Jan 022013

Behind the Steel Curtain makes a very interesting point today while discussing whether former Steelers OL Tunch Ilkin would be a good fit for offensive line coach for the Steelers:

It not as easy as just looking at some of the guys that are currently available and say they would look great in Black and Gold. That is what happened to the Eagles. They brought in Howard Mudd to coach their offensive line after Juan Castillo was promoted to defensive coordinator. If there is a Hall of Fame for offensive line coaches, Mudd would be in on the first ballot. But, he was a disaster in Philly. Mudd likes big offensive linemen because he believes in a vertical pass drop set, whereas Castillo always preferred smaller, more athletic linemen. The overhaul that resulted really impeded their offense. Some guys may teach things a certain way that doesn’t fit with Haley or the players we currently have. That narrows the list, and would obviously bode well for Ilkin if he was interested in the job.

I’d never really thought of offensive line coach as being such a study in varied techniques but after reading that passage, it makes sense, doesn’t it. And because they’re more nitty-gritty than head coach or even offensive/defensive coordinator, perhaps it’s more difficult to customize techniques based on available personnel. It’s easier to stress over a coordinator or head coach’s philosophies, as so many did/have done w.r.t. Tomlin’s background in the 4-3 vs the Steelers current use of the 3-4. But the impact of position coaches shouldn’t be understated either.

Sep 142009

Now that Mike Vick may take a larger role in Philadelphia after Donovan McNabb fractured his ribs, it’s worth re-examining the outrage against Vick and backlash against the anti-Mike Vick outrage.

I’m ok with Vick getting another chance in the NFL. But his incarceration does not mean he necessarily deserved a second chance to play in the NFL. The only thing that 2 years in jail earned for Mike Vick is the opportunity to live a life in which he doesn’t commit more crimes. That’s all that “paying one’s debt to society” means. He didn’t earn the right to resume the life of a popular millionaire superstar. He earned the right to become a law-abiding citizen again. Nothing more, nothing less.

Some folks pose an equivalency argument that questions why Vick was treated so harshly by the law or the NFL when murderers, adulters, domestic abusers and others seem to get off so much more easily. Donte Stallworth pled out to 30 days for killing a person while driving drunk. Plaxico Burress is getting 2 years for shooting himself in the thigh. Steve McNair and countless others stepped out on their wives. Warren Moon was reported for domestic battery. Countless players use illegal drugs, performance-enhancing and other.

The relatively light ‘punishment’ incurred by other players shouldn’t mean that Vick’s punishment was too much. Stallworth should have gotten a harsher sentence. Moon should have been dealt with harshly for battery. Vick got hit pretty hard and he deserved that punishment. Others should get an even harder hit. Continue reading »