Steelers: Tomlin day 2, Pittsburgh guy, defensive change


Steelers training camp is officially underway. For the next few weeks the team will lay the foundation for the 2015 regular season. While the Steelers are sweating in the hot Latrobe sun we’ll be busy looking for mentions of your Black & Gold so we’ve got you covered. Here’s your Steelers Morning Huddle for Tuesday, July 28th.

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Tomlin on day 2

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin addressed the media following the second day of practice in Latrobe for training camp. There was one injury to report where defensive back Ross Ventrone suffered a leg injury and had to be helped off of the field.

Tomlin isn’t going to give away any compliments on the progress or status of any specific players or units at this juncture, obviously, but he is enthusiastic about the progress so far and you can tell he’s anxious for them to get the pads on and start hitting each other.

Tomlin explained that the heat was a factor in practice and he even traded his typical long-sleeve black shirt and cap for a long-sleeve white shirt and cap. He said that one player had to be carted off the field for heat-related illness but he did not name the player.

Pittsburgh guy

Mark Kaboly of the Trib spoke with Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger on Sunday before the team’s first training camp practice. Roethlisberger discussed his desire to be known as a “Pittsburgh guy”, especially by the people of the city and the fans of the team.

"“I want to give it all to those fans because that’s what they do. If these guys are in the mines or working in the steel mills or wherever, if they break a finger, they aren’t going home. I feel like I want to be the same.” – Ben Roethlisberger"

That explains why he wouldn’t leave the field unless he had an actual limb detached and even then probably not unless someone else called a timeout and forced him to leave the huddle. He insisted that his statements prior to his contract extension on wanting to remain a Pittsburgh Steeler for his entire career were completely genuine.

"“I want to play here and nowhere else. I do headshots and stuff like that, and people ask me where I am from and I say Pittsburgh. I feel like that is where I am from. I got the accent down.” – Ben Roethlisberger"

Ok Ben, we’re gonna need to hear that accent ASAP.

Steelers Cover-2 defense

Jim Wexell of spoke with former Steelers safety Ryan Clark during Monday’s training camp practice about how the Steelers defense will transition under Keith Butler. Clark explained that from what he saw about the drills and formations being run is that Mike Tomlin is finally adding his own stamp on this Steelers defense.

When Tomlin took over the Steelers in 2007 he left in place the defense that Dick LeBeau had built, and for good reason, at that point they had the talent and pieces to make that LeBeau defense one of the great ones. Now, however, the Steelers have a different kind of talent and a different leader.

Clark thinks the Steelers have the personnel to run a cover-2 defense like Tomlin ran when he was a secondary coach in Tampa Bay.

"“You didn’t pay Cam that money to be a two-gapper. He’s a penetrator. That’s what he does. That’s what he’s good at. You have to get pressure if you’re going to play cover-2. You drafted Bud Dupree. You have Jarvis Jones. You have those guys. Those guys have to be able to rush the passer and I think what’s going to make this team still good is they can perfect cover-2 to a point to where it’s something they can play throughout the game. Now, unless you run your fire zones, unless you run your cover-3, the things this defense is known for doing, with it being a young group you’re not having to re-teach people. You don’t have to re-teach Troy Polamalu and say, ‘Hey Troy, I need you to learn to play cover-2.’ Mike Mitchell comes from a place where they played cover-2 because they had great backers. You look at what should be all first-round picks in James Harrison, Bud, Jones, Ryan Shazier, Lawrence Timmons at linebacker, now you’ve got to count on these guys to be able to drop, to be able to run, and so I think they have the personnel to do it. Coach Tomlin is putting his imprint, his stamp, on this.” – Ryan Clark"

The look and performance of this Steelers defense under Butler is one of the more anticipated storylines for the upcoming season. What do you think about the Steelers running a cover-2 defense, Steeler Nation?

Next: Steelers Golson Setback

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