Opportunity knocks: Coach Mike Tomlin knows what the final preseason game can mean for a young player, because he saw what happened first-hand for Stefan Logan back in 2009. Logan, who was signed from the Canadian league, went into the final preseason game against the Panthers that season as a player who opened a lot of eyes, but still needed to take that final step to ensure himself a spot on the 53-man roster.
He did just that when he returned a punt 80 yards for a touchdown in the game, earning him a spot thanks to that play and the culmination of his work to that point.
There are other players this year in the same shoes, including Mathew Sexton, who has returned three punts for 88 yards this preseason, with a long of 47 yards.
"You know that's the beauty of this process," said Tomlin. "We were studying the history of the series this morning in a team meeting and talking about what a platform this game is for guys to springboard to success. We talked about a guy about 10 years ago named Stefan Logan, you know that nobody knew and really didn't have a position. He added the return game and he had about an 80-yard punt return the Carolina preseason game and really ran his way onto the football team.
"Mat had some moments and he'll have an opportunity to put an exclamation point on his work like a lot of guys will."
Getting to know you: The Steelers will go into the first regular season game with a group of rookies on offense who could be set to make a fast impact, including their top three picks, Najee Harris, Pat Freiermuth and Kendrick Green.
Tomlin said there are things you can look at when evaluating them coming out of college, but it's the day-to-day interaction once they are with the team that helps them understand their maturity, ability to pick things up quick, and other key components.
"We're always trying to get a complete picture of our prospects, but you know some things never really get confirmed until you get a chance to work with somebody day-to-day," said Tomlin. "The rest of it is just speculation. That's why we get out and get boots on the ground and visit guys and pro days and things of that nature in an effort to unearth some of those things, but we value all of that."
Veteran presence: Tomlin said he continues to like what he sees from nose tackle Chris Wormley, who was acquired from the Ravens via a trade last year and re-signed in the offseason.
"Man, he's, he's done a great job with additional reps that he's gotten," said Tomlin. "But we're not surprised by that. He's been a part of us and we re-signed him in the offseason because of that expertise."