Steelers' quarterback Ben Roethlisberger sat down after Tuesday's OTA session and talked about the offense improving, young wide receivers and some of the talent on offense.
The offense had a record setting year in 2014. In what areas can the offense improve?
We can get better every day. We can improve on third downs, we can improve on red zones, and we can improve on first down. To us, we never want to settle. We always want to continue to improve and get better. Just because we had a bunch of individuals that did great last year and we as a unit played great, we still feel like we can get better.
Is the red zone an area you really want to focus on improving in?
It means points, and the more points we can score it usually means you win football games.
How much improvement have you seen in OTAs overall?I have seen some growth from young guys. Some of the veteran guys keep getting better. I am really excited about this team and hopefully as in every season health is always the key component.
Speaking of health, how much of a difference did it make to have a healthy offensive line last year?** It's huge, their cohesiveness, their love for each other. They play so well together. If they can stay healthy that makes us everything. What have you seen from Martavis Bryant during OTAs?
I have seen growth. I have seen a guy that wants to be good, wants to be great, every day he is working at his craft and talking to me about things he can improve on. You just see him continuing to grow and learn from the best in the business who is in his room in Antonio (Brown).
What's it like to have a target like Antonio Brown?
He is awesome. Every day he amazes you. He is a guy that works so hard and he is being rewarded with it because he is a special player.
Sammie Coates is another young guy you are just getting to know, but do you see him developing into a guy who can be something?
I think so. Right now he hasn't been on the field too much from injuries and then not running with our group because the receivers ahead of him are playing so well right now. That is going to be his biggest obstacle getting on the field because the guys ahead of him are playing so well.
Early on in OTAs you talked about DeAngelo Williams and how he was picking things up fast. Has that pattern continued?
Yes, definitely. When we break the huddle and I ask him if he is good, he says yes almost every time. To me that is a good sign. He is working hard and he wants to be a guy that can contribute to this offense and I firmly believe that he will be.
The Steelers participate in Day 8 of the 2015 Organized Team Activities at the Steelers practice facility.
What does (QB coach) Randy Fichtner mean to you, to your game?**
I have been with Randy for quite a few years now and it's great to know every day when I walk in what I am going to get. He is a guy that is always willing to help. Whether it's today when I asked him to come out early to work on some stuff I wanted to work on. He is always out here ready to go. The film study. Just having a guy to talk to. I think the best thing about having a coach that has a player like myself that is a veteran guy is to not try and over coach, just to be there for the things the player might need. That is what Randy does the best.
Another guy you have been around awhile is Heath Miller. Do the two of you look around a little bit at the youth on the team and think wow, we are the old guys?
We have for a couple of years now. It's such a blessing to call Heath Miller a teammate for as many years as we have. I have always said he is one of the best teammates I have ever played with and to me he is the best tight end.
You hear so much about guys that are 'future Hall of Famers.' What is it like to have been a teammate with a player who is now a Hall of Famer in Jerome Bettis?
It's awesome. It's humbling. I think we all thought it was about time. We all thought he should have been there a long time ago. It's so awesome for him and I feel humbled to have played with the guy and call him a teammate and a brother.