Steelers sign top pick David DeCastro
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His deal done, David DeCastro has big shoes to fill, and that does not mean those Ramon Foster wore as the starting right guard last season.
The Steelers, who gleefully drafted DeCastro with the 24th pick overall in April and saying they believed he would be taken much higher, expect him to replace Foster as their starter on opening day in Denver.
He has been compared to Alan Faneca, the best guard in their history who started as a rookie but not in his first game.
The Steelers, who long ignored their offensive line in the top two rounds of the draft, have found two quick starters there the past few years and DeCastro should be the next. Center Maurkice Pouncey, their No. 1 pick in 2010, started in the opener as a rookie. Tackle Marcus Gilbert, their No. 2 pick in '11, moved in to start at right tackle in the second game last season.
They also would like to see another rookie, Mike Adams, win the job at left tackle, but last week they re-signed veteran Max Starks just in case Adams is incapable of doing so.
DeCastro, a guard from Stanford and the last of their '12 draft picks to sign, came to terms on a four-year contract that should be worth nearly $8 million, with a club option on a fifth year.
He will report Wednesday with the rest of his new teammates to Saint Vincent College in Latrobe for the start of training camp.
The only player still unsigned on the eve of the team reporting to Saint Vincent is veteran wide receiver Mike Wallace. He has a one-year contract offer as a restricted free agent he has not yet signed as the sides also try to negotiate a multiple-year deal.
NOTE --The Steelers signed undrafted rookie offensive tackle Bridger Buche of Eastern Michigan, where he started the past two seasons.
First Published July 24, 2012 12:00 am