Some of them walked off the practice field with their heads spinning, with so much information thrown at them in a short time they didn't know if they were coming or going.
Others felt good, confident after their first minicamp practice, while at the same time realistically knowing they have a lot of work ahead of them.
"It was good. It was new," said first round pick Artie Burns. "The whole playbook, the different adjustments. It's a lot of work, but getting back out there for the remainder of the practices things will get better.
"Overall though, being a part of a team, getting the playbook, it all felt real good."
The Steelers have a total of five practices over the three days of the team's rookie minicamp at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex. Practice number one is normally the worst, but the good news for the rookies is, it gets better.
"It was good," said defensive tackle Javon Hargrave. "I have a lot to work on, getting familiar with plays and things like that. I think it's a start."
Getting on the field was a sense of accomplishment for the players as well. They have been through a lot the past few months. From the NFL Combine, to Pro Days, and finally the NFL Draft, they have been pulled in every direction. But to finally get on the field, put a helmet on, that is what they have been waiting for.
"It was good, it was fun," said seventh round pick Demarcus Ayers. "It's exciting to be back in a helmet and jersey. I am just happy to be here with all of the guys competing for a spot. I love the coaches, I love the vibe, the great family atmosphere around here. There is a lot of excitement."
He wasn't the only one feeling that excitement, that energy.
"When I first got in yesterday, seeing my locker, seeing No. 28, I am happy to put on this jersey," said second round pick Sean Davis. "Being out here with the guys, it's an amazing feeling. I am embracing it.
"I am working hard, getting in the playbook, trying to learn. We only put in one install. We have more to do. I just have to keep on learning and take in everything I can and contribute wherever I can."