Pre-Season Blog: Staying Consistent

Tape Rating: The Steelers returned to the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on Monday, back on familiar ground as they prepare for their final preseason game against the Detroit Lions on Sunday at Acrisure Stadium.

Coach Mike Tomlin is using this week to acclimate the players to what a regular season week is, following the same schedule they will follow when preparing on a weekly basis during the season.

“Really big day for us here, just to get back to the comfort of the South Side facility and deal with normalcy from that perspective,” Tomlin said. “We’re looking at a fictional week where we simulate the game preparation process; Wednesday is normal regular season, Wednesday in season, Thursday is Thursday, etc. So we’re pleased with that and to see them picking up that rhythm and that they understand what we do from a cultural perspective.”

Monday was something of a “bonus day,” and it was used to gauge the tape from Saturday’s preseason victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars.

“Today was about evaluating our tape and then coming here and doing what was appropriate based on what we saw on tape,” Tomlin said. “We made some corrections this morning, some things we talked about and some things we didn’t talk about, and then we came here and had a good day’s work. We’ll analyze that and then, as a ‘team, we’ I’m going to start looking at getting Detroit ready for our fictional week.”

The tape assessment covered all aspects of the game, but everyone wanted to know more about one position in particular – the offensive line. Tomlin didn’t go into detail about what he covered while watching the film regarding the offensive line, but did elaborate on some areas they need to work on during his post-practice availability.

“There wasn’t enough detail from a fine motor point of view, details relating to their position,” Tomlin said. “They haven’t played with enough advantage individually and collectively. The things that are on our tape, we have to own them, and I think they will be ready to do that.

“I’m not going to go into detail with you guys. They know where I stand and what I expect, and it’s going to be fun watching them work and respond to this adversity this week.”

Left guard Kendrick Green said earlier in the day that Tomlin mentioned him during the movie session, but that was fair.

“The coach kind of put us on the board, me in particular, before the team meeting,” Green said. “It never does any good. He doesn’t even insult you or anything. He’s just like, ‘That’s who you are. That’s what you put on film,’ and that’s fair. It’s not like it’s unnecessary, it’s completely fair.”

Left guard is one of the positions still up for grabs in the preseason, with Green and Kevin Dotson battling for it. Tomlin said it’s one of many battles that will be settled at the end of the preseason.

“A lot of places will come down to this job,” Tomlin said. “That job is weighted differently and appropriately. The job in the stadium is important, and more and more the more you are exposed to the stadium. So make no mistake, this is an important game for a lot of people. “

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