As the 2022 Pittsburgh Steelers continued their work on the practice field at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on Thursday for their final preseason game, we were also graced with a media session from head coach Mike Tomlin. Despite his brief responses, it’s time for another installment of the “players mentioned” article. Remember these are current players where a specific question was asked during the Q&A period.
Cam Sutton, Tre Norwood, & Minkah Fitzpatrick
One thing in particular the Steelers value throughout their personnel is versatility. Coach Tomlin was asked about the way he moves around the three outside cornerbacks and how it has played out. In his response, Coach Tomlin mentioned Cam Sutton, Tre Norwood, and Minkah Fitzpatrick.
“It’s been good. The versatility of the guys is an asset to us, particularly in the secondary. I think guys that are central to that are Cam Sutton and Tre Norwood, they’re guys that you see move around and do a lot of things. Minkah [Fitzpatrick] is a component of that, he provides a lot of versatility for us.”
One of the players from the previous question left out of the response from Coach Tomlin was new cornerback Levi Wallace. Coach Tomlin was asked how a new guy like Wallace fits in.
“Levi’s an easy fit. He’s a low maintenance guy. He’s sharp. He’s competitive. He stays close in coverage. It’s been pretty much seamless.”
Despite having to release five players on Tuesday, the Steelers brought in a new safety on Wednesday off waivers. Coach Tomlin was asked what made him want to bring in Elijah Riley at safety.
“We’re just going to continue to turn over to get the best collective we can in this process and the effort to find the appropriate 53. It’s just a function of business this time of year.”
One potential starter on the offensive line who has made it back to practice is Kevin Dotson. Coach Tomlin was asked now that Dotson has a string of practices together what he is looking for from him.
“What do you mean by a string of practices?”
To answer Coach Tomlin‘s question, it was reiterated that Dotson had missed time earlier in camp and now has been working consistently.
“He’s having good days. Right now, we’re just singularly focused on preparing ourselves for Sunday’s performance and that’s where we are, and he’s just a part of that process. Today’s a big day regarding some of the pressures and things that you see on possession downs, and so he’s been a component of that. Good workday.”
One player who has stepped up in the late stages of the first two preseason games is wide receiver Tyler Vaughns. Coach Tomlin was asked what he has seen from Vaughns and what he likes about him.
“Boy, how about the playmaking at the end of games. I can’t say enough about that. The in-stadium things we respect, but beyond that, he’s a capable and willing worker out here. He’s versatile from a positional standpoint. I like some of the things I’m seeing for sure.”
In speaking with the media earlier on Thursday, T.J. Watt said that he’s an open book for younger guys but he’s not going to force his knowledge onto them. Coach Tomlin was asked if he has seen younger guys approach Watt and ask for his advice.
“That’s just part of the business at this level. He’s a guy that does it at a high level and does it right, so he attracts attention and rightfully so. But at the same time, you know, he’s got to get T.J. ready. So, I understand his perspective.”
In a follow up question, Coach Tomlin was asked if he sees a lot of veterans helping out the younger guys.
“I think you’ll see all veteran guys helping younger guys. It’s just a component of the team, it’s a component of our culture that we cultivate and appreciate, and we do so intentionally.”
Mike Tomlin’s media session can be seen below:
Coach Tomlin talks about the versatility of the secondary, what he is looking for from the backup RBs on Sunday + more. pic.twitter.com/510aeD3Hhd— Steelers Live (@SteelersLive) August 25, 2022