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Former Steelers OG Trai Essex on 2022 Offensive Line: “I’m Very Confident in Our Front-Five”

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Former Steelers OG Trai Essex on 2022 Offensive Line: “I’m Very Confident in Our Front-Five”

Former Pittsburgh Steelers offensive guard, Trai Essex was brought on as a guest of 93.7 The Fan Thursday morning to talk about multiple topics surrounding the Steelers, including the beef between Ben Roethlisberger and Cam Heyward, Roethlisberger’s leadership style while he was on the team with Essex, and more.

But, a highlight of the interview was Essex touching on the 2022 offensive line and how he thinks it will perform after a lackluster 2021 campaign.

Steelers, trai essex, offensive line, 2022

PITTSBURGH, PA – AUGUST 30: Trai Essex #79 of the Pittsburgh Steelers blocks against the Carolina Panthers during the preseason game on August 30, 2012 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

Essex on Steelers New O-Line Additions

“The Steelers line struggled mightily last year. They had a hard time protecting Ben Roethlisberger last year, and even a hard time running the football. Do you think they’ve done enough this past off-season to improve on that?” Chris Mack asked Essex.

“I hope so,” Essex said. “It is yet to be seen, but we did bring in two guys in Mason Cole and James Daniels that were two ‘under-the-radar’ guys. But I am excited about them. Mason Cole was a part of an offensive line that blocked for Dalvin Cook, and we’ve seen how good [Cook] is. Then we brought in Daniels, who I thought was really good coming out of Iowa, is a versatile player that can play both center and guard. Plus, he’s young and already has a lot of experience at only 24 years old.” Essex continued.

steelers, mason Cole, offensive line, trai essex, 2022

CHICAGO, IL – DECEMBER 20: Minnesota Vikings center Mason Cole (52) battles in action during a game between the Chicago Bears and the Minnesota Vikings on December 20, 2021, at Soldier Field in Chicago, IL. (Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Essex on Returning Steelers O-Linemen

Essex then continued on to talk about the returning players on the offensive line, including mentioning the likes of Dan Moore Jr., Kevin Dotson and Chukwuma Okorafor.

“We got a young O-Line. I am excited about the development that Dan Moore Jr. showed last year at that critical position at left tackle. I think he’s going to get better from here on out. On top of that, if Dotson can come back healthy, that left side is going to be good, especially now with ‘Chuks’ [Okorafor] being at his natural position,” Essex exclaimed.

“So I’m confident in our front-five, even still with J.C. [Hassenauer] and John Leglue getting experience last year, we got guys behind them who have gotten some snaps which we didn’t have last year. Last year, we had a very young crew that had almost no experience outside of Chuks, so this year is completely different. We have experience up front and guys backing them up that also have experience,” Essex admitted.

Essex on Steelers 2021 Draft Pick, Kendrick Green

Finally, he admits he is eager to see how Kendrick Green bounces back from a lackluster rookie season, especially now that he is at his natural position of left guard.

“I am interested to see what Kendrick Green is going to do. He’s had an off-season where he hopefully has gotten his lower body stronger. He’s showed athleticism and I think he could really contribute as a guard, and I’m really interested in seeing what he does in camp this year.”

 

What do you think, #SteelerNation? Are you confident in this season’s offensive line? Did you like the additions the Steelers made this off-season, or do you think they should’ve done more? Do you believe that Trai Essex knows what he is talking about when it comes to the offensive line since he is a former Steelers guard? Let me know in the comments or @anthonyravasio on Twitter.

I'm Anthony "Rav" Ravasio and I'm a Pittsburgh native currently at Arizona State University studying sports journalism. I attended North Catholic High School in Cranberry and grew up cheering for these Steelers the whole way through. In my spare time, I love to spend time with friends or family, as well as grow my knowledge for sports in many different ways! Follow me on Twitter @anthonyravasio

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  1. Pingback: Steelers Intriguing and Hopefully Improved 2022 Offensive Line is a Must-Watch vs Seahawks on Saturday - SteelerNation.com

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