Unless things go horribly wrong during the 2014 season, Thursday night more than likely will be the last time we see Pittsburgh Steelers third-string quarterback Landry Jones play until next year.
While it’s not yet known if Jones will start against the Carolina Panthers in the preseason finale at Heinz Field, head coach Mike Tomlin did say Tuesday during his press conference that the former fourth-round draft pick will see significant playing time in the game.
“Just consistent, above-the-line play and that’s about as straight as an arrow as I can fire,” said Tomlin when asked what he’s looking for this week out of Jones.
Last year in the preseason finale against the Panthers, Jones started and played the entire game in the 25-10 loss. After going 10-of-20 passing for 133 yards with a touchdown to tight end David Paulson in the first half of that game, Jones went 6-of-15 for 56 yards with three interceptions in the second half.
While Jones did admit Tuesday that the team isn’t doing much in the way of game planning for the Thursday night game against the Panthers, he did say that they have watched the game from last season against Carolina in order to prepare.
“Yeah, we watched it a little bit,” said Jones. “Watched it throughout the week because they kind of have the same coordinator and stuff. It felt like a decent start to the game. You know obviously it didn’t turn out the way we wanted it to, but just learn from those mistakes as well.”
During his playing time in the first two preseason games this year, Jones has had his share of mistakes once again. After going 11-of-21 for 74 yards in the preseason opener against the New York Giants, Jones’ 2-of-5 passing performance for 53 yards that included an interception and a lost fumble the following week against the Buffalo Bills left a lot to be desired out of the Oklahoma product.
With Jones’ roster spot still up in the air right now as he heads into perhaps the biggest game of his young career Thursday night, he seemed relaxed Tuesday when talking to the media and he’s focused on doing just one thing.
“I just want to go out there and play the best game that I can play,” he said.