Steelers G David DeCastro On Mike Munchak: ‘He Makes The Game Very Simple’

Pittsburgh Steelers right guard David DeCastro is about to partake in his third training camp since being selected in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft out of Stanford and newcomer Mike Munchak will be his third different offensive line coach. Wednesday, DeCastro talked about what it’s like having the Hall of Famer as his position coach in an interview on 93.7 The Fan.

“I’ve had a lot of great offensive line coaches. Coach Munchak, I think his resume speaks for itself, in terms of what he’s done as a player and as a coach,” said DeCastro. “He makes the game very simple. It’s hard to explain unless you’re actually in the meeting room and on the field with him, but everything’s very simple. He’s very detailed and when he speaks, you listen.

“I’m not saying that I didn’t listen to other line coaches, but when you’ve done what he’s done, you definitely treat him with the utmost respect. And everything you take, you’re like, ok, yes, yes, ok. So we’re really excited to have him and work with him, and I think he’s going to be very, very helpful to our O-line if we can all stay healthy, that’s the key.”

Another key to the offense being successful in 2014 could be the usage of more no-huddle and they worked quite a bit on that phase of their attack during the OTA and mini camp practices. DeCastro was asked to give his thoughts on how that part of the offense is coming along.

“The no-huddle’s great, I really like it,” DeCastro said. “It really slows down the D linemen and puts pressure on (defenses), and I think if we can find a way to keep using it to our advantage, I think it’s great.”

The offensive line will also get starting center Maurkice Pouncey back this year as he’s now fully recovered from the serious knee injury that he suffered in the 2013 opener against the Tennessee Titans when DeCastro accidentally clipped him from behind during a failed cut block attempt. According to DeCastro, Pouncey hasn’t missed a beat with his line calls despite missing so much playing time and has showed no signs of rust during the offseason practices.

“No, Pouncey’s extremely smart football player,” said DeCastro. “We all kind of help each other, because we’ve switched around the calls a little bit, so there’s some things that used to be called this that are now called this and they mean a little different. We’re all on the same page and Pouncey doesn’t need any help.”

The Steelers will report to St. Vincent College a week from Friday for the start of training camp and DeCastro can’t wait.

“I think everyone’s just ready to get going,” said DeCastro “I think talk’s really cheap, but everyone understands that. They can kind of see it and feel it, but everyone’s just ready to get going. Get to Latrobe, get this season started, get it underway, so that we can prove it on the field.”

  • srdan

    Every year I get excited for our Oline to become dominant, and every year I am disappointed. I hope Munch can help.

  • dgh57

    The best part of the above is Training Camp starts a week from Friday!!

    You can sure say that again David DeCastro, “if we can all stay healthy, that’s the key.”

  • joed32

    I’m hoping they can stay healthy for the whole year for a change.

  • Ken

    With Big Ben you only need a solid line, it doesn’t have to be great. For half of his career the Steelers have not provided him even an average nfl line. At least this group has more promise than we have had in awhile.

  • Lil Smitty

    Sometimes people can over complicate things. Find the person you are to hit and hit him with your pad level below his. I am sure it is more complicated to know which person you should block depending on play call and D front. However the simplest thing can be made overly complicated and cause the players to over think his assignment.

  • Virdin Barzey

    I agree. This year will be different. Munch is like that. Keep in mind the line played better at the end of the season. If they struggle again, look for guys to be sent packing out of the Burgh.

  • srdan

    For the young Ben I agree, unfortunately he is not that anymore

  • srdan

    I’m sure nobody ever shared this secret with them.

  • Ken

    We actually know who is going to be our left tackle before training camp It’s always nice to try new things.

  • cencalsteeler

    The high draft picks along the line are now seasoned. The rest of the pieces have fallen into place. Beachum has settled in nicely. Cody Wallace has proven back up quality. Adams has another year under his belt. The hiring of Munchak. It is now time for the investments to start paying off. IF and I say IF this line stays healthy, they will open the eyes of the NFL this season, and rightfully so.

  • Kurt Williams

    I guess this says alot about Bicknell Jr. and Sean Kugler. Let’s hope Munch is the difference maker because there’s not many changes that can be made with the players.

  • charles

    Injury has been the LARGEST obstacle. 59 different combos on the OL the last 2 years?? Teams that get far in the playoffs have continuity on both DL and OL. Elway’s 2 SB victories incredibly did not have ANY injury either year on the OL!
    Munch will still be an improvement. The adjustments he makes during the game should prove his worth. The last 2 times the Steelers played Titans they won the line of scrimmage on their O. Locker’s time to throw the ball was crazy.

  • Kurt Williams

    Excellent points.

  • srdan

    Good point on Elway. That was the dirty Oline that use to cut block everyone before teh rules were changed. Hated that.

  • sean mcmartin

    True. The Steelers have been affected by injuries the last few seasons, The Standard has been lacking in the back-ups. Tomlin knows it, He hired seasoned veteran coaches , Now they need to come through and coach these guys up like Cowher did.

  • joed32

    Kugler was alright. DeCastro got hurt in preseason and never actually got to play under him. Lots of injuries that year and Kugler still got an offer to be a college head coach. He was no Munchak though.

  • Kurt Williams

    Are the injuries relative to technique? Example: DeCastro taking out Pouncey. I think it’s valid that technique or just bad execution could’ve been the issue as well. Just a thought.

  • James Miles

    Coaches can only do so much but you have to have the talent and the Steelers don’t have it. If I were been Ben, I would ask to be traded. Could you imagine Ben’s success if he had a top quality line to work behind? He would be ranked up there with Brady and Manning!

  • FAIL

  • ikr, we need a run game too. I rather have a elite offensive line, then go from there.

  • We’ll find out whether or not guys like Marcus Gilbert and Mike Adams want to be Steelers this year. No more excuses in 2014, let’s do this.

  • MC

    Same. Although I think this season is the most likely a positive change will be implemented.

  • Lil Smitty

    Its the same thing with tackling. You see how well that works at the pro level today as opposed to the 70s. Noll drilled the simple fundamentals every year in training camp. Many people get caught up with schemes and ignore the simplest of skills.
    haven’t you ever met someone who takes fifteen minutes to explain something that should only five.

  • srdan

    Yes but those people don’t spend 12 hours a day 6 days a week trying to cut down those words and they are not being coached by some of the best people in the world at getting to the point with millions of dollars on the line.

  • Krankor

    This is one of the extremely few articles I’ve read this off-season that actually gives me a little optimism for the upcoming season. About the *only* place we’re likely to see any significant improvement this year is in the o-line. But if we do get that, it could be big. I’m still in “show me!” mode about the defense.

  • joed32

    I agree with you but that didn’t happen under Kugler.

  • Kurt Williams

    Indeed, he was dealt a tough hand in 2010 with the injuries and they still made the superbowl.

  • srdan

    lol, you seem like one of those guys that if your girl makes a bad dinner you start doubting a 2 year relationship.

  • James Miles

    This O-line has been stinking it up for years. Put Manning or Brady behind what Ben has had to play with and let Ben have the O-lines they have played behind and they would be talking about how ELITE Ben was……NO QUESTION!

  • Caleb

    For a while I felt like the Steelers line was injury prone because it was filled with big fat lineman. But generally I feel like it is easy to get injured when the line is being dominated. How many injuries were due to another lineman being pushed back into a teammate? If the steelers line were imposing its will on the D, those guys would be in control and not being pushed into each other.

  • Kurt Williams

    No excuses this year, so far the health is good and Munch is a top notch coach. Time to perform “above the line”.

  • Steve

    When you get right down to it, as Chuck Noll said Football is a game of Blocking and Tackling. For an offensive lineman, you can either block or not and if you can’t block you better find another profession. Because you won’t be around very long.

  • Toddy Bravo

    Agreed, with the understanding that about 95% of the disappointment is due to injuries. I’m completely confident that this line would have been among the best in football had Pouncey’s season not ended week 1, which in turn resulted in some shifting around and DeCastro not being the same for a few weeks as well.