The Steelers yesterday unveiled the members of its 33-member all-time team yesterday, based on fan voting. Choosing who we think has the been the best isn't usually the difficult of a prospect. It means grabbing most of the core members of the '70s dynasty and sprinkling in a few of recent vintage, along with Greg Lloyd. Finding the worst is much more difficult. Okay, it's not. It's just picking a lot of Steelers from '98-'00. But I did it anyway, because I can. Also, I'm only 25, so I'm a little foggy on the crappiness of many of the '80s teams and the horrid ones before the '70s. Feel free to include more in the comments.
Update: Blog 'N' Gold put up a similar version earlier today.
Quarterback -- Jim Miller and Kent Graham
As tempting as it is to put Kordell here, these stalwarts weren't even good enough to unseat him in some of his worst seasons. Wasn't Anthony Wright in the mix there for a while for the starting job? Guuhhh. Those are days gladly gone by.
Dishonorable mention: Tommy Maddox
Running back -- Amos Zereoue and Richard Huntley
If you think about it, Zereoue's a lot like Willie Parker, only with unexceptional speed. Which is like being Ben, but sober. Huntley teased everyone with his 6.1 yards per carry average as a reserve then totally sucked when actually used as a regular back.
Dishonorable mention: Duce Staley, for all but the eight games he wasn't on the sidelines.
Wide receivers: Courtney Hawkins and Troy Edwards
Two stopgaps while Hines Ward was still transitioning from a quarterback to a wideout. Two very, very poor stopgaps.
Dishonorable mention: Plaxico Burress, because he's a dick.
Tight end: Jay Riemersma
In the later Mark Bruener years, the Steelers were most desirous of re-establishing an offense where the tight end was a big factor in the passing game, so they went out and got Riemersma, who was a good pass catching tight end with the Bills. In the two seasons he played in the 'Burgh, his best season he had 10 catches. Now the tight ends catch every damn touchdown the Steelers throw and Matt Spaeth has four catches and three scores.
Offensive linemen: Jamain Stephens and Wayne Gandy
Stephens was by far the worst first-round pick of the Cowher era and Gandy was probably one of the worse free agent acquisitions. At least Stephens had the excuse of being riddled with injuries. Gandy was just riddled with suck.
Defensive linemen: Jeremy Staat and Orpheus Roye
I probably shouldn't criticize Staat because he ended up joining the Marine Corps after his former roommate Pat Tillman died. For his football career, however, he is deserving. Staat was a somewhat highly touted second round pick who never really materialized into anything. Roye was okay but then became a member of the Browns, trading decency for Cleveland.
Inside linebackers: Earl Holmes and Kendrell Bell
Perhaps the inclusion of these two is a bit unfair, as they were both solid contributors when they were members of the Steelers. But as was the case with many other big-ticket defensive free agents, they never quite shined as bright with Detroit or Kansas City.
Outside linebackers: Carlos Emmons and Alonzo Jackson
Emmons was the worst starting outside linebacker that I can remember . A stiff breeze got better pressure from the end. Jackson, like Staat, was a horrible second-round bust who never managed to impress anyone enough to get significant PT.
Cornerbacks: Chad Scott and Dewayne Washington
Being an alum of the University of Maryland, it always pains me that Terps make terrible Steelers (Chad Scott, Neil O'Donnell) while graduates from UVA (Heath Miller, James Farrior) excel. What makes this tandem so painful was the fact they were the pair of starting corners for the Steelers for what seemed like goddamn forever. Having those two assholes meant being plagued with constant fear that unless the Steelers got to the opposing quarterback within a second, that those two clowns would get burnt worse than suburban San Diego.
Safety: Scott Shields and Brent Alexander
More late '90s, early aughts mediocrity in the secondary. Granted these two weren't as embarassing as Scott and Washington, but they weren't making things better. Thank God the Steelers signed Troy long-term in the offseason.
Special teams: Ricardo Colclough, Todd Peterson
Why is that asshole Colclough still on the team? And don't try to tell me he helps out in nickel or dime coverage, because I don't see him helping there, either. Also, I think he just dropped another punt. In Peterson's 10 games as a kicker for the Steelers in 2003, he was a whooping 12-21 on field goal attempts, and was approximiately .01 percent as fun as Jeff Reed.