The Pittsburgh Steelers were back out of the pads again, and although the team didn’t wear pads at practice, the Steelers, and head coach Mike Tomlin, were ready to get this new year started right.
This might be disappointing for many fans to read, but one of the players who has performed well at camp has been none other than local whipping boy, Ryan Switzer. Switzer, the player who fans love to say will make the team solely based on his relationship with Ben Roethlisberger, is determined to prove his worth.
He started with a nice touchdown to cap off the Steelers’ first two-minute drill.
Switzer’s production in camp, and before, is something head coach Mike Tomlin realizes, and doesn’t take for granted. His experience in the slot is valuable to the Steelers offense heading into the 2020 regular season.
Coach Tomlin on @Switz: He brings big time experience to that position. He will continue to carve out his role in this process.— Teresa Varley (@Teresa_Varley) August 19, 2020
When the minimal amount of reporters start to take notice a player like Switzer, I consider that rather big news. And that is what is starting to happen...
Early standouts at camp: Roethlisberger, Watt, Gilbert, Edmunds and Switzer.— Mark Kaboly (@MarkKaboly) August 19, 2020
There was other news from Day 3 of padded practice...
Let’s get to it...
After practice on Tuesday, Mike Tomlin said the team suffered two injuries during the workout. Those two players were rookie guard Kevin Dotson (knee) and Dax Raymond (ankle). Dotson was able to leave under his own power, but Tomlin wouldn't elaborate on the severity of either injury.
Tomlin’s post-practice report on Wednesday announced both of these injuries are deemed ‘short-term’. Tremendous news for both players who are trying to make the 2020 roster.
Outside of Dotson and Raymond, both James Washington and Chris Wormley continued to work with their position groups on a limited basis.
This per Dale Lolley of DKPittsburghSports:
No pads, no problem
So the Steelers didn’t wear pads on Wednesday, but that doesn’t mean the practice didn’t have a main focus. According to Tomlin, the focus was on passing and defensive coverage skills today. Tomlin said the team had great energy, and that typically follows with the first two-minute drill of camp.
This per Missi Matthews of Steelers.com:
Coach Tomlin said the #Steelers went with helmets only today and focused on passing and defensive coverage things today. Said the team had good energy.— Missi Matthews (@missi_matthews) August 19, 2020
Benny Snell Football takes on new meaning, and form
Is losing weight a big deal for a professional athlete? Sometimes. Does Benny Snell Jr. losing 12 pounds heading into 2020 carry any significance? Absolutely. Snell has gone from 224 to 212 pounds, and he is following a trend of running backs slimming down heading into year two. First, Le’Veon Bell and even James Conner all trimmed down and realized speed and conditioning was as important as strength.
Benny Snell lost 12 pounds from last year. It sure shows.— Mark Kaboly (@MarkKaboly) August 19, 2020
Being a Watt
Coach Danny Smith is always good for a solid quote, and he didn’t disappoint as he met with media via Zoom for the first time this training camp. When Smith was asked about having Derek Watt on the team, and what he brings to the special teams units, Smith’s response was legendary.
This from Brooke Pryor of ESPN:
Danny Smith on Derek Watt: "He's a Watt. His mom and dad ought be writing books. we all to be reading them. He's special. His makeup, understanding of the game, he's special.— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 19, 2020
"I've got plans for him. ... I'm so glad we got him."
Stephon Tuitt on Pectoral Injury Recovery
In 2019 a lot went wrong, and while everyone points to Ben Roethlisberger’s elbow injury as what doomed the team, Stephon Tuitt’s pectoral injury shouldn’t be overlooked. How was the rehabilitation, and how is Tuitt looking for 2020? He told reporters on Thursday his chest is stronger than ever, and he is leaning on Cam Heyward, who suffered a similar injury a few years ago, for advice.
This per Chris Adamski of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:
Steelers DL Stephon Tuitt on how his recovery from October pectoral surgery is going pic.twitter.com/EQAPFuyn1i— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) August 19, 2020
A recap of the day’s happenings, in audio form:
Live Look-In at Practice
We're #LIVE at @heinzfield for #SteelersCamp!— SteelersNationUnite (@SteelersUnite) August 19, 2020
Watch Training Camp Live, presented by @FedEx, an exclusive daily live look-in at #SteelersCamp!
For more training camp coverage, watch NFL Network. https://t.co/pBaxgxeWpy
Mike Tomlin Post-Practice Conference
#LIVE: @missi_matthews & @DVEMike wrap up what Coach Tomlin said in his post-practice media session, what they saw at #SteelersCamp and more on Training Camp Wrap Up, presented by @UPMCHealthPlan!— SteelersNationUnite (@SteelersUnite) August 19, 2020
For more training camp coverage, watch NFL Network. https://t.co/A1nL4gWui3
The guys brought the energy today— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) August 20, 2020