@ScottBrown_ESPN: I think both return even if the Steelers miss the playoffs unless something drastic happens like they lose the rest of their games. Mike Tomlin will probably have to shake up his staff if the Steelers miss the playoffs for a third consecutive season and I think he officially lands on the proverbial hot seat if that happens. The Steelers would also have to take a hard look at their drafting process. Whatever the setup is in regard to Kevin Colbert and Tomlin doesn't appear to be working. The Steelers have made too many questionable draft picks since the two have been together. I think the Steelers would be wise to give Colbert the final say -- there appears to be 50/50 split between him and Tomlin -- and give him ownership the draft. Colbert's body of work going back to 2000 has earned him the right to get the Steelers' drafting back on track.
@ScottBrown_ESPN: I don't know if I'd say genius. Right now it looks like the Steelers simply made the better of two bad choices. LaMarr Woodley may be non-factor in Oakland but it's not like Jason Worilds has been tormenting opposing quarterbacks. He has just two sacks and seven quarterback hurries in six games. Coach Mike Tomlin said earlier this week that the Steelers need Worilds to make impact plays on a consistent basis. The best thing that the Steelers can say about Worilds right now is they are not bound to him as far as a contract after 2014. It would be nice if they got more from the $9.754 million they are paying him this season.
@ScottBrown_ESPN: The Steelers wanted another special teams player against the Cleveland Browns with Shamrko Thomas out because of a hamstring injury. I wondered too about the decision to expose Wesley Johnson to waivers when the Steelers presumably could have found someone on else on their 53-man roster to take Thomas' spot on special teams. Ventrone did play well in Thomas' absence, and what does it say about Johnson that the Steelers were willing to risk losing him, as they did to the New York Jets? The bigger question may be why they used the second of two fifth-round picks on Johnson in the first place. That round continues to be a black hole for the Steelers. Their fifth-round picks dating to 2011 are Johnson, cornerback Shaquille Richardson, cornerback Terry Hawthorne, running back Chris Rainey and outside linebacker Chris Carter. Ouch.