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Steelers 2021 Training Camp Recap, Day 8: Najee Harris gets his “welcome to the NFL” moment

The Pittsburgh Steelers are back at Training Camp, and it is time to check out what went down during the latest practice!

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers Minicamp Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It isn’t Saint Vincent College, but it hasn’t been Latrobe, PA since 2019. The Pittsburgh Steelers are taking in their 2021 Training Camp between Heinz Field and their UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on the Southside of Pittsburgh.

What went down during the latest training camp practice? That is where this article comes in. Check out all that was said, as well as photos and videos from the day’s workouts.

Here we go...

For the Steelers’ first round pick, Najee Harris, it has been so-far-so-good for the former Alabama product. Every test he’s been given, he has passed with flying colors.

  • Handling the media — CHECK
  • Getting the fans to love you — CHECK
  • Rookie Minicamp — CHECK
  • Organized Team Activities (OTAs) — CHECK
  • Mandatory Minicamp — CHECK
  • First padded practice of Training Camp — CHECK

But on Friday night, when the Steelers practiced in front of thousands at Heinz Field, Harris had his first rookie moment. No, not fumbling the football, but in the ‘backs on backers’ drill. In the first padded practice Harris was lauded for his work done against players like Marcus Allen and Robert Spillane.

Friday Mike Tomlin wanted to ramp it up and test Harris with Alex Highsmith and Jamir Jones. Let’s just say it didn’t end well for the 24th overall draft pick.

Just read some of the live tweets from practice:

It wasn’t the first mistake Harris has made so far in training camp, James Pierre stripped the ball from him Thursday, but it was the first time Harris didn’t step up to the challenge. Anyone who thinks this will somehow set him back, or means he won’t be a productive NFL player, doesn’t understand every player has these workouts.

Better to have these moments in training camp, compared to the regular season. Harris is still learning, and he will continue to learn and develop as a professional. The key at this point is does he improve and learn from his mistakes made Friday night.

Now let’s get to the rest of the news from Friday’s practice...

Mike Tomlin on the mic

Mike Tomlin welcomed fans to Heinz Field, and talked about how far everyone has come in the last 12 months.

Full pads again!

This was the second practice where the Steelers were in full pads. This would just set the scene for 11-on-11 work, and a very physical practice.

Zebras present

For this practice the Steelers welcomed NFL officials to help players realize what they would, and would not, be calling when they are in stadiums this season.

Who’s in? And who’s out?

First, the players who are returning to practice, in some way...

Now, the players who are still out...

7 Shots

Now for your daily update on the Steelers’ ‘7 Shots’ drills. For those who don’t know, the ball is placed at the 2-yard line and 7 plays are run. Here is how it played out..

Big run of the day belongs to...

This is the type of news Steelers fans love to see. Not only seeing how Anthony McFarland had a huge run, but also how it was Derek Watt used to help spring the speedy back for a 40-yard run.

Najee Harris knows how to run

While McFarland had the biggest run of the day, it isn’t as if Najee Harris didn’t have some decent runs. During a tackling run drill, Harris had 20 yards on 3 carries, with a long of 12 on his final carry.

Chippy practice session

Considering this was just the second fully padded practice, there was obviously some frustration lashing out from players. It is typically this time of camp when the team is sick and tired of hitting each other. The Cowboys game next Thursday can’t come soon enough.

Kicking news

For those who were wondering how Chris Boswell has been doing, he and Sam Sloman practiced kicks from 28-41 yards. See how they did:

BTSC Training Camp Recap Podcast