Rookie OL Marcus Gilbert‘s first day on the job for the Steelers was, at times, a little bit more Woody Allen than Damien Woody.
The second-round draft pick out of Florida, making his first start at right tackle, allowed a drive-killing sack in the first quarter of the Steelers’ 24-0 victory over the Seahawks — but it was his next gaffe, late in the first half, that had the Rooney family squirming.
Seattle’s Raheem Brock escaped past Gilbert to blast low into Ben Roethlisberger‘s right knee, leaving the QB twisting in pain on the ground.
“It was a miscommunication,” Gilbert told The Associated Press, before turning to fellow lineman Ramon Foster for support.
Said Foster: “I told him, ‘I got (Ben’s) nose broken last year.’ It’s just one of those things, don’t let it happen again. I think he’ll learn from it.”
If Roethlisberger was annoyed by Gilbert’s debut, he didn’t show it, saying he “did a great job.”
While it was predicted that rookies would be living in a world of chaos following a lockout-addled offseason that prevented them from adapting to the pace and demands of NFL play, this was more the case of learning on the job with a Steelers offensive line riddled with injuries and early season issues.
– Marc Sessler