If you were looking forward to seeing Pittsburgh Steelers rookie cornerback Artie Burns make his NFL debut Friday night against the New Orleans Saints, you’re about to be disappointed.
Even though Burns had a good day of practice on Wednesday, the cornerback reportedly said later in the day that he will not play in the team’s third preseason game.
“I’m not playing this week,” Burns said, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “I most definitely will be back next week, though.”
During his Wednesday press conference, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin sounded hopeful that the team’s first round draft pick this year would make his NFL debut against the Saints.
“It was a big day for Artie Burns, got good significant work from him today at practice so hopefully there’s no negative consequences of that work and he can continue to move forward,” Tomlin said of the Miami product.
Burns unfortunately missed quite a bit of practice time during training camp and it this point it’s hard to fathom he’ll see much playing on time on defense during his rookie season barring injuries to players ahead of him on the depth chart. For now, the hope needs to be that burns can contribute on special teams in 2016 with an eye on being a starter in 2017.
With Burns now expected to sit out again on Friday, cornerbacks Doran Grant, Al-Hajj Shabazz, Donald Washington, Kevin White, and Montell Garner should all continue to be able to pick up more preseason snaps against the Saints.