The Pittsburgh Steelers, and mainly Mike Tomlin, love versatility. They like players who can play multiple positions, and play them well. Think about a player like William Gay, who has been dominant in the slot, and proven himself on the outside. There are more examples of such versatility, and it doesn't just help build your resume, but increase your chances at making the team.
The latest player to bounce from one position to another is Doran Grant. After Grant's great showing at cornerback on Friday against the Detroit Lions, the Steelers moved Grant back-and-forth from cornerback to safety to get him repetitions at both positions.
"We're going to bounce people around positionally." Tomlin said. "He's always been a guy we thought was capable of doing some things in there. Multiple positional guys are attractive to us."
One of the reasons for a change of position was the return of Artie Burns to practice. With Burns getting repetitions at cornerback, and Sean Davis also transitioning from both safety to cornerback, there were reps to be had at safety with Ross Ventrone being released recently.
Grant got his sophomore season off to a great start with his interception returned for a touchdown and solid tackling against the Lions, and it will be up to him whether he is able to stack performances this Thursday when the Philadelphia Eagles come to Heinz Field for their second preseason game.
The Steelers were fortunate to have several players who were nursing injuries return to the field. Some of the names who were back on the field were Travis Feeney, Markus Wheaton and Artie Burns all were back on the practice field as either full, or partial, participants.
Bruce Gradkowski's status wasn't released from the Steelers, but it was reported by ESPN's Jeremy Fowler Gradkowski suffered a serious hamstring tear which could jeopardize his 2016 season, and his NFL career.
Tomlin not engaging Artie Burns
At the end of Tomlin's media scrum, which you can watch below, a report asked Tomlin what he does for a rookie who has never been in an NFL camp before to keep him engaged.
Tomlin quickly snapped back, "He better keep himself engaged."
With that question, and response, clearly signalling the end of the media session, Tomlin walked off muttering, "How do I keep him engaged?!" under his breath. Tomlin very well could be frustrated with the rookie's injury, but also the fact camp is drawing to a close and the media sessions after every practice are certainly wearing on the team's head coach.
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