LATROBE, Pa. – The Steelers reported to Saint Vincent College on Friday and went through their annual conditioning test with Coach Mike Tomlin pleased with the results.
Several players didn't participate, including Ramon Foster (death in family) and Adam Podlesh (wife's expecting) who were both excused from camp. In addition safety Mike Mitchell and running back Alvester Alexander were placed on the PUP list to open camp.
The following are the top takes from Tomlin's post-conditioning test presser.
- Tomlin said training camp is no different when you come in following an 8-8 season or if you had a playoff year.
"Not for me. We're here to build our team for 2014," said Tomlin. "What we've done in the past is in the past. To be quite honest with you a lot of those guys that are going to be significant components of what we do this year weren't a part of some of the teams that you mentioned. I'm singularly focused on the now. I'm going to sell that to the football team. We don't need to carry last year's baggage and I say that every year regardless of what transpired last year. I just think that's an appropriate mentality for the individuals and football team and one that I hope this group buys into."
- The Steelers have a lot of young and new players on the roster this year, making the challenges different than they have been in the past for the coaching staff.
"I think that's a continual discussion for me and the staff not only this year but since I've been here," said Tomlin. "Our job is to provide them with what it is they need. Different groups, different individuals have different needs, obviously. We have some youth in some areas and their needs are different than veteran players so our job is to provide them with an atmosphere that is conducive to them learning, improving and preparing and that's what we intend to do. It may be a little different in some instances than it is in the past, but we don't worry about that. Our mentality is to do what is appropriate for this group."
- With a lot of new players on the roster, Tomlin said he expects to see some good battles during practice.
"I know that I'm excited about seeing some of these guys play and seeing what they are capable of and I know that they are excited about showing what they are capable of, and really the only way to do that is to play football," said Tomlin. "I enjoy the spring and summer but that's the spring and the summer. Now (that) we are here in training camp we are going to do what we do in this type (of) setting, which is compete."