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Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 Preseason Game 2: 5 Intriguing Things to Watch for in Jacksonville

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Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 Preseason Game 2: 5 Intriguing Things to Watch for in Jacksonville

The Pittsburgh Steelers had a good showing in their first preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks. The team will continue to ready themselves for their next game, their lone road game of the preseason, as they travel to Duval County to face off against the Jacksonville Jaguars. In preparation for this contest, we have a list of five things to keep track of on game day.

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Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback, Kenny Pickett (#8) warms up before a preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh, PA on August 13, 2022. | Jordan Schofield / SteelerNation (Twitter: @JSKO_PHOTO)

1. Pickett’s Prominence

There will be no change in who the starting quarterback is for the Steelers as Mitch Trubisky is still going to be leading the offense onto the field. What will be different this time around is Kenny Pickett being elevated to the second tier of the quarterback carousel.

Pickett was taking the majority of the second team reps this past week in camp, which may be partially due to his performance in the first game. Against Seattle, Pickett completed 13 of his 15 pass attempts for 95 yards and two touchdowns, including the game winner to Tyler Vaughns. Steelers head coach, Mike Tomlin likes what he has seen so far, and now wants to turn up the pressure on Pickett.

“He’s going to get some reps and more varsity-like action in this game in an effort to get to know him and see how he fares.” – Mike Tomlin on Kenny Pickett

The good news for fans is not only will we not have to wait very long to see Pickett in action, but he will be in action for a larger portion of the game.

 

2. Shining Time For The Stars

Ordinarily, most coaches like to wait and play their star players in the third preseason game since there are typically four games scheduled for the preseason. However, this year, there are just three preseason games.

The regular season for the NFL will begin the weekend after Labor Day, which means that after the third preseason game is held, players who (God forbid) suffer any injuries would have a two-week period to recover from them. This is most likely why Tomlin is going to give the big-name guys an opportunity to see the field on Saturday.

This might be the only time before the regular season starts that we will see guys such as TJ Watt, Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Diontae Johnson among others. We can only hope that if they play, we will be able to see them for more than one series.

 

3. Bush League

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Pittsburgh Steelers middle linebacker, Devin Bush (#55) warms up before a preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh, PA on August 13, 2022. | Jordan Schofield / SteelerNation (Twitter: @JSKO_PHOTO)

Devin Bush has been one of the many topics of conversation ever since the beginning of camp. We all know that Bush was amazing his rookie year in 2019, but after suffering an ACL tear in 2020, he hasn’t really been the same player. This season is supposed to be a “bounce back” year for him and defensive coordinator Teryl Austin is expecting Bush to continuously improve so he can deliver on those expectations. Austin said this about Bush after his performance in the Seahawks game:

“Sometimes as coaches, we like guys that know their assignments and do their assignments, but they never make a play. The whole deal is being able to do your assignments AND make a play. That’s really what we’re looking for in Devin.”

Bush is currently competing with Robert Spillane for the privilege of being the secondary starting inside linebacker aside from Myles Jack. Hopefully, Bush will be able to make a few plays against the Jaguars because a great performance, showing that same fire from his rookie year has returned, will help silence all the doubters and instill both Bush and the coaching staff with great levels of confidence moving forward.

 

4. Jaylen Justification

As it currently stands, Benny Snell has been viewed as the number two running back behind Najee Harris, but it looks as though Jaylen Warren could potentially be coming for that spot. Warren is one of the many undrafted rookie free agents on the roster, and he has been showing off his skills during training camp as both a hard runner and a good pass catcher.

It’s difficult to properly evaluate the depth chart as Snell, among other running backs, have been plagued with injuries. With them missing time, players like Warren have been making the most of their opportunities, especially in the Seattle game. In that match up, Warren carried the ball 10 times for 64 yards and a touchdown. Not only does he stand a good chance at making the season-opening active roster, but Warren may also pass Snell on the depth chart.

 

5. Offense Innovation

As we continue to get closer to opening day, we also are getting closer to seeing the full scope of a true Matt Canada offense. Last season, Canada had to centralize the offense to the liking of Ben Roethlisberger. With new young quarterbacks under center, Canada can now build the offense to suit his style of play.

It helps having Trubisky and Pickett both being the type of player that Canada likes, so expect him to become more comfortable in his play-calling. As for Saturday night, it wouldn’t come as a shock if we see some more pizzazz and flair with a variety of new packages and plays for the offense.

 

What do you hope to see in our second preseason game? Leave a comment down below.

#SteelerNation

Name: Matt Tristan Hometown: Binghamton NY Birthday: 08/10/1994 Played football in high school and college (St. John Fisher College - Division 3) Majored in Communication/Journalism Minor in Sports Management Steelers fan forever

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Jeff

    August 20, 2022 at 12:46 pm

    I want to see how the D plays with the 1s. The 2s weren’t up to the standard last week.

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