Steelers Camp Wraps, Pass Rush, RB Tandem


The Pittsburgh Steelers are officially on summer vacation. They’ve wrapped up their minicamp and will head out to parts unknown for the next five weeks until reporting to the dorms of Saint Vincent for the Steelers’ 50th season of training camp in Latrobe. While the Steelers are enjoying their summer break we’ll be busy looking for mentions of your Black & Gold so we’ve got you covered. Here’s your Steelers Morning Huddle for Friday, June 19th.

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Put a bow on it

Steelers Coach Mike Tomlin wrapped up the team’s final day of minicamp, marking the end of the offseason workout program. In earlier years the team would have a shortened session for the last day of minicamp but for the second year in a row the team had a full practice for their final minicamp session.

Bob Labriola got some of Tomlin’s thoughts on how the team worked throughout this year’s workout program.

"“We had another good day, and had a great finish. We had a nice energy and enthusiasm. It’s really been a great offseason. This is a structural offseason and we measure it in that way. I’m not looking for result-oriented things. More than anything, we’re just laying the foundation for our football team in 2015. We’re making sure the guys have an understanding of what we expect from them. We’ve introduced them to the manner in which we work and the manner in which we need to work in order to produce a successful team. We also looked for how they give and receive information, formally and informally. From that perspective, it’s been a productive offseason. Obviously, this is football in shorts. So, we measure that optimism, but we look forward to taking the next step in a month or so in Latrobe when we play in a more football-like environment. In terms of what we could get better at, in this setting, I thought it was good. I’m just looking forward to the process continuing.” – Mike Tomlin"

Coach Tomlin is very much stoked that the team essentially gets an extra week of training camp thanks to being part of the Hall of Fame game. NFL coaches and guys trying desperately to make NFL rosters are the only people on the planet who enjoy preseason.

Bring it in guys.

Can we have a pass rush, please?

In case you haven’t noticed the Steelers defense are going through a bit of a youth movement in just about every unit on that side of the ball. The question will be, as Matt Williamson of ESPN poses, will the changes to the defense with the infusion of youth and the change of Keith Butler taking the reins mean more of a pass rush?

Typically, in the Dick LeBeau traditional 3-4 defense, the defensive line played occupying roles rather than attacking roles. Butler has already explained that he intends to get everyone involved in the cause to get after the pass (the Steelers were 27th against the pass last season).

The Steelers have a lot of youth on this defensive line. Cameron Heyward is in his fifth season and he’s basically the anchor of the line that consists of Steve McLendon, Stephon Tuitt and Daniel McCullers. There’s even interest to see if sixth-round pick Leterrius Walton can have a strong camp and make the roster rather than the practice squad.

Best running back tandem?

We were thinking the same thing this time last year. We’ll, maybe not the same thing because there were some of you who still had your doubts about Le’Veon Bell. You might not admit it, but you know who you are. Nevertheless we were all pretty stoked about “LeBackfield” last year with Bell paired up with veteran back LeGarrette Blount to spell him and/or be the third down or short-yardage back if need be.

But, we all remember how that went. Mark Kaboly of the Trib spoke with Steelers running back DeAngelo Williams about how he would rank the Steelers backfield now. Naturally he has confidence that they are the best tandem in the league. He’s spent the last eight years being part of a tandem in Carolina that combined for 10,453 yards to he may just be the Anti-Blount and a real reason to be excited again this season.

Next: Antonio Brown's Record-Breaking Catch

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