The Steelers Should Sign Faneca to Strengthen O-Line

David LawCorrespondent IApril 24, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - AUGUST 25:  Alan Faneca # 66 of the Pittsburgh Steelers in a game against the Philadelphia Eagles August 25, 2006 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles defeated the Steelers 16 to 7.  (Photo by Len Redkoles/Getty Images)
Len Redkoles/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers used to be built from the lines out. Long-time fans of the franchise recall the team typically dominating the line of scrimmage, both on offense and defense.

That is no longer the case, particularly on the offensive side of the ball. Ben Roethlisberger is always among the leaders in sacks. That is sometimes due to his tendency to hold onto the ball too long, but more often is a result of weak pass blocking.

The offensive line is no longer capable of opening holes for their running backs. Fans have become used to the team abandoning the power running game in short yardage situations, at times going with a four-receiver set instead. That is a far cry from what old-timers refer to as "Steeler football".

It has recently been announced that the New York Jets have parted ways with Pro-Bowl offensive guard Alan Faneca. Faneca's most successful years were as a Pittsburgh Steeler. Faneca won a Super Bowl ring with the team in Super Bowl XL.

Faneca was a Pro-Bowl fixture during his tenure with the Steelers, and was elected by fans to the Steelers 75th Anniversary All-Star team. Faneca is a six-time All-Pro selection and a nine-time Pro-Bowl choice.

At age 33, Faneca is probably not the player he was in his Steelers prime, but Faneca was an All-Pro in 2009, and remains a very effective run-blocker.

Faneca would provide an immediate boost to the Steelers' offensive line. The addition of Alan Faneca along with first-round draft choice Maurkice Pouncey would go a long way towards strengthening what many fans consider the team's weakest unit.