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3 Steelers to watch in the 2023 NFL preseason

With Pittsburgh’s slate of preseason games set to kickoff in one week, here are three players to keep a close eye on.

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

The Pittsburgh Steelers play their first preseason game on the road against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Friday, August 11. Here are three players to keep a close eye on during the Steelers preseason games in 2023 based on what they’ve done so far in training camp.

WR Calvin Austin III

Calvin Austin is what the Steelers wanted Ray-Ray McCloud to be. He has all you want in a gadget-type player, and he can be utilized as a returner, should the Steelers decide to go that route.

We were robbed of seeing Austin’s skill, and potential, in 2022 due to an injury he suffered right around this time last season. It will be interesting to see what Matt Canada draws up for the Memphis product, and how long we see him taking snaps in exhibition play.

LB Kwon Alexander

Really, you could just say the entire core of off-ball linebackers, but Alexander has fans excited. The middle of the defense, as well as its depth, were one of the few question marks remaining on the Steelers’ roster. The addition of the former Pro Bowler answers those questions, though.

Watching the different combinations of Alexander, Cole Holcomb, and Elandon Roberts will be fascinating, as will figuring out who the best out of the three linebackers is throughout the preseason.

Joey Porter Jr.

It will be extremely exciting to see the second-generation star dawn the black & gold for the first time in live-game action. Porter has had a fantastic first week of camp. The tutelage of Patrick Peterson, combined with Porter’s natural ability in coverage is what the Steelers envisioned when they drafted him the the 32nd overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Having three preseason games to begin harnessing that raw talent at the NFL level will be great to see unfold in real-time.