5 early Pittsburgh Steelers defensive training camp positional battles in 2020
The Steelers will have a few key changes on the defensive side of the ball this year. Here are five defensive training camp battles to keep an eye on.
Though Pittsburgh’s offense was in shambles last year, their defense got progressively better as the season went on. All-Pro players like T.J. Watt, Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Cameron Heyward led the Steelers defense to a unit that was top six in every major statistical category last season.
While we know the stars are rarely going to leave the field barring injuries, there are plenty of other key contributors who have yet to sort themselves out. Here are five defensive training camp battles to keep an eye on for the Steelers in 2020:
NT: Tyson Alualu vs. Chris Wormley
Mike Tomlin already hinted this offseason that Tyson Alualau would be taking snaps at nose tackle, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that Chris Wormley will not. Though both defensive linemen are probably better suited as backup 5-techniques, they could be fighting for extra snaps as nose tackle.
Throughout their careers, both Wormley and Alualu have proven to be solid run defenders, In fact, each player earned their best grades in that department in 2019, according to Pro Football Focus.
Both players are entering the last year of their contracts. While Alualu is 33 years old, Wormley is just 26. If Pittsburgh is looking for a long-term replacement, Wormley is a player who is much more likely to be resigned to a long extension. Alualu may kick training camp off as the starting nose tackle, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this one went either way.