The Pittsburgh Steelers are a couple of weeks into training camp, and still a ways away from having to make cuts. But that doesn’t mean the rumor mill isn't circulating. From starting jobs to contract extensions, the team has a lot of cards in the air, whether or not everything can be worked out remains to be seen, but this is everything we know about the biggest rumors circling the Pittsburgh Steelers today.
T.J. Watt waiting on a contract
To the surprise of hopefully nobody, T.J. Watt has been sitting out team drills for the entirety of training camp practice, not from injury but to maintain his health while contract negotiations with the Steelers continue. We all know what T.J. Watt can do on the field and the Steelers coaches are fine with the All-Pro player taking the contact drills off. A deal that will likely cost the franchise $150 million, or more, it’s best for all parties that Watt prioritizes his health and doesn’t throw any wrenches into what is likely a very complicated negotiation. The sooner the deal gets done the sooner T.J. can ramp things back up, but slow playing this really isn't hurting anyone.
Keith Butler acknowledges that TJ Watt isn’t practicing because he has yet to sign his contract.— Mark Kaboly (@MarkKaboly) August 7, 2021
James Washington didn’t request a trade
It all started when former Oklahoma State Cowboy, Dez Bryant, tweeted someone would be wise to pry James Washington away from the Steelers. A few hours later and Adam Schefter was tweeting that official sources believed James Washington was unhappy about his limited playing time, and wanted out of Pittsburgh. While every Steelers fan can understand why Washington would want out, because he is an afterthought in the offense, it seemed out of character for the quiet and humble Washington. Well, it turns out those rumors were false all along and Washington doesn’t want to go anywhere after all.
James Washington has NOT requested a trade from Steelers, according to multiple sources.— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) August 7, 2021
Kevin Dotson needs reps before he gets the job
The internet melted down when Coach Tomlin said Kevin Dotson “has done nothing to earn first-team reps. What are we talking about? He’s a second year guy who hasn’t worked.” Many overreacted only reading the comment on twitter and not actually diagnosing the audio. Kevin Dotson even took to twitter himself stating what was really going on.
Dotson is finally healthy enough to practice with the team, so instead of being thrust into the starting lineup the coaching staff is making him earn the job. He’s not being handed a starting gig and he’s not out of shape either.
I watched Coach Tomlin’s press conference live. I took his words to mean that Kevin Dotson needs to earn his spot as a second-year player with four starts under his belt who is just now getting back to practice. Then #Steelers Twitter goes crazy… https://t.co/Niuc0FToFa— SteelersSuperFanDad (@STLRSuperFanDad) August 8, 2021
Steelers in the market for an inside linebacker?
This one is more speculation than anything but, the Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebackers struggled mightily against the Dallas Cowboys in the hall of fame game, and struggled in 2020 after Devin Bush went down with a knee injury. During a question and answer period with Steelers defensive coordinator Keith Butler, the coach gave us a look at what might be going on in the inside.
Butler has previously stated the team is looking at adding to other position groups in the past and the team followed through (think Melvin Ingram). Perhaps the inside linebacker spot is what the Steelers have been saving money for.
Keith Butler didn't show confidence in his ILB backups.— Nick Farabaugh (@Nick_Farabaugh) August 7, 2021
Called UG3 "OK". I asked if he would rotate in Buddy Johnson and Marcus Allen in he said "I ain't rotating in nobody if I don't know if they can play". When asked if they would bring someone in, he said it was up to Colbert
Reverse Color Rush jerseys incoming?
There have been whispers around NFL circles that the league has been toying with the idea of releasing a reverse color rush jersey for all 32 teams. Even a video from the Browns organization flashed a graphic of an all orange uniform. Some eagle eyed fans saw the Steelers terrible towel display at Heinz Field had some new boxes including one for the “Reverse color rush” towel. This would seemingly confirm the rumor of the Steelers wearing an all gold uniform for the first time in their history.
That’s the list! Which rumor interests you the most? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.