Timmons: 'We're always going to blitz'

Linebacker Ryan Shazier led the Steelers in tackles last season with 119, but he isn't one to focus on the ones he made. Instead, he still thinks about the ones he missed.

"I am always tough on myself," said Timmons. "I always feel like I can do better. I missed a few tackles last year that I feel could have helped the team.

"I can always grow and that is something I am working on this offseason. Strength, speed. I am also trying to be smart. I am doing certain things to work on my feet to help me with coverage. Anything you can do, I am trying to do this offseason to be better."

Last season Timmons was asked to drop back in coverage more than he had in the past, something he didn't mind, but also something he wanted to work on improving.   

"I am a guy who likes to be out in the center of the field, making plays. I like to roam," said Timmons. "I like to be out there in space to make plays for our defense."

But don't mistake that for his first love…blitzing.

"Everybody likes the sacks," said Timmons. "Sacks and interceptions; that is the way to go."

Timmons has 33 career sacks, ranking him ninth in team history in the category, and shared what transpires in the moments before and when the sack happens.

"You are basically sprinting as fast as you can and trying to run through somebody or jump on him and get a sack," said Timmons. "You are hunting someone so you don't really want to look at them. I want to look them off like I am going to cover a wide receiver, get off the ball like I am going to drop back, and then I sprint back toward the line of scrimmage to attack the quarterback and bring him down for the sack.

"I think it's one of the best things in football. You have guys who do their celebrations; you have guys who celebrate with their team. Your whole sideline is jumping up and down. It gets the stadium going, celebrating from the fans. There is nothing like Heinz Field when you get a sack and you hear them roar. Everybody knows when you get a sack. That is why I think it's one of the best things in football."

Timmons loves the fact that defensive coordinator Keith Butler didn't make major changes to the team's defense last year, meaning the opportunities to blitz and get sacks still existed for the linebackers.

"We're Blitzburgh," said Timmons. "We're always going to blitz. That's our identity. That's why I love our makeup, the way we play. We are going to pin our ears back and play ball."

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