The Pittsburgh Steelers finally started training camp yesterday, and there were plenty of stories to cover.
Not everyone was in attendance, but those who showed made sure their entrance was clear as the Steelers began the final phase of the offseason. As players take the field for the first time today, Still Curtain looks back at the memorable day one at St. Vincent.
Bell and Stafford are no shows
No one expected Le’Veon Bell to attend training camp, but people certainly want him there. Maurkice Pouncey offered to pay him half his salary, and Antonio Brown pleaded time and time again for his running back to show up.
Still, Bell was a no show and will likely remain a no show throughout camp.
Daimion Stafford was a bit more surprising. After signing only a one-year deal, you’d figure the former Tennessee Titans’ safety would be working twice as hard at training camp, trying to make a roster spot. But, instead he was listed as reserve/did not attend list.
Stafford isn’t guaranteed a roster spot, and if he wants to make the final 53-man roster, he needs to participate in training camp. It’ll be interesting to see if he’s a no show the rest of the way.
Martavis Bryant isn’t allowed to be there
This one isn’t really surprising. Martavis Bryant is still conditionally reinstated, and still has no idea what’s going on right now. Even head coach Mike Tomlin didn’t know the expected date that the NFL would meet with Bryant and evaluate his situation again.
So, while other receivers like Justin Hunter, Demarcus Ayers, and Darrius Heyward-Bey try to work into the final roster, Bryant will be watching highlights from home. Not that he’s in danger of not making the final 53, but it would help his chemistry for him to be able to participate.
The crazy cars
Antonio Brown balled out and pulled up with a driver in a classic 1930s Rolls Royce. Typical AB to show up in something crazy while his teammates were pulling into the parking lot in jeeps and Porsches.
Brown wasn’t the only one, nor the most impressive one, to show up in an unusual whip. 39-year-old James Harrison still has some jokes in him, as he arrived in a big old firetruck, horns blaring and all. He probably had a tough time finding a parking spot, but it certainly got everyone fired up when they say that thing flying up the road.
Brown and Ben get some early laughs
Ben Roethlisberger isn’t always goofing off infront of the camera, but he is known to be a bit of a comedian to his teammates. This time, he kept it simple and made sure Antonio Brown knew not to fall asleep in class anymore.
Sammie Coates and Canaan Severin placed on PUP list
Sammie Coates and Canaan Severin were both placed on the PUP list prior to training camp. Coates, who underwent a knee scope, is set to miss a few weeks. With the rise of some other wide receivers, and his inconsistency issues over the last two years, Coates could be in danger of keeping his roster spot due to the missed time.
Severin wasn’t much of a threat to make the final 53-man roster to begin with. Now, he’ll really have to bounce back and try to regroup and get back on the field as soon as possible. With no timetable to his return, the wide receiver could be looking at an upsetting finish to his training camp.
Alejandro Villanueva gets his deal
The Steelers and left tackle, Alejandro Villanueva have agreed to a four-year deal, right in time for training camp. The deal is huge for both parties as Villanueva was not happy to play on an exclusive rights tender this season.
Now, he’ll get paid and the Steelers will regain a motivated starting left tackle right in time for the season. With all the hype surrounding this team, it was definitely important to get this deal done before players got to camp.
Mike Tomlin speaks to the media
To finish off day one madness, Mike Tomlin addressed the media on almost every aspect of this team. The head coach spoke about Coates, Bryant, Bell and Stafford as no shows, and what the expectations are this training camp and the rest of the season.
With a long road ahead before the regular season, make sure to follow Still Curtain for everything #SteelersCamp.