The Pittsburgh Steelers certainly weren’t great in all three phases of their Thursday night preseason road loss to the Green Bay Packers. After the game was over, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin noted several areas in which he thought his team didn’t perform well in and one of those was the punting of Jordan Berry.
“I thought the punting wasn’t consistent enough,” Tomlin said during his post-game press conference.
In the Steelers 51-34 preseason loss to the Packers, Berry, who is now in his fourth season in Pittsburgh, punted six times for a 44.5 yard average and a net average of 31.8 yards. While Berry did have three punts Thursday night that traveled 56 or more yards past the original line of scrimmage, his three other efforts went 30 yards or less. As evidenced by those six distances, you can understand why Tomlin said his punter wasn’t consistent Thursday night.
While the Steelers did sign journeyman punter Matt Wile to the roster this past January to provide competition for Berry, he didn’t punt any Thursday night against the Packers as he was allowed to showcase his kicking abilities in Green Bay instead as regular kicker Chris Boswell was given the night off. Wile, however, did punt twice in the Steelers preseason opener against the Philadelphia Eagles and registered a long of 56 yards in that contest along with a 40-yard effort that was fair caught at the 8-yard-line.
So, do we now have us a punter competition on our hands with two preseason games remaining? It’s hard to say for sure. However, if Wile starts getting more opportunities starting a week from Saturday night when the Steelers play the Tennessee Titans and is consistent and Berry continues to be inconsistent the remainder of the preseason, perhaps the Steelers will ultimately decide to make a change.