So far, are Steelers better or worse?

So far, are Steelers better or worse?
April 10, 2014, 8:00 am
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New England Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount (29) celebrates after scoring a touchdown in the first half of an NFL football game against the Baltimore Ravens, Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013, in Baltimore.

(AP Photo/Nick Wass)

At this point in the offseason, with free agents possibly still left to sign and waiting for the draft, have the Pittsburgh Steelers improved themselves? Figuring this out can be sort of like when your eye doctor flips the lenses when he fits you for glasses -- better or worse? You have to blink a few times to tell.

But the answer, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Ed Bouchette, is that at least they haven’t gotten much worse.

He puts it like this: The Steelers are better at two positions, but worse at three. As we said, not much worse.

The improvements: stronger at running back with the addition of LeGarrette Blount and at safety with Mike Mitchell. Blount, in particular, could be the key pickup of the offseason, a big, strong runner who could combine with Le’Veon Bell to give Pittsburgh the kind of rushing attack that has traditionally driven its offense.

As for the steps back: wide receiver, linebacker and defensive line. Wide receivers Emmanuel Sanders and Jerricho Cotchery are gone, so far replaced only by former New Orleans Saint Lance Moore. At linebacker, LaMarr Woodley isn’t coming back, and the fact that Jason Worilds is staying doesn’t make up for Woodley’s absence. And, as Bouchette writes, “They are not as good in the defensive line because adding Cam Thomas is not better than having Brett Keisel, Ziggy Hood and Al Woods.”

We’re still a long way from September, but that still leaves the Steelers with significant holes to fill.