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Report: Lions Have Not Requested Permission from Steelers to Contact GM Kevin Colbert

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The Detroit Lions have not requested permission from the Pittsburgh Steelers to interview general manager Kevin Colbert for their vacant general manager position, according to a report by Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, despite repeated reports that the Lions have interest in Colbert.


Colbert, who worked for the Lions for a decade before coming to Pittsburgh in 2000, has familiarity with the Ford family and is well-regarded in most NFL circles, leading to Detroit’s initial interested in the Steelers’ general manager, as originally reported by Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports on Jan. 4.

On Tuesday though, Albert Breer of NFL Network reported that Los Angeles Rams executive Brad Holmes, along with Ed Dodds of Indianapolis, Terry Fontenot and Jeff Ireland from New Orleans and George Patton of Minnesota are individuals that the Lions wanted to bring in for an in-person interview, excluding Colbert.

Less that 24 hours later, Mike Stone of 97.1-FM The Ticket in Detroit reported that the Lions have offered the job to Colbert, and that a deal is “close to happening.”

That would not seem to jive with Dulac’s report that the Lions have not approached the Steelers with a request to interview, though it’s not clear that the Lions would need to interview Colbert, who they are familiar with and has a long track record in the position, before making such an offer.

Additionally, such an offer could be made through an intermediary and not to Colbert himself.

It seems that there is at least some interest from the Lions in Colbert, but that interest has not risen to the level of them asking permission to speak with him as a candidate.

Colbert’s contract runs through the end of the 2021 NFL Draft in April.

Pro Football Hall of Fame

HOF Voter Ed Bouchette Makes Hall of Fame Case for Former Steelers Guard Alan Faneca

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As the Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee met Tuesday, The Athletic’s Ed Bouchette made the case for former Pittsburgh Steelers guard Alan Faneca.

Bouchette listed Faneca’s career accomplishments, of which there are many, and compared him to others league-wide and at his positions with similar credentials, demonstrating how it is long past time the six-time All-Pro received the football’s highest honor.

Selected in the first round of the 1998 NFL Draft out of LSU, Faneca spent the first decade of his career in Pittsburgh before closing with the New York Jets and Arizona Cardinals.

Faneca missed just two games over his 13-year career, was selected to nine-straight Pro Bowls and named First-Team All-Pro six times. He was also named to the All-Decade team of the 2000s and won Super Bowl XL with the Steelers.

The Class of 2021 will be enshrined in Canton, Ohio on Aug. 8, 2021.

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Pro Football Hall of Fame

Hall of Fame Selector Bill Polian Makes Case for Former Steelers Scout Bill Nunn

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With the Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee meeting Tuesday to determine the next group legends to be enshrined, Hall of Famer and former general manager Bill Polian made the case for Pittsburgh Steelers scout Bill Nunn.

In his presentation, Polian especially highlighted Nunn’s impact as a revolutionary in the scouting process targeting historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). Nunn’s vital scouting these underrepresented players and institutions proved vital in crafting the Steelers dynasty of the 1970s.

“He was the authority, while working for the (Pittsburgh) Courier, on HBCU football. He might well have been termed the Scout-in-Chief of HBCU football,” Polian said. “Bill Nunn helped create one of the greatest teams of all time.”

A Pittsburgh native, Nunn attended Westinghouse high school and West Virginia State College before embarking on a journalism career with the Pittsburgh Courier. Eventually becoming the managing editor of the paper, Nunn gained notoriety for his black college All-American teams, highlighting relatively unknown players at HBCUs.

Nunn’s expertise translated to his career with the Steelers, where his scouting led the organization to draft a number of legends form HBCUs, including L.C. Greenwood, Mel Blount, Ernie Holmes, John Stallworth and Donnie Shell.

Nunn would become the first Steelers nominated as a contributor if selected. Executives Art and Dan Rooney were inducted prior to the designation in 1964 and 2000, respectively.

The Class of 2021 will be enshrined in Canton, Ohio on Aug. 8, 2021.

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Steelers

Steelers WR Chase Claypool Named to PFWA NFL All-Rookie Team

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Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool has been named to the 2020 Pro Football Writers of America NFL All-Rookie team.

Claypool was honored along with Minnesota Vikings wideout Justin Jefferson as the top 2020 rookies at the position. 

The Notre Dame product caught 62 passes for 873 yards and nine touchdowns this season. He also rushed for a pair of scores, tying Louis Lipps for the most touchdowns scored by a Steelers rookie with 11 total.

Claypool was the 11th wide receiver selected in the 2020 NFL Draft when the Steelers took him with the 49th overall selection. 

Claypool previously won the Joe Greene Great Performance Award as the Steelers’ rookie of the year.

This is the second straight season the Steelers had a PFWA All-Rookie member, as linebacker Devin Bush was a part of the 2019 squad. Wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and linebacker T.J. Watt were awarded in 2017.

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