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Ike Taylor, Troy Polamalu not at Steelers OTAs

The veteran defensive backs missed the voluntary practice in Pittsburgh Tuesday. Both have missed in the past and most veterans miss at least one or two sessions of the 10-practice segment of the offseason program.

Karl Walter

To the veterans go the options.

Steelers cornerback Ike Taylor and safety Troy Polamalu are not at the team's first practice of the OTAs session beginning Tuesday in Pittsburgh.

OTAs are voluntary, and most veterans will miss a session or two at least.

Polamalu has missed these practices in the past, choosing instead to continue training on his own. He made it last year, deeming his presence necessary to help transition leadership roles on the defensive side of the ball.

Taylor also doesn't typically reach 100 percent attendance in OTAs. He's known as one of best conditioned players in the game, and his 11 years in the NFL speaks to his knowledge about his role on the team.

That role could change a little bit this season, though. Taylor, a starter since 2005, accepted a significant paycut to stay with the Steelers in 2014. William Gay and Cortez Allen may end up the team's top two cornerbacks this season as Taylor looks to rebound from a rough 2013.

The Steelers signed free agent cornerback Brice McCain, who was released by the Houston Texans, and drafted Shaquille Richardson in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft. The team also expects third-year CB Antwon Blake to compete for snaps as well.