After not addressing it during the draft, it was thought that the Pittsburgh Steelers still needed to add some depth on the offensive line.
And despite Steelers’ head coach Mike Tomlin claiming on Saturday that he wasn’t concerned about depth across the line, just two days later the team addressed the need by coming to terms with veteran offensive tackle Guy Whimper on a one-year deal.
Whimper, who turns 30 later this month, is a six-year NFL veteran who was a former fourth-round pick of the New York Giants and spent the last three seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
He will provide depth behind Mike Adams and Marcus Gilbert, who are expected to start at tackle. Whimper (6-5, 302) has made 19 starts at right tackle in the last two seasons; should he make the Steelers’ roster and will likely be the first tackle off the bench.
Whimper is ideally a right tackle and would only likely get a look on the left side if Pittsburgh were in a pinch.
The signing of Whimper is a curious one, especially with Max Starks still unsigned.
Usually the Steelers turn to Starks in a time of need and signing him to add veteran depth made a lot of sense, especially considering the fact that he is a very capable tackle who started all 16 games a season ago.
Whimper has a long history of allowing sacks, which isn’t a good sign for a team looking to protect their franchise quarterback.
Here’s what J.J. Cooper wrote in December 2011 in his Under Pressure column for FootballOutsiders.com:
“Whimper leads the league with 12.5 sacks allowed. Eight of those sacks have come when Whimper’s man wrapped up (Blaine) Gabbert less than three seconds after the snap.”
The Steelers signing him while Starks remains unsigned is a real head scratching move.
The team also announced the signing of undrafted rookie linebacker Terence Garvin, who tried out for the team this weekend during Rookie Camp.
With Garvin and Whimper joining the roster, the Steelers waived defensive tackle Anthony Rashad White and center Ivory Wade. White and Wade were undrafted free agents.