Ed Bouchette: Good afternoon, let's begin
kjacksonpgh: Hi Ed, wouldn't you think that all of the recent coverage of the Steeler's divided locker would be less of an issue if the players would stop going on shows talking about it?
Ed Bouchette: It would not be as large an issue with the public if they did not. They're the ones who brought it up in the first place, making a much larger issue out of the divided locker room than anything the original anonymous comment did.
Dude_From_Cali: Ed: is there still a 2-3% chance to resign fast footed #17 Mike [Wallet] or Mike [Wallet] is good as gone, as in Zero chance.
Ed Bouchette: A Mr. Blutarsky chance, 0.0.
Deuce: With the rising stock of Tavon Austin, do you see the Steelers maybe looking at him in the first round?
Ed Bouchette: It is way too early for me to determine who they might look at in the first round, but I would think a WR they deem to be near the top 17 prospects would have to be one of them.
kjacksonpgh: Ed, since Kevin Colbert and others did not use the excuse for going 8-8 as a reason for the underperforming team, why do you believe they underachieved when other teams with injuries were able to prevail?
Ed Bouchette: Sometimes it's the timing of the injuries and how they linger even when the players return, such as the QB.
kjacksonpgh: Ed, I'm not certain if you watch any of the NFL combine coverage? If so do you have any thoughts of a player or players that may be on the Steelers radar?
Ed Bouchette: I watched as much of the NFL Combine as i did the latest Survivor season. 0.0.
DSFedor: Having once written for a website, I found that the more I had to write, the harder it was to enjoy the game as a fan. I'd imagine that you, as a legit journalist, must obviously view the game differently. When was the last time you allowed yourself to be a fan? Can you root for the home team?
Ed Bouchette: The last homecoming I attended at IUP, sometime in the 1980s. Oh, and the 2004 and 2007 World Series.
The Wiz: I know there is always discussion that Steelers take best player on their board, but at 17 which of these positions (if any) do you think they would actually pull the trigger on QB, TE, G, OT, S, DT, DB
Ed Bouchette: LB or RB.
Ed Bouchette: I take that back, there is no RB worth the No. 17 spot. Safety, WR maybe
JamesinNYC: How about the player quit trying to blame something other then their performance for a soso year?
Ed Bouchette: That's a thought.
The Wiz: If they do end up with Breaston, does that mean the end for J Cotch?
Ed Bouchette: No, they need WRs, 4 of them at least.
Eleven: With the exception of Pouncey, the starting OL you contemplate, while talented on paper, is seriously lacking experience. Is this really the right time to release Colon and not attempt to resign Starks?
Ed Bouchette: I don't know if it's the time, but it's the time because they won't bring back Starks and it APPEARS they will cut Colon. They sunk all those high picks into the line and they have no choice but to use them.
John in Ohio: Is there any possibility the Steelers cut Ryan Clark and move Troy to free safety. Maybe this could save his health. Even though he is the defenses best playmaker, he isn't a playmaker if he's standing on the sidelines with an injury and this could help solve that?
Ed Bouchette: no
t: too early for second thoughts by the front office on signing antonio brown to that contract? not just performance from last season, but his seeming selfish ways on and off the field. what happened to receivers who just did their job without getting up after every catch and signaling a first down for example?
Ed Bouchette: If they're having second thoughts, they will keep them to themselves, I can assure you.
The Wiz: Do you think the Steelers would be willing spend market value for K Lewis or is it only realistic they sign him if he doesn't generate a lot of interest and they can get him relatively cheap
Ed Bouchette: Cheap is a relative term. I think they'd try to sign him to a reasonable contract, which is also relative, if he does not generate an over-the-top offer elsewhere. However, from what I can see, he is among the top FA corners.
Eleven: A tall, fast wide receiver with a decent level of maturity should be the first pick, do you agree?
Ed Bouchette: Again, that would depend on who is available and how they have them rated. There a not a lot of tall, fast WR with decent levels of maturity.
Jack Splat: When will Steelers start to announce who stays/who goes!
Ed Bouchette: I would think by next week. Many won't be announced because they are free agents.
mario: Will the off-field issues of last year's draft class keep them from drafting any with issues this year?
Ed Bouchette: I would think it would prompt them to take a closer look.
The Wiz: Do you think the Steelers are planning for a season with S Spence, and it will just be gravy if he is able to play
Ed Bouchette: I don't think Spence is in their plans right now.
Oscar: Ed, I found the bit you wrote about being in the SAG quite interesting today. Do you get a vote for the SAG awards?
Ed Bouchette: Yes, I did, for the first time since SAG merged with AFTRA.
scout: Ed, are these talking heads on the Combine coverage just full of it or are they legit? I sometimes wonder about some of these dudes that were never even scouts who are breaking down these kids.
Ed Bouchette: I found the commentary on the Red Carpet at the Academy Awards to be much more compelling.
John in Ohio: Whose to blame for having Worlids on the roster and, injuries or not, still not knowing what kind of player he is or can be?
Ed Bouchette: I don't know that anyone's to blame. That wrist injury set him back last year. My understanding is that Mike Tomlin was influential in them drafting him in the second round.
DSFedor: Did Plaxico Burress show anything last year that would make a tall veteran target at veteran minimum salary more attractive than a tall rookie receiver with a heafty paycheck and no experience?
Ed Bouchette: Probably not
mario: Do they have any interest in bringing back Hampton for one more year?
Ed Bouchette: They better. If they don't, it's a signal that they don't consider themselves contenders in 2013
Ken: Do you think the Steelers will draft a tight end? Any word on Heath Miller's progress?
Ed Bouchette: I don't think they are counting on him to open the season. There is little doubt they need another tight end, although David Johnson might move back to that spot.
weegie: Will they offer a contract to Emmanuel Sanders? He's a restricted FA, isn't he?
Ed Bouchette: Yes, they have to.
Ed Bouchette: I mean, they don't HAVE to, but they do have to.
DSFedor: Will the Rooneys have to switch to turf at Heinz Field after the Summer Olympics? I can only imagine the shot put and javelin events will wreck the grass more than a Pitt game on a Saturday.
Ed Bouchette: There's always that new soccer stadium on the South Side.
Eleven: What are the chances of the top 7 salaried players all collectively agree to take a significant pay cut in order to sign Lewis and to fix the salary cap situation for 2013. Kind of like sequestration.
Ed Bouchette: Back to Blutarsky, 0.0.
LGG115: This past season, we lost 5 of our games by 3 points (each), one of which was in OT. To me, that's not the sign of a bad team that is in "disarray" or in a "downward spiral" or are "rebuilding." Your thoughts, please.
Ed Bouchette: Told a long time ago that good teams win the close ones, bad teams lose them.
sf58: Follow up to Mario, do you still stand by your proclamation that Ogletree is totally off the Steelers board?
Ed Bouchette: That was an opinion. I would be stunned if they drafted him.
VA: Please tell me they aren't interested in Manti Te'o.
Ed Bouchette: Why, he could make some team a nice third-round draft pick.
Sam: Ed, what's more likely... the Steelers trade their 17th pick to get possibly two low first rounders or trade a player for 1-2 extra picks?
Ed Bouchette: I don't think you're going to get two low first-rounders for the No. 17, and I don't see anyone they are going to trade to get a couple of extra draft picks. So, neither.
Scott: Any attempt to re-sign Mendenhall or is he as good as gone?
Ed Bouchette: No attempt. I thought there was a chance he'd be back until he left the team.
Ed Bouchette: Thanks, all, for your questions today. We'll chat next Tuesday again.
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