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Winners & losers from Week 1 of Steelers training camp

As there is every season, several players have been making noise, while others are hoping the next week of practices will bring them better fortunes.

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers Training Camp Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers have finished their first week of training camp. As there is every season, several players have been making noise, while others are hoping the next week of practices will bring them better fortunes. These are the biggest winners and losers from the opening week of training camp.


CB Elijah Riley

The fourth-year cornerback has made a case for himself to be the go-to nickel cornerback this season. Riley spent the first week of practices being a menace to the offense, intercepting multiple passes, and wreaking havoc off the edge in surprise pass rush situations.

Should Riley’s play continue throughout camp, and carry over into preseason action, the Army product could earn the starting slot cornerback job.

LB Nick Herbig

The rookie from Wisconsin has been impressive as a pass rusher. He hit a swim move that made Bill Dunkle look silly, and his repertoire of pass rush moves seems deeper than anyone originally anticipated.

One thing the Steelers’ pass rush lacked in 2022 was depth. Early on, Herbig looks like a guy that can be relied upon to come in and be productive.

RB Anthony McFarland

While the Steelers’ top two running back spots are all but final, the third spot on the depth chart is still up in the air. McFarland has been on the team since 2020 but has yet to establish himself into a consistent role in the offense. That said, he has had a fantastic week in Latrobe, specifically as a pass-catcher out of the backfield. He had a particularly good rep against the newly-signed Kwon Alexander where he ran a pivot route to get past the veteran linebacker.

For a guy who didn’t have a guaranteed roster spot going into camp, the Maryland product is making it hard to find a reason to cut him.


LT Dan Moore Jr.

The writing was on the wall for Moore when the Steelers traded up to draft Broderick Jones. While the team was adamant that Jones would have to earn the job, Moore hasn’t shown any reason why he should keep it. He was beaten three consecutive times in pass-pro by Alex Highsmith (who gets an honorary mention as a winner of the week), and during team drills, Highsmith blew by him for what would have been a sack on Kenny Pickett in live-game action.

Credit to Moore for handling the situation as best as he possibly could, but the writing seems to be on the wall for him as a starter.

TE Darnell Washington

Now, credit to Washington where it’s due — he held his own against T.J. Watt in pass-pro. In terms of his struggles, though, they seem to be more mental than anything as he figures things out. He’s had multiple false starts and lapses, which have led to him not seeing the field as often during team drills.

In the grand scheme of things, though, these are little things that the uber-athletic tight end will be able to fix- that’s what training camp is for, after all.