PITTSBURGH (93.7 the Fan) – As Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin thought of starting off a first ever virtual rookie mini-camp, he wanted someone to grab the players attention.
So he had recently retired guard Ramon Foster speak on a video message to all of them.
“Ramon delivered in a big way,” Tomlin said. “I just thought he was a great guy to welcome those guys. A guy that understands the journey that many of those guys are attempting to walk.”
“A guy who was an undrafted guy and went on and had a great career that lasted over a decade. Really just a well-respected professional and recently retired professional.”
“He’s very fresh to just getting off the field and I thought the position that he was in and the perspective that he has would be a good one. I thought he did an awesome job.”
After that Tomlin said his draft class and new signees were able to break up into smaller online groups of offense, defense and special teams and then within that, to smaller groups yet with position coaches and they were able to utilize video.
“The retention of the information is probably the most significant difference in working in this setting,” Tomlin said. “It’s much more difficult to get the feedback, the feel if somebody is receiving the information when you are working remotely than it is when you are dealing with somebody in an intimate space.”
The Steelers head coach said they wouldn’t be evaluating this weekend, even if they were together.
“We are in a teaching and instruction phase right now and we will be in that until we get into a football environment and a training camp like setting and we play the game,” Tomlin said.
Tomlin said its fair for everyone right now and it’s a matter of how guys learn. And this group doesn’t really have any idea what normal is, in a NFL sense.