Todd Haley Wants One Of His Running Backs To Collect Bull Horns Against Titans

The Pittsburgh Steelers will start Isaac Redman at running back in their Sunday season opener against the Tennessee Titans, but offensive coordinator Todd Haley said Thursday during his talk with the media that nothing is set in stone beyond that.

“We’re still looking for someone to take the bull by the horns and not let us take him out,” said Haley. “The guys are going to have an opportunity in this game to showcase how much they want the job.”

During his Tuesday press conference, head coach Mike Tomlin said that while Redman would start the game, we can expect to see the former undrafted free agent spelled by the other backs.

Haley, however, said Thursday that if Redman gets off to a hot start, he will keep him in the game.

“Yeah, absolutely,” he said.

One of the running backs that figures to receive a few touches in the season opener is Felix Jones, who the Steelers acquired via trade with the Philadelphia Eagles the day before their third preseason game. With very limited time to prepare, Jones carried the ball eight times against the Kansas City Chiefs and led the team in rushing with 29 yards. His ability to pull that off certainly impressed the Steelers offensive coordinator.

“The amazing thing was I think it’s the first time that I’ve ever seen it,” said Haley. “We hadn’t even had the guy on the practice field once. I met him the night before the game in a team meeting, and he leads our team in carries, does kickoff returns; I’ve never seen it happen before.

“So that in itself was impressive, but now that he’s been able to get settled in a little bit and get comfortable, you can see there’s a reason he was taken number one at some point in his career and were excited about having him on board.”

Make no mistake, Redman will be given every opportunity to show that he can tame the bull early on against the Titans, but if he fails to do so, Haley certainly won’t be afraid to go to his running back bullpen if that’s what it takes to jumpstart the running game.

  • Matt Searls

    Is it bad that I’m hoping that they do well enough to win but not enough to keep bell from that starting spot?

  • falconsaftey43

    Not related, but watching the Denver Baltimore game, while the raven’s were coming out of the tunnel it looked like a Ref was patting down some of the players. Seemed to be the linemen. Anyone know what that was all about?

  • Steve

    Felix was let go of by 2 different teams, I don’t get too excited about him.

  • bgsteelfan

    Felix has talent, there is no denying that. However, he tends to put the ball on the ground and get hurt a lot, which is why he was let go. Rumors aside, he is NOT a feature back, but he has the skills to be a great complimentary back.

  • Eric

    Yes it is bad. Hope they do great, we win and Bell comes back and does even better.

  • Matt Searls

    Yeah I was wondering that too

  • Douglas Andrews

    I go back to when Felix was in college he wasnt a feature back at Arkansas it was Darrin McFadden and Felix. The problem with Felix is when you try and make him the feature back, he hasn’t shown he can be durable and he lays the ball on the ground at times. The one thing you like about him though is his speed. Now i’m not a big Redman fan but maybe a 1-2 punch of Redman and Jones might give us an effective enough running game so it can open up play action for the passing game.

  • Douglas Andrews

    I’m hoping for that also!

  • Christopher Wilkes

    We also don’t have DeMarco Murray or Shady McCoy on this team, with all due respect to the the yet unproven Bell.

  • Jefferson_St_Joe

    There is a post on Deadspin about it. They pat down random players on every team at the start of each half looking for silicon on the linemen and stickum on the ball handlers.

  • Kolie Oak

    Bell has nothing to worry about…

  • TxSteeler

    My wife, who rarely watches football, asked me the same question. I told her “It’s the Ravens, they have to check them for shanks”. The look on her face was priceless.


    I don’t really get all this talk of we Need Bell to get back to be successful,…the kid has run the ball 4 times in the pre-season, he’s not even a first round pick, he might be a complete bust for all we know.

    Once he is able of course, ease him in, he might be our best back? He might not be that great!

    We simply do not know yet.

  • steeltown

    Lets GO! Time to get physical, we need to impose our will on opponents this year.. establish a physical identity. We have it on Defense, we need it on Offense too

  • StrengthOfVictory

    For all the talk of Jones and Redman (Steeler Nation loves Isaac of course), no mention of LSH? Granted, he is not an every-down back, but if I was an opposing coach watching all the preseason Steelers tape and was looking for threats in the backfield, Stephens-Howling would scare me the most. When we got the zone going, he was quick, decisive, elusive, and effective. Jones and Redman are more grinders, but LSH would make me pull my safeties back from the line.

  • charles

    Steve your comment and the 2 replys are my sentiments as well. Jones is the type of back Haley wants though. I did not like giving up Robinson for another Dwyer type fumbler. Tape on Bell did not give much hope either, but I was very impressed in the few NFL attempts that he had, that Bell is what Haley wants as his Jamaal Charles look alike. Excepting injury Bell could be a very good feature back with Red Zone Redman having good value as well.

  • steeltown

    Agreed.. I think LSH was a great signing this offseason, obviously he will help in the return game, but this kid has quickness and he’s short, LBs tend to lose him in the gaps… I hope he stays healthy because he is definitely a weapon

  • TsarPepe

    Charles look-alike? What, do they have similar faces?

  • Steve

    Seems Bell has been hurt more than he has been healthy. Hope this does not linger very long.

  • tim quigley

    todd haley is a likeable and great coach