Listening to Adam Crowley and Bob Labriola on Steeler Nation Radio's live broadcast during OTAs Thursday, Labriola brought up an interesting point. With defensive assistant Joey Porter brought in to, among other things, help develop young Steelers defensive players like Jarvis Jones, his technical acumen usually takes a back seat, attention-wise, to his attitude.
Who's going to be that guy on this team?
Steelers defensive end Cameron Heyward could be a good candidate, Jones aside.
"Heyward one of those kinds of guys," Labriola said. "But this is first camp as a known starter. A lot of guys are experiencing new roles for the first time. A guy like Joey can remind these guys what that's about."
Another interesting point he made is Porter had 60 sacks as a Steelers outside linebacker, but his time in Miami and Arizona netted him another 38 sacks, and all of that came at a point where Porter's career was on the downswing. He didn't have the explosive athletic ability he had for most of his career, yet, he still remained largely productive.
Those are the kinds of things Porter can instill. Perhaps none of that is more important than ratcheting up the intensity. Crowley played an interview with Jones, asking him about Porter tearing into him after going through a drill. Porter asked Jones if he was hurt or sick, suggesting he wasn't happy with the pace at which Jones was operating.
Porter isn't re-inventing the wheel with that kind of coaching. But the presence of J-Peezy and the surrounding of the Steelers' "Big Nasty D" of the 2000s can serve the young players, as fast as they may be, just as much as his experience and success in the technical aspects of the game can.
And this is the time of the year to instill that kind of mentality.