Buckeye News Around the net for 08/23/08

Buckeye News Around the net for 08/23/08
Santonio Holmes

Buckeye News Around the net for 08/23/08

Santonio Holmes, Troy Smith, Joey Galloway, Donte Whitner, Anthony Gonzalez, Dustin Fox, Ashton Youboty, Roy Hall, Antonio Pittman, Ryan Pickett, Tyler Everett and A.J. Hawk.

By Bill Smith

The Good 

            WR Santonio Holmes said he is a bit excited and nervous to be returning punts in the team's next preseason game. He has not done it since his rookie season in 2006. Because he has developed so well as a wide receiver, head coach Mike Tomlin feels comfortable letting him return punts.  Maybe it is the sensation of the shaking underneath your feet when 21 players are running toward you with a majority of them having one goal—remove the ball and perhaps parts of your body from you.

            As a WR, Holmes looks outstanding.  Expect him to have a great year.  On a per-game basis last year, Santonio Holmes averaged more fantasy points than Wes Welker and Plaxico Burress, among others.

            Head coach John Harbaugh said the team may not know who their starting quarterback is until the week leading up to their regular-season opener. QBs Kyle Boller and Troy Smith have not done anything to separate themselves in the battle while the team has ruled out starting rookie QB Joe Flacco. However, he did announce that QB Troy Smith will start the team's preseason game Saturday, Aug. 23.

            WR Joey Galloway (groin) participated in practice Wednesday, Aug. 20. He may play in the team's preseason game Saturday, Aug. 23.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Jon Gruden said  Galloway (groin) is a "work in progress" in his return from a groin injury. Galloway practiced on a limited basis Tuesday, Aug. 19. "He's getting better. He's not 100 percent, and therefore it's hard to play. But he is back in a limited capacity," Gruden said.  At Galloway's age, groin injuries can be very slow to heal.  Galloway has been struggling with the injury all preseason.

            Donte Whitner got a key interception in the Bills game against the Steelers.

            In Weeks 12 through 16 last season, Anthony Gonzalez was top 10 in receiving yards and had three touchdowns.

            CB Dustin Fox worked with the hands team on special teams Wednesday, Aug. 20.  That is usually in indication that his roster spot is pretty safe.  That is very good news for a player that has played in only 7 games with 3 teams in his 3 previous years as a pro.  If Fox does make the 53 man roster, there is a good chance that it will come at the expense of fellow ex-Buckeye Ashton Youboty.

            From Yahoo:  Roy Hall, WR, Colts: Marvin Harrison is healthy. The Colts say it, so it must be true, right? Now, Marvin did catch three passes in Indy's first exhibition game, which is good. But what if he goes down again? Sure, Anthony Gonzalez would be the primary beneficiary, but who becomes the third receiver? Hall, like Gonzalez, is an Ohio State product; unlike Gonzalez, he's a physical freak. Hall is 6-foot-3, 240 pounds, and runs a 4.35. That makes him David Boston (before Boston got fat), but bigger and faster. Now, Hall never did much in college, missed all of last year with a separated shoulder, and hasn't shown the greatest hands. But remember the name.

            Antonio Pittman had 38 carries for 139 yards in limited action for the Rams last year.

        Antonio Pittman, RB, Rams: I've been asked a dozen times over the past week what I think of the Steven Jackson holdout, and in each case, I've remarked that the whole thing smells like an Emmitt. Which is to say that it's evocative of those halcyon days when Emmitt Smith would stay out of camp for all but the final three days, sign a new deal, then come storming in Week 1 (or Week 3 or whatever) and dominate. Still, it's never unwise to have contingencies, and Pittman seems the likely starter if Jackson stays away. Cut by the Saints after last year's draft, he was solid as a backup for St. Louis last year, is a very good pass catcher and has nice elusiveness. The presence of fellow sophomore Brian Leonard would complicate things, but I'd prefer Pittman.

            Steven Jackson RB St. Louis has agreed to come back to camp to try to get a new deal negotiated.  While it will send Pittman to the second team, Jackson's absence has given Pittman a chance to solidify his position as the #1 reserve.

The Bad           

            Ryan Pickett is still suffering with a hamstring.  He hopes to be back on the field late this week.

             Dallas Cowboys FS Tyler Everett has a tough uphill road to make the 53 man roster.  He is not practicing due to an undisclosed injury and that is not helping his cause.  He is competing for the No. 5 and No. 6 cornerback jobs on the roster in a very crowded and talented group of DB's.

            The chances that Youboty will be traded to Cleveland were reduced significantly when the Browns traded a future draft choice to the Dolphins for CB Travis Daniels.

The Ugly

            A.J. Hawk was hurt in a practice this week.  The injury involves the chest but the team is being VERY quiet about it.  The rumor is that Hawk has a torn peck.  If so, it could easily be a season ending injury.  We will do our best to keep you posted.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams and has scouted talent.  He is a senior writer for http://BrutusReport.com.  He has also published several novels on http://ebooks-library.com/index.cfm and edits http://fryingpanpolitics.blog.com

Tags: Buckeyes Football NFL Ohio State

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