The Pittsburgh Steelers released a new depth chart Wednesday in preparation for their second preseason game this coming Monday night against the Washington Redskins, and it created enough of stir that head coach Mike Tomlin was asked to comment on the numerous changes it reflected at the conclusion of practice.
“I just wanted it to represent how we intended to work in the game, said Tomlin. “Obviously, we haven\’t gotten into detailed discussions about reps that we\’ll dole out, the number of reps, but we do have some semblance of groups which people are going to work in, and I wanted to represent that with the depth charts.”
One of the changes that has everyone in a tizzy this week is the inclusion of undrafted free agent wide receiver Reggie Dunn as a punt returner. Prior to the Saturday night preseason opener against the New York Giants, Dunn was only listed as the third kick returner, but did get the opportunity to return two punts in the game for 23 yards. Being as fellow wide receiver David Gilreath is no longer listed as a punt returner this week, there is a good chance the coaching staff saw enough out of him Saturday night after he made a poor decision to return one from the 3-yard-line and muffed away another.
With Gilreath now out of the picture, rookie wide receiver Markus Wheaton has been bumped up from three to two in the punt returner category, so there is a good chance that he might get an opportunity to return one or two along with Dunn against the Redskins.
As far as the other changes this week on the depth chart, it is obviously an effort by Tomlin to send a few messages to players who didn\’t live up to standard against the Giants. I suspect that next week will see another jumbling of the depth chart following the Redskins game, so I wouldn\’t get too caught up with memorizing the one released on Wednesday.