After four days at camp the players were given Monday off. According to the new CBA that went into effect last year, players are now given one day off per week. I imagine that there’s not much to do on a short leash in Latrobe on a Monday. Redman will spend some bonus time in the ice tub with a couple of sandwiches. Ike will perfect his art of chill-axin. Heath could catch some Olympic beach volleyball action, assuming they have a decent Internet hook up. Woodley and Harrison will try to out-tweet each other. Ben and Coach Haley might meet at Applebee’s and share the 2-fer. Whatever they choose, it won’t be on the practice field, and has to be done by a reasonable hour as a curfew is
likely enforced. Tomlin hopes that they will not screw around take advantage of the day, rest their bodies and get mentally prepared to continue practice the next day.
The rest day comes at a good time since a few guys are already getting banged up. This includes Keenan Lewis who went out Sunday with a sprained shoulder, said to be sustained while making a sideline hit. Rookie guard David DeCastro and veteran tackle Trai Essex suffered what will hopefully only be minor ankle injuries. Heath also has missed a few days of practice but is expected to return in the next day or so.
One other interesting observation from the first few days of training camp has been Haley’s presence on the field. Just the fact that he’s there as we are so used to seeing old Bruce roaming around. Haley has been anything but shy about making an impression with his play calling. He seems to be sending a pretty clear message to the offense and us fans by not calling a single pass play…. Ok so he called one some, but the ball had less air time than Olympic ping pong gets in prime time. The Pittsburgh offense has lacked identity the last few seasons with the obvious absence of a proven ground game and passing plays that were basically Ben scrambling for his life. But, much like those ink blots that are supposed to look like birds, our offense, if you stare at it long enough, seems to be shaping itself into a physical beast capable of creating an effective run game.
In other news, the on-going Wallace saga has made for some pretty good buzz among journalists and brought out the boxing gloves on twitter. Check out this tweet from ‘faux john madden’: Mike Wallace has been demanding Larry Fitzgerald like money, while Antonio Brown is satisfied with Mike Wallace’s money. At this point it feels like a lot of Steeler Nation is ambivalent if they even want Wallace back. I’m not even sure. This team is built on hard work and dedication and loyalty. Wallace is 0 for 3.
If September 9th rolls around and his ass isn’t
running a beautiful slant across the middle… blazing down the sideline dressed in pads on the visitor side of Invesco, you better believe I’m sending him an invoice for the $80 jersey I bought last season. Or maybe Dick’s will exchange it for a tube sock, since that’s about all its going to be worth.