What will the Pittsburgh Steelers starting offensive line look like for the team’s Week 1 road game against the Buffalo Bills? While it’s still hard to say for sure, it might just include two rookies.
According to Brooke Pryor of ESPN on Monday, rookie tackle Dan Moore Jr. was used as the team’s left tackle during practice while Chukwuma Okorafor was moved over the right tackle spot. Zach Banner, who has been slated to be the team’s starting right tackle in 2021, did not practice on Monday after being left back in Pittsburgh on Friday when the team played their preseason finale.
Outside of the extra curriculars at today's Steelers practice, something to watch:
-Okorafor took reps at right tackle today, while Dan Moore Jr. was at left.
-Zach Banner did not practice& Tomlin said he'd give an injury report next week. Banner didn't travel vs. Panthers.
— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 30, 2021
So, did Banner have a setback of some sorts with his surgically repaired knee? It’s hard to say for sure right now but it’s obviously not a great sign that he’s not practicing with less than two weeks to go before the team’s Week 1 game.
Tomlin was asked about Banner on Monday and the head coach said he would give an injury report next week. In short, it sounds like he sidestepped the question and because he can.
Moore, a rookie out of Texas A&M, played well during the preseason overall. His better play came at the left tackle spot, however. Moore was worked quite a bit at right tackle later in camp and the preseason, however.
As for Okorafor, who was the Steelers starting right tackle last season after Banner went down injured in Week 1, he didn’t have a very good preseason showing at left tackle, his more natural side.
Should Moore wind up having to start in Week 1 for whatever reason, he’ll likely join Kendrick Green as the two rookies manning five of the starting spots on the offensive line.
Banner, by the way, played all of 12 offensive snaps during the preseason with all of them coming at right tackle in the team’s second contest against the Philadelphia Eagles.