Learning a new defense is nothing new for linebacker Arthur Moats, signed by the Steelers as an unrestricted free agent this offseason.
In his four seasons with the Buffalo Bills he had three different defensive coordinators, making picking up another defense almost run of the mill for him.
"I feel like my situation in Buffalo helped me out a lot," said Moats. "I was constantly learning something new, so it definitely helps with the adjustment. I just have to get the terminology down here.
"You have to put your time in, though. You can't come out here halfway studying the defense and expect to come out here and perform at your best. With the veterans here they are communicating well and they are making the process a lot smoother for me."
Moats has been putting in as much time as he can with his fellow linebackers during teams OTAs, getting to know them and pick up as many tips as possible about Dick LeBeau's defense.
"You are building that chemistry now," said Moats. "We are not trying to be good here. We are trying to be great. We feel like if we want to take it to that next level we have to work extra. If we just sat out here and did the minimal requirement, we are going to have minimal success. We want to take it to the next level and that is why we want to work that much harder."
Despite the fact that Moats said he does still feel like one of the new kids in the defense, he said he is enjoying it, learning daily and things are going well.
"You look at some of the other guys, they know all the calls, all the checks and you are sitting here overthinking a lot of stuff but that's just normal," said Moats. "Any time you are learning something new it's going to take a little bit of time. The veterans around here are helping out."
Moats also weighed in on a few other topics:
On learning from defensive assistant Joey Porter: "Any time you get a guy who has had that type of success in the NFL, who has been in this particular defense for that long, you are picking his brain at every chance you get. It helps to have a guy who has been out there and has played that position at a dominant level, so every time you come off the field he is able to give you positive criticism and let you know what you need to work on so you can continue to do well."
On why he signed with the Steelers: "I felt like if you look at this defense over the past 10 years, outside of last year they have had a top 10 defense, top five defense. Any time you see that type of continuity, that type of sustaining success, you want to be a part of something like that. Dick LeBeau is a legendary coach. The whole staff here, from (Mike) Tomlin having the connection in Virginia. It was a really comfortable experience and I thought a good transition for me."
On competition at linebacker: "That is what you want. If you come somewhere and you don't have any type of competition, then how hard are you really going to be playing because you are already there? When you have competition you are going to play to the best of your ability and ultimately make the team better."