Having concluded their preseason schedule on what Mike Tomlin described as the "front side of the Week Three cycle," the Steelers returned to the practice field today, a day on which 20 other NFL teams were still playing.
Tomlin called the three scheduled workouts today through Monday in the wake of Thursday night's 24-0 preseason victory in Atlanta "bonus days."
The Steelers' head coach embraced the first such session with recognizable enthusiasm.
"Really directed in terms of how to use this block of days," Tomlin announced today at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex. "It's a really good opportunity for the (assistant) coaches to troubleshoot some technical issues that may have been dogging them, some situational awareness, teaching and learning. We're doing a lot of situational ball in an effort to tie up some circumstances that maybe we hadn't put them in enough.
"You can't do enough situational ball. There's so many opportunities to teach how the game changes, certain nuances, things that we're trying to get accomplished schematically when the field circumstances change."
The day began with a video review of the Falcons game after a scheduled off day on Friday.
"That's a major component of this process, this cycle of playing, if you will, tape analysis, acknowledgement, accountability, and then we present the next plan or work according to what it is we see we need to hone up and then we proceed with the work," Tomlin emphasized.
That agenda included "fundamental things.
"We gotta do routine things extraordinarily well," Tomlin maintained. "Flat tackles, angle tackles, the science of tackling, the tackle types based on matchup, angles to the ball, space are some of the things that we're focusing on on the defensive side of the ball.
"The precision component of offensive play, rhythm throws, timing, pace, intentional use of pace are a couple of things that really have our attention as we lean in on this block of days."