The Pittsburgh Steelers have completed four of their 15 scheduled training camp practices of 2019 as of Tuesday and while there hasn’t been a lot of talk about how rookie inside linebacker Devin Bush is fairing thus far on Chuck Noll Field at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, he still seems to be right on course with his progress to hear the team’s coaches talk.
“He’s out here talking,” Tomlin said about Bush a few days ago, according to Jarrett Bell of USU Today. “By virtue of his position, he’s the hub of communication. And he doesn’t appear to be overly stressed by it. That’s encouraging. He has the look of a defensive quarterback.”
During a sit-down interview with Steelers Nation Radio on Monday, Steelers defensive coordinator Keith Butler was also asked to give a progress report on Bush, the team’s first-round draft pick out of Michigan this year.
“He’s done pretty well,” Butler said of Bush. “You know, it’s a little bit easier out here against your own guys when you’ve seen them all this time, even though you haven’t seen them with pads on. It’s a little bit different then, but when you get into preseason, when you get in a regular season, things happen a little bit faster. Things require a little bit more thought sometimes and it gets away from you a little bit. And, you know, as a young guy, he handled everything we asked him to do yesterday pretty well.”
As Butler made sure to point out, the upcoming preseason games will serve as a great next test for Bush. When fellow Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier was a rookie after being selected in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft, he started the final three preseason games after sitting out the first one with an injury. In those three games he represented himself well as he registered 20 total tackles an interception and two defensed passes. He led the team in total tackles that preseason and wound up opening the regular season as the starter.
Should Bush keep progressing the way he has from the moment the Steelers drafted him, he’s likely to play extensively in the regular season opener against the New England Patriots. Heck, he might even start that game.
“Every day, I’m picking up something new, learning something new,” Bush said, according to Bell. “As time goes on through this camp, through the preseason and into the regular season, I should be off to a good start.”
The Steelers first preseason game of 2019 will take place a week from this coming Friday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Butler is looking forward to seeing how the rookie inside linebacker fares not only in that contest, but the three that will follow it.
“We think he’s gonna help us. We’ll have to see how we do in preseason with him,” Butler said of Bush.