LATROBE, Pa. – The expectations are high for the Steelers as they prepare for the 2016 season, and with just three days of training camp practice under their belts, nobody has higher expectations than the players themselves.
"That is what it's all about, expectations," said quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. "We set the bar high for ourselves. We know what the fans expect, but we set the bar high for ourselves."
Take a look at photos of the Pittsburgh Steelers' 1st training camp practice in pads.
The Steelers finished the 2016 season with a 10-6 record and advanced to the AFC Divisional Playoff game, but losing to the Denver Broncos had them falling short of their ultimate Super Bowl goal.
"We definitely expect to do better than last year," said tackle Marcus Gilbert. "We have to be better if we want to get to where we need to be. Both sides of the ball, up front, we know we can lead this team to greatness. Camp is a place to put a start to it."
To get there, it's about every player doing their job and knowing their role.
"We have to improve everywhere," said Gilbert. "Everybody can get better. Each guy knows that. Our goal is to come out every Sunday and win. It all starts now."
The offense has gotten a lot of attention going into the season, but the defense has the same high expectations and feels comfortable carrying their share of the load.
"We have one goal, and that is to win a world championship," said safety Robert Golden. "Whatever we have to do on the defensive side of the ball, we're going to do it. We're up for it. I know a lot of the guys are excited to be here and we are excited to be out on the field."
Mr. Mel: Former Steelers cornerback Mel Blount was at Saint Vincent College on Sunday, greeting fans as a part of a promotion with NFL Network. Blount was impressed with how much Saint Vincent College has developed and grown since he came there for training camp.
"It's amazing," said Blount. "I had no idea they had built so much stuff up here. It's incredible. It doesn't even look like the same place that I came when I was with the Steelers. It's good to be back and good to see all of the progress that has been made, things that have been built, and the football fields. They have done a great job."
Blount especially likes seeing Chuck Noll Field, the field the Steelers practice on every day during training camp that was dedicated to his former coach.
"I think it's a great tribute," said Blount. "He really turned this whole franchise around. He and Dan Rooney were a combination. To see them pay tribute to him is special."
And while Blount was enjoying his visit to training camp, fans were thrilled to have the Hall of Fame cornerback there.
"It's amazing," said Blount. "I retired in 1974 and these people come up to me like I am still playing. It's a tremendous fan base the Steelers have. I am just glad to be a part of it. It all really started with Chuck Noll and the team in the 1970s. It's deep rooted. It's real. These people love their Steelers and it's just good to see."