Between now and the start of the regular season, the Pittsburgh Steelers could very well finalize a contract extension with tackle Kelvin Beachum. While the SMU product has been downplaying a potential new deal ever since he arrived at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe for training camp, head coach Mike Tomlin made his feelings known about him at the conclusion of Thursday’s practice.
“He just has a professional, business-like approach to everything that he does,” said Tomlin of Beachum. “He’s got some distinguishing characteristics about him in terms of how he approaches his business and that’s a pretty good window in terms of his ability to do what you see him do. He’s a special guy, hard working guy.”
So when did Tomlin actually see that Beachum might actually turn into the player that he is now?
“Immediately,” said Tomlin.
Beachum was originally drafted in the seventh-round of the 2012 NFL Draft. The knock on him initially was that he was under-sized in addition to being very raw. Since coming into the league, however, Beachum has gradually become a technician and a student of the game and it has resulted him being the team’s starting left tackle since the fifth game of the 2013 season.
This will be the second season that Beachum will get to work with offensive line coach Mike Munchak, so there’s reason to believe that he will get even better in 2015. Being as Tomlin doesn’t often gush over players to the media, it should tell you all you need to know about Beachum.
Solid starting left tackles are hard to come by and while Beachum certainly isn’t the best one in the league as we sit here today, he’s still getting better. He’s a commodity and the Steelers know it, and because of that, it will be surprising if he doesn’t have a new contract by the time the Steelers play the New England Patriots in the Thursday night regular-season opener.
“I’m here to play football. Let the business people take care of the business stuff,” Beachum said Saturday, according to Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com.