Another day, another training camp practice for the Pittsburgh Steelers. With almost two weeks in the books in this 2015 training camp, the repetitive nature of camp is starting to become a reality for even the veteran players. In other words, it doesn't seem Saturday can come fast enough as the team will be traveling to Canton, OH for the Hall of Fame Game against the Minnesota Vikings.
See what happened in Thursday's practice session in Latrobe, PA.
Sweatpant Squad continues to grow
Some players (ahem, James Harrison) have been on Summer break even when reporting to training camp. Nonetheless, he has had a revolving door of players join him on the side fields and doing separate drills to better themselves without practicing. The following players sat out Thursday's practice for one reason or another: Harrison, Ramon Foster, Rob Blanchflower, Martavis Bryant, Markus Wheaton, William Gay, Cortez Allen, Ross Ventrone, Robert Golden, Daniel McCullers, Clifton Geathers and Matt Spaeth.
'Seven Snaps' not so good for the defense
Maybe the team isn't focusing as much as it was earlier in camp. Maybe the injuries are starting to take their toll on the defense. Whatever the situation may be, the Steelers offense ran the gauntlet on the defense by scoring touchdowns on all 7 plays in the 'seven snaps' drill which is used to start every practice.
Ben Roethlisberger had a hand in the first three touchdowns with touchdown passes to Le'Veon Bell, Heath Miller and Antonio Brown. Following that act was Landry Jones who threw touchdown passes to Jesse James, Cameron Clear and Devin Gardner. The final touchdown, a Cameron Stingily run up the middle on a draw.
Final Score: Offense - 7, Defense - 0
Antonio Brown is good at football
Reports continue to pour out of training camp on just how dominant Antonio Brown is whenever he steps on the field. Brown seems determined to put the "best WR in the NFL" debate to bed in 2015, and his part on the 2015 Steelers offense could certainly do just that. Brown has become a leader on this team, and not just with the wide receivers. Brown's tireless work ethic and willingness to do whatever it takes to get better is something which can be seen when he steps on the field. During 11-on-11 drills Thursday, Brown blew passed everyone for a big pass play which was reported as looking "ridiculously easy".
Jarvis Jones the next Ike Taylor?
In Thursday's practice session there was a series of back-to-back plays where Landry Jones dropped back to pass, Jarvis Jones read the play perfectly and when the ball was thrown nearly to Jones...he dropped the interception - twice. Ike Taylor was historically known for his horrendous ability to catch the football, and maybe he passed such a trait down to Jones before leaving. However, if there is one coach who won't be pleased with missed opportunities left on the field, it would be Joey Porter. Porter had tremendous hands for an outside linebacker while playing and will certainly expect the same for the players in his meeting room.
Injuries seemingly won't stop
ILB Vince Williams, who has had a tremendous training camp to date, was forced to leave practice early due to a hamstring injury. Depending on the severity of the injury, Williams could be held out of the team's first preseason game this Sunday. If he is unable to play, he most likely will be replaced by Jordan Zumwalt, a player looking for a chance to prove his worth.
Bye Bye Rob...
In case you missed it, earlier in the recap Rob Blanchflower was listed in the group of players not participating in practice. The reason? He was injured, and the injury was significant enough for the team to place him on the waived/injured list and sign Ray Hamilton off waivers from the Dallas Cowboys.
Training Camp Fun
Who doesn't love some training camp fun?! Even grown men like to throw footballs at things. Take a look at the classic "trash can" quarterback contest, as well as Maurkice Pouncey hitting the cross bar from about the 10-yard line.
The Steelers will have their final practice before traveling to Ohio Friday at 2:55 p.m. EST. The practice, as always, is open to the public.