If Healthy, Beachum Deserves To Start At Left Tackle Over Adams

With Pittsburgh Steelers tackle Kelvin Beachum back practicing fully on Wednesday, there’s a good chance he’ll be back as the starting left tackle Sunday night against the Cincinnati Bengals and that means Mike Adams will likely return to the sidelines.

While Adams seemed to hold his own Sunday in the snowy loss to the Miami Dolphins, I think this is right move, assuming of course that Beachum is fully healthy.

Since taking over as the starter at left tackle following the loss to the Minnesota Vikings, Beachum has allowed five sacks, four hits and 16 hurries. While that only equates to a 94 pass blocking efficiency number using the Pro Football Focus formula, Beachum’s last four starts produced even better numbers.

Dating back to the game against the Buffalo Bills, Beachum has allowed just one sack, one hit and three hurries in a 159 pass blocking opportunities. That equates to an outstanding 97.5 pass blocking efficiency number.

While they are still mathematically alive, the Steelers need to start the players that give them the best chance at winning and that means playing Beachum over Adams. He has done nothing to lose his job.

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • joed32

    Gilbert didn’t practice yesterday and if he’s unable to play Adams could end up starting on the right side.

  • SumnerYoung

    I agree that Beachum should start at LT if healthy. He looked awesome against the Ravens in pass protection. I also think that Beachum, Gilbert and Adams should stay in the Burgh during the offseason and continue to work hard and develop. They are all still young players, and I think this season has shown that they each have talent. I don’t think the Steelers have the luxury now of drafting another OT in the first two rounds because of the needs on defense. I think they may draft one in the mid rounds, but at the end of the day, Beach, Adams and Gilbert are the tackles moving forward.

  • steeltown

    Beachum really struggled at first, but he did settle down after a few games. That’s what you like to see, improvement over the course of games and season

  • steeltown

    Yea they’re still under contract with their low rookie deals, Gilbert will be a FA after 2014 and Adams and Beachuim after 2015, we’ll know by then if any are worth a 2nd contract

  • SumnerYoung

    Yes, all true. And I think Pouncey is entering the last year of his rookie deal. I know there are mixed opinions on his talent level, and on his injury history, but if the Steelers decide to not lock him up this offseason, he will hit the open market in 2015, and some team will definitely pay top dollar for him. If that’s the case, we will be looking for another center, and the revolving door of our offensive line continues to spin.

  • dgh57

    That’s why we need to resign Velasko not only for depth but in case Pouncey becomes to expensive to keep around.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    At this point I do not look at who deserves to be there, it is whether or not Adams is a pro LT that we need to find out. Beachum at this point has shown he is better at the position and we know what we have there.

  • Rick M

    I wouldn’t normally say divide the time between Beachum and Adams, but it’s essential that the team find out if they have an adequate left tackle going forward.
    If Beachum starts and does well, keep him in there. But if he’s struggling, insert Adams to see if he really has improved. Then again I’d absolutely be starting Wheaton over Sanders, so they won’t be listening to me :)

  • chris ward

    Even though the Steelers chances of making the playoffs are not great, they still need to put their best product on the field. They should continue with Beachum if healthy for the rest of the season. Beachum has earned that LT position for this year.

  • Chad H

    Only the sands of time know who will be the starting LT. At this point you gotta go with “The Beach.”

  • Jefferson_St_Joe

    Beachum just looks like the better player to me. If he can get stronger in the offseason, he has a chance to solidify that position. Beachum getting stronger seems like a better bet than Adams learning to move his feet.

  • Jollyrob68

    If they can get a Starting Center in RD 3 or 4 and slide Pouncey to Guard This Line will be alright. The issue is The Steelers dont let the new guys or Rookies take their lumps and get better as a unit.

  • Jollyrob68

    I’d lockup Pouncey and shift him to Guard then Draft a Center.

  • Jollyrob68

    Yes, The need to let these guys take their lumps and grow together as a unit. The best way to do that is for Ben to get rid of the ball.

  • Jollyrob68

    As a Steelers fan I Agree because we always want to win and they wont quit. However, They really need help and a better Draft pick. THat being said If they fall back some in the draft they might take a CB Safety,LB or DL that we so desperately need.

  • cencalsteeler

    Nobody is talking about Cody “The Colonoscopy” Wallace. I think his play was admirable last week and I really loved his demeanor. He and Ebernasty could be a heck of a mean tandem in years to come, something I feel is lacking and desperately needed on this squad.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    cencalsteeler : You make a good point. Wallace and Embernasty may just teach the starters to be a little more nasty. That might be what’s required to take them to the next level. A level that will result in more running game success.

    I have been praying for Ben to get rid of the ball quicker forever, and since he has improved his own errors and turnovers have greatly diminished and he is helping the line get better. Let’s hope this works out, because if it does, the future is bright — even if it does take 2 years to get the D going well again.

    Beach on the left for sure. I have to admit, if Gilbert is iffy, then I would sit and I would love to see Adams start at RT. Remember that he did quite well there last year, and I would love to see some improvement. Real curious.

  • chris ward

    Yeah I agree, I think CB and Saftey are huge needs in this years draft. As of right now, I hope they go with a big play-making WR in the first round.

  • RMSteeler

    As Michael Reynolds pointed out in a post on this site two weeks ago, Beachum was the FOURTH of the Steelers 4 seventh round draft picks and just a few picks from being Mr Irrelevant in 2012. If I remember right, he had already earned a Masters degree. Maybe that’s how he ended up being the most versitile OLineman on the team? They don’t measure heart at the combine, and surely Kelvin has used hisa and his brain to supplant a number one draft pick. If anyone deserves as much playing time as possible for the remainder of the season, it’s Beachum.

  • Rick M

    I don’t mean to be snarky cencal and I genuinely apologize upfront. But have our expectations really sunk to the level where we think a guy who gave up to two sacks and had two penalties (one an incredibly dumb one) played ‘admirably’.

    I realize it was his first start and he definitely showed some nastiness. But there was nothing admirable about his performance from my perspective.

  • WilliamSekinger

    Most everyone is going to disagree with this, but here goes. Beachum is far from a prototypical LT. Why is that important? It’s important because even if Beachum plays a perfect game every game during the season, he will still get beat because of his short arms and squat frame. If Adams has shown improvement since he was benched (and I believe he has), Adams will be the better option moving forward.

  • Rick M

    In theory, I agree completely with you. I assume Beachum’s intelligence (i.e. Masters degree) is allowing him to play pretty well at a position that he isn’t ideally suited for physically.

    Absolute full credit to Beachum and give him the start if healthy, but I really hope we get an adequate chance to see if Adams’ one game improvement at left tackle was an aberration.

  • cencalsteeler

    You are probably right. My levels may have sunk, but this guy was on the practice squad a few weeks ago. The penalties and the sacks were expected from someone with his experience. Maybe the word admirable was based more on the fact he didn’t injure any of his teammates, he played with heart, and aside from the mistakes you mention, I thought did a good job considering he was thrown into the fire rather quickly.
    His mistakes are fixable. When looking at his overall talent, athleticism, and skill set, I think this guy has some potential. I think when I said the word “admirable”, it was based on an overall future outlook as opposed to a one game performance.

  • steeltown

    Between Velasco and Wallace it sure looks like we wont have any issues trying to find a backup Center this next offseason. May the best man win. Plus we can then let Beachum focus more on Tackle and Guard

  • RedCarpetDefense

    Oops tried to reply but hit down vote instead. What on earth was Dr. Wallace trying to do?….C’mon man..!!

  • Rick M

    Love the ‘at least he didn’t injure his teammates’ comment. Good one. Cheers.

  • Rick M

    Love the ‘at least he didn’t injure his teammates line’. Good one! Cheers.

  • Brandon James

    I don’t know why everyone keeps saying this….he started LT for 3 years in college. Regardless of his arms or physical stature, he must have some natural ability to play LT.

  • cencalsteeler

    Yeah, I don’t condone what he did, but at least he was doing something!! I watched this guy push opponents off of teammates on the ground. I saw him helping pick teammates off the ground. And, we all saw the prostate exam. I saw scrappiness in a kid, and for that, I “admire” him for his efforts. I felt even though he had some penalties, it was a breath of fresh air as opposed to the kids that come in with that “deer in the headlight look”.
    Can you imagine though the one liners and the jabs going on in the locker room with Cody? It’s got to be hilarious! And, on the other hand, what about all the jokes getting laid out in the Dolphins locker room?

  • joed32

    Beachum is doing well in pass pro but is a poor run blocker and Adams is just the opposite. Neither is going to be really good unless they can improve on their weak points.

  • joed32

    The stat sheet on RotoWorld says that he gave up 0 sacks. Gilbert had 2 1/2 but none for Wallace.

  • Rick M

    Not sure what specifically you’re looking at. ProFootball Focus gave him the worst grade of any Steeler at -4.2 and I’ve seen several sites list him as giving up 2 (and in one case 2 1/2) sacks in the Miami game.

  • Mike Carroll

    Four year college starter.

  • WilliamSekinger

    Because DEs in the NFL are monstrous. 6′-2″ and the arms, legs, frame, and strength that go with 6′-2″ just doesn’t cut it. Granted, he will be a serviceable tackle, but never great at this level. He will get beat just by the shear size of some of his opponents.

  • WilliamSekinger

    My point being that if Adams improves on his weak points he can be a great tackle at the NFL level. If Beachum improves on his, he will always be undersized and at a disadvantage going against some of the huge DEs. Beachum will never be more than a serviceable tackle in this league.

  • MC

    I agree. Although, if there are no chance of playoffs then it should be re-assessed. Who has more upside and a higher ceiling? that is the question that should be asked once the season is determined as a loss. If it is Adams then he should start the rest of the season so they can determine if they need to draft another LT next draft. I love what Beachum has done, but i just can’t see him being a franchise LT and this is a position that must have clarity as soon as possible.

    Bottom line is, if the oline doesn’t improve next season regardless of who’s starting, this front office will look horrible.

  • joed32

    Give me a link to one of the other sites and I will concede. Right now we have 1 vs 1.

  • Brandon James

    But he went up against 3 or 4 of the best pash rushers in the game and played very well, especially 1 on 1. So never say never.