Steelers select Mike Adams in second round

2012 NFL DRAFT - Steelers Second Round SelectionMIKE ADAMSOffensive TackleThe Ohio State University Buckeyes6:07.2-323Dublin, OhioDublin-Coffman High School2nd Round – 56th OverallCAREER NOTESAdams appeared in 30 games during his four-year career at Ohio State, starting 25 contests, including his last 21…In his final two seasons as a starter, the left offensive tackle registered 167 knockdowns and 33 touchdown-resulting blocks.

2011 SEASONAll-American Dream Team selection (second-team) by The NFL Draft Report…The Dream Team is based on pro potential, according to that scouting information service…Added second-team All Big Ten Conference honors, despite missing the Buckeyes' first five games due to an NCAA suspension…Started the final eight contests and once he was back in the lineup, the team's struggling ground attack suddenly came back to life…Without Adams, OSU averaged 154.2 yards per game through their first five games, but 224 yards came in the season opener vs. Akron, a team that ranked 108th in the nation in run defense…After the team generated only 35 yards on 35 carries vs. Michigan State, the Buckeyes more than gladly welcomed Adams back to the fold…In his first game back, Adams made two touchdown-resulting blocks as the running unit piled up 243 yards vs. Nebraska…The following week, he helped OSU rush for 211 yards Illinois and then had two more touchdown-resulting blocks as the Buckeyes scored three times rushing and collected 268 yards in an upset win over Wisconsin…With fourteen knockdowns and three touchdown-resulting blocks to his credit, Ohio State exploded for a season-high 346 yards rushing vs. Indiana…Adams would close out the year with thirteen touchdown resulting blocks and 78 knockdowns for an offense that averaged 308.2 yards per game without their left tackle and 324.38 yards with him in the lineup.

2010 SEASONAll-American third-team selection by The NFL Draft Report…Consensus All-Big Ten Conference first-team choice…Started all thirteen games for the only time during his collegiate career, as the left tackle paced the Buckeyes with an 89.6% grade for blocking consistency, registering 89 knockdowns and 20 touchdown-resulting blocks…The team ranked 11th in the nation in scoring (38.77 ppg), 14th in rushing (220.08 ypg) and 20th in total offense (448.62 ypg).

2009 SEASONStarted four games against Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Purdue…Made first career start against Illinois…Did not play against Minnesota, New Mexico State and Penn State because of a knee in­jury.

2008 SEASONAdams was a reserve offensive tackle, appearing in four games…Sidelined by a shoulder injury.

HIGH SCHOOLAdams attended Dublin-Coffman High School in Dublin, Ohio, playing football for Shamrocks head coach Mark Crabtree…Regarded as the nation's top offensive tackle prospect by ESPN, Scout.com, Rivals.com, Prep Star and Super Prep, Adams led the team to a 13-1 record, ranking second in the state and ninth nationally during his senior year…An All-Ohio pick as a junior and senior, he added All-Ohio Capital Conference, All-Metro, and All-District each of those seasons…Was selected Parade and EA Sports All-American in 2007…Was the top-rated player on the Detroit Free Press "Best of the Midwest" team and chosen USA Today All-USA…Competed in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

PERSONALCriminology major…Born 3/10/90…Resides in Dublin, Ohio…Son of Heidi Taylor.

Mike Adams Conference Call TranscriptMIKE ADAMS

Offensive Tackle
2nd Round – 56th Overall

How did you convince the Steelers to draft you?
For me, it was more about trying to get back in their good graces. I knew that I screwed up. I've been a lifelong Steelers fan. I struck out to meet with them and just to let them know what happened and show my remorse and let them know that I love that organization and that I'll do anything to be a part of it.

Is this a dream come true for you?
Oh yeah. I guess you could say that. The first jersey I wore said "Steelers" across the front at Farrell Elementary School when I was six years old, so saying that it's a dream come true is an understatement.

Were the Steelers the only team you met with?
They were the only team that I contacted to meet with, yes.

What do you feel you need to do to earn and keep this team's trust?
Do the things I'm supposed to do. Make the right decisions. Produce on the field. As long as I do the right things I think everything will be ok.

What were some of the criteria that the Steelers laid out for you?
That's something that's between me and them. I think that's probably how we're going to keep it.

Are you more relieved than happy at this point that this has past?
I am happy to be a Steeler and relieved that it's all over. I love this organization and I am glad to be a part of it.

What was your reaction when Kevin Colbert told you that you were off the board?
It was something that was really hard to deal with. That's the team that I wanted to go to from day one. Ever since I started imagining playing in the NFL, the Steelers have always been the team I wanted to go to.

What are your expectations on the field?
I have high goals for myself and for my team. First and foremost, I want to win some Super Bowls. Individually, I want to be All-Pro. I want to be the best left tackle in the league. I believe I was the best tackle in the draft, and I believe I can show that on the field.

Why the affinity for the Steelers?
I am from Farrell, Pennsylvania. It's about 45 minutes from Pittsburgh. When I was a four-year old, my entire bedroom was all Pittsburgh Steelers' stuff. I've been in love with this organization since I started watching football. It was important for me to reach out to them because this is something I definitely wanted to be a part of.

Did you go to Farrell high school?
I lived there until I was 12. My entire family still lives there. I go back about once every month. I'm pretty interactive in the community up there, I love that place. I graduated from Dublin Coffman high school though.

How did you convince the Pittsburgh Steelers that you love football and have a passion for the game?
If you talk to any of my coaches or teammates I don't think you can doubt my passion for the game. This is what I love to do, this is what I'm passionate about and this is the only place where I can really see myself being. That part wasn't really a big issue. I think everybody knows I'm very passionate about the game, I love football and this is who I am.

On if you are more comfortable with the right or left side?
It doesn't matter. I've played left my entire life and my entire career, so that's probably where I'm more comfortable. I'll do whatever I have to do to contribute to the Steelers.

On the battles between you and Cameron Heyward:
Cameron and I used to battle all the time so it's good to be back with him and I can't wait to have those heated battles in practice.

Offensive line coach Sean Kugler on Mike AdamsSean in your wildest imagination did you ever see the first two rounds unfolding like this?I certainly didn't expect it. I feel very fortunate to have two quality players that we thought very highly of, and spent a lot of time evaluating. Im excited to coach both of those guys.

Was Adams a first round grade for you guys?Yes, he did have a first round grade. We did a lot of thorough research on him. We spent a lot of time with him, more than we spent with any of the other players for obvious reasons. We are real comfortable with where he is at and what he can contribute to us.

Are you worried about all the off-the-field issues?No, and we had to research it. We feel comfortable with him.

He is rated very highly as a pass protector. What have you seen that makes him so good at pass protecting?He has great size and long arms. He can bend for a guy his size. He has a lot of length to him and that is important at the tackle position. He's a physical player and a size combination that is hard to beat at the tackle position.

Does he need work at run blocking?He's going to have to work on his entire game. I wouldn't say that he's a finished product. Mike is a willing worker and I'm excited to get working with him.

Is he going to play left or right tackle?We'll get him in the right spot. He does have the ability to play both, but that will remain to be seen.

How do you see the offensive line shaking out?We're going to see how things go. We want to get the guys in the best spots. Realistically I don't want moving parts. It has been more of a necessity for us to have moving parts. We love to have guys at five stable positions and keep them there. We'll get the right five and see where we go from there.

He's had trouble with speed off the edge, but seems to have good feet. Will pro coaching help that?A guy his size, speed probably will be his nemesis. We'll continue to work on that. There will be some technique things. He presents other problems to players. With each guy you give and take a little bit.

Is he a guy that you can bring along slower?That could be a good assessment, each guy is different. Some guys can just step in and play ball, some guys can't. that remains to be seen. I hate to put a label on one guy, we'll see when we get to OTA's and those things.

Does this change your plans to move Marcus Gilbert to left tackle?I'm going to have a few beers tonight and think about it. I think that it is two quality players that we are adding. These two guys are going to help us get better as an offensive line. I promise that we will get the right guys in the right positions.

RE: Your take on the offensive line picks over the last couple of years:Obviously you want the best players that you can get. Adding those guys will give us a talented line. You play with whoever you have. It doesn't matter to me what round I guy is picked, I want guys that are talented and can compete throughout the game. These are two guys that really like playing football.

Are these two guys not going to be able to come in right away because of school?David is going to graduate. The way his classes are structured he doesn't finish until after OTA's. I have to check on Mike's graduation status. If we have to spend extra time with them when they get here we'll do that.

Will there be a difference in the running game approach with Todd Haley as Offensive Coordinator?I think Todd likes the gap schemes. I think we'd like to be more balanced. I think it's unique with David DeCastro, having a right guard that has the ability to pull left. There are not many of those guys, most of those guys are left guards that pull to the right, and teams are more right-handed. That will give us a chance to be more balanced, so I'm excited about that.

Will he pull to the right a lot?He'll pull. He can pull. If he can pull, we're going to pull him.

General Manager Kevin Colbert on Mike AdamsKevin Colbert:I just thought I'd step up and talk about Mike Adams because I'm sure there have been comments or questions regarding the character of this young man. So please, ask away.

What did you do to investigate Mike's situation and what did you find out?In any prospect, we always get background information, which we did in Mike's case. When players are subject to the testing at the combine, we don't get those results until about a week before the actual draft. In Mike's case, he sought us out once he was aware of the situation. He requested a face-to-face interview and meeting with myself, Art Rooney II and Coach Tomlin, and we obliged. When Mike came in, we told him he's off our draft board. These are the stipulations that you have to accomplish for consideration for us to draft you, which the young man did. He met our criteria, he met our stipulations, and we were comfortable in taking him where we took him.

Can you be more specific about what you asked him to do?No. All I can say is we told him you're off our board, this is what you have to do to get back on it, and he met those criteria.

Did he go to other teams for special meetings, or just to you?I can't answer that. I honestly don't know, but he sought us out very quickly. We have a great relationship with his agents, and we worked together with it.

Are you worried because he lied at the Combine?  What was more grievous, the test results or him lying?I would imagine, yes. I think with either one you could say those are usually offenses that we're not going to forgive, but in this man's case, he sought us out, he met the criteria we provided for him, and now we are comfortable with selecting him, but it's going to be a day to day working relationship between all of us.

Is it more bothersome because he could not stop his behavior, even at the biggest interview of his life?I think whenever a kid fails at the combine, we look at each individual situation and we try to figure out whether the risk is worth the reward. Quite honestly, I'm not so much worried about the reward as I am about the young man getting his life in order. In this case, we felt comfortable that he is going to do that. Whether he does or not, nobody knows, including me, him and everybody associated with this.

Does your experience with Marvel Smith and his past situation have any effect on this decision?No, this about Mike Adams and the Steelers.

Re: Surprised he was still available:No, again, different teams look at different criteria and view it differently. When he was there, we were comfortable with picking him.

Do you view him as a risk?Every pick is a risk, no question about it. With this being public information, and him making it that type of situation, there is probably more of a risk than we are usually comfortable taking. Because he was forthcoming and took matters, met our criteria, we are comfortable with taking the risk.

Was the way he approached the situation a key factor in selecting him?It was. These are young people. Young people make mistakes. If they are proactive in trying to correct those mistakes, I think you have to give that consideration, especially the way he personally sought us out. We didn't call him, he called us. Had he not called us, this may not have occurred. But because he did – we were point blank. We told him he was off our board.

Did the prior problems with improper benefits at Ohio State factor into your decision?You take into consideration a player's entire body of work as a player and as a person. Again, you look at those individual infractions and weight them all together but we were comfortable taking him where we took him.

What did he do to convince you?I am not convinced. I won't be convinced. I am comfortable because of his actions. I won't be convinced that he made it as a player until the day he retires.

Did you tell him over the phone that he was off your board?Face to face.

Was that a part of the official meeting?Yes.

Did he request the follow-up visit on his own?Yeah, we talked to him at the combine. He was one of our 60 interviews. He requested that he be brought back here for one of our 30.

Did he have to ask the NFL for permission to do that?No, he can call and request that.

Are you worried about Willie Colon's health?No, not at all. This has nothing to do with any of our other guys. It's a decision we made based on the facts that we had and the actions the young man took. We all worked to make it the right decision.

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