It was quite a terrible performance Saturday night on the road against the Jacksonville Jaguars in front of the Pittsburgh Steelers offense. In all, the Steelers ran just 14 yards on 10 carries and had quarterbacks Mitch Trubisky, Kenny Pickett and Mason Rudolph coerced all night.
Although the Steelers came back to win thanks to a go-ahead touchdown drive from Rudolph in the two-minute drill, the offensive line remains a major concern under freshman offensive line coach Pat Meyer. Guys like free agent James Daniels, left-tackle Dan Moore Jr. and left guard Kendrick Green are three guys who continue to struggle at an alarming rate and had quite a few performances to forget Saturday night on the road.
Green, who played well into the fourth quarter as he substituted with guard Kevin Dotson at the position, spoke to the media from the locker room on the south side of the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex Monday prior to practice and revealed that head coach Mike Tomlin was on the offensive. lineup on the big screen during Monday’s team filming session, publicly criticizing the poor play of the unit, including Green in particular, according to video taken from the locker room by Josh Rowntree of 93.7 The Fan.
“Coach T [Tomlin] had us on the board, and me in particular, a lot during the team meeting,” Green told reporters on Monday, according to video from Rowntree. “That doesn’t feel right at all.”
No, it probably doesn’t feel right to be negatively singled out in a team environment, especially if you’re putting in a downright awful performance from start to finish. Heading into the preseason game with the Jaguars, Green had a chance to really build some distance from Dotson in the battle for the left tackle runway due to his overall availability, but just as he played in his rookie season, Green struggled. from the start of the game and never quite got his feet under him.
The transition to new OL coach Pat Meyer remains a work in progress. There are lots of moving parts in the trenches, some new techniques and some extra calls and ways to tackle blitzes, stunts, twists and more. But so far the work in progress has looked very, very rough.
Hopefully, Green will give the fuel needed to start a fire and get things running fast up front, by being singled out for the team in a negative way. There’s only one way to go from here for Green and the rest of the offensive line, and that’s up.
The way Tomlin handled the criticism of the offensive line – and Green in particular – is no surprise at all. He will be extremely transparent and tell you what’s going on whether you want to hear it or not. He will be up front and honest – sometimes brutally honest – which has helped him maintain his credibility and control of the locker room every year in the Steel City.
Groen had to experience that the hard way.
“He’s not berating you,” Green added, according to Rowntree for 93.7 The Fan. “He’s like, this is what you are. This puts you on film. And it’s fair. The natural response, the comfortable position, is that you want to get into the fetal position. Like, ‘ah, don’t look at me.’ But you must own it. You put it on film. It’s more than the people in our room looking at it. There are also 31 other teams looking. They are going to try to tighten up the same.”
Thanks to Green for not running away from the harsh criticism internally and revealing to the media. He knows that he played very poorly on Saturday and that he needs to improve quickly, not only for his time with the Steelers, but also for his NFL future in general. What he’s filmed so far doesn’t really show an NFL lineman. The good news is that he has some time to sort things out and improve. The ship has not yet completely left port for the third round of 2021.