Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin met with the media prior to the team taking the field for their final practice at Saint Vincent College, and he said running back LaRod Stephens-Howling and rookie wide receiver Markus Wheaton will both get looks as return men Monday night in the second preseason game against the Washington Redskins.
“We\’re excited about taking a look at a few other guys in the return game,” said Tomlin. “[LaRod] Stephens-Howling in the kickoff return game, [Markus] Wheaton in the punt return game.
Last week, I wrote that I didn\’t think Wheaton should be playing on special teams, unless he can win the punt return job. It now appears as though he will get a chance to do just that. The Steelers third-round draft pick only returned three punts for 68 yards during his career at Oregon State, so it will certainly be interesting to see how he fares Monday night.
Stephens-Howling, on the other hand, is a very accomplished kickoff returner. During his four years with the Arizona Cardinals, the University of Pittsburgh product returned 163 kickoffs for 4,067 yards and three touchdowns.
As far as other changes this week, Tomlin also let his intentions be known as it relates to playing time for the starters.
“We\’ll continue to look at our starters a little bit more than we did last time,” he said. “We\’ll of course rotate in from there.”