´ Steel Curtain Rising: Steelers Send Message With Decision to Resign Max Starks

Who Deserves the Game Ball for Steelers Victory Over Panthers?

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Steelers Send Message With Decision to Resign Max Starks

The Steelers sent a message in the first two rounds of the 2012 NFL Draft: 
  • The era of “Plug and Patch” offensive line building in Pittsburgh is over.
Mike Tomlin’s offensive staff quickly confirmed this move after drafting DavidDiCastro and Mike Adams when they called Willie Colon to inform him that theoft-rumored shift to guard was going to become real.

The Steelers shifted Colon because they’re projecting Mike Adams to start at right tackle.

Today in resigning Max Starks the Steelers sent another unequivocal message: 
  • You have to earn your role as a starter when you’re a Pittsburgh Steeler
The latter message was just as important as the former. Mike Adams brings more than his fair share of baggage to the NFL – Adams knocked himself off the Steelers draft board with a positive drug test at the NFL scouting combine.

Adams worked himself back into the Mike Tomin and Kevin Colbert’s good graces, and they rewarded him by giving him a chance.

But when news of Colon’s shift to guard was accompanied by confirmation that Marcus Gilbert would remain at right tackle the idea that the Steelers braintrust might be giving Adam’s more than a chance wasn’t so outlandish.

Afterall, the only two people he’d have to beat out were Trai Essex and Jonathan Scott – both mean whose track record at the left tackle position is checkered – to be charitable.

But with Max Starks on the roster, the Steelers have brought in a veteran whom Adams will have to push himself to beat. They’re also giving themselves the luxury of allowing Adams to grow into the position.

Steelers Sign Starks - an Annual Off Season Rite

Perhaps when I launched Steel Curtain Rising in January of 2008 I it never occurred to me to  write up a batch of generic articles to cover typical, recurring, events.

One such story could have been "Steelers Resign Max Starks." 

That would have come in handy as hardly a year has passed without Max Starks putting ink to paper with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
That four year contract got cut short, however as Starks injured his neck during 2010 and had to finish the season on IR.

The Steelers "Resign Max Stark" yarn took an unexpected twist in 2011 as Starks, after weighing in at over 400 pounds at Ben Roethlisberger's wedding, was cutas soon as the lockout ended.

When WillieColon went down after the Debacle in Baltimore, many fans expected the Steelers to rush to the Red Phone to resign Starks (or perhaps Flozell Adams who actually offered his services to the Steelers -- for a price.)
That plan lasted all of 3 games when it became crystal clear that Jonathan Scott was not a 16 game starter at left tackle. Discretion is that better part of valor, and the Steelers turned to Max Starks, initially thinking he would provide depth, but Starks started immediately -- and the Steelers offensive line improved as a result.

Starks appears to be happy with the Steelers, Alan Robinson of the Tribune Review indicated that Atlanta was interested in signing him, despite the fact that the Steelers never seemed to have made up their collective mind on him.

However rumor is that Starks was never high on Bruce Arians list, and that of course is a moot point now. Welcome back to Steelers Nation Max (again).

Thanks for visiting. Click here for the rest of Steel Curtain Rising or here to see our Steelers 2012 Free Agent Focus.

6 comments:

Scatter said...

I was hoping this would be an option. Excellent move on the Steelers' part. Frankly, I feel much more confident going forward with the O Line now.

KT said...

Scatter,

Yes. This has been rumored for a while, and I am glad to see that it is true. Granted, the injury mileage is piling up on Starks, but they're also not putting all of their eggs in his basket either

Tony Defeo said...

I love Max Starks. Great guy. Underrated lineman. I was going to write something about the many lives of Max Starks, but you beat me to it. I'd much rather have Starks for depth than Scott. Let's hope the Steelers feel the same way.

Joe K said...

I agree that Max Starks is an underrated lineman. I like this move. I sure hope the days of "Plug and Patch" offensive line building are over. This confirms the Steelers may be addressing that issue

KT said...

I think the Steelers understand that the line is important and that they need to address it.

Honestly, I am not so sure that this is a "new" perception, but perhaps one that has had more to do with the way the '08 and '09 drafts broke in terms of who was available on the board when their time came to pick.

missroyaldisaster said...

I agree with most comments on this, Max Starks deserves way more than he has now and he is definitely underestimated for some reason.