Steelers 2015 Projected Starters: Big Changes Midseason


The Steelers, and the rest of the NFL teams, are quietly preparing for the upcoming mini-camps and eventual training camp. The finalized depth charts have yet to be determined, but we’ve seen our fair share of projections.

Here’s the most common depth chart I’ve seen floating around of who will be starting Week 1:

[table id=54 /]

Pretty straight forward. It’s a group full of Steelers veterans sprinkled with DeAngelo Williams starting due to Le’Veon Bells three game suspension.

Steelers defensive coordinator, Keith Butler, could very well take some chances with the rookies, but by the time training camp is over, he will more than likely hang with guys comfortable with the system – that includes keeping William Gay and Cortez Allen as the 1/2 combination at the corner position.

The coaching staff very well could push Jarvis Jones to the left side of the defense in hopes of keeping Moats as a backup and giving Jones a chance on the weak side of the line.

But, what about the starters by the time midseason rolls around?

Things could look very different at that point, and I believe they will.

Here’s what the starting group could look like by Week 8:

[table id=55 /]

This is, of course, assuming that everyone stays healthy by this point….

There’s no bigger shakeup than on the defensive side of the ball. The last few years of the draft, including this year’s will begin to see the payoff.

Daniel McCullers will have his breakout over the course of the first half of the season. “Big Dan” will surpass the effective yet low impact Steve McLendon by collapsing the pocket with his huge frame early in a quarterback’s drop back.

Bud Dupree will eventually surpass Jarvis Jones and Moats, and become the outright starter. James Harrison, though older in his years, is still inhuman when it comes to his workout and work ethic. The Steelers won’t be able to afford to limit his snap counts, and he will be starting and playing most snaps even by mid-season.

We’re about to see a whole lot of Daniel McCullers in 2015.

William Gay is not a #1 cornerback. I repeat. William Gay is not a #1 cornerback. Neither is Cortez Allen, but I think Allen will show much improvement from his huge let down in 2014.

Senzquez Golson will get the bump to #2 because of his ball skills and ability to make plays. Gay will be relegated to where hit fits best – nickel corner.

Shamakro Thomas will hold his own for most of the season (hopefully not wishful thinking).

Mike Mitchell on the other hand will prove that it wasn’t just a ‘groin injury’ that kept him from taking good angles to the ball, tackling, and celebrating big hits like some damned fool. Robert Golden will get the bump here, and hopefully would be more effective than Mitchell.

On the offensive side of the ball, the big change is at the wide receiver position. Again, hoping that this isn’t wishful thinking, Sammie Coates improves his catching ability over the first half of the season. He surpasses Markus Wheaton simply because he is bigger and can stretch the field – which will only help Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant.

What do you think Steelers Nation of the starters by Week 8 for the Steelers? What do you predict?

Next: Brady-less Patriots Could Still Cause Problems

More from Still Curtain