Everyone in the Steelers' organization knows that Stephon Tuitt is one of the NFL's best young players, and it seems NFL.com agrees.
Tuitt was named to their All-Under-25 team as one of the defensive tackles they selected.
To make the list players have to be 24 or younger before kickoff of the NFL season. While Tuitt was the only Steelers' player on the list, they did note that Ryan Shazier just missed out because he turns 25 the day before the NFL Kickoff Game.
Tuitt stepped up big in 2016 when Cameron Heyward went down, and he became a leader on the defensive line.
"I knew they needed me to step up," said Tuitt. "Not just because of my development, but in general. We had a significant person not just on the field, but off the field, who went down. When they drafted me they saw me becoming that type of person too. It's just that my time was coming sooner than expected due to circumstances. I was ready to do it. I was ready to be that person."
One of the biggest steps he had to take was changing his style. Not who he was on the inside, but how he handled himself with the defensive line unit, how he communicated and interacted with them.
"Everybody has their style," said Tuitt. "I was always to myself growing up as a football player. I realized communication is a key. Communication can help you grow. Communication as a whole can help us grow. Once we started doing that all together, and bought into that, we grew and were on the verge of something great. It was an awesome experience."
He finished the 2016 season with 37 tackles and four sacks, as well as three passes defensed and two forced fumbles. In his three seasons, Tuitt has 78 tackles, 11.5 sacks, four passes defensed, an interception and three forced fumbles.