Inside the ropes: Two-minute drill highlights Steelers practice
After three days of 2 1/2-hour workouts, the Steelers removed the pads Saturday and had a noncontact practice that was 15 minutes shorter.
Coach Mike Tomlin saved the excitement for the final 11-on-11 session when he had the first, second and third teams run the two-minute offense.
In each instance, the offense was asked to move the ball 52 yards with one timeout and 1 minute, 43 seconds on the clock.
“The first time out, I want to see guys communicate,” Tomlin said. “Mutes are not good. Guys that are talking through scenarios -- watch the chain, guys trying to get out of bounds -- that’s what you’re looking for from the first time out.
“There was no shortage of communication, so from that standpoint I like what I saw.”
Ben Roethlisberger directed a touchdown drive while having rookie James Washington and first-year player Tevin Jones as his primary receivers because of injuries to several veterans. Jones made a sliding catch in front of cornerback Mike Hilton for a first down at the 4. After throwing the ball away twice, Roethlisberger found Washington in the end zone, and the receiver leaped above cornerback Jamar Summers for the score.
Josh Dobbs ran the second team and wasn’t as fortunate. Although Dobbs scrambled for a touchdown, Tomlin called the play dead and brought the ball back to the 13. The drive stalled there. On fourth down, Dobbs threw an incompletion in double coverage for Justin Thomas.
Rookie Mason Rudolph produced a touchdown with the third team. Rudolph scrambled for a first down to the 14. Two plays later, he hit Jaylen Samuels on a crossing route, and the rookie running back outraced linebacker Matt Galambos to the left pylon.
• The defense scored a 4-3 win in the “Seven Shots” 2-point conversion simulation. Roethlisberger completed 1 of 4 attempts, although Justin Hunter pleaded for a pass-interference call on one incompletion. Hunter snared a pass over the middle for the only score and was targeted on three of Roethlisberger’s attempts.
• Dobbs produced two touchdowns with the second team in “Seven Shots” but misfired on his only pass attempt. The scores came on an option pitch to Stevan Ridley and when Dobbs faked a handoff and sprinted into the end zone.
• With Bud Dupree sitting out because of a concussion, Anthony Chickillo moved to right outside linebacker. Keion Adams started on the left side, but rookie Ola Adeniyi shared first-team reps on the other side of Chickillo.
• Washington and first-year receiver Trey Griffey had big catches in seven-on-seven work. Washington made a leaping catch of a Roethlisberger pass in the right corner of the end zone with Summers in tight coverage. Griffey made some grabs that would have made his father, Ken Griffey Jr., proud. Griffey jumped above Dashaun Phillips to catch a touchdown pass from Landry Jones. He then stretched out across the end zone, with Cameron Sutton trailing in coverage, to pull in a pass from Rudolph.