After being a perennial playoff team with a proud tradition, the Steelers
have become somewhat of a joke the last three playoff-less years, though they
did show some improvement from consecutive 7-9 and 6-10 seasons with a 9-7
showing last year.
CAMP AT A GLANCE
|Bill Cowher signed a contract extension through 2005.||
Location:St. Vincent College, Latrobe, Pa.
Rookies report: July 19
Veterans report: July 19
Aug. 3: at Atlanta
Aug. 16: at Minnesota
Aug. 25: Detroit
Aug. 30: Buffalo
Big changes were made, with defensive captain, linebacker Levon Kirkland
released for salary cap reasons and offensive captain, center Dermontti
Dawson, was also let go because of the cap, his age and injuries. Whether
these changes translate into a first playoff season in four years remains to
Man in the spotlight
Head coach Bill Cowher has to be in the spotlight
considering the goings on of the last three seasons. On the field, though,
quarterback Kordell Stewart always has the spotlight on him. He had a decent
year in 2000, going 7-4 as the starter and winning back his teammates and the
Key position battle
In an attempt to fill the shoes of Kirkland at inside
linebacker, Mike Jones and Kendrell Bell will fight for the starting spot.
Both are very speedy players. Jones, a free agent pick-up from the Rams is
best known for making that Super Bowl-saving tackle in the final seconds
against Tennessee two years ago.
Will Plaxico Burress, the No. 1 pick receiver from a
year ago, finally adjust to the NFL in his sophomore year as a pro? Burress
was a bust last year. He needs to work harder and mature to make the proper
transition from college to pro, because the things he got away with in
college don't fly in the NFL.
Bell, the Georgia linebacker who's vying for the inside
linebacker starting job, was a second-round pick. Texas nose tackle Casey
Hampton, the Steelers' top pick, is expected to start immediately.
Steelers' complete offseason moves