During the offseason, the Pittsburgh Steelers signed free agent free safety Mike Mitchell to replace Ryan Clark. Being as this will be the first season in a long time that fellow starting safety Troy Polamalu will have a new partner in the secondary, head coach Mike Tomlin was asked Saturday afternoon if expects his all-everything defensive player to be in attendance when the OTA practices get underway.
“You know how OTAs are, they’re voluntary, said Tomlin. “It’s not 100% attendance across the league. I’m not getting into that with any particular player. We’ll work with the ones that show up and get them better.”
Polamalu normally likes to train during the offseason in Southern California, but he was present for the Steelers early OTA practices last year. Will he be present this year? We’ll have to wait and see.
While Tomlin stayed far away from who he thinks may or may not attend the OTA practices, he did acknowledge that he wished younger players such as quarterback Landry Jones could be given the choice to attend the rookie minicamp practices.
“I’m a proponent of the offseason,” said Tomlin. “I believe that guys that want an opportunity to work and need an opportunity to work should get an opportunity to work. So anytime you talk about more opportunities for young guys to grow and develop as players, I’ll be for.”
Currently, only rookies and certain first-year players are eligible to attend the rookie minicamps. In the case of Jones, who made the roster but was inactive for all 16 games last season, it would be nice if he could be given the opportunity to work with the younger players.
The Steelers rookie minicamp will wrap up on Sunday.