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6 players mentioned by Mike Tomlin following Thursday night’s game

The Pittsburgh Steelers took to the field for the final time of the 2023 season and emerged with a 24-0 preseason win over the Falcons in Atlanta. Following the game, head coach Mike Tomlin had a formal media session. Not always having questions asked of specific players by the media in attendance following a game, there was enough this time for a players mentioned article. Remember these are players where a specific question was asked during the Q&A period.

James Daniels & Cam Heyward

Although head coach Mike Tomlin said all healthy players would be available for the Steelers final preseason game, there were several who did not dress. Coach Tomlin was asked if James Daniels was injured or resting and in his response he also mentioned Cam Heyward.

“He had a day-to-day injury, so we did what was proven in that regard. Same thing with Cam Heyward.”

Kenny Pickett

The Steeler second-year quarterback was a perfect five touchdowns on five drives through the Steelers preseason. Coach Tomlin was asked how Kenny Pickett has grown in his time with the Steelers.

“I think the growth is probably associated with being him and not necessarily the surface level things associated with the position, but the leadership things, the communication things, the bringing people together things. When you have a high level of comfort in terms of what it is you’re doing, then those things probably happen more and so, that is significant. It’s not play-related, but it is because he is the catalyst for their unit. He controls the pace and the tenor of that unit and I just think that if he’s comfortable, that unit has an opportunity to be comfortable. I think that’s probably the most significant difference.”

In a follow-up question, Coach Tomlin was asked about Kenny Pickett’s accuracy and ability to see the field.

“It has been really solid.”

Diontae Johnson & George Pickens

The Steelers top two wide receivers each pulled in a key reception for more than 30 yards in their only target Thursday night. Coach Tomlin was asked if he was encouraged to see Kenny Pickett connect with both Diontae Johnson and George Pickens on deep ball throws.

“We’ve done it in practice and so I expect to see it in stadiums.”

Broderick Jones

Despite not being entrenched as a starter at this time, Steelers 2023 first-round draft pick Broderick Jones has put quality play on film throughout the preseason. Coach Tomlin was asked if he felt good about Jones’ preseason play.

“I did. I felt really good about the number of reps we were able to get him and that was our intention. He is a talented young guy and he is a third-year guy and those guys need as many reps as they can get and thankfully, we were able to get him a lot.”

Mike Tomlin’s full interview can be seen here:


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