The list of those that didn't play in the preseason finale at Carolina included the vast majority of the Steelers' collection of established veterans.
Linebacker Arthur Moats was one of the exceptions.
He played 30 snaps in the Steelers' preseason-concluding, 18-6 loss to the Panthers on Friday night and, as always, Moats played them enthusiastically.
"It's still football," Moats maintained. "You love the game so you do what you do. We're blessed to be in this position, so anytime I'm able to go out there I'm going to have fun."
Moats contributed one-and-a-half sacks against the Panthers and emerged from the preseason with a team-leading two-and-a-half sacks through four games.
Although he's listed on the depth chart as the second-team left outside linebacker behind Bud Dupree, Moats wound up starting every game this preseason while Dupree battled an injury.
Moats embraced each and every opportunity.
"I wanted to make sure that I was continuing to be productive," he said. "Just start out fast because once the season starts, we have to be productive.
"My thing is, if you're productive, you're going to be out there."
That's a mantra Moats is determined to maintain heading into the regular season as a part of what he perceives to be an improving, evolving defense.
"We're continuing to grow," Moats said. "And that's what we have to do. We have to continue to get better every week. I feel like in practice we take it like that and ultimately that's why it's showing up out there.
"The biggest thing is, all of us have another year in the defense. We're a year older, we're grown up more. I just feel like we're playing more cohesively. And ultimately that's what it's going to take for us to be the group we want to be this year."