March 15, 2013
A Pittsburgh Steelers fan sent me an email this morning about providing a better explanation of some of the positions on the Steelers roster. There are a lot of terms that get tossed around when talking about football players and the positions they play such as "Mike", "Mack" and "Buck" linebacker. These different names refer to playing styles. For now I will try to give a better explanation of positions on the Steelers 3-4 defense.
There are two primary defensive types used in NFL they are the 3-4 and 4-3 defenses. The 4-3 defense uses four down lineman and the defensive ends are used to rush the passer. The outside linebackers in the 4-3 are used more in pass coverage and the middle linebacker has to cover the middle of the field.
The Steelers run the 3-4 defense which implements three down lineman and four linebackers. Therefore, the outside linebackers are used as the primary pass rushers rather than the defensive ends and they also have to be athletic enough to cover in the pas...