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Postgame Takes

Tomlin on Mitch, receivers, urgency and injuries

Two-minute magic: The Steelers closed out the preseason with a 19-9 win over the Detroit Lions at Acrisure Stadium, giving the Steelers a 3-0 preseason record.

Coach Mike Tomlin saw the good and the bad in the win, but one of the things that stood out to him was quarterback Mitch Trubisky getting the opportunity to have a two-minute drive.

Trubisky, who played the entire first half, got the ball in his hands at the Steelers eight-yard line with 1:34 to play in the half and all three timeouts. He steadily drove the offense down the field, putting together a six-play, 92-yard drive that culminated in a six-yard touchdown pass to Steven Sims.

"A lot of positive things to build upon," said Tomlin. "It was good to get Mitch a two-minute drive. He hadn't had that exposure, and we had talked about that earlier in the week, and it was good to get the execution there.

"I would have liked it to have been more challenging from a timeout perspective, but we got what we were looking for."

Tomlin was asked the most popular question in Pittsburgh following the game, if he has a decision yet on who will be the starting quarterback when the Steelers open the regular season against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sept. 11.

He didn't reveal anything.

"I might, but you're not going to have that today," said Tomlin. "Like I told you guys the other week, we're not going to make knee-jerk reactions and statements following a performance. We'll go through our proper, professional procedure. We'll evaluate the game. We'll meet with our front office people. We'll have discussions. We'll talk internally. We'll talk external possibilities.

"We'll go through our normal procedure this time of year, and we'll disclose it to you at our leisure, to be quite honest with you."

Better to receive: The Steelers will have to reduce their roster from 80 players to 53 players by 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 30.

And one position where players have really stepped up and the depth is strong is the receiver spot. Tomlin likes what he has seen from the group and how they put it all out there.

"I feel good about the group," said Tomlin. "I just appreciate the competitive spirit that all the guys gave us. And they played to their strengths. Big guys making big guy plays. Miles Boykin, Cody White making possession down plays at the sticks and things of that nature, the skedaddlers running around the perimeter.

"I just thought that guys gave themselves an opportunity because they played to their skill set and their strength, and that's what you want. They're making our decisions difficult. And when you're in my position, you've got to respect and appreciate that."

Moving ahead with urgency: While the preseason has wrapped up for the Steelers, and the rest of the NFL, the opportunity for development hasn't even come close to concluding.

All teams are off this coming weekend, and the regular season kicks off for the Steelers on Sept. 11.

"We still have two weeks of work," said Tomlin. "Just because the games are over, like I told that group in there, we're going to lean into the developmental opportunities between now and then.

"We've got to move ahead with urgency. We've got to prepare with an edge. Because we need to assume our opponents are doing the same."

Coach Tomlin on injuries: "A couple guys weren't able to finish the game due to injury. The guys you'll be asking about, Diontae (Johnson) and T.J. (Watt), we don't expect that to be serious. Maybe they could have come back into the game had it been different circumstances and so forth. But we'll monitor those guys and evaluate them and proceed from there.

"(Damontae) Kazee's injury could be perceived as more serious. He's being evaluated now. It makes his availability in the near future questionable.

"But that's part of the game. It's good to get back in the stadium, get back into the confines of our home stadium and perform in front of our fans. Now we turn our attention to our next opportunity, which is September 11th football."

Tune in: Steelers Nation, NFL+ is here, which means you can now watch your Steelers live and on the go! Watch live out-of-market preseason games across devices and live local and primetime regular season games on your phone or tablet. Start your free trial today here.

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