While his main contribution to the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2013 was on special team, third-year safety Robert Golden would eventually like to see more snaps on the defensive side of the football
Golden, who has been the beneficiary of more defensive snaps during training camp this year with newcomer starter Mike Mitchell currently on the PUP list with a groin injury, recently talked about his current increase in snaps during practices with Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
“Any time you are able to get some reps out there, you want to take advantage of them,” Golden said. “I always want to take advantage of every opportunity.”
During his first two years in the league, Golden, who was originally signed as an undrafted free agent out of Arizona in 2012, has played all of 97 regular-season snaps on defense. In order to improve as a safety, Golden, according to Fittipaldo, worked with head coach Mike Tomlin during the offseason on the little things such as angles and he’s ready to show what he can do.
When the preseason games get underway, Golden should be able to once again show how much he’s progressed from the previous season as a free safety as he’s likely to see extensive playing time as soon as the starters exit. Last preseason, for example, Golden played 156 total defensive snaps in the four games.
While Golden’s not a lock to make the final 53 man roster this year because of his inexperience on defense, the fact that he was the Steelers upback on the Steelers punt team in addition to playing on three other special team units, will make him tough to knock off of the roster in 2014.
“If it’s special teams, it’s special teams. But I definitely want to be a safety,” Golden said. “I feel like I came in the league to be a safety. Coaches liked it when I played safety last year.”