A few weeks ago, the Pittsburgh Steelers announced that they would be taking a step back from their season with a two-game series against the Dallas Cowboys.
In order to ease the pressure of that, the team was holding practice on Monday for the first time since training camp started on Monday.
A lot has changed since then, but here are the most notable players on the team.1.
Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster: “I just want to show my teammates, I want to win.
If I don’t get the job done, I just want them to know that I have my back.
I have confidence in myself and in my teammates.”2.
Safety Morgan Burnett: “It’s been a long time coming.
I’ve been around long enough.
It’s a lot of pressure.
It definitely has been tough, but I’m happy that I’m back.
Hopefully, we can win and have a good experience for the players and everyone else.”3.
Safety Ryan Shazier: “For me, I’m just trying to make it happen, be a big contributor to this team and hopefully, get my confidence back.”4.
Cornerback A.J. Bouye: “As a player, it’s definitely been an adjustment for me to play the way I have to play.
I feel like I’m a little more mature than I was last year and the game is a little different.
I just think I’ve got to find a way to fit in.”5.
Offensive tackle Joe Thomas: “Just trying to stay focused, stay strong.
I think I’m going to get a chance to play and do what I need to do to get better.”6.
Defensive end Cameron Heyward: “Last year, I was the guy who didn’t do too well.
Last year, it was me not playing up to my potential.
Now, I feel ready to be the player I am.”7.
Safety Markus Wheaton: “This is a big challenge for me.
I’m not used to being out there.
This is my first year, so I’m trying to do what’s best for me, what I can do, for my team.
I know this is going to be a little tough, especially with the playoffs looming.
But, I know I can be the best player I can possibly be.
I will work hard, I will give it everything, and I will win this.”8.
Offensive lineman Anthony Castonzo: “Everyone in this locker room has been in this position.
I understand that.
I do as well, and we’re all just going to work together to make sure we’re ready to go for the playoffs.”9.
Defensive tackle James Harrison: “My goal is to go out there and help this team win.
That’s the biggest thing.”10.
Defensive back Kevin Dodd: “The first thing you gotta do is make sure you keep your head up.
That helps a lot.
It helps with the preparation because you have to prepare, you have the coaches, you just have to go in there and work your butt off.
That can help.”11.
Linebacker Antonio Smith: “When you look at how many games you have played and how many playoff games you’ve played, it makes it tough.
But if you can do it, you can play in this league.
That gives you confidence, that you can win.
You just have all these things going for you.
So I’m looking forward to it.”12.
Running back Le’Veon Bell: “A lot of guys that have been here a long, long time, it definitely comes with a lot to prove, so that’s a big part of it.
Hopefully this is my last season, so it’s not the end of the world.”13.
Safety Troy Polamalu: “Getting in here to play is important.
I love this game.
I really love the game of football.
It really brings me joy.
I always try to work hard and help my teammates as much as I can.
This league, you’ve got so many guys that come in and you’ve gotta play hard.
You’ve got guys that are going to do it their way.
So, I have no issues with that.”14.
Defensive lineman David DeCastro: “Coming in, this is the biggest challenge.
I still haven’t gotten to play every day.
I haven’t been out there in pads and I’ve just been out here to be honest.
It takes a lot out of you mentally.
You’re out there doing what you gotta be doing.
You have to stay mentally strong and mentally sharp and mentally mature.”15.
Runningback James White: “Being out here, I’ve already seen some of the changes in this team.
Just getting out here and just having a chance, being out here in the cold, you never know what you’re going to see.
But you’ve just got to keep pushing forward and keep doing what