The Pittsburgh Steelers first preseason game of 2017 will take place Friday night against the New York Giants and on Wednesday, head coach Mike Tomlin revealed a few players who will sit that contest out.
According to Tomlin, all healthy players will play Friday night sans quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and wide receiver Antonio Brown as both will sit the contest out. With backup quarterback Landry Jones currently dealing with an abdominal strain that he suffered several days ago during a training camp practice, Tomlin said Wednesday that rookie quarterback Joshua Dobbs will start against the Giants. Bart Houston is expected to backup Dobbs.
“One man’s misfortune is another man’s opportunity,” Tomlin said of Dobbs starting Friday night. “Landry’s been dealing with injury so it gives Dobbs an opportunity to start the game and I know he’s excited about it. I know I’m excited about watching him play the quarterback position in that group and lead us in that way.”
So, what has Tomlin seen out of Dobbs so far that he likes?
“He’s a bright-eyed, willing worker,” said Tomlin of Dobbs, the team’s fourth-round draft pick this year. “He appears to learn from mistakes and I think that’s good. He also appears to be able to learn from the mistakes of others and that’s doubly good. But like a lot of things, we won’t know until we get him in a stadium. At that position, you’re defined by under how you perform under certain circumstances and it will be good to get him in that stadium on Friday night and watch him in terms of putting his skills on display.”
Is there something that Tomlin wants to see specifically out of Dobbs Friday night against the Giants?
“You know, this is just the first time out,” started Tomlin. “I’m just interested in his game-day demeanor, his ability to communicate through circumstances not only with his fellow players, but also with coaches as well.”
Tomlin would not say whether or not veteran outside linebacker James Harrison will play Friday night. Harrison, who has only practiced once in pads since training camp opened, will be getting on the proverbial train very soon, however, according to Tomlin.
While Tomlin would not name other players who will likely sit out Friday night, you can probably expect safety Mike Mitchell, linebacker Ryan Shazier, cornerback Senquez Golson, cornerback Cameron Sutton and several others who have missed recent practice time with injuries to be inactive against the Giants.