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Thread: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

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    Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Very slim pickings.




    With the release of Ladarius Green, Steelers’ Nation has understandably turned their attention to any options on the free agent market. That in mind, let’s view the top options out there.



    Gary Barnidge –
    Released by the Cleveland Browns after they drafted David Njoku in the first round. He caught 55 passes for the Browns last year but he clearly regressed: His average dropped from 13.2 to 11.1 from the year prior and touchdowns had a more severe fall, nine to two. Barnidge turns 32 in late September. 22 career receptions and three touchdowns in his career against the Steelers.


    http://www.steelersdepot.com/2017/05/top-tight-ends-left-free-agency/
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  2. #2

    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Barnidge should've been signed by the Steelers unless there's something wrong with him...but what would their medical team know about that...too soon?




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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    I think I can't get on board with the whole "OMG!!!! What are we going to DO! How could this happen!!!" panic that seems to be bubbling below the surface on Steelers internet sites.

    If we take as fact that the team anticipated Greg Warren's failed physical. Why do we assume they did not with Green?

    That guy they just picked up yesterday seems to compare favorably to in size, speed, and production to Sheehan, who went in the third round. Kittle can block like a tackle, but if you don't light the Big 10 on fire catching the ball, you aren't going to suddenly get better at in the NFL. I mean James is a Big 10 TE with better production as a receiver than Kittle and we are talking about replacing him. See where that logic breaks down? Kittle is basically Matt Spaeth 2.0. Meh. I've seen that movie before and it was underwhelming and kinda boring.

    Super Roku Box, Engram, and Everett are all cover you eyes bad at blocking. So they have to be evaluated as super sized WR's because that is what they would be doing. If that is the case, may I introduce you to Jujubee and the Canaanite. Both are big bodied targets that are actual WRs.

    Does it suck that Green's brains are so scrambled that they had to cut him? Absolutely. Is anyone currently on the roster a downgrade at this point? Yup.

    Is this some sort of disaster that doesn't seem to have a plan? Not sure I can go that far. If no one "gameplanned" out what the team would do if they had to cut Green -- then everyone not named "Rooney" needs a new job.

  4. #4

    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Not to mention they did pretty well with the same grouping last season...people hate on James a lot but the guys not terrible by any means. I don't remember seeing him drop many passes or fumble anything...




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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    I am a James fan. Cutting Green is a non-factor as he wasn't much of a part of the team last year anyway.

    Oh wells.....
    Hey goal post, you got something in the mail today.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    They can manage with James, they did last year, it's just he could stand to be upgraded, especially in the blocking department, and it's troubling that they seemed to be indicating confidence in Green a short time ago and seemed to plan for Green being available

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency


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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Looking at the remaining FA TEs, I'd stick w/James and X-man. Grimble didn't look too bad as a 2nd TE when healthy. Outlaw can make 1st downs and red zone targets (but no YAC)and maybe that's all we need if (BIG IF) the other WR's ste up.

    MB/Coates and Rogers along w/Juju all need to step their ass up and help AB out.



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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by Mojouw View Post
    I think I can't get on board with the whole "OMG!!!! What are we going to DO! How could this happen!!!" panic that seems to be bubbling below the surface on Steelers internet sites.

    If we take as fact that the team anticipated Greg Warren's failed physical. Why do we assume they did not with Green?

    That guy they just picked up yesterday seems to compare favorably to in size, speed, and production to Sheehan, who went in the third round. Kittle can block like a tackle, but if you don't light the Big 10 on fire catching the ball, you aren't going to suddenly get better at in the NFL. I mean James is a Big 10 TE with better production as a receiver than Kittle and we are talking about replacing him. See where that logic breaks down? Kittle is basically Matt Spaeth 2.0. Meh. I've seen that movie before and it was underwhelming and kinda boring.

    Super Roku Box, Engram, and Everett are all cover you eyes bad at blocking. So they have to be evaluated as super sized WR's because that is what they would be doing. If that is the case, may I introduce you to Jujubee and the Canaanite. Both are big bodied targets that are actual WRs.

    Does it suck that Green's brains are so scrambled that they had to cut him? Absolutely. Is anyone currently on the roster a downgrade at this point? Yup.

    Is this some sort of disaster that doesn't seem to have a plan? Not sure I can go that far. If no one "gameplanned" out what the team would do if they had to cut Green -- then everyone not named "Rooney" needs a new job.
    I disagree, Iowa is a TE blocking school and Kittle wasn't used much as a receiver. He had some of the best numbers at the combine in the TE class, running a 4.5 forty. I think Kittle will turn into a far better TE than James or Spaeth. I'll be watching closely.
    "The first principle is that you must not fool yourself--and you are
    the easiest person to fool."

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by Mojouw View Post
    I think I can't get on board with the whole "OMG!!!! What are we going to DO! How could this happen!!!" panic that seems to be bubbling below the surface on Steelers internet sites.

    If we take as fact that the team anticipated Greg Warren's failed physical. Why do we assume they did not with Green?

    That guy they just picked up yesterday seems to compare favorably to in size, speed, and production to Sheehan, who went in the third round. Kittle can block like a tackle, but if you don't light the Big 10 on fire catching the ball, you aren't going to suddenly get better at in the NFL. I mean James is a Big 10 TE with better production as a receiver than Kittle and we are talking about replacing him. See where that logic breaks down? Kittle is basically Matt Spaeth 2.0. Meh. I've seen that movie before and it was underwhelming and kinda boring.

    Super Roku Box, Engram, and Everett are all cover you eyes bad at blocking. So they have to be evaluated as super sized WR's because that is what they would be doing. If that is the case, may I introduce you to Jujubee and the Canaanite. Both are big bodied targets that are actual WRs.

    Does it suck that Green's brains are so scrambled that they had to cut him? Absolutely. Is anyone currently on the roster a downgrade at this point? Yup.

    Is this some sort of disaster that doesn't seem to have a plan? Not sure I can go that far. If no one "gameplanned" out what the team would do if they had to cut Green -- then everyone not named "Rooney" needs a new job.
    Sheehan was drafted in the second round, 13th pick. I had been pimping Sheehan before the draft but knew he would be gone by our 2nd pick. The TE we just picked up doesn't resemble Sheehan in the slightest besides maybe size.
    They are obviously counting on James to be the guy. However, I remember hearing Ben wanted a TE in the draft, so that tells me he's not confident with what we have on the roster, which is alarming. Having a reliable tight end is really taken for granted. I don't see us not having one as being catastrophic, but with one, we would be that more dangerous.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    We have the number 2 or 3 ranked offense in the NFL and picked up JuJu in round 2.

    So while I wanted a TE in the first (Roku Sudoku), I am less concerned about a TE now, because we upgraded our WR corp.

    Now, finding the last few pieces to a formidable defense is what I am most excited about.
    "Life is not measured by the amount of breaths we take,
    but by the moments that take our breath away."

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by Shoes View Post
    I disagree, Iowa is a TE blocking school and Kittle wasn't used much as a receiver. He had some of the best numbers at the combine in the TE class, running a 4.5 forty. I think Kittle will turn into a far better TE than James or Spaeth. I'll be watching closely.
    If he didn't get the ball thrown to him a lot and was mainly a blocker then the 4.5 40 is kinda irrelevant.

    Game tape >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Combune numbers.




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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by 86WARD View Post
    If he didn't get the ball thrown to him a lot and was mainly a blocker then the 4.5 40 is kinda irrelevant.

    Game tape >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Combune numbers.
    Well he's in the NFL now, so its very relevant.
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    the easiest person to fool."

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    I'll go with The Outlaw.

    He's not not my favorite, but with AB, Bryant, Bell, & JuJu Bee on the field, the number of balls left to go to the TE won't really make much difference.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by teegre View Post
    I'll go with The Outlaw.

    He's not not my favorite, but with AB, Bryant, Bell, & JuJu Bee on the field, the number of balls left to go to the TE won't really make much difference.
    In terms of stats, I agree. But the reliable checkdown or deep threat down the middle is a huge asset and we don't have a guy who can do that on a consistent basis. I do have faith in the Outlaw and believe he could provide some of what Heath gave us, but it's definitely the weakest link of the offense.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by teegre View Post
    I'll go with The Outlaw.

    He's not not my favorite, but with AB, Bryant, Bell, & JuJu Bee on the field, the number of balls left to go to the TE won't really make much difference.
    That's true, but the problem is that a TE has two jobs, and catching is James's better job by a far cry over blocking. So, if we aren't using him much for catching the ball, then he's not going to be worth that much to us unless he really learns how to block between now and September.
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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by RunNGun View Post
    In terms of stats, I agree. But the reliable checkdown or deep threat down the middle is a huge asset and we don't have a guy who can do that on a consistent basis. I do have faith in the Outlaw and believe he could provide some of what Heath gave us, but it's definitely the weakest link of the offense.
    Have they ever had that?




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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    I never recognized Green as ever being on the team.
    Hater = Realist

    Why do liberals whine so much?

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    This may keep Haley from running his 3 TD sets.


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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by RunNGun View Post
    In terms of stats, I agree. But the reliable checkdown or deep threat down the middle is a huge asset and we don't have a guy who can do that on a consistent basis. I do have faith in the Outlaw and believe he could provide some of what Heath gave us, but it's definitely the weakest link of the offense.
    Don't me wrong. I'd love to have an upgrade at TE; it's the weakest link on the offensive side of the ball.

    But, replacing James with someone from this draft would have been a lateral move.

    James 65
    Drafted TE 70???

    Whereas, drafting JuJu (or Sutton) upgrades both of those positions.

    JuJu 85
    Sutton 80

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Craic View Post
    That's true, but the problem is that a TE has two jobs, and catching is James's better job by a far cry over blocking. So, if we aren't using him much for catching the ball, then he's not going to be worth that much to us unless he really learns how to block between now and September.
    True

    That said, if he goes out into the seam, he takes a LB with him (one less guy in the box for Bell to deal with).

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    I was not counting on much from Green anyway. This just means XGrimble earns a spot on the 53 if he shows anything in camp. This changes nothing as far as my outlook for this season. Just say no to FAs.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by RunNGun View Post
    Sheehan was drafted in the second round, 13th pick. I had been pimping Sheehan before the draft but knew he would be gone by our 2nd pick. The TE we just picked up doesn't resemble Sheehan in the slightest besides maybe size.
    They are obviously counting on James to be the guy. However, I remember hearing Ben wanted a TE in the draft, so that tells me he's not confident with what we have on the roster, which is alarming. Having a reliable tight end is really taken for granted. I don't see us not having one as being catastrophic, but with one, we would be that more dangerous.
    They are similar in size. They put up almost identical metrics.

    Shaheen -- https://www.mockdraftable.com/player/adam-shaheen

    Odom -- 6’7/6 251 pounds at his Pro Day. There, he ran a respectable 4.79 and jumped 33 inches in the vertical, plus a 7.27 three cone. (http://www.steelersdepot.com/2017/05...okie-minicamp/)

    Let's compare breakdowns and we can see both have strong questions about their ability to succeed as #1 TE at the NFL level - http://www.steelersdepot.com/2017/04...-adam-shaheen/ and http://www.steelersdepot.com/2017/05...-phazahn-odom/ (used these two because they are written by the same observer).

    One cost you a 2nd round pick! The other cost you a bag of kicking tees. That was my point. If I'm going to take a gamble on a TE from lower level of competition that needs to be "caoched up" -- I certainly would rather do it w/out spending a high draft pick.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by Shoes View Post
    I disagree, Iowa is a TE blocking school and Kittle wasn't used much as a receiver. He had some of the best numbers at the combine in the TE class, running a 4.5 forty. I think Kittle will turn into a far better TE than James or Spaeth. I'll be watching closely.
    You may be right and aspects of Kittle's tape are extremely impressive. I just don't see it happening. Of course we may never know because he got drafted by a crap franchise with no QB and the hope that the younger Shannahan can use magic pixie dust to fix the team.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by 86WARD View Post
    Have they ever had that?
    They wanted Green to be the guy to stretch the middle of the field with his speed. So we had it, it just didn't work out. James is nothing more than a checkdown with his lack of speed and Ben doesn't trust him. IMO, with the TE position you want to have a guy who can get over the top of LBs and stretch the middle of the field, or a guy who can block and be a reliable check down. Right now, we have neither.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by teegre View Post
    Don't me wrong. I'd love to have an upgrade at TE; it's the weakest link on the offensive side of the ball.

    But, replacing James with someone from this draft would have been a lateral move.

    James 65
    Drafted TE 70???

    Whereas, drafting JuJu (or Sutton) upgrades both of those positions.

    JuJu 85
    Sutton 80

    - - - Updated - - -



    True

    That said, if he goes out into the seam, he takes a LB with him (one less guy in the box for Bell to deal with).
    I agree 100%. There wasn't a guy there after our first pick that was a sure fire upgrade with what we already have. There was really nothing the Steelers could do to upgrade the position unless they took a TE with their first pick, which would have been a reach IMO.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by Mojouw View Post
    They are similar in size. They put up almost identical metrics.

    Shaheen -- https://www.mockdraftable.com/player/adam-shaheen

    Odom -- 6’7/6 251 pounds at his Pro Day. There, he ran a respectable 4.79 and jumped 33 inches in the vertical, plus a 7.27 three cone. (http://www.steelersdepot.com/2017/05...okie-minicamp/)

    Let's compare breakdowns and we can see both have strong questions about their ability to succeed as #1 TE at the NFL level - http://www.steelersdepot.com/2017/04...-adam-shaheen/ and http://www.steelersdepot.com/2017/05...-phazahn-odom/ (used these two because they are written by the same observer).

    One cost you a 2nd round pick! The other cost you a bag of kicking tees. That was my point. If I'm going to take a gamble on a TE from lower level of competition that needs to be "caoched up" -- I certainly would rather do it w/out spending a high draft pick.
    Shaheen has him by 20 pounds and runs more fluidly, if that makes sense. Shaheen also dominated his competition, while Odom tallied a whopping 14 catches last season. There is no comparison other than similar pro days. Turn the film on.

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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by RunNGun View Post
    Shaheen has him by 20 pounds and runs more fluidly, if that makes sense. Shaheen also dominated his competition, while Odom tallied a whopping 14 catches last season. There is no comparison other than similar pro days. Turn the film on.
    I'm not saying that Odom = Shaheen. What I'm wondering is how much better is Shaheen than Odom? If Shaheen is a 7/10 and Odom is a 4/10 what does that gap really mean in terms of NFL ability? Is it really that much?

    Plus it isn't like Shaheen is ready to buckle his chinstrap and dominate. He needs work on routes, separation, quickness, blocking. Odom needs work too, but he didn't cost anything.

  28. #28

    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by RunNGun View Post
    They wanted Green to be the guy to stretch the middle of the field with his speed. So we had it, it just didn't work out. James is nothing more than a checkdown with his lack of speed and Ben doesn't trust him. IMO, with the TE position you want to have a guy who can get over the top of LBs and stretch the middle of the field, or a guy who can block and be a reliable check down. Right now, we have neither.
    I can't recall them ever having that. Heath wasn't a burner. And I don't think it's fair at all to say Ben doesn't trust James. Where do you get that?

    James has been decent. If there's an area on the offense that needs to be upgraded, it's TE. However, the current TE situation isn't going to prevent this team from winning a championship...unless of course one of them pulls a "Jackie Smith"




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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    I think James is serviceable.

    He had 338 yards and 3 TD's splitting time with Green.

    and having Bryant and JuJu as the #2 and #3 receivers, he may get more open.

    I predict 500 - 600 yards and 5 TD's for the Outlaw this year, which is just a little lower than Heath averaged in his career.

    Hope his blocking improves.
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    Re: Top Tight Ends Left In Free Agency

    I can't remember why, now, but I was somewhat impressed with Grimble's play last year. I can't remember if it was catching, blocking, or something else, but he caught my eye a few times for good plays and never caught my eye for bad plays. I'm hoping he can step up to be a decent TE for us.
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