The Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Philadelphia Eagles 31-14 in the first preseason game of the season. After weeks of practices, it’s nice to see what the team can do in a game setting. Scores don’t matter in the preseason, but there is a lot we can learn. Let’s take a look at who looked good and who didn’t.
JuJu Starts Game with a Bang
JuJu Smith-Schuster, coming off a great rookie year and with huge expectations, showed that he’s ready to pick up where he left off with a great jump-ball catch then a sprint into the end zone.
JuJu with the 71-yard TOUCHDOWN! pic.twitter.com/PmJ29QTksp
— FlurrySports (@FlurrySports) August 9, 2018
Conner Makes Case Bell’s Backup
James Conner didn’t play a lot in this one, and he shouldn’t play much in the regular season, but he is making the case to be the main backup behind Le’Veon Bell this year. He rushed for 25 yards on 4 carries and had a catch for 9 yards.
Damoun Patterson? Who??
At the end of the first half, Joshua Dobbs ran the two-minute drill and threw a beautiful 29-yard touchdown pass to Damoun Patterson. If you’re asking “who’s that?” you’re not alone. Patterson, a wide receiver from Youngstown State, was signed after minicamp on a tryout basis. He has been impressive in training camp and had a great game, grabbing 6 catches for 77 yards and a touchdown. Patterson is making a strong case to at least make the practice squad.
— The Checkdown (@thecheckdown) August 10, 2018
The secondary has had a lot of interceptions in training camp, and that continued this game by picking off Nate Sudfeld twice. Maybe this trend will carry into the regular season.
Mason Rudolph Impresses
Third round draft pick Mason Rudolph made his much-anticipated debut and looked good, going 7-12 with 101 yards. He probably won’t play much in the regular season, but he has looked good in training camp and led them to 9 points in the second half.
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) August 10, 2018
Dashaun Phillips = Burnt Toast
Ouch. Reserve cornerback Dashaun Phillips was beaten in single coverage for a 63-yard touchdown catch by Shelton Gibson. Not a good look if you’re trying to make the team.
AND THERE IT IS.
Shelton Gibson's first touchdown as an Eagle was a home-run hit! pic.twitter.com/xDptUF2LIC
— Philly Sports Network (@PhiladelphiaSN) August 10, 2018