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Steelers News: Everyone, even the Steelers, are getting used to the new NFL rules

Time to check on the latest news surrounding the Pittsburgh Steelers.

NFL: Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers returned to the gridiron this week when they reported back to training camp. With practices underway, the news surrounding the black-and-gold is just starting to heat up. As the team returns from their summer break, we continue to provide you with features, commentary and opinions to tide you over until training camp starts!

Today in the black-and-gold links article we take a look at how the Steelers had special guests at practice Thursday, NFL officials, and the hope was to get everyone, players and coaches alike, accustomed to the new NFL rules.

Let’s get to the news:

  • Thought NFL rules were confusing before? Juts wait until the 2019 season when pass interference calls are now subject to review.

Steelers get summer lesson on NFL rule changes, reviewable pass interference

By: Joe Rutter, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

The rule change was initiated after the controversial non-call near the end of the NFC championship game that would have extended a potential game-winning drive by the New Orleans Saints, who lost in overtime to the Los Angeles Rams.

Making pass interference reviewable — and the groundwork for enforcement — generated much debating heading into the NFL annual meeting when ownership approved the change. For instance, the replay official has the power to not only overturn a defensive pass interference call, he can rule in favor of offensive pass interference — and vice versa.

“We want clarity on how they are going to call it,” said Teryl Austin, the Steelers senior defensive assistant who coaches the secondary. “We want to have some clarity so we can teach our guys and coach our guys to stay out of those situations.”

To read the full article, click HERE (Free)

  • If you paid attention to the NFL Network’s Top 100 list, you might have noticed a lack of linemen on the list...and the Steelers weren’t happy about it.

Lack of Steelers offensive linemen on Top 100 list has teammates up in arms

By: Joe Rutter, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

The Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback loves to talk about his linemen. He credits much of his success to the five men assigned to protect him on a weekly basis. He can recite their accomplishments, preach their importance to the offensive scheme and speak glowingly about how his career has been extended because of their pass protection.

But mention the NFL Network Top 100 rankings that didn’t include a single Steelers lineman — notably center Maurkice Pouncey and right guard David DeCastro — and Roethlisberger is reluctant to offer more than a few terse words.

“It’s such a joke,” Roethlisberger said Thursday morning.

The 10-day runoff of players who comprised the top 100 concluded Wednesday night. The Steelers had five players make the list that is voted on by their NFL peers, but none in the top 40.

To read the full article, click HERE (Free)

  • Steelers fans haven’t heard much on TE Zach Gentry this training camp. Turns out the growing pains are real.

Growing pains? Yep, Gentry’s feeling them

By: Hunter Homistek, DKPittsburghSports

At 6-foot-8, 262 pounds, Steelers rookie tight end Zach Gentry wasn’t expected to light defenses on fire with blazing speed. That’s not what he was drafted to do, and it’s not a skill set he’s suddenly going to add at the pro level.

That said, Gentry is expected to catch some passes. He’s expected to block, to get that massive frame low and control NFL-level defenders. On those fronts, Gentry admits the NFL has presented its challenges in the early going.

”There’s obviously a learning curve when you’re first coming in, especially with a guy as tall as me,” Gentry was telling me after Day 6 of training camp at Saint Vincent College. “So I’ve really had to focus on getting my pad level down and firing out ... I know everybody always says the same thing, but it’s the speed and physicality. It’s just the next step up in every single way. People are not lying when they say that, for sure.”

To read the full article, click HERE (Free)

  • Alejandro Villanueva is a fan favorite for a reason...

Big Al for mayor? Villanueva provides powerful moment

By: Hunter Homistek, DKPittsburghSports

He’s a 6-foot-9 starting left tackle in the NFL on one of the league’s top offensive lines. He was a long shot to ever even make a final 53-man roster, let alone to ascend to the Pro Bowl level he currently occupies.

He earned a Bronze Star as an Army Ranger, where he served three tours of duty in Afghanistan and now he’s dropping knowledge and an intimate understanding of his current home of Pittsburgh.

”It is cool to sort of drive around when you’re in the buses and you load up and you get to the stadium, and you see the houses and you see how much they [fans] love the Steelers,” Villanueva was saying. “To me personally, it goes back to Pittsburgh, to how, sort of, it became the city that it was.”

And while Villanueva admits he’s “focused on practice,” it’s clear he’s taken the time to truly understand his new home and to appreciate the strides it’s making as a city.

To read the full article, click HERE (Free)

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