I think Al Everest got the biggest share of time today in the afternoon practice, and used most of it on fundamentals for his kickoff return unit. I say fundamentals, because the coverage unit did not seem to get much work in today.
There wasn't much hitting today, and there were no live drills.
Coach Tomlin did do an interview after practice that can be seen at: http://www.steelers.com/video-and-audio/videos/Mike-Tomlin---Training-Camp---August-11th/cece3466-1005-4a97-9bcb-ff46010d6bbe#?id=cece3466-1005-4a97-9bcb-ff46010d6bbe
Much more after the jump.
Arrived for the 2:55 practice at 2:00, which was about 20 minutes sooner than necessary, to ensure a shaded seat in the bleachers.
First player or coach I saw on the field was Sean Kugler, he walked two laps around the three football field area, before practice started. He impressed me on Monday with his hands on approach, and seemingly just coaching more than any other coach I saw. The more I see of Kugler, the more I like. I believe our O-line will be just fine this year under his guidance. We'll probably need some patience though, with at least the addition of a new right tackle, they will probably need a few games to really mesh.
The O-line was the first group of players to come out, followed by the rest of the offense. Then the defense comes out. The O and D go to separate parts of the field. The offense spends about 15 minutes slowly going through the motions of some basics, with most of the players not wearing their helmets yet.
A signal horn blows, players grab their pads and helmets, and gather together for the first of many kickoff return practices, with coverage unit players sprinkled here and there.
Ten minutes later the horn blows again, return practice stops. Entire team warm ups begin. First jogging straight ahead, then sideways, they do some stretches, etc. This goes on for about 12 minutes.
3:41 RB drills with the huge swinging bag (give it a rest guys...) Not sure what this is called, so I'll just call it the big red bag. This thing is shaped like a travel toothbrush holder, or a body bag that boxers would practice with, except that it is about 5 or 6 feet wide, 8 feet tall, and must weigh at least 200 lbs.It attaches to something above it, so that it does not touch the ground. Enough of descriptions. They get the bag swinging from side to side,and the RB runs into it, and gets smacked by it. I have only seen the RBs use this bag. Today the bag wins vs Justin Vincent. Vincent does get up and move on to the next drill though.
3:55 Kirby Wilson rotates Redman and Tank with each other. One holds a blocking pad, the other one runs into it at less than full speed, then they switch. Could this be a FB drill?
By the way, there are 3 football fields in this area. Multiple drills are usually happening on 2 fields at once.
3:56 LBs do coverage drills, this ended not long after I noticed that it was happening. Sorry, no report of some INTs.
3:58 WR and QBs do pass and route drills.
4:00 CB's practice jamming receivers at the LOS.
4:03 Offense vs defense 11 on 11 non live scrimmage begins.
4:07 Someone yells "Go Redman!" after he makes a 20 yard gain.
4:12 11 on 11 stops, and 7 on 7 begins.
4:14 Someone yells "Congratulations Dick!" as LeBeau is standing on the field near the bleachers. The crowd comes alive with applause. LeBeau raises both arms in appreciation.
4:18 Arians gives Redman a nod and a few words after he seemed to do what was wanted on a kickoff return blocking drill.
4:24 11 on 11 again, McFadden lines up at left CB.
4:27 Redman lines up in the slot, and runs a short route. On the next play Redman takes it up the gut for 7 yards.
4:30 Logan lines up at WR, makes diving catch for 20 yard gain. He's a little slow to get up, but he's in there for the next play.
Next play, Dwyer up the middle for 20 yards.
4:33 Reed kicks off, ball stays in the air untill it gets to the goal line.
Reed kicks again, ball is fielded at the 5 by Antonio Brown who runs it back 75 yards to the 20.
4:38 7 on 7 passing drills start. I call the 7 on 7s passing drills.All week the defense gets blown out in this drill.
4:44 Emmanuel Sanders catches a looong pass from Ben.
4:45 Brandon London catches a 10 yard pass in traffic.
4:46 Dump off to Mendy, with Tank in the lineup, short 5 yard pass goes for 20.
4:48 LeBeau goes in and communicates something with his 7 defenders, as he has throughout this 7 on 7 drill. He wasn't doing this yesterday.
4:49 7 on 7 passing drills are over.
4:50 11 on 11 start again.
Wallace - catch
Heath - catch
Steely McBeam poses with kids in the bleachers, while their parents take pictures. Steely motions for my pen, and gives his autograph, but he wants no part of keeping notes.
5:02 Last play of non live scrimmage. Ra'Shon Harris breaks it up in the backfield.
5:05 Heath runs the width of the field a few times after practice is over, then signs autograps for about 30 minutes.
Hines stays late too. He practices catching balls one handed by having someone load them into the jugs machine. First right handed for about 5 minutes, then left handed for the same amount of time. He also ran a few sprints, and signed autographs.
After practice - I met Dale Lolly who had some very interesting things to say. I mentioned not seeing Deshea Townsend at camp, and Dale informed me that Deshea was now with the Colts. Here is a link to some of Dale's work that you may find interesting: http://nflfromthesidelines.blogspot.com/