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e the pocket, he can run, real fa

Сообщение douhua2233 » 10 окт 2018, 08:52

Pittsburgh Steelers running back James Conner knows what to expect.

Two-time All-Pro running back Le’Veon Bell is skipping training camp at St. Vincent College for the second straight season because of a contract dispute. Bell’s absence last summer meant Conner saw additional snaps in camp as a rookie.

This time Jeff Driskel Jersey , he’s raised expectations. He’s at the top of the depth chart, at least until Bell arrives.

”Le’Veon here or not, I’m focused and trying to prove to myself that I’m in shape and I can handle playing,” Conner said. ”I’m focused no matter who’s here or who’s not here.”

Bell chose to not sign his franchise tender until the eve of the 2017 season. He is expected to follow the same path this time. That’s with Conner, who intends to prove he can handle the heavier workload.

”I want to show it all,” Conner said. ”Every time I get in, I’m going to make every rep count.”

Conner, a former star at the University of Pittsburgh, showed flashes as a rookie, sporadically filling in to give Bell a breather. The Steelers’ 2017 third-round pick appeared in 14 games, rushing 32 times for 144 yards Aaron Ekblad Jersey , an average of 4.5 yards per carry, before a knee injury ended his season.

A leaner, trimmer Conner initially turned heads during spring workouts and that effort has carried into training camp.

Conner set the tone with a touchdown on the first competitive snap of training camp. Ben Roethlisberger delivered a quick slant to the slot where Conner hauled in the touchdown ahead of former first-round pick Artie Burns.

On Monday, Conner broke off a long touchdown run during a drill that featured live tackling. He displayed burst through the hole and into the secondary where he ran away from safety Nat Berhe en route to the end zone.

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin expects that kind of development from Conner in his second season.

”We’ve been around the track for a lap,” Tomlin said. ”He understands what’s going on in terms of the environment of professional football. He should utilize that experience and knowledge to produce a better, more consistent performance.”

Rookie Jaylen Samuels still seeks that kind of consistency. He is taking advantage of the extra snaps to see where he fits in.

Samuels, a fifth-round pick, was a do-everything standout at North Carolina State. The 6-foot, 225-pounder stepped in at running back, fullback, wide receiver and even tight end. He ranks second in school history in total touchdowns Youth Denzel Ward Jersey , fourth in touchdown catches and sixth in scoring runs.

The Steelers list Samuels as a running back, but he’s also being used in the slot or split out as a receiver.

”I don’t want to be held to just one skill,” Samuels said. ”I want to be able to showcase a lot of different skills. Whenever I go against different mismatches, I want it to be tough on them.”

Samuels knows he needs to improve on his pass blocking.

”I didn’t really do it in college as much,” Samuels said. ”I did a lot in practice, but not really game-time situations because I was either in the route or I was getting the ball.”

Tomlin made Samuels take five consecutive, unsuccessful turns during the team’s ”backs on backers” drill in which a running back or tight end attempts to pick up a blitzing linebacker.

”I feel like pass blocking is probably the most that’s lacking in my game right now,” Samuels said. ”That’s the one thing I need to work on.”

Samuels will have his chance for additional development at training camp with Bell away.

”It’s definitely an opportunity to display my skills, and earn some respect from the players and coaches,” Samuels said. ”I’m excited for the opportunity that’s ahead of me.”

Saints backup quarterback Taysom Hill was something of an NFL curiosity last season: An undrafted rookie, he obviously wasn’t going to get any playing time ahead of Drew Brees Brian Elliott Jersey , but he did get playing time on special teams and even made some tackles covering kicks, which is almost unheard of for a quarterback.

Last year Hill was the third-string quarterback behind Brees and Chase Daniel, but this year he’s competing with Tom Savage and J.T. Barrett for the No. 2 job, and the Saints are liking what they’re seeing.

鈥淗e looks good,鈥?Saints coach Sean Payton said of Hill. 鈥淲e like where he is at. He is grinding and working hard. You guys saw [him make] a play today. When he does get outside the pocket, he can run, real fast. That presents a new challenge for the defense.鈥?/p>

Saints quarterbacks coach Joe Lombardi gushed about Hill’s athleticism.

鈥淓very great quarterback has to have a way of making a play when the play call isn鈥檛 perfect,鈥?Lombardi said. 鈥淪omeone鈥檚 not open right away, or the pressure gets to you, and you have certain guys like Tom Brady or Drew, they do it by finding these creative throws or getting the ball out so quick and having that sixth sense of where to go with the ball. Other guys get away from the rush Riley Sutter Capitals Jersey , and they get outside the pocket, and they create. You see Aaron Rodgers and those kind of guys make plays that way. Just the ability to avoid the rush. The guy runs a sub-4.5 40, and he鈥檚 strong 鈥?he might be the strongest guy on the team.鈥?/p>

Strength and speed are why Hill was able to help out on special teams, but passing accuracy are what he needs to develop if he wants to be a quarterback. Playing behind Brees, Hill has time to develop. And perhaps some day, Hill could even be Brees’ successor.

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