We know Maurkice Pouncey has a chip on his shoulder. A new resolve this year to play at a high level. He expanded on those feelings in part two of Missi Matthews’ interview with the Pittsburgh Steelers’ center.
“[Mike Tomlin] tried to tell me he didn’t want to take as many reps,” he told Matthews. “But I’m 26 coach, I gotta go out and play. I gotta go out there and do what I love doing. I can’t sit back and watch. It hurts to sit back and watch more than it does to play.”
That’s a similar sentiment from what Pouncey said during OTAs, declining Tomlin’s offer to sit out of a couple practices. The team has talked about “mapping out” his snaps during the preseason in order to ensure he’s healthy for Week One against Washington.
The specifics of that are unknown, and sure to be met with resistance from Pouncey, but figure to be at least a day or two per week. Maybe as much as work just every other day, as is common with the oldest players on the team, though Pouncey does need to experience football again. After all, it’s been almost an entire year.
Predictably, he’s looking forward to training camp. Another step closer to finally playing in a meaningful game.
“The camaraderie it brings. I didn’t like last year because we were out there a little bit too long. But the camaraderie you get to have with the guys, being out there every second of the day. Building that core inside it really helps out in the long run.What people don’t really pay attention to, the Steelers pay attention to it.”
Good news for Pouncey considering the training camp plate is less full than a year ago. Instead of 18 practices and five games, there’s just 14 practices and four games. The window of camp is smaller too, three weeks compared to the month long excursion in 2015.