Again, thanks for your patience in this most hectic of times for me. Just as soon as I got to California for a 4-6 week vacation before permanently settling down in Seattle, I had to head up to Los Angeles for a weekend of wedding festivities for a friend. Bah. I hope things return to normal for me very soon.
* Big Snack is still being limited to conditioning drills at Latrobe. I'm not sure there's much technique wise for a guy like Hampton to be working on in all actuality, so perhaps this month long conditioning program is not such a bad thing. However, only if he's taking the regiment seriously. I think he'll be ready to go, but his words certainly do not make it sound like he's feeling the pressure:
"I don't think it's about weight. I can play heavy," Hampton said. "It's just getting in shape. I'm trying to get right, get ready for Sept. 7 (the season opener)."
* The excitement of training camp commencing has distracted us from the potential pending re-organization of the Steelers ownership. You can catch up on the story here.
* Dale Lolley has posted the link to the video shown at training camps about the new rule changes and points of emphasis.
* We get out first taste of why the Steelers snagged Dennis Dixon in this April's draft, and why so many of his fans are so high on him. Jim Wexell wrote yesterday that Dixon is much, much further along than expected, and is impressing in ways that previous bottom-of-the-depth-chart type QBs in year's past failed to do. Hines Ward has certainly noticed:
“Dixon’s further along than Omar was,” said receiver Hines Ward. “He has a better feel and a better knowledge of the coverages. Omar just had a hard time distinguishing the different coverages.
“Yes, our defense is hard for any quarterback, but Dixon’s doing a helluva job. He’s still making mistakes, but when he’s on point he’s on point.”
Remember when I asked rookie Bruce Davis which teammate was most likely to be reading a book? His answer: Dennis Dixon. The rookie from Oregon said that things are starting to slow down for him a bit as he understands the ins and outs of the offense a bit better:
“Things are starting to slow down a little bit, but there’s always room for improvement,” he said. “I’ve always been a bit of a quick learner. This level is real fast, so it’s all about the mental aspect.”
I very much look forward to seeing him play this coming Friday night when the Steelers take on the Philadelphia Eagles in our first preseason game.
* Speaking of that preseason game, Big Ben will not play any, as he tries to recover from the lingering effects of a minor groin injury.