Everything the Steelers do on defense is predicated on their ability to stop the run. The most important run defender in Dick LeBeau's scheme is the nose tackle. Casey Hampton excelled in that role for years before Steve McLendon took over last season. McLendon had thrived in a pass-rushing role, but he struggled to sustain quality play as a full-time starter at the nose. McLendon made his average run tackle after a gain of 3.0 yards, the highest figure for any starting nose tackle on a 3-4 defense last season.
Come on down, Louis Nix. Irish Chocolate is what the team needs.
I would love that. Hampton was a stud, ate up two guys (hehe) and freed up the MLBs. I don't know if a 3-4 NT will ever make the HOF, but he should be in the discussion. It's so hard to quantify what he did - not many tackles or sacks. But the run defense was #1 for however many straight years largely due to the big snack.