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Steelers LB Larry Foote Says It Will Be Tough For Rookie LB Jarvis Jones To Start Immediately

Although Pittsburgh Steelers rookie linebacker Jarvis Jones played in a 3-4 defense while at Georgia, veteran inside linebacker Larry Foote said on Wednesday after practice that it will be tough for him to overtake fourth-year linebacker Jason Worilds as the starter outside right away.

“It\’s going to be difficult (for Jones to start immediately), especially outside,” Foote said, via a report by Alan Robinson of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “There is so much technique, (knowing) where you\’ve got to line up, inside or outside. The fortunate thing is they (Jones\’ Georgia) played a 3-4. … I\’ve seen a lot (of players) come in as rookies and not have a clue, but you can tell he\’s been around our type of football.”

During the rookie camp back in early May, Jones said that the Steelers 3-4 defense includes a lot of the same stuff he played in college only with different terminology, and that he was getting the concepts of it. However, a few weeks later at the end of the Steelers second OTA session last week, Jones told Jim Wexell of Steel City Insider that playing outside linebacker in the Steelers 3-4 compared to the 3-4 he played at Georgia isn\’t perhaps going to be as easy as he might have thought several weeks ago.

“No, no, it ain’t no cakewalk, ain’t going to be no cakewalk,” Jones told Wexell. “I understand that I played a 3-4 in college, but here it’s more complex. It’s a pro defense and I’ve got to adjust to it; I’ve got to learn it.”

Following the selection of Jones by the Steelers in the first-round of the 2013 NFL Draft, I predicted, that baring injury, Jones would likely end his rookie season with around 100 snaps of playing time on defense because of where I expected him to be on the depth chart. While 200 plus snaps might not be totally out of the question, you would have to figure that Worilds would really have to fall flat on his face in the first half the season as the starter in order for that to happen.

As far as Worilds goes as he heads into his first season as the starter, Foote said that unproven guys such as him need to step up if the Steelers are going to get back to the playoffs in 2013.

“We lost some guys this year and last year, so it\’s unknown guys who need to step up if we\’re going to go far,” said Foote. “There are some unknown guys who have to step up and play big time for us.”

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About Dave Bryan

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • steeltown

    People who thought that Jarvis was the starter right after we drafted him are sadly mistaken, obviously Worilds is the starter this season. The only chance Jarvis has to start is if Worilds goes down with injury. He might spell him some and I think he’ll rack up 200+ snaps, but Worilds is the starter in ’13

  • emac2

    I think you are misjudging the odds when you talk about 200 snaps meaning Worlds has to fall on his face. The odds very clearly show that he will get 200 snaps simply because Worlds and Woodly won’t both stay healthy all season. The real question is if he can beat out the third options on the outside.

    I think he could be starting at some point this year based on merit but feel much more confident in an injury than him beating anyone out this year.

  • SteelersDepot

    You miss the part about baring injury? #rollseyes

  • Kenneth Wilt

    Here are the questions about our OLBs as I see them:

    1. Can Woodley stay healthy and is he in shape?
    2. Can Worlilds be a starter?
    3. How quickly does Jones pick up the defense?
    4. What kind of jump did Carter make if any in the offseason?
    5. What kind of jump did Robinson make if any in the offseason?

  • steeltown


    I think either way Carter and Robinson both make the roster. If the past has shown us anything, its that we need the depth atleast until these guys prove they can stay healthy, by the end of this season we’ll see who has a future with this Team and who doesn’t… and that includes Worilds and Carter… Robinson may be given more time as he is still pretty green

  • Shea Fahr

    In the past it has been difficult for me to get very excited about preseason but this year is different with the infusion of youth across the roster. It will be fun watching them compete for jobs. I can’t wait.

  • r4kolb

    I agree. Will watch preseason a lot closer then in past just due to all the new position players. Wonder when the last time was that the Steelers had the potential for so many new starters?

  • Shea Fahr

    Yessir and the back up spots for that matter. With youth comes hunger so it should be very violent and fun to watch. I like it.

  • steeltown

    Its been awhile.. and its funny some people have been saying for yrs that we’ll struggle because we’re “old” and need to go younger, well we’re in the middle of that kind of transition and now those same people say that we will struggle because we have lost veterans and will be relying on younger guys to step up… ha!

  • r4kolb

    That’s why they play the games are played on turf not on paper my Brother!

  • Shea Fahr

    Guys, who is your surprise pick to make the roster this year? Like Robinson/Johnson last year.

  • emac2

    I did.

    But, using the term barring injury with the players involved is like pretending the season might not happen. The eye rolling should be reserved for your repeated attempts to qualify and support the 100 snap theory.

  • steeltown

    That’s tough, its still pretty early… I would like to say Golic Jr. due to his position flexibility, but there are two things I am still unsure of, can he play RT well enough (or better than Whimper) and/or will Legursky be re-signed before tcamp

    So, for now I might go long snapper Luke Ingram

  • WilliamSekinger

    I’ve been saying since the draft it’s great we have Jones and all, but Worilds is the starter baring injury. Hopefully they can put Jones in at the end of somes games the Steelers have well in hand and let him go get the QB.

  • SteelersDepot

    In case you are new to the Steelers fan base, rookies don’t get to see the field a ton in the Dick LeBeau defense. 2013 will be no different for Mr. Jones. Hope that helps.

  • emac2

    Helps what?

    Do you think for one second that they will start Carter in case of an injury if Jones is better?

    People do things for a reason that is beyond the fact that they did it before. Smart people will change how they do things if there is a better way.

    It’s usually best to let the guy learn for a year but if you don’t have that luxury you don’t just stick with an old plan because you have that pattern. That’s is how you diagnose a mental disorder not a successfully run business.

  • Steve

    Worilds will start us off but if history tells the story, he goes down in the 4th game with an injury and JJ will take his place and not give it up. So JJ makes mistakes, we all do. I remember James saying he was suppose to rush the QB in the SB when he ran the ball back 101 yds. This is NOT a perfect world.

  • steeltown

    Not sure what you are arguing.. Bryan along with most fans would agree if Worilds goes down with injury than Jarvis would get more snaps (hence the term baring injury) unless we’re talking very early on, like week 1 then its possible A.Robinson gets the nod, Carter plays on the left side

  • steeltown

    Worilds was recovering from wrist surgery last offseason.. but he played in all 16games last year, he stayed healthy all season

  • cencalsteeler

    It really surprises me how many fans want to leapfrog Worilds. Yes, Jones was our first round pick, and I can see how people are excited about him, but it’s Worilds time, give the guy a chance.

  • PA2AK

    Didn’t harrison say he was supposed to rush, but saw something in the formation/situation and instinctively dropped? That’s not a mistake. I would love to see JJ starting this year, but I really don’t think it is going to happen aside from an injury. Also, while they have dealt with injuries in the past, doesn’t even come close to meaning both Worilds and Woodley are guaranteed an injury this year. I just don’t think JJ will have the D down well enough. Last time we had a LB start as a rookie was Bell…dude had the smarts and the instincts. It would be pleasant surprise, but don’t count on it.

  • Steve

    If JJ is anything like Bell, we would be elated. Bell played inside LB. We need someone to make sacks and clog up the outside run (Turn it in). James would strip the ball out of the QB hands and JJ needs to learn that. Worilds had his chance when James and Woodly were hurt. We need someone to suck-it-up and play, NOT be hurt all the time. I remember Troy saying he had MANY concussions. Many players play hurt and if they want to sit the bench for $$$ – Go on!

  • Steve

    I remember MANY players playing with broken arms, fingers and such. How many times when you stood up after making a play did you see stars? I never came off the field when I played and loved it. Outside LB in the Steelers D is a good job. Loyd and Green were sack-a-holicks and the other team knew it. When the D got into the prevent, forget it. Prevent, didn’t prevent nuttin,, just got us into trouble.
    What about all the other years with Worilds? It has NOT been one year he has been with us!

  • PA2AK

    Bell played inside?….ya don’t say?! the need at OLB is well documented and not a sole is debating that here today. The question is whether or not JJ will be mentally capable of handling this D right out of the gate. As far as Worilds…he isn’t great at run stop, but his other numbers aren’t awful. He’s been bounced around from injuries to replacing each starter from side to side. I’m sure he will show more when healthy and in a consistent position on the field. Certainly won’t come in and be a james harrison. Doesn’t have the potential that JJ has. But the argument is…Worilds knows the system and right now, this year, is more capable than JJ coming out of college…especially with technique and mental aspects. Worilds isn’t the long term answer, but no one has really seen a body of work from him either. Worilds finished (1) sack behind harrison as he was bouncing from side to side. not saying he is the second coming, but I and many others would be very surprised if he doesn’t start for the majority of the season.

  • emac2

    why chip in and speak for someone else if you can’t figure out what we’re talking about anyway?

  • steeltown

    Not sure what you are arguing.. Bryan along with most fans would agree if Worilds goes down with injury than Jarvis would get more snaps (hence the term baring injury) unless we’re talking very early on, like week 1 then its possible A.Robinson gets the nod, Carter plays on the left side

  • joed32

    My guess is that if Woodley were to get injured which seems to happen a lot, Worilds could move to the left side opening the right side up for Jones or Robinson.

  • Fivesevenzero Sports-Radio

    No Rookies start in Dick Lebeau’s Defense. EVERYONE knows this. Jason Worild has proved as much as Jarvis Jones has to be an consistent/Reliable Week to Week Starter in the NFL..

    The question here is if Jones can master the role in dropping back in coverage. Jones is much more talented then Worilds. The only rookie that would have made a “Starting” push would have been Spence later in the season and that’s if he didn’t’ get injured…I think Jones would be more effective this season as a strict 3rd down pass rusher this season anyway.

  • 2443scott

    its true some rookies are never ready to play first season but its also true they need to be put into playing alot sooner then later to see what they can do not wait till season 3 of their contracts then when season 4 comes around they stand up and say well now ..i am going to come in better shape and try harder to help team … then they are either unknown to coaches or they are looking for that contract year extention and every one knows how that ends up just look at wallace how he screwed around in that last year plus now you have sanders doing same thing …the steelers cant sit back like they used to with these young kids and wait year after year with way league is now they move on for more money it isnt like used to be where they stay with team for love the team now its pay me or i move on mind set ….so here you have sanders who hasnt done much but has some nfl experience over a rookie and is in a contract year and no one knows if he stay or go or even if hes good as one new rookies can be …its time for a new mind set in steeler town play these rookies sooner or every year it be same thing ….contract years and steelers not sure what they got then new ones be drafted and be back to square 1 …..sanders is a hit miss as much as a rookie could be he should been left go and got that extra pick and left some one else step up …..

  • charles

    Thanks for the change of pace.1) it does not matter, the Steelers need someone to step up their game and make Woodley irrelevant. 2) Worilds HAS to step up 3) I think Jones best path to playing is in the nickel or dime packages. 4 and5) the steelers need a difference maker on the outside, I like Robinson, but I don’t care who it is. I hope that the fellow above is right and that the Steeler coaches don’t just do what they have “always” done. Sorry for the tired one liners, but, who was the only person to hold Michael Jordan to under 20 points/game? ?.His coach Dean Smith. So hopefully the Steelers coaches will give their talent the opportunity to shine.

  • Christopher Wilkes

    I think it will be tough for him to beat out Robinson as the #2.

  • Michael Mazanowski

    I played QB with a broken ankle my junior year of HS! I was shocked to learn that my ankle was broken-played through the pain (didn’t find out until season was over-thought it was sprained)! Furthermore, Jim Tressel sent me a letter to play for YSU in 1998 but I had never heard of YSU or Jim Tressel until I moved to Ohio in 2002 (from Erie PA). Kick myself in the ass daily!

  • Steve

    Hey – We all have them moments. Youngstown, that’s where DeBartolo is from. His FAMILY is Old Money. Owns Malls, 49ers, many Race Tracks ETC. Concussions were my specialty. One year had 3 and never missed a snap, broke one helmet, head, had a tore off face mask. Knocked some sense into me. Coach always said in a fight, NEVER take off your helmet. I remember leaving Westinghouse with our Helmets on cause our buss was high jacked, so they got another – Oh well!

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