Gerry Dulac: OK, I see questions lining up so let's get started...
BishkekSteeler: If Art Rooney asked you for your advice on what to do with the # 30 pick in this draft, What would you tell him?
Gerry Dulac: I doubt he will but I'd tell him draft another OLB who can pressure the pocket.
truesteelerfan: Is our #2 QB for next season currently on our roster?
Gerry Dulac: No because his contract is up. But he was on the roster in 2016 and his name is Landry Jones.
Joe C.: Does the Franchise Tag amount change if Peterson gets cut from the Viking thereby lowering the average of the top 5 backs?
Gerry Dulac: No. It is the average of the top 5 RBs based on the previous season salaries, not the coming season
BishkekSteeler: I agree that Landry should be our #2 QB and hope he resigns. I don't get all the hate thrown at him. People need to give the man his due.
Gerry Dulac: As a No. 2 QB, he is fine. I said this last week -- the Steelers consider Jones to be better than 80 percent of the other backups in the league. That's not my opinion, it's theirs.
James: Can you expand on last weeks CB comments pertaining to the draft? This team might see Golson as a bonus but isn't it a need inside the first few rounds? You advocate a pass rusher, but what's next on the list?
Gerry Dulac: What I said is cornerback is not a priority, not like the past 2 seasons. And just like last season, the Steelers view Golson as a second No. 2 draft pick for 2017. That doesn't mean they won't draft a cornerback, but it won't be in the first two or three rounds. It's more likely they will draft a safety before a corner.
truesteelerfan: Brown admits he has some 'growing up to do' - Does he get it and how his actions have at times hurt his team?
Gerry Dulac: I will give you the answer that universally applies to any question ever asked -- Time will tell.
William: Besides an Edge Rusher, what are the biggest needs in the draft?
Gerry Dulac: Unlike the past two seasons, when the Steelers went heavy on defense, this draft won't be as lopsided, especially in the early rounds. Last year the Steelers went defense on the first three rounds. This year, don't be surprised if you see a RB or WR sneak in there on the second round or third round, and possibly both through the first four rounds.
TXSteeler: Fastest Steeler Coach to 100 wins. 65% win percentage. No losing seasons. 7 playoff apps in 10 years. Winning playoff record. 2 SB apps and a win. What more do Steeler fans want? And before anybody brings up having a HOF QB how are Mike McCarthy, Sean Peyton, and every SD Coach doing with theirs?
Gerry Dulac: Pay the man
BishkekSteeler: Where do you see the Steelers picking a WR in this draft? Round 6 or 7 or is it a higher priority than I'm thinking?
Gerry Dulac: See earlier answer. They never turn their back on a skill player, no matter what round. And there is a lot of uncertainty at the position with Bryant, Wheaton and even Coates, not to mention their BIG wide receiver -- Ladarius Green. So, higher than you think
SteelByDesign: What position could you see the team addressing with a Ladarius Green/Mike Mitchell level FA signing?
Gerry Dulac: So, because you mentioned those players, you're talking about someone they need to come in and be a starter, or, at the very least, a major contributor, and I don't think they have that need. The only position I would say is maybe OLB, but as long as James Harrison is on the roster that makes no sense.
Joe C.: When you say WR is a need is that Interchangeable with TE? Isn't TE a bigger need or is James good enough along with hoping Green can play.
Gerry Dulac: I keep them seperate. And, I will tell you, the coaches and Ben like Jesse James. To me, he was one of the biggest surprises of the year. Dependable. Good hands, Solid route runner.
LI Steeler: Can the Steelers extend all 3 and what order would you prioritize the extensions due Tuitt, Bell, Brown?
Gerry Dulac: Tuitt would be third only because they view Cam Heyward as their best defensive lineman. That is not true w Bell and Brown. They are the best at their position and will be prioritized as such. That being said, Tuitt is a stud and a budding star, and they won't let him leave.
SteelByDesign: I won't call Ben the "DQ" word, but let's be honest... he's been known to stir the pot. If the Steelers take a QB early before he feels he's ready to retire, do you think that could create waves in the locker room?
Gerry Dulac: Like I said earlier, time will tell.
Egan: Any chance the Steelers make a splash and sign a Nick Perry in free agency? I understand Colbert doesn't spend Big in FA but he has signed Mitchell & Green to 5 million per year deals. Can they stretch that out a little bit and maybe offer Nick Perry 5 years 40 million?
Gerry Dulac: That is one of the moves that would make sense, but, again, a lot will depend on what they do with Harrison. I know he said he wants to come back and they have indicated they want him back. But, at age 39, they can't expect him to be a full-time contributor and play the way their scheme dictates -- i,e,, expect him to drop into coverage. That is unfair to James and unwise for their defense.
CburgStiller: In Fittipaldo's article today on Bell's contract, he mentioned how the deal the Vikings did with Peterson has muddied the water for other teams' negotiations with running backs. With them throwing so much money at him, is that in some ways irresponsible from a league business standpoint since it skews the market so much for that position? Do other teams resent that type of contract being given to players?
Gerry Dulac: I don't think any GM likes to see such disruptions/escalations in salaries because that only drives up the market for everyone. But I don't think there is resentment.
SteelByDesign: Is it a 0% chance the team would take someone like a Pat Mahomes if he were there at 30?
Gerry Dulac: The Steelers know they are very close to getting back to the Super Bowl. They showed that this season. I think every move they make in the offseason will be geared toward finding that missing piece, if you will -- the player who can help get them over the top. I doubt that is a backup QB.
Rob: Do you think the Steelers have serious worries about Bell's durability in relation to a long term deal?
Gerry Dulac: Serious is a strong word. But even in they had modest concern, it is not reflected in the manner they deploy him.
BishkekSteeler: Any insight into what is going on with Sammy Coates. The misdirection in the reporting of his medical treatment is very confusing.
Gerry Dulac: The only reporting of his treatment came from Sammy himself, via social media. There is no medical information coming from the Steelers. There never is during the offseason
James: Do you see Kevin Colbert staying on for many more years? He and Coach Tomlin seem to do quite well with each other, is that a genuinely good relationship?
Gerry Dulac: Yes it is. Genuinely
SteelByDesign: Any chance we see a double dip at OLB? Maybe a 1st and a 4th?
Gerry Dulac: No. Maybe 1. Certainly by 4. But not twice.
Mike Silva: Gerry thanks for another chat. Always look forward to them.
Gerry Dulac: Give the man something.
SteelByDesign: If they take a WR early, who do you see being cut out of DHB, Sammie Coates, Cobi Hamilton, and Demarcus Ayers?
Gerry Dulac: Well, you'd have to start with the late additions -- Ayers and Hamilton, players who did not make the roster out of training camp. I'm not saying that will happen. I'm just answering your hypothetical question
Phil P.: Would you be shocked if the Steelers didn't draft an OLB in round one?
Gerry Dulac: Nothing shocks me. They might not have a good grade on an OLB when they pick, as opposed to a player at another position they might like to address. They won't reach
Rob: Do you see the Steelers being active in free agency?
Gerry Dulac: No more than usual, and probably less than last season when they signed Green and LT Ryan Harris
Theo: The Steelers need a backup RB behind Bell. If they draft one it will be in rounds 4-7 ? I can't see wasting a 2nd or 3rd rounder for a player who will be a backup unless an injury/suspension to Bell happens.
Gerry Dulac: I agree. But they considered a RB last year in round 5 and there is a bit of a greater urgency to find a young backup this season. I agree, I don't think it would be in round 2, but you never know. My guess, more than likely, in rounds 3 or 4.
Guilherme: How much do you think injuries will affect Le'veon Bell contracts talks. Do you think the team should be cautious taking into consideration that he hasnt been in full health until the end of the season for the past seasons?
Gerry Dulac: I think it will be taken into consideration, as will his two suspensions. I know he never tested positive for a banned substance, but he still is subject to random testing for the rest of his career because of his arrest for marijuana in August 2015. That means if he skips another test like last year he will be subject to a longer suspension. That is probably more troubling to them than his injuries.
Kevin: Am I wrong saying OLB and CB are are 2 biggest needs in either free agency and/or the draft?
Gerry Dulac: You are wrong. CB is not one of the biggest needs.
Ronny: Last week you stated the Steelers would not draft a corner in the draft. Does the release of Gilbert change your mind? They now have Burns, Cockrell & Gay along with hopefully a healthy Senquez Golson. Seems like they need a little more depth, don't you agree?
Gerry Dulac: No I said they wouldn't draft a CB in the first round for sure and maybe not in the second or third, either. But I never said they wouldn't draft one.
Ryan: Will the steelers ever look to add a dynamic safety as a top priority?
Gerry Dulac: I think they found that guy last season, in case you weren't paying attention. His name is Sean Davis
BishkekSteeler: If Bell had been able to continue against New England do you think the game would have played out differently. All we have heard is the 3 B's have not all been on the field when all the chips are on the table.
Gerry Dulac: No
Glenny: Hi Gerry, are there any cheap FA options that you think the Steelers might go after?
Gerry Dulac: That list is usually too long to compile.
Guest: Of the three rookies on defense from this year, who do you expect to have the biggest improvement next year?
Gerry Dulac: All of em. But I'll say Burns.
BishkekSteeler: Hello Gerry, love the chats. Is there anyway the Steelers would take TE O J Howard in the first round? The outlaw did well this year but Green is very iffy going forward and Howard looks to be a long time play maker.
Gerry Dulac: None.
BD: Had you heard before this week that Coates had an injured groin? It must not have been too bad if he was still on special teams.
Gerry Dulac: No. And you are correct. It's kind of like Mike Mitchell saying a couple years ago he played w two bad groins, even though he never missed a game. Just because Coates had surgery doesn't mean the injury was debilitating.
Theo: Of these 3 players who is most likely not on the 2017 roster.Gay, Moats or DHB?
Gerry Dulac: 22
Tom: Will the Steelers draft a CB in the 1st three rounds of the draft to give Cockrell some competition?
Gerry Dulac: See earlier answers. And, yes, but his name is Senquez Golson. Write it down. All but a done deal if he can stay healthy.
Bake: Gerry, I agree with you that OLB should be first priority in the draft. What should they address next CB, WR, RB?
Gerry Dulac: Because of the iffy nature with Bryant and depending what they think will happen or does happen with Wheaton, I'd say WR.
Guest: Assuming we get an edge rusher who can contribute right away in the first round. Where do you think the Steelers defense will be ranked next year?
Gerry Dulac: Look, they made big improvements this season, and I expect that to continue next season. Remember, they did that playing more than half the season without Heyward and Bud Dupree, and never having a chance to use Golson.
Tom: Any chance the Steelers sign Villa to a long term extension?
Gerry Dulac: They don't have to. He's an exclusive rights free agent, which means the Steelers can tender him an offer for one year if they choose.
Guest: How are you so confident in Golson when he has yet to have a full contact practice? Not because of his fragility, but just there hasn't been much to see yet?
Gerry Dulac: They are confident in his ability. It remains to be seen if he can stay healthy enough to show that ability.
KJ: Gerry, in your opinion, have the Steelers typically drafted from position of need or best available talent?
Gerry Dulac: A little of both. For the most part, they draft the best player available at the positions where they have a need.
BishkekSteeler: Thanks Gerry, always informative. Bishkek is a long way from Pittsburgh and the insight you give is much appreciated.
Gerry Dulac: Then....a long-distance thanks!!
SteelByDesign: So Gay could not be on the roster and you STILL say they won't take a CB in first 3 rounds? God I hope you're wrong.
Gerry Dulac: It won't be the first time.
KJ: When will potential draft picks be invited by the Steelers in for a visit?
Gerry Dulac: After the combine.
Bake: If Timmons is not resigned where does ILB fall as draft priority?
Gerry Dulac: Well, that would certainly increase the priority. But, as long as they have Vince Williams, I don't believe it will become a priority just yet.
KOB: Best guess.....who will have the biggest impact in 2017 ? Bryant, Green or Golson?
Gerry Dulac: Haha. You picked the three biggest question marks on the roster. I'll say Antonio Brown.
FlaFan: Steelers just signed a CB yesterday? What chances he can make the roster?
Gerry Dulac: Any player being signed right now probably doesn't have a good chance to make any roster. That's why he's available. Doesn't mean he won't.
Guest: have compensation picks been announced
Gerry Dulac: Not for several months.
Gerry Dulac: OK, I'm running out of time and still tons of questions to get to so only two-word answers here in...
mtsteel: Hi Gerry, so as we all know the red zone was a big issue this season, I see the lack of Martavis Bryant as the biggest reason why. Assuming hes ready to go, we should have a scary O with him, Brown, Bell, Rogers and Green, what are your thoughts? Thank you
Gerry Dulac: Agreed
Billy2lodown: Landry Jones a Steeler in 2017 ?
Gerry Dulac: Yes sir
BOB: Is will gay a gonner? If they let him go when will that be?
Gerry Dulac: Be demoted
KJ: I would love to have DeAngelo Williams back next season, but does his age prevent the Steelers from bringing him back again next season in favor of a younger back they may take in the draft?
Gerry Dulac: Probably yes
George: What do you think about adding McCraffey at # 30 as an added weapon to special teams and to the offense?
Gerry Dulac: Love it
Guest: Hi Gerry, Help me out here. In the DIvisional Rd of the Packers/Dallas game Rodgers was hailed as being a 'God' amongst men for the so call Pass (I thought it was a far better catch than throw) and then it was talked about all week leading up to the NFC Title game. He then laid a MASSIVE egg. I mean is it just me or is he slightly overrated? Really good player but kinda comes up lame in the really big games except for one time. Also aren't those 'hail marys' a little over blown?
Gerry Dulac: Not overrated
Adam: Will the color rush jerseys be worn going forward? I thought they really looked sharp.
Gerry Dulac: I agree
Papichingo31: Any,word on M.Bryant? If reinstated he will be the missing puzzle for the steelers to make that final push to the Super Bowl .have to get pass New England
Gerry Dulac: Tremendous talent
KJ: Does Shamarko Thomas still have a future with the Steelers? If so, then what would his role be?
Gerry Dulac: No sir
Adam: Any chance Keenan Lewis comes back? I know the Steelers doctors checked him out last August after the Saints cut him and he then had surgery soon after?
Gerry Dulac: Bad medical
truesteelerfan: Any more words from #7 on if he'll be back next year? All signs point to yes, but I would think the team wants a firm commitment before the draft yes?
Gerry Dulac: Dont fret
When do you expect the NFL to make a decision on Martavis Bryants reinstatement to the league?: When do you expect the NFL to make a decision on Martavis Bryant's reinstatement to the league?
Gerry Dulac: Not sure
Guest: ILB in the first 3 rounds? Timmons has lost a step and may not even be here.
Gerry Dulac: Could be
truesteelerfan: I know ideas of resigning Gilbert at a lower rate have been out there - any indication they want to do that? If he doesn't love football, as indicated by Thomas from Browns - can he ever succeed at such a job?
Gerry Dulac: Bad attitude
truesteelerfan: Is this new CB we signed this week - formerly of the falcons anything to be excited about?
Gerry Dulac: Uh no
TK: If they re-sign Wheaton, would they still take a WR in the top 3 picks?
Gerry Dulac: They could
Guest: why do you think Ben was so mediocre this year? Please don't say injuries to wr when I see other qbs light it up with way less talent at Wr, RB and Offensive line.
Gerry Dulac: Wasn't mediocre
Behind Enemy Lines: Gerry, it seems to me that the Steelers only hope to reach anSB is to secure home-field ad stance throughout the playoffs. Based on the schedule set for the Steelers this coming season, what are the odds you think of the Steelers snagging the #1 seed?
Gerry Dulac: Tom Brady
truesteelerfan: Will they have a good idea on TE Green's status for next year before the draft? Seems as if concussions, and his history would be nearly impossible to predict - is he worth the gamble at his pay with the possibility of another year on the bench when we could use that money elsewhere?
Gerry Dulac: They better
Matt: Gerry-With Bryant & Green coming back on offense & , Golson & Heyward coming back on defense, do you see us making it past NE next year bc I do. Add in a great draft class & this team is loaded.
Gerry Dulac: Stay healthy
Bill: Who is the real Sammy Coates? The one we saw the first 5 weeks? Or the one we saw the last 10 games? He is baffling to me.
Gerry Dulac: Them too
Gerry Dulac: OK, kids, that's all the time we have. Sorry I cant get to all the questions. Lets try again next week.
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