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Hard Count: What is Byron Stingily Ready To Do For Steelers?

Byron-Stingily-OTHard Count

By P. Brady

The Pittsburgh Steelers lost Kelvin Beachum from their offensive line – a torn ACL suffered in last Sunday’s game against the Arizona Cardinals.  The loss may have been devastating if not for the fact that Pittsburgh already had Alejandro Villanueva in the wings.

What is interesting is how little is being said about the guy they brought in to take Beachum’s spot on the roster: Byron Stingily.

Stingily was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in the sixth round of the 2011 NFL Draft (175th overall).  He was primarily a backup player, and saw little action when the Titans had Michael Oher at right tackle.  After becoming an unrestricted free agent in March, the Titans re-signed him just nine days later and Oher was released.  Stingily reportedly received a two-year, $2.25 million dollar contract, with a signing bonus of $250,000, but on September 5, 2015, he had reportedly been released by the Titans before final roster cuts. He played in 20 games with 9 starts throught his 4-year career with Tennessee.

Despite being familiar with the Titans, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin indicated on Tuesday that offensive line coach Mike Munchak knows very little about Stingily.  “We’re just getting ready to see what he’s capable of,” Tomlin said.  “Don’t know much yet.  The fact that he has past experience with (coach) Munchak was really irrelevant…we’ll just put him in the mix with the other guys and see what he’s capable of executing…” In other words, it doesn’t sound like the coaching staff really expects much.

Munchak was at Tennessee when Stingily was drafted and may be holding back comment until he sees how well Stingily does in practice this week.  He played in 10 games in 2014, a career high (five starts).  He has yet to allow a sack, but is otherwise an enigma.

Truth be told, he may be simply an addition to push Mike Adams to get himself ready to come off the PUP list after back surgery.  Adams is faced with getting back to practice within the next three weeks or losing a chance at the 53-man roster this season.

Stingily is a big guy at six feet, five inches and 318 pounds, if those are his true measurables.  He made no big splashes at Louisville (college career) and has yet to make much noise in the NFL.  Coach Tomlin called him the team’s most “viable option” of the players available at the position.  Time will tell Stingily is ready to give the Steelers something that resembles a player they’d like to see add depth to their O-line or if he’s a warm body should Villanueva or another lineman falter.

4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. DrGeorge

    October 22, 2015 at 9:50 am

    Many thanks to the SteelersGab staff for this profile. Under the circumstances, we didn’t expect Stingily would be the second coming of Leon Searcy — but it would be nice if he could play the position better than Mike Adams. Otherwise, he and Adams are both likely to be gone at the end of this year. This is for all practical purposes the last best chance for both men to make it in the NFL.

    Unfortunately, this situation exists because Tomlin has neglected the OT position in past drafts and free agency. (I consider wasting an impulsive #2 draft pick in 2012 on a known air head and underachiever as a whim rather than a serious response to a team need.) As it is, Munchak has worked wonders with an O-line that lacks a true starting tackle: Gilbert and Adams would be backups anywhere else, and Beachum is an over-achieving OG pressed into service at LT. Let’s hope that in the next draft, Munchak will get the dominate LT he needs to solidify this line.

  2. P Brady

    October 22, 2015 at 1:53 pm

    DrGeorge I agree wholeheartedly. Why Munchak doesn’t get involved come draft day make no sense to me, but the 2015 draft was not best for off. linemen

  3. DrGeorge

    October 22, 2015 at 4:24 pm

    Thanks for the comment, P Brady, and you are right about the 2015 draft. But the problem is not a recent one; it has been going on for at least eight years.

    Our last Pro Bowl OT was Marvel Smith, who left the Steelers in 2008. Since then, we’ve used a #2 on Kraig Urbik in 2009, Gilbert in 2011, and Adams in 2012, without much to show for it. That Beachum, a #9 in 2012, has outplayed all three suggests that there is something amiss in the way we evaluate players at that position. Yet we haven’t picked up a proven OT in free agency either.

    Our weakness at OT explains, in part, why Ben R. has taken so many sacks over those years. In 2015, our defensive needs trumped all offensive needs, regardless of Munchak’s input, but in 2016, I hope he finally persuades the brass to pick up a quality tackle, more likely in free agency than the draft, since we really don’t have time to develop a rookie. Beachum is due to hit free agency after this year, although his recent injury will make it less expensive for the Steelers to retain him, if he successfully rehabs the knee. Adams is as good as gone, and Gilbert is hanging on only because there is no one better — a sad commentary in itself. I hope Villanueva proves to be the guy at LT, but even if he is, RT remains a problem, as is depth. The franchise must address this deficiency in the coming off-season if we hope to be real contenders again.

  4. Austin

    October 23, 2015 at 12:15 am

    Couldn’t agree more, Doc! By the way and on another note, there is no way BB should play against KC! If the coaching staff feels there is no way they can win with Landry jones in this game, oh well, then they need to simply take their lumps and wait until BB is more fully healed. They’ve already exceeded expectations without him in terms of win-loss. But Tomlin may once again prove why he is not the man for this job by bringing him back prematurely and risking further injury!

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