The Pittsburgh Steelers third preseason game of 2015 will take place Sunday at Heinz Field against the Green Bay Packers and even though the team has now broken training camp, a few roster spot battles will continue on over the course of the next several weeks. Below are five players who can really help their own cause Sunday against the Packers and we’ll be watching the performance of all five very closely.
Ian Wild – Wild has quickly become a fan favorite and while he might not be a master of all trades, he certainly is a jack of all of them. On Sunday, Wild should get an opportunity to play quite a few snaps at inside linebacker as his position flexibility is needed due to injuries at the position. However, where Wild can really help himself against the Packers is on special teams and especially outside of the punt coverage team, which seems to be his specialty. If Wild is going to make the 53 this year it will be because special teams coach Danny Smith can’t live without him.
Kevin Fogg – The battle between Fogg and B.W. Webb for a potential sixth cornerback spot is shaping up to be the best one of the summer. Fogg, according to the practice reports filed by Alex Kozora and Jon Ledyard, had a very eventful several weeks at Latrobe and now he needs to close out the exhibition season with three solid showings. Fogg has picked off several passes during practices and it would be nice to see that happen during the preseason games. Additionally, Fogg can help himself immensely in the next three games by showing up on the special teams stat sheet.
Chris Hubbard – Hubbard hasn’t looked great so far during the Steelers first two preseason games and to be honest with you, that’s not very surprising. Sunday, Hubbard will get a chance to show he can play some center, so perhaps his roster spot isn’t very safe. Regardless, the former undrafted offensive lineman out of UAB really needs a strong showing on Sunday against the Packers.
Alejandro Villanueva – Even though the former Army captain is a virtual lock to make this year’s final 53 man roster at this point, we’ll get an opportunity to see him play on the right side against the Packers after playing only on the left side in the first two preseason games. Villanueva’s play last weekend wasn’t as good as what he put on tape in the Hall of Fame game, so we’re looking for him to get the needle moving back in the other direction once again. He has three games left to prove that he can be the Steelers ultimate swing tackle this year and that’s certainly needed being as Mike Adams still isn’t healthy.
Ross Ventrone – Ventrone really needs to get himself on the field sooner rather than later if he’s going to have any shot at making the final 53 man roster. He returned to practice on a limited basis this week and we’ll have to see if he’s given the green light on Sunday. He’s proven to be a solid special teams player during his career, but there’s no doubt that Wild is gunning for that same roster spot this year. You can’t make the club in the tub, so Ventrone needs to get his ass on the grass.