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Steelers Sign QB Bruce Gradkowski

Postby Steelers76 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 7:12 pm

The Steelers on Wed. signed F.A. QB Bruce Gradkowski to (presumably) be Big Ben's back-up for the next 3 years. Gradkowski spent the previous 2 seasons backing up Andy Dalton in Cinci. This spells the end of Byron Leftwitch's time as back-up QB here, and Batch's tenure is up in the air as well.

Personally, I'm fine with this. Gradkowski is only 30 years old, and has experience starting at the position, albeit for mostly bad teams. As I said this past season, the role of back-up QB needed addressed in the off season given Leftwitch and Batch's situations. If they weren't going to take a QB in the upcoming draft, this was the way to go.


Thoughts?

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Re: Steelers Sign QB Bruce Gradkowski

Postby Pommah » Fri Mar 15, 2013 9:10 am

The Steelers are following a pattern they have long established, whereby they have a journeyman, experienced QB as a backup who is capable of going .500 while the starter is out for a few weeks, keeping them in contention. They then draft a QB in the 3-5 rounds and hope he develops into something useful. The variant on this theme is done by the Patriots under Bellichick, who skip the experienced journeyman at number 2, and just go with a mid-round draft pick as a backup. They hit gold with Brady as Bledsoe's backup. The problem with it is, if the QB is out for an extended period of time, the playoff contention goes away, as they witnessed with Cassel; my belief is an experienced backup could have gotten them the one more win they needed for the playoffs that year.

Look for Gradkowski to be #2 with Batch #3 for one more year. If they see some QB talent they like they might take it and ditch Batch. If not, they will most certainly draft a QB in the mid rounds next year.

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Re: Steelers Sign QB Bruce Gradkowski

Postby Steelers76 » Sat Mar 16, 2013 4:41 pm

Something tells me that if Batch isn't signed by another team, he may be on "stand-by" for The Steelers in 2013. I.E.; They'll just have Big Ben and Bruce as The QBs, and won't waste a roster spot on a 3rd QB unless something happens to those 2. It seems a lot of teams are only keeping 2 QBs on their active roster during the season instead of 3, and will just check the unemployment line if 1 of their QBs goes down.

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Re: Steelers Sign QB Bruce Gradkowski

Postby Pommah » Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:47 pm

76 you could be right but the way Ben plays you know he's going down for at least some plays this season. If backup - assuming Gradkowski - then gets hurt, we're bringing in a wide receiver or something. Trying to remember if the Stillers have ever gone with just two on the roster, can't think of any time, but could be wrong.

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Re: Steelers Sign QB Bruce Gradkowski

Postby Steelers76 » Fri Mar 22, 2013 12:56 am

Yeah, come to think of it I can't remember a time when the team didn't have at least 3 QBs on their roster. It actually may have been a few years ago, but am not totally sure. At any rate, do they still have 3 QBs active for gameday on the regular season, or is the 3rd usually "deactivated"? If so, that's why I think they should just have Batch on speed-dial instead of wasting a roster spot at this stage of his career.

BTW, have heard of a few grumblings about The Gradkowski signing here and there. I just have to ask those who didn't like it who they would've taken in the role instead? Would you have brought back Byron or Batch, or went for someone else? Looking at the top Back-up F.A. QBs this off-season, there wasn't any that really jumped out at me; Fitzpatrick, Matt Hassleback, Cassell, and Chase Daniel. 3 of those 4 have had varied success starting at the position over the years, but have seen much more in the way of failures over the past few seasons. Daniel I don't think has ever played in a meaningful regular season game, so there's that. Plus their $$$ tag probably would've been too high than what this team was willing to spend on a back-up QB, so I was fine with The Gradkowski signing. Not elated, but fine.

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Re: Steelers Sign QB Bruce Gradkowski

Postby Steelblud » Fri Mar 22, 2013 1:31 am

at this point we'll take what we can get, and Gradkowski is better than Leftwich. This is going to be a tricky season if we wanna see the playoffs. alot is up in the air. afterall, he beat us with the Raiders. Ugh! this could be the back up spark that we need. lol. go Steelers!

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