a firm hand on the rudder and the ship will right itself again. Wouldn’t want to turn into the Browns, hiring and firing yearly. How many season did Cincy call for their coach’s head before making their way back to respectability?

  31. jr4real says: Oct 8, 2013 3:43 PM

    Haley’s offense is significantly different than Arians’.

    Haley has no idea how to call plays. If you can’t see that you don’t know enough about football.

    The 4th Quarter “Out” pattern is his staple. It has been pick-6ed so many times they should called it the “Game-Ender”.

    If you can remember the bad Steeler teams of the 80′s, the 3rd-and-long Draw play was the “I don’t have enough creativity co call anything else” play. Haley is now calling that in the 2nd Quarter.

    I couldn’t stand Arians play-calling. He would throw 4x’s on 1st and Goal. But his offense was trying to play football. Blocking and tackling. Haley thinks it is about “tricking” people which motion. He doesn’t know enough to have plays that will exploit any matchup issues.

  32. wearethesteelers says: Oct 8, 2013 3:49 PM

    Steelers will go on a 10-2 stretch and make the playoffs.

  33. joewilliesshnoz says: Oct 8, 2013 3:49 PM

    New O – line coach stinks. Existing Head coach stinks. The G.M. Also sucks. That all adds up to a 4 win or worse season.

  34. Nofoolnodrool says: Oct 8, 2013 4:04 PM

    What do the Ravens have to do with this anyway? Oh that’s right, they took the Steelers mojo a couple years ago and haven’t looked back.

    So let me guess getting Batch slapped happened during this period of mojo stealing. Skippy the steelers are in rebuilding mode for the first time since the ravens came into existence. Took you a long time to take a mojo don’t you think?

  35. Joemontanaflacco says: Oct 8, 2013 5:00 PM

    Maybe Charlie Batch WAS the Steelers’ greatest player afterall? With Roethlisbooger, they’re winning as many games as they would with Mickey Mouse playing QB. Now, the games aren’t even competitive. They lose at home. They lose on the road. They lose in America. They lose in Europe. They’re just losers who feel sorry for themselves. Look on the bright side. At least they won’t have to play the Broncos and be the first team to go down by 100 points.

  36. steelcurtainn says: Oct 8, 2013 5:08 PM

    All this could start equaling some wins if they quit turning the ball over. Get a win over the Jets and the Ravens are going down.

  37. citizenstrange says: Oct 8, 2013 5:30 PM

    The Jets are coming off of a Monday night game and Tomlin has had two full weeks to “coach ‘em up.”

    If the Steeler defense can pitch a shutout and also score three defensive touchdowns they might be able to squeak out a close win.

    GO STEELERS!

  38. Nofoolnodrool says: Oct 8, 2013 5:51 PM

    They’re just losers who feel sorry for themselves. Look on the bright side. At least they won’t have to play the Broncos and be the first team to go down by 100 points.

    I think you define loser as a troll who obsesses over a team he wishes was his. The bright side is we have six Lombardi’s and a great young coach, a great city, and the best fans. Nah we are not losers which you can’t say skippy.

  39. steel2372 says: Oct 8, 2013 6:13 PM

    Joemontanaflacco says: Oct 8, 2013 2:12 PM

    “Shortly after this announcment, Dumervil put in a vaction request for Oct 20th, citing anxiety issues.”

    He’s joining some friends in Pittsburgh for a cooking class. They’re going to make pancakes out of the Steelers’ OL and QB. Bon Appetit!

    ————————————————-
    I guess you forgot last season when Charlie Batch beat you? We always rise to the challenge against the Ravens no matter what the record is.

  40. madjack58 says: Oct 8, 2013 6:17 PM

    Replacing Hood with Heyward isn’t newsworthy. Hood will still play just not as a starter.

  41. gameover78 says: Oct 8, 2013 6:30 PM

    Zzzz…can’t wait for week 7, it will be fun to watch uncle TOMlin get lit up and start the year 0-6!

  42. rottenbellybutton says: Oct 8, 2013 6:32 PM

    nofool lives in Virginia but claims pissburgh as his or her city. The STEELERS may have 6, but the coach, city and definitely fans are nothing to brag about. If you look at your present record you are a loser skippy. If sh!ttsburgh is such a wonderful city, why don’t you reside there timmy?

  43. Nofoolnodrool says: Oct 8, 2013 6:43 PM

    rottenbellybutton | Oct 8, 2013, 6:32 PM EDT
    nofool lives in Virginia but claims pissburgh as his or her city. The STEELERS may have 6, but the coach, city and definitely fans are nothing to brag about. If you look at your present record you are a loser skippy. If sh!ttsburgh is such a wonderful city, why don’t you reside there timmy?

    Sounds like a loser who can’t move from a place he hates has crawled out from under his bridge to spew his hate. I live where I can which you are unable to do so no reason for the jealousy . Where you live does not determine your allegiance to a team or if that was the case as yinzer you would be rooting for the steelers so your argument is much like you ….pretty worthless.

  44. dirtdawg54 says: Oct 8, 2013 6:52 PM

    There’s much discussion about the draft but let’s deal with facts. From 2007 to 2013, the Steelers drafted 59 players. 34 are still in the league (58%), 27 are with the Steelers (46%) and only 5 never played a down in the league – and that includes Sean Spence who blew his knee out.

    Compare that to Bill Belichick during the same time frame. He drafted 63 players. 37 are still in the league (59%) and 25 are still with the Pats (40%). BB completely whiffed on 10 players as they’ve never played a down in the league.

    Detractors like to point to the 2008 draft as no one from that draft is playing in the Steelers and only 3 remain in the league (a fourth – Dixon – was just signed to the Bills’ practice squad). Fair enough. That was a bad draft. But what about the 2009 draft then? They hit on 7 of 9 including two of the bigger free agent interests last year in Wallace and Lewis. Yes, they dropped the ball on Urbik – couldn’t figure out why he ever was let go, but lots of teams have cut guys they regretted (James Harrison Ravens fans?).

    As for Cowher and his vaunted draft record? In his last seven years he drafted 54 guys. At the end of those seven years, 33 (61%) were in the league, 25 (46%) were on the Steelers and 12 never played a down. Hmmm … Looks a lot like the Steeler draft record of the last seven years, doesn’t it?

    Now, you can debate the quality all you want, but it’s not like they have completely pooched the dog.

  45. stoogy says: Oct 8, 2013 6:52 PM

    I listened to Tomlin on 93.7 the fan today and he is acting like Levi Brown is the savior to the season. Last I checked he was not much of an upgrade to Adams. The season is saved!

  46. 1mommicked1 says: Oct 8, 2013 7:18 PM

    instead of a PUP (physically unable to perform) list, the steelers now have a TLP list (too lazy to perform) list. lots of their top draft picks are on it.

  47. rottenbellybutton says: Oct 8, 2013 7:20 PM

    Not jealous at all timmy, I live 70 miles from that cesspool. You said it was a GREAT city, yet choose to not live there. Can you tell us what’s so great about Pittsburgh or do you know nothing about it? While you’re at it, maybe you can explain what makes tomlin and steeler fans so great. We’ll be waiting!

  48. bobzilla1001 says: Oct 8, 2013 7:27 PM

    jr4real:
    Once upon a time, Haley looked pretty smart when he was the Cardinals’ OC. It was Haley’s offense that carried defensively-challenged Arizona to the Super Bowl, where Haley’s offense outscored Arians’ offense, 23-20.
    Speaking of Arians, the Indianapolis Colts’ offense is really “struggling” this season without last season’s feel-good “Coach of the Year,” huh?
    Both Haley and Arians have looked good when they’ve both had quality quarterbacks. Funny how that works…

  49. holeinone09 says: Oct 8, 2013 7:39 PM

    Anybody see how Brady performed when he was under siege from the Bengals defense? He stunk, he is a statue. Did you hear the announcers saying he wasn’t getting any time to plant and pass? Well, what the hell do you think Ben has put up with for years? Same thing except several times worse and for much longer. The OL is the main reason for their difficulties this year, second is lack of defensive turnovers, third is lack of defensive sacks. IMHO.

    When you are FORCED to pass so often, things will happen, even early in the game, as the defense knows you have no other viable option but to pass to gain any yards.

    On a thread that talks about the obvious glaring problem with the OL and the steps they are taking to try to change the results, some are still making snide comments about the QB. Unbelievable. It is OK to criticize everyone on the team. As I have said, everyone on the team can and should be playing better, but open your eyes and be honest folks. This OL is killing both the pass and the run.

  50. Nofoolnodrool says: Oct 8, 2013 7:43 PM

    Not jealous at all timmy, I live 70 miles from that cesspool. You said it was a GREAT city, yet choose to not live there. Can you tell us what’s so great about Pittsburgh or do you know nothing about it? While you’re at it, maybe you can explain what makes tomlin and steeler fans so great. We’ll be waiting!
    When you say we are you talking about the lint in your belly button? If I have to explain to you what is great about The Burgh I might as well try to give you some class which you desperately seek. Pittsburgh is a vibrant cultural , educational, and professional center filled with open minded friendly people. Their climate is what made me move closer to the ocean otherwise I would still be in the burg. You couldn’t cut it there so you hate it……right. I’ll take your answer off the air TIMMY

  51. rottenbellybutton says: Oct 8, 2013 8:00 PM

    Do you actually believe the garbage you type? Pittsburgh is none of that. Maybe back in the 1930′s when you moved but not now. Come back and visit. You’ll find a depressed city full of ignorant disgruntled yinzers. Come to think of it, you’ll fit right in. What happened timmy, did a little cold weather scare you from your paradise?

  52. Joemontanaflacco says: Oct 8, 2013 8:17 PM

    Hahaha. Nofool thinks Pittsburgh is New York City!! The place has like one theater and a sandwich shop. On the weekends, downtown is nothing but crickets. Give me a break! Even Baltimore has more culture. At least Baltimore has enough pride not to erect statues in memory of a silly jump ball deflection pass. And open minded friendly people?!? Hahahahaha! That’s a good one. Most vile, rude, inhospitable fans in the world!

  53. crownofthehelmet says: Oct 8, 2013 8:29 PM

    Not that familiar with Baltimore the city, and I’m sure this is just a rumor, but I heard the town is so rough that even the strippers assault innocent people that are just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Yikes.

  54. quittsburghstoolers says: Oct 8, 2013 8:38 PM

    What the Steelers need to do is go through all the other teams’ practice squads & sign 53 new players while cutting that whole pack of underperforming losers they already have on the roster.

    Heaven knows they couldn’t do any worse than they are doing now. At least those practice squad guys would be out there busting their humps, unlike those banjos currently on the team…

  55. steelcurtainn says: Oct 8, 2013 9:39 PM

    Pittsburgh is a great place to live. Those who say otherwise, are lying to themselves or never been. Been to Baltimore, its OK, I won’t bash the city, but its nothing to write home about. One things for sure, since the two teams have been in the division together, Pittsburgh is the CLEAR CLASS of the afc north. There is no disputing that, despite how bad raven fans want to argue it.

  56. Nofoolnodrool says: Oct 9, 2013 4:24 AM

    Joemontanaflacco says:
    Oct 8, 2013 8:17 PM
    Hahaha. Nofool thinks Pittsburgh is New York City!! The place has like one theater and a sandwich shop. On the weekends, downtown is nothing but crickets. Give me a break! Even Baltimore has more culture. At least Baltimore has enough pride not to erect statues in memory of a silly jump ball deflection pass. And open minded friendly people?!? Hahahahaha! That’s a good one. Most vile, rude, inhospitable fans in the world!

    4 7 Aren’t you the very same troll who whined about me making disparaging comments about Charm City? One and the same…not a big deal as I judge the source for its value, which in your case is not much…an Internet wise guy lacking the social skills to survive off the keyboard.
    Vile, rude, inhospitable, but not building a statue for and worshipping a convicted felon….. Skippy you are just a hater, nothing more.

  57. pitt6six says: Oct 9, 2013 8:56 AM

    Thing is- coaching. Go look at the first rounders since 2003 and there is only 2 guys you can consider a “miss” which are Ziggy Hood and Rashard Mendenhall. The problem isn’t the talent it’s the coaching. Not Dick Lebeau either. Todd Haley needs to go because he doesnt fit Ben’s style, and when you have a QB that has taken you to 3 Super Bowls, you better have his approval on a hire. Mike Tomlin needs a stern sit down talk and needs 5-6 wins to keep his job, needs playoffs next year or he will be gone. This team isn’t “rebuilding” they are in a rough patch. Patience my fellow fans, patience.

  58. Joemontanaflacco says: Oct 9, 2013 10:39 AM

    “Not that familiar with Baltimore the city, and I’m sure this is just a rumor, but I heard the town is so rough that even the strippers assault innocent people that are just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Yikes.”

    Let’s hope none of them runs on to Heinz Field. She’ll go 60-70 yards before the defense figures out what’s happening.

  59. mostlombardisintheleague says: Oct 9, 2013 12:26 PM

    @bobzilla, read this posted today in the Post Gazette. It does not mention Ben Roethlisberger at all: On the Steelers: Defense might be main culprit in 0-4 start

  60. ultramanjones says: Oct 9, 2013 1:14 PM

    There are Steelers fans and there are Steelers customers, and one thing about being a true Steelers fan is that you understand the heart and soul of the Pittsburgh Steelers philosophy and you don’t turn your back on it because of some bad luck or hard times. Customers can booo and complain and blame and point fingers and turn on the team. Fans – FANATICS stick with their team through thick and thin and know that when the team is having struggles, it’s time for THE FANS to step up and support the team. If Mike Tomlin says Mike Adams needs to sit down and study and practice harder, I believe him and trust him to make the right choices to turn this team around. For all of you who disagree with me. Go root for the Browns and get your negativity out of my face.

  61. evansvc says: Oct 9, 2013 11:39 PM

    This team should bring in VINCE YOUNG…..
    He has shown everyone that he is NOT a cancer in the locker room and that he is a hard worker (e.g. Green Bay Packers)… Vince is a 6′-5″ mobile quarterback with talent and playoff experience…. He is hungry, motivated and determined to prove he can still play this game at a high level…. Vince is a LOW risk-HIGH reward type of guy… This would be a wise move for any GM/Coach looking to upgrade their qb pool….

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!