Ed Bouchette: Good afternoon, let's begin
kjacksonpgh: Ed, with the additional 8 million coming after June 1st do you see the Steelers using some of that money to extend some of the young talent before their contracts expire or add an experienced vet ie Brett or James?
Ed Bouchette: I can see some extensions and it would depend on the draft whether there would be interest in re-signing one of those two vets. Candidates for extensions would include Ben Roethlisberger, Maurkice Pouncey, Marcus Gilbert and Cortez Allen.
kjacksonpgh: Hi Ed, with only days away from the draft, and the anticipation building what say you? With the 15th overall pick of the 2014 draft the Steelers select …………?
Ed Bouchette: I have not decided who I will predict for them. I will eventually, but there's still plenty of time left for me to watch tape and read all the reports.
JamesinNYC: Is the draft here yet? I happen to know a friend of mine who was working on the stage for the show that was postponed, so I know it was real, the question is why didn't they either go back to the Garden, Barklay Center or kick the Rockets out of the way for 3 days?
Ed Bouchette: That would be the Rockettes, not the Rockets. It is because they wanted an excuse to move the draft later. I would expect they will need no excuse next year to hold it again in May.
dave: Mel Kiper now thinks they'll draft an OT with their first pick. Do you see that as a possibility?
Ed Bouchette: I love Mel, known him for a long time. How many different players has he now picked for the Steelers in his various mock drafts and when the music stops, which one can he lay claim too? I think it's possible they would draft an OT if the CB/LB/WR they like are not there.
K DUB: Hi Ed, I feel there is going to be a lot of draft day trades in Round 1, especially if QBs start to drop. So, if that happens, I think there is a good chance that there will not be a player that the Steelers feel is worthy of pick 15. Having said that dropping back would be ideal, in my opinion. However, can you see them dropping back as far as pick 30 with San Francisco since they are loaded with picks? Or is that too far and do you think Jim Harbaugh would not want to deal with the Steelers because of his brother being in the same division as Pittsburgh?
Ed Bouchette: I don't think Harbaugh cares what his brother thinks if it can help his own team. If the return is attractive, dropping to No. 30 should not be a problem. I do not see that happening, but if the offer is a good one, they'd have to be interested.
dave: Do they need to draft a NT at some point?
Ed Bouchette: They have plenty of needs and nine draft picks. I think they have more important needs elsewhere and I would classify defensive end as one before NT.
Steeltyke: Hi Ed. Now that he has turned up for phase 1 of offseason workouts has Jarvis Jones got bigger and stronger as everyone at the end of last season said he needed to. Surely one of you guys has seen him!
Ed Bouchette: Nope, haven't seen him. They thankfully do not let us watch the conditioning drills.
JamesinNYC: As the details come out about Adams, who is still the victim, is his standing with the Steelers affected? He appears to be lacking in common sense at the very least to find himself in that position.
Ed Bouchette: While some of what has come out does not reflect well on him, I do not see it affecting his status with the Steelers. If he were a prospect in the draft, that would be a different story.
tommy: Hello Ed. could you see the steelers drafting a running back somewhere in the draft?
Ed Bouchette: Yes, but not until Saturday and not early on Saturday. Late rounds I would guess, if they do.
steelmann58: Ed I was curious seems reports from the Media are saying the Steelers will not bring back The Beard?
Ed Bouchette: I don't think there has been any definitive "report" that they will not bring him back. Again, I think they will re-assess after the draft. I also do not like the chances that he will return.
steelmann58: Hi Ed Do you see the Steelers going CB then Wr since Wr postion seems to have more quality Depth
Ed Bouchette: That would be my guess, provided the corner is someone they really want in the first round. They will not blindly select a corner just to get a corner if he's not rated highly enough by them.
tommy: after watkins and evans, who do you like best at wide receiver?
Ed Bouchette: I know a lot of people peg Odell Beckham of LSU for them there, but I like Brandin Cooks of Oregon State, the fastest of the top WRs.
LaRueski: What do you make of Antonio Brown's claim of the team lacking camaraderie and togetherness in the locker room….and who do you see stepping up as leaders of the team in 2014?
Ed Bouchette: Wasn't that claim being made last year by a few Steelers too?
chaz: Move Jarvis to inside linebacker and let them draft someone who fits the position, does that make sense?
Ed Bouchette: No.
Homer: Hello Ed, the Steelers scheme revolves around LB's and I have to say I am pretty unimpressed with their pedigree to this point, what is your assessment of the unit?
Ed Bouchette: I've written this many times in my blog, that they are thin at linebacker and their two starting OLBs have done little to date.
JamesnotinNYC: is Mike Adams considered a bust at this point given his poor play and legal troubles?
Ed Bouchette: First off, he has no legal troubles. The guys who stabbed him are the ones with the legal troubles. As for his play, no, I would not label him a bust. I also would not label him a whopping success, but he will have a chance to show what he can do in his third season. It took Jason Worilds and Cam Heyward some time before they asserted themselves.
mikeflores16: Do the Steelers pick a DE in the first 3 rounds?
Ed Bouchette: I could see that, yes.
mikeflores16: How much did the stabbing affect Adams last year? Could it have been to blame for his horrible start?
Ed Bouchette: Mike insisted it did not affect him at all. I maintain that when you get your belly carved up in June, your core probably won't return to being as strong as it was for awhile.
kjacksonpgh: Ed, I wanted to ask you if you knew that the Steelers, and Big Ben have started preliminary talks about a contract extension. Also that it has been kept low profile to not attract much media attention?
Ed Bouchette: I think it's been kept low profile because there are not substantive talks going on.
James: Ed, why is everyone so down on the DHB signing? He's getting paid the minimum, he has a good pedigree, and if nothing else he can be their return man
Ed Bouchette: The fact he has done very little returning does not make him much of a candidate there. There is also a reason why a former first-round draft pick lasted so long in free agency. The signing was OK because it cost them virtually nothing if they cut him.
chaz: why are you so down on moving Jarvis inside? He is tall, rangy, fast, but not particularly strong or quick and seems to have the opposite body type of the great OLB's (Harrison, Ware, Dumervil, etc)
Ed Bouchette: The fact the Steelers drafted Jones in the first round as an outside linebacker, which is where he played in the 3-4 in college, is what I'm basing it on. If they move him inside, it would tell me they made a mistake drafting him. It's like when they drafted Tom Ricketts of Pitt in the first round in 1989 and called him a "natural left tackle.'' No sooner did they have him in training camp that they moved him to guard. That had "bust" written all over it when they did that. You do that with fifth-rounders, not No. 1s.
mikeflores16: Would you take Cooks with the 15th pick?
Ed Bouchette: Maybe, but I want to know who else is available when it's my turn.
T: Who is someone who is already on the team that you are excited to see or you think is going to breakout?
Ed Bouchette: Jarvis Jones.
Steeltyke: With Jarvis Jones unproven and Jason Worilds signed for only 1 year at present I think that the Steelers need to go OLB in the first half of the draft after hopefully taking a CB and WR in the first 2 rounds. Your thoughts?
Ed Bouchette: It would surprise me not at all if the Steelers would draft an outside linebacker in the first two days.
mikeflores16: Do you believe Cortez Allen steps up this year, much like Lewis did in his last year?
Ed Bouchette: Right now I believe they are confident in Cortez Allen's abilities.
Jerr: Why do the chats appear as a long paragraph on the Web...... Questions and answers running together?
Ed Bouchette: I do not see them that way, so I cannot tell you. But I will say goodbye here and look forward to next Tuesday's chat. Thank you all.