During the off-season, Steelers 101 put forth the idea that Isaac Redman and Jonathan Dwyer were playing for more than playing time during the preseason and we were right. On the final cut down, the Steelers decided to part ways with Dwyer after an up-and-down string of games. When this happened, some fans took it as surprise, as Dwyer may have more natural talent than Redman and he was the leading rusher in 2012. The big question has always been focus and dedication to the cause.LaRod Stephens-Howling sidelined for the season with a torn ACL, the Steelers return to the beginning. If fact, they should consider themselves lucky that Dwyer was still available after his release.
For Redman, time may be running out for him to prove his long-term worth to the franchise. He was handed the starting job when Dwyer was released, even after missing the majority of preseason with a stinger. Armed with the starting nod, he responded with a thud, fumbling twice although one may not have been all on him. Sure, he has been a fan favorite since the Steelers signed him as an undrafted rookie, but that status will not last forever.
His performance on opening day is part of a not so healthy trend for Redman. Look at 2012, he appeared poised to seize the starting role until injuries in training camp derailed him. In all, he rushed for 410 yards on 110 carries and 2 touchdowns while adding 19 receptions for 244 yards From then on, it was a challenge all season. Now, he again may be pushed to the sideline if production does not improve. It is not inconceivable that the 6-0, 230 pound bruiser could find himself as a change of pace / short yardage back, if Dwyer, Felix Jones or even Bell seizes the starting job.
Dwyer may be the most talented healthy back on the Steelers roster at this point and appears ready to make the most of his second chance. When motivated and healthy, he is a load and he was the Steelers leading rusher in 2012. A power back, he does run with an attitude and has enough short area quickness to make people miss. The 5-11, 229 pound was banged-and-bruised, and could not seem to maintain his stamina throughout an entire drive, but he finally appears to have turned the corner in his career and ws in the best shape of his Steelers’ career during training camp.
While he has said all of the right things since returning to Pittsburgh, there does appear to be more of an edge. The veteran running did have opportunities after working out with the New York Giants and New England Patriots, but decided to return to the Steel City to prove himself and show the coaching staff and front office that they made a mistake when they released him.
There is no doubt he will see action on Monday night, and that could be a blessing for the Steelers. In 2012, Dwyer had one of his better games against the Cincinnati Bengals in a game where the teams offensive line was physically battered. Sound like a familiar situation to anyone? Of course, if given the chance, he must become the dependable back that the franchise is looking for (at least until Bell is ready) and he must hold onto the ball; something he did not do during the preseason.
- Be sure to "like" Steelers 101 on Facebook and to follow Steelers 101 on Twitter
- Be sure to “like” Sports Media 101 on Facebook and to follow Sports Media 101 on Twitter
Your man cave is your home field advantage for every game. When the game is on the line, you should be able to look around and be reminded of the great moments you've watched unfold in that very room! MJR Sports Integrity offers a wide range or team and player-specific memorabilia that can do just that and take your game day room to the next level. Find your inspiration at MJR Sports Integrity and will your team to victory!
- Jonathan Dwyer and Isaac Redman Battling for More than Playing Time, Could Be Battling for a Contract Extension
- Jonathan Dwyer Headlines List of Cuts as the Pittsburgh Steelers Reduce Their Roster
- Pittsburgh Steelers Make a Roster Move Potentially Aimed at Boosting the Return Game
- LaRod Stephens-Howling Could Be the Player the Steelers Thought They Had in Chris Rainey
- Is William Gay the Pittsburgh Steelers Most Important Offseason Signing?
Short URL: http://sport-ne.ws/10o3