Steelers To Start 26th Different Offensive Line Combination In Last Four Season On Sunday

With starting center Fernando Velasco now out for the season after suffering an Achilles injury Thursday night in the loss to the Baltimore Ravens, the Pittsburgh Steelers will more than likely give Cody Wallace the start at center Sunday against the Miami Dolphins. There is also a chance that both Kelvin Beachum and Mike Adams might not be ready to play, but regardless, it is guaranteed to be the sixth different starting offensive line combination used this season.

If it feels like the Steelers start a new combination every few weeks, it is pretty much because they do. In fact, Sunday will mark the 26th different starting combination used dating back to Week 1 of the 2010 season. That’s a span of 61 regular season games and breaks down to a different one every 2.35 games.

You have to go all the way back to the 2009 season to find stability on the Steelers offensive line. That season they had four offensive linemen start all 16 regular season games and only two different staring line combinations were used that season. The four iron men that season were Justin Hartwig, Willie Colon, Max Starks and Trai Essex.

Remember, there will still be three regular season games left after Sunday and it is a good bet we will see at least a 27th different starting offensive line combination, if not more, used before they end the season.

Below is an updated list of the starting offensive line combinations used dating back to Week 1 of the 2010 season.

20109NEJ. ScottFosterPounceyEssexF.Adams
201010OAKJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyFosterF.Adams
201011BUFJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyFosterF.Adams
201012BALJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyFosterF.Adams
201013CINJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyFosterF.Adams
201014NYJJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyFosterF.Adams
201015CARJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyFosterF.Adams
201016CLEJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyFosterF.Adams
20111BALJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyLegurskyColon
20112SEAJ. ScottFosterPounceyLegurskyGilbert
20113INDJ. ScottKemoeatuPounceyLegurskyGilbert
20116JACStarksLegurskyPounceyFosterJ. Scott
201115STLStarksEssexLegurskyFosterJ. Scott

  • gene mann

    This is unreal what is going on with the OL. I can not figure out what going on here .Really need to look into this issue

  • GunsDontKillWoodleyKills

    And I read somewhere that Willie Colon has taken every snap this year….what the hell?

  • Reader783

    Quick poll, I was having an argument today. As Steelers fans, would you rather make it to the Superbowl and lose or not make the playoffs at all, of course all in hindsight.


    Not make the playoffs at all.

  • T R

    hell 26th starting OL is not our problem how bout tally up the finish OL… how many times have we actually finished the damn game with the same starting line up. LOL

  • Elijah Stevenson

    The way I see it the OL is developing everyday due there a little hurt but they are learning to understand how protect Ben. Even with the substitute in the last hgame they still contained the DL and did not allow a sack, that I’m proud of.

  • T R

    with all these different OLs maybe we might become the first team to have offensive packages and substitute out OLineman like we do on the defense. LOL

  • Matt Manzo

    I HATE losing Super Bowls! But this year if we stormed through the playoffs I wouldn’t mind. UNLESS the loss is to SF, SEA, or GB. I wouldn’t want to lose a SB to them!

  • Reader783

    Not sure who gave me a down vote….I’m just asking a question. Sorry I angered you.

  • colingrant

    Friendly fire. I don’t think the oline injuries are purely bad luck or coincidence. Going back to when Kemo, Starks, Colon, Foster, Essex etc. played, their lack of athleticism and mobility dictated them running the ball with straight forward power blocking schemes. They ran tight formations and were tightly compacted when beginning there blocking assignment. The only variation was when kemo pulled left to right and led the running back inside the right tackle, a long time favorite in the Steelers playbook.

    Point being; you had 4-5 350 lbs lineman, standing next to one another and blocking straight ahead against an expecting defensive front seven. At the snap, behemoths are engaged, intertwined, pushing and pulling. A couple of seconds after the snap, physical battles (mini-wrestling matches) ensue and eventually a lineman gets off balance, trips over a body on the ground or the foot of the other lineman who’s very close by.

    The off-balance lineman becomes a runaway truck with no brakes. With no chance of controlling their body, they sometimes end up going sideways onto someone’s leg. That’s it. ACL torn. Similar to when Kimo von Oelhoffen fell on Palmer’s leg in the 2006 playoff game. The scenario above describes the season ending injuries to Pouncey, DeCastro, David Johnson, and Heath, not to mention many other less impacting injuries. I think I’m forgetting one or 2 also.

    I was hoping the Steelers would start running outside zone blocking methods. Not because I thought they’d be successful running the ball, but because I thought the outside zone concept would widen the concentrated blocking area giving less chance of them running into and onto one another, which is inevitable with a steady dose of inside power blocking.

  • alex

    much charted waters for our OL…

    but we still have 3 out of 4 home games, and we can still go 9-7,,,

    as long as we dump the Haley run-run-pass, dink and dunk offense for the ‘no huddle Ben’ offense! its ‘ben’ our only success on this year!

    tell me what use is Haley this year?!

  • jizz

    youre a faggot reader783 and you know nothing about the steelers

  • steeltown

    I’d rather make it to the SB.. always.. that means a strong out-of-nowhere playoff run. That, is always awesome. Win or lose you always want to make it to the big game.
    Of course losing the SB is terrible, but not even being involved in the playoffs is much worse. The ONLY good out of not making the playoffs is a higher draft pick.

  • Steeler Fanatic

    The lesson learn is create depth and invest in the team’s offensive line. It is so important. How about this scenario? LT- Bring Brown back at $5M+ or negotiate a more friendly incentive based $3M per… draft the LT from Alabama; Foster is cheap at LG, Pouncey, DeCastro and Gilbert. Re-sign Velasco for three years at around Fosters salary… Then you have Velasco, the rookie Bama tackle, Beachum and Adams as backups. You know have three guys who can play tackle and two guys who can play guard/center. All for the following: Brown ($3M-$5M), Foster ($1.1M), Pouncey(<$1M), Decastro (<$1M) and Gilbert (<$1M), You will have roughly $12M-$14M wrapped up with nine guys. And it takes just one draft pick, a restructure (Brown) and a re-sign (Velasco). Then we can address corner, tight end, big receiver, defensive end depth, safety depth, etc.