Defense wins goal-line drill
Posted August 9, 2009 8 :14 PM
News and notes from the 10th day of training camp...
· The Steelers' goal-line drill did not disappoint Sunday as the first-team defense stuffed the first-team offense three consecutive times from the 1-yard line before leaving the field. The offense got stopped on its fourth attempt from the 1 before scoring on its last three tries.
The defense won the best of seven sequence, four to three, but it wasn't that close.
"We take a lot of pride in this as a group and we never want the offense to win," inside linebacker James Farrior said. "I think we've been doing pretty well."
The first-team defense stopped Rashard Mendenhall twice and Frank "The Tank" Summers once. Summers got stopped again before scoring.
Rookie Isaac Redman, an undrafted free agent, scored both times he carried the ball.
The drill matched power versus power as the offense had five linemen, three tight ends, a fullback, a running back and a quarterback while the defense countered with its goal-line package.
The offense could take some consolation from the fact that the Steelers had the No. 1 defense in the NFL last season. Also, the drill probably favors the defense a little bit as the defensive players have to know that there is no way Tomlin is going to allow a pass to be called on any of the plays.
"I'm not going to make any judgments based on what I looked at," Tomlin said. "Somebody's going to win and somebody's going to lose when we pit ourselves against one another. Competition is the truest motivator and I like to put these guys in situations where they compete."
· Nose tackle Casey Hampton and wide receiver Limas Sweed didn't finish practice Sunday. Hampton "tweaked" his knee, Tomlin said, while Sweed experienced tightness in his hamstring.
Tomlin said both are "day-to-day" as far as practice.
The Steelers held Willie Parker out of practice for the second consecutive day because of back spasms. Also not practicing were running back Mewelde Moore (hamstring), wide receiver Martin Nance (hamstring) and defensive tackle Scott Paxson (calf). Darnell Stapleton watched practice from the hill that overlooks the main football field at St. Vincent with his right knee packed in ice.
Stapleton is out for at least a couple of weeks with a knee injury.
LaMarr Woodley, who had been sidelined with swelling in his knee, returned to practice Sunday and stood out in the goal-line drill.
He stuffed Mendenhall on the first play from the 1-yard line, and on the third play he was among the host of tacklers that stonewalled Summers.
"Knee is good," Woodley said.
· The players were given their first practice off at training camp as Tomlin cancelled the drills that had been scheduled for Monday morning. While he has had the players on the field a lot, Tomlin has been mindful to rest various veterans.
"He's been taking very good care of us," fullback Carey Davis said. "He's been doing a great job of looking out for us."