With the preseason complete and the Steelers finishing with a record of 3-1, the coaching staff is tabulating the results and shaping the 2017 Steelers. As I was taking in the desperation by the players on the field to make the team, I logged my initial reactions without much thought. Allow me to share my knee-jerk reaction to the Steelers 17-14 victory over the Panthers in Preseason Week 4.
- Seeing Joe Haden on the sidelines was great. Even though he's slated to show today, Le'Veon Bell should have been there too.
- Josh Dobbs isn't ready to start in the regular season, but I like his progress so far. His play is a far cry from where it needs to be, but executing a thrilling comeback win is big for the rookie.
- The WR stable is going to require some super tough decisions. Justin Hunter's speed and athleticism on the 58-yard TD grab from Dobbs clouds things even more. I have a feeling that some of these guys are being dangled for a late-round pick.
- Terrell Watson was running north/south ably, powerfully moved piles and made impressive spin moves against Carolina. I can't see how it could possibly be justified that Knile Davis has had a better preseason than "the Nightmare".
- The other TW, Trey Williams, may have jeopardized his chances of making the team with the fumble on the fair catch in the second quarter. Luckily the ball was recovered by the Steelers, but it still doesn't bode well for a bubble guy.
- I cannot possibly fathom the fact that 312-lb DT LaVon Hooks was a wideout in High School.
- I love the play of Mike Hilton. I hope it translates to the regular season.
- James Harrison looked like his old self on that second quarter sack. Didn't take long for Deebo to knock off the rust.
- Cam Sutton's exit with another hamstring injury benefits William Gay in a big way. Sutton has had a hard luck preseason.
- Jacob Hagen is a legit player. With an interception and a jarring hit on a back on a screen pass, he announced his candidacy in a big way. I'm afraid he would get poached off of the PS. But with Jordan Dangerfield and Terrish Webb going down, who knows how it will shake out.
- It was nice to see all of the turnovers forced by the Steelers’ defense, but those opportunities needed to be converted more than they were.
- The Brian Allen project really needs to continue. He's improved leaps and bounds from the team's initial look at him and he could be a key contributor in the future.
- Cobi Hamilton went from hero to goat in a New York minute. I feel awful for him for that gaffe. I was hoping it would be No. 83 to get redemption on the winning drive.
- With two nice returns, could Demarcus Ayers be an option as the return specialist?
- Marcus Tucker plays with absolute heart. Too bad the WR stable is so stacked.
Well so the drama begins. The next few days will be interesting for Steelers Nation. Stick with BTSC, for up-to-date Steelers coverage.