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...
The Pittsburgh Steelers had their final training camp practice before their Thursday Hall of Fame game preseason game vs. the Dallas Cowboys, and after practice the organization had Dwayne Haskins available to the media.
Haskins, since coming to Pittsburgh after his release from the Washington Football Team last season, has never been one to mince words. He says what he is thinking, and he has never lacked confidence. After all, he is a former first round draft pick and considered a top player coming out of Ohio State University.
Head coach Mike Tomlin has made it clear there are no jobs which aren’t potentially up for grabs, and many are now wondering if Haskins could leap frog Mason Rudolph to become the Steelers’ primary backup quarterback in 2021.
Haskins was asked about this potential change on the depth chart, and his response was precise.
However, it wasn’t Haskins’ response to the question of being the backup which caught attention of media. He was asked a follow up about Thursday’s game being the try out to be the future franchise quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Haskins’ answer again left nothing to the imagination.
This per Brooke Pryor of ESPN:
Is there an open competition for the Steelers No. 2 QB?— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 3, 2021
Dwayne Haskins: “I’m trying to make it one.”
Is Thursday your first try out to be the future franchise QB?
Haskins: “I feel like that was the first day I got here.” pic.twitter.com/GtEzTi7Hot
Little more on this: Dwayne Haskins says he’s been “told certain things” about his future with the franchise, but he’ll keep that between him and the coaches. https://t.co/TNFg7hbEiT— Brian Batko (@BrianBatko) August 3, 2021
Haskins is polarizing, and has been since the day the Steelers signed him. Some love him, and hope for the best, and other despise him and are waiting for the other shoe to drop. Either way, Thursday is the first step of Haskins proving himself worthy, or not, of being on the Steelers’ quarterback depth chart.
Now onto the other news and notes from Steelers Training Camp...
Here is your daily update on the Steelers’ 7 shots drill.
Another win for the defense in 7 shots.— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 3, 2021
Roethlisberger intercepted by Highsmith on his first throw.
Rudolph went 0-2. First one, incomplete to James Washington, next one, would've been sacked by Uly Gilbert.
Haskins 1/2 - intercepted by Duke's Mark Gilbert on his last throw.
Banged up players
The Steelers had several players get banged up, most notably two big name rookies. First was Pat Freiermuth, who left with an apparent shoulder injury.
Dr. Bradley looking at TE Pat Freiermuth on the sidelines along with trainer John Norwig. Freiermuth had once on his shoulder. He went to the ground hard after making a catch earlier in practice.— Ray Fittipaldo (@rayfitt1) August 3, 2021
Freiermuth doesn’t look to be in great discomfort but looks like he is done for the day.— Ray Fittipaldo (@rayfitt1) August 3, 2021
Still no Snell
Benny Snell Jr. has been missing from practice the past few days, and no one knows exactly what is keeping him out of practice. Nonetheless, his absence has been notable, and the signing of a new running back makes you wonder what the future holds for Snell this season.
Benny Snell again is nowhere to be seen on the field. 2nd day in a row. So his absence (combined with signing a new RB) is something to watch.— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) August 3, 2021
Tight End Trouble
Speaking of Freiermuth’s shoulder banged up shoulder, the tight end depth chart will certainly be tested on Thursday night if Freiermuth, Eric Ebron and Zach Gentry are all ruled out vs. Dallas.
Pat Freiermuth's day is done, his shoulder wrapped.— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) August 3, 2021
No Eric Ebron (elbow) and Zach Gentry today.
2 days before a game, Steelers down to only Kevin Rader and newcomer Marcs Baugh at TE at practice.
Cam Sutton INT
Sutton with a beautiful interception of Ben Roethlisberger. We all could see Sutton doing more of this...
Cam Sutton with a beautiful interception of Roethlisberger in 11-on-11. Tips pass along the sideline up in the air intended for Washington, catches it and gets his feet down in bounds.— Dale Lolley (@dlolley_pgh) August 3, 2021
Big Press vs. Jordan Berry
Invested in the punter battle? It was on display Tuesday leading up to the Hall of Fame game.
Pressley Harvin III's leg certainly is impressive. Anecdotally to my untrained eye without any stopwatches, Harvin out-booted Jordan Berry in terms of distance during drills today punting from near their own goal line.— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) August 3, 2021
Seemed to me like Berry and Harvin are in a pretty tight competition. Definitely one to keep an eye in actual preseason games.— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 3, 2021
Shakur Brown showing up
When the Steelers signed their Undrafted Rookie Free Agents (UDFAs), Shakur Brown was a player everyone was excited about. He has quietly been having a really good training camp.
Steelers run drill ends with rookie UDFA slot corner Shakur Brown forcing and recovering a fumble against new running back Tony Brooks-James. Second takeaway in three practices for Brown.— Brian Batko (@BrianBatko) August 3, 2021
Dan Moore Jr. was in front of the media after practice Tuesday, and he was asked about the camp fights he has been a part of so far. He said it isn’t personal, and he’s all good with his teammates in the locker room.
Steelers rookie left tackle Dan Moore Jr. has gotten in a couple scraps this camp, but says, “No fights today. … It’s the competitive spirit of football.” He says everything is good in the locker room with himself and the defensive guys. pic.twitter.com/a1fnWx6cBR— Brian Batko (@BrianBatko) August 3, 2021
Think Watt, not Haskins
Some might read this and see nothing but news about Dwayne Haskins, but I see news about how the Steelers plan on using Derek Watt. Maybe, just maybe, he will play up to his contract in 2021.
The Dwayne Haskins-Derek Watt connection has been a strong one today— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 3, 2021
Another reception 25 yards downfield today for Derek Watt, this time a one-handed grab with the left hand from Dwayne Haskins off play-action in “team run” period. Watt may or may not have finished it off at the goal line, but we’ll give it to him.— Brian Batko (@BrianBatko) August 3, 2021
Freiermuth left practice with an apparent shoulder injury, and Najee Harris had a similar scare earlier in practice.
Harris was working in one-on-one passing drills against linebackers and after his rep immediately went to the sideline and took a knee -- rest of the team is at midfield. Trainer John Norwig went over and Harris was flexing his shoulder. He has now rejoined his teammates.— Dale Lolley (@dlolley_pgh) August 3, 2021
And Harris is right back in there taking the first handoff in team 11-on-11 run.— Dale Lolley (@dlolley_pgh) August 3, 2021
Chase Claypool isn’t playing around
Chase Claypool is a physical specimen, and it seems in this training camp he is ready to use his big body to punish defenders. He already pancaked Justin Layne earlier last week, and the latest victim was Tre Norwood.
Chase Claypool just loves owning guys in 1-on-1 drills. The other day he pancaked Justin Layne in a blocking period. Just now he put Tre Norwood on the ground with a stiff-arm. Mike Tomlin giving these guys plenty of competition reps two days before first game.— Brian Batko (@BrianBatko) August 3, 2021
During Haskins’ media session, this crazy story about Haskins hosting Najee Harris on a college visit at Ohio State was pretty cool.
Fun fact: Dwayne Haskins hosted Najee Harris on Harris’ visit to Ohio State. Haskins laughed and said “he chose that other school.”— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 3, 2021
BTSC Training Camp Recap Podcast
#LIVE: Hear from Ulysees Gilbert III and about everything that happened at today’s practice at @heinzfield on Training Camp Wrap Up, presented by @UPMCHealthPlan.— Steelers Live (@SteelersLive) August 3, 2021
For more Training Camp coverage, watch @NFLNetwork https://t.co/y2B00pOv9j
We recapped the final practice @heinzfield before the HOF game on @SteelersLive and Ulysees Gilbert III explains why heading to Ohio is special for him. #SteelersCamp #HereWeGo pic.twitter.com/gSzwLhFbGk— Missi Matthews (@missi_matthews) August 3, 2021
#Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph will start against the Cowboys in the Hall of Fame game followed by Dwayne Haskins and Joshua Dobbs pictured here today at practice Aug. 3, 2021 at Heinz Field. pic.twitter.com/rHhIPsxQBL— Charles Palla (@ChazPalla) August 3, 2021