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Postgame Takes

Tomlin disappointed in performance

Disappointed in outcome: It was a final opportunity for players to make a case for a spot on the 53-man roster, but the Steelers 34-9 loss to the Carolina Panthers in the preseason finale did not sit well with Coach Mike Tomlin.

"Just really disappointed in our performance tonight," said Tomlin. "I'm excited about the opportunity for the guys, especially given Carolina was playing a lot of their regulars. I thought it would be a great platform for them to display varsity skills and succinctly we didn't. We didn't take care of the ball. We didn't win possession downs on offense.

"I thought the defense started strong, but as fatigue set in because we couldn't maintain possession of it, there were mental lapses, there were physical lapses as fatigue set in with them. We turned the ball over on special teams.

"All in all, it was a junior varsity performance. We accept that. We understand what that means. But we also understand where we are in this journey collectively. I'm appreciative of their efforts not only tonight, but throughout this process. Now we begin the decision-making time. I'm sure we'll get started with that when we get back.

"Based on the performance that happened in the stadium, we're disappointed. But there will be disappointments in ball and in life."

Game action photos from the Week 3 preseason game against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium

Late rush: Dwayne Haskins started at quarterback, finishing completing nine of 16 passes for 108 yards, a touchdown and an interception, with 58 yards coming on the final drive of the game after Haskins went back in for an injured Joshua Dobbs.

"Like the rest of us, I didn't think it was enough varsity work from him," said Tomlin. "It wasn't the type of performance he wanted, or we wanted. But such is life."

Injury update: As mentioned, Dobbs left the game in the fourth quarter with what Tomlin referred to as likely a turf toe injury that was still being evaluated. And he wasn't the only injury in the game.

"There were a number of guys who were injured in some way," said Tomlin. "Marcus Allen had a hamstring. I don't know the extent of it.

"Joshua Dobbs had a turf toe, maybe that was being evaluated. Don't know the extent of that."

Long snapper Kameron Canaday didn't see any action, sidelined after he was feeling sick following pregame warmups. Christian Kuntz, who is battling for the long snapper job, got all of the work, although Tomlin wasn't ready to evaluate the job he did just yet.

"I wasn't laying direct eyes on the snapper, so I got to look at the tape and all of that," said Tomlin. "It wouldn't be the appropriate thing to evaluate his performance in this setting."

In addition to the injuries several players didn't make the trip to Charlotte, staying back in Pittsburgh for treatment.

"There were several Steelers that we just left home, to give them medical treatment opportunities," said Tomlin. "Guys like Anthony McFarland, Zach Banner didn't make the trip. We're just taking care of some guys that we wanted to leave back that we thought would be better served getting some treatment at home."

He said it: Tomlin on the punter competition between Jordan Berry and Pressley Harvin:

"I thought they represented themselves solidly tonight and largely it's been a really competitive thing throughout this process," said Tomlin. "I'm appreciative of their efforts. They've both been varsity."

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