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Is Mike Peterson Enough Depth At Linebacker?

I told a reader whose name evades me that I'd offer my perspective on this, so here it is.

I've been on record saying we didn't need much, if any, extra linebackers. We have a plethora of young LBs coming to camp, including Harris, the Alabama LB. I'm convinced any defensive player coming out of Bama is worth a look, if only because that defense is always so, so good.

We went out and signed MoPete after the unfortunate injury to Lofa Tatupu, who was fighting to make his way back from several knee surgeries and who also sat out the whole season last year.

In a perfect world, Mike Peterson never sees the field. That's not to say he's a bad linebacker - in fact, he used to be a fantastic LB - but his best days are behind him. If anything, his leadership will allow Akeem Dent to become a better LB than he would've been otherwise.

That part of MoPete's signing, I like. He's a very youthful guy in spite of his age, and there are LBs who have played at 36 years old and done their part. I think the Steelers' James Farrior played at 36, and he played in a 3-4, so it's certainly plausible that Peterson could play in a limited role if needed.

The only thing I don't like about MoPete's signing is that he'll end up taking the spot of a younger player that might have a higher ceiling. I'm really big on young, raw talent, because I think that it can be coached up, and most certainly Mike Nolan can get the most out of anyone we bring in. Now that player will be put on the practice squad, and they might be taken away from us.

Perhaps that's just because I've watched too much baseball lately, where half the league is or was a project player.

Aside from Peterson, I don't think we need to look at LB anymore. I'm convinced that Harris has a chance to succeed if given the opportunity. Training camp is coming up, let's see what the younger guys give us before we go dipping into the free agency pool again.