LATROBE, Pa. - Rookie Daniel McCullers got his first chance to make an impression on the Steelers' coaches on Saturday night in the preseason opener against the Giants, and he felt that he fared decently for his first outing.
"I thought I did pretty good overall," said the big defensive end. "Most of the plays I held up the linemen and helped the linebackers make the plays."
McCullers did say the game was a good introduction to what NFL games are like, and gave him a framework to work on moving forward.
"I have to just adjust to the speed," said McCullers. "That is the biggest thing. It was a huge difference when I first got out there. That was the biggest thing for me, the speed. I think once I get it down pat the next couple of days I will be good. It hit me for a second, but I adjusted."
With just a week left in camp McCullers said he can see some of the progress that he has made, but he knows he still has a ways to go.
"Overall it's going good, learning the system," he said. "That is the biggest thing. Coach (Dick) LeBeau puts in a lot of plays so you have to take the time to study and learn your keys. Once you do that you will be pretty good.
"I just have to continue to work on my technique, my pad level, learn the system and keys. Once I get that down pat I feel like I can contribute to the team."
Highlight photos from the game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the New York Giants. The Giants defeated the Steelers 20-16.
Also getting his first chance to show what he can do in black and gold was linebacker Vic So'oto. The third-year linebacker has been with Green Bay, Oakland and Arizona, but is hoping to find a home in the Pittsburgh defense.
"Every year is a different year," said So'oto. "Every time I have been in training camp I have been in different spots. I am excited to be here and hopefully I can contribute."
So'oto did just that, stripping the ball late in the game on a lateral that Howard Jones then picked up and took in for a touchdown.
"I think the spot I am in you have to make plays when opportunities come," said So'oto. "I think that plays a big part in how they will pick the 53. I just have to be consistent and keep making plays. I am just trying to come out here every down and make plays.
"I think Coach (Mike) Tomlin says it best. He doesn't underestimate anyone that is out here in cleats and a helmet. I don't either. Everyone can make plays and I can too."