Pittsburgh Steelers try to head off travel issues with schedule request

PHOENIX -- The Pittsburgh Steelers are hoping for an extended stay on the West Coast this season.

Whether it will be granted by the NFL remains to be seen.

The Steelers petitioned the league to schedule games at San Diego and Seattle back to back so the team can stay out west and not have to make separate trips to the other side of the country in the regular season.

“I don’t have high hopes that this is going to happen, so let’s be realistic about it; but we’ll see,” Art Rooney II said Wednesday at the conclusion of the NFL owners meetings.

The Baltimore Ravens made the same request for their two West Coast games this season.

In other Steelers news, the team got a bump in the compensatory draft pick they received earlier this week from the NFL. The Steelers get an extra pick in the sixth round instead of the seventh based on gains and losses last year in free agency.

“They just said they miscommunicated,” Rooney said of why the league moved the Steelers’ compensatory pick to the sixth round.

Rooney, before leaving the Arizona Biltmore for his return to Pittsburgh, said he did not hear anything this week about when the NFL will inform the Steelers of running back Le’Veon Bell’s punishment for violating the personal conduct policy.

The same is true of the 2015 season opener, Rooney said.

The Steelers are strong candidates to play in the first game of the season at New England. The season opener is usually a home game for the defending Super Bowl champions and the Steelers are scheduled to visit the Patriots this season.