Steelers OL Kelvin Beachum Has Yet To Master The Snap Of The Center Position

The Pittsburgh Steelers wrapped up their second OTA session of the 2013 season Thursday and over the course of the first two weeks, second-year offensive lineman Kelvin Beachum has been getting a chance to play center behind starter Maurkice Pouncey. According to Beachum, however, he hasn\’t gotten the snap of it just yet, literally.

“Some growing pains right now,” said Beachum, the Steelers fourth of four seventh-round draft picks in 2012. “Having some good days, having some bad days. You got to be a little more consistent. Working hard at it before practice and after practice.

“I understand that it\’s something that the team wants me to do, so I\’ve got to get it right. My livelihood depends on it, so working hard to get it. Working hard on it everyday, so it\’s some growing pains, but I\’m going to get it. It\’s going to work.”

Beachum, who as a rookie last season played right tackle after both Marcus Gilbert and Mike Adams went down injured, was asked about the adjustments that have been needed to be made with him now learning the center position.

“For me, it\’s really just snapping the ball,” said the SMU product. “Blocking and working in space and communicating, that\’s not a problem. It\’s really just as basic and fundamental as can be. It\’s snapping the ball and being consistent with snapping the ball.”

Beachum continued to point to being more consistent when asked if there was a lot more to snapping the football than what people think.

“For me, I just can speak for myself,” said Beachum. “It\’s just really; I\’ve got to be able to snap the ball consistently. Like I said, I can do the blocking schemes. I can communicate with teammates along the offensive line, but for me its just really snapping the ball and being consistent with snapping the ball.”

Despite Beachum seemingly having some growing pains right now, he said that working with Pouncey over the course of the last two weeks has helped him.

“Got some really good work with him yesterday,” Beachum said about Pouncey. “Really helped out and made some improvement, but like I said, it\’s still, when the bullets start flying, that\’s when all the work comes into fruition. And during those team settings, is when I have to be on point.”

While Beachum might sound down on himself right now, the OTA sessions are perfect for trying to work on these kind of things. Beachum played left tackle while at SMU, so the position switch should be expected to take some time to master. He is very smart and he has a tremendous work ethic, so I imagine it will only be a matter of time before he literally gets the snap of it.

One thing is for certain with Beachum, and that is he understands the urgency of him needing to learn position.

“I\’m going to work on it and I\’m going to get,” finished Beachum.

  • mem359

    Reminds me of an NFL commercial that opens with: “Amateurs practice until they can get it right. Pros practice until they can’t get it wrong.”

  • maxdaddy

    He is a smart guy, he will get it.

  • WHY? Is it because he’s ‘fraid of putting his 10″ inch hands under another mang’s buttnutts?

  • Shea Fahr

    Snapping the ball is just a technique adjustment. Like Dave said, these OTA’s, Mini Camp and Training camp are designed to help him accomplish that. The good thing is that he seems comfy in calling the protections to the rest of the line and blocking. He will be fine.

  • Steve

    Snapping the ball is an Art. Good centers can ask a QB if they want the seams hit the fingers in stride, sideways or up and down. They can also ask do you like the snap soft or hard so it hits your hand at 90MPH or easy. Snapping on extra points and FG’s are the same. Ask the holder how does he like it? Soft, hard, seams up down, ball up, sideways and such. Every QB is different, so the center and the QB have to be in sync.

  • Shea Fahr

    Just snapping the ball consistently is a challenge and you are absolutely correct about the style and personal preference.

  • Steve

    Like I said the Center is the hardest position. They have 4 main jobs 1) Call the blocking assignment. 2) Snap on correct count. 3) Get the QB the ball 4) Make your block. Steelers are very fotunate to have another Pro Bowl Center (Pouncy).

  • Ahmad

    I have no doubt that he will get the snap down pat. He has a great work ethic so I’m not worried.

  • Kolie Oak

    Beachum will take over for Pouncey in week 8…