Steelers 2013 Training Camp Battles: Greg Warren Versus Luke Ingram

The Pittsburgh Steelers will report to Latrobe for training camp on Friday so it\’s time for us start wrapping up our training camp battle series. Today we will look at the ever important long snapping position as it features a battle between a veteran and a rookie. You can comment on this battle below and make sure that you also vote in the attached poll.

Training Camp Battle Setup: It\’s hard to hype a long snapper training camp battle, but this battle could wind up being a good one between Greg Warren and Luke Ingram. Let\’s now have a look at both players.

Greg Warren – Back in 2005, Warren, an undrafted free agent out of North Carolina, beat out Mike Schneck for the long snapping job and now, eight years later, he will perhaps face his stiffest competition to date from another undrafted free agent

While Warren has easily discarded competition during training camp over the years, he did show a few chinks in his armor last year. In the game against the Tennessee Titans, Warren and Ryan Mundy, the personal protector for punter Drew Butler, seemed to have a miscommunication on a blocking assignment that led to a blocked punt deep in the Steelers own end of the field. In addition to that gaffe, Warren\’s bad snap in the crucial Week 16 game against the Cincinnati Bengals resulted in kicker Shaun Suisham missing an easy chip shot field goal

At 31, Warren has overcome two serious knee injuries and no longer gets down the field the way he used to. He is, however, a veteran who knows all the crafty tricks of his trade and has snapped flawlessly in some high pressure situations.

Warren will indeed be tough to beat, but him losing his job this year isn\’t as unthinkable as it once was.

Luke Ingram – Ingram, an undrafted free agent out of Hawaii, was the only long snapper invited to attend the scouting combine this year, and he posted a 5.05 forty-yard dash to go along with 24 reps on the bench while there.

As a senior, the 6\’6″ Ingram, whose older brother was also once a long snapper in the NFL, appeared in all 12 games in 2012 at long snapper and finished his college career having played in all 52 games without having one bad snap that led to a blocked kick or mishandled kick placement. He also recorded three total tackles last season on his way to being named the team’s special teams player of the year.

Being that Ingram is the challenger, he has to have a perfect training camp and preseason if he is to beat out Warren for his spot on the roster. Judging by his track record, you have to think he has a fighter\’s chance in this battle.

Prediction: Being as Warren signed a one-year qualifying contract during the offseason, his cap number is only $620,000. That is only $148,500 more than Ingram will count against the cap should he win the job, so there are no real savings involved here in this battle. This battle, however, gives the Steelers a perfect opportunity to not have to worry about the future at the position should Ingram win the job. I am in no way an expert when it comes to long snapping, but my gut tells me that this could indeed be the end of the road for Warren, so I will bravely predict that Ingram wins the job.

  • steeltown

    Its hard to say/think Ingram wins the job over the mainstay Warren, but as mentioned, where there was once almost flawless play by Warren, last season there were some bumps in the road and the coaches took notice, why else bring in this kid who has a serious chance to win the job. Having a new special teams coordinator wont help Warren’s cause either, level playing field. I’ve always liked Warren, but a couple knee surgeries and father time can make anyone replaceable..and also as mentioned, Ingram could hold down the position for the next 10yrs.

    I mentioned weeks ago in a previous Depot post that Ingram was my dark horse UDFA favorite, I think I’ll stand by that.

  • gene mann

    If Ingram can hold his own and go head to head with Warren it might come down to Money

  • Shannon Stephenson

    Warren has lost some tread on the tires. 8 yrs in the league I believe. If Ingram is close to him I say make the switch you could always resign Warren if Ingram gets injured or has a brain-fart.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    I 100% agree. I believe Ingram may be even with Warren at this point and may even be a slight edge over Warren. Ingram was considered the best LS coming out of college this year.

  • gene mann

    I liked Ingram stats at hawaii

  • CW

    I agree that Ingram has a great shot at winning the job. Warren’s been an excellent long snapper over his career. However every eight to ten years, sometimes upwards of fifteen years in rare occasions, long snappers get replaced for younger guys who do the same job just as well if not better.

    Ingram supposedly hasn’t had a bad snap in years and was the only long snapper actually invited to the Scouting Combine because he is supposed to be that good. If that’s true, he could turn out to be one of the elite long snappers in the league. Which is a bit like saying you’ve got the world’s best, as far as stats and technical details, receptionist working at your office. Yes, it’s great to have if true, but it’s hard to write home about it.

  • NW86

    It’s possible – Dave said there is only a $125k difference in cap hit, but I think Ingram is just a rookie minimum guy at $405k, which means the cap savings would be $215k. Also, regardless of cap hit, Warren actual cash salary is $840k, so there would be over $400k in actual savings by keeping Ingram.
    That’s still not a lot though,and I think if they do end up keeping Ingram it will be because of his bright future and the fact that they will be set at the position for the next several years with a younger guy.

  • gene mann

    I think if this kid can do the job at a lower cost really like this and what ever savings is still a savings

  • gene mann

    If he can do the job keep the savings

  • SteelersDepot

    You are forgetting the $65,000 that would be dead money if Warren is cut.