Breaking News: Just In Mike Tomlin Provides Crucial Updates On Steelers Offensive Line…

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ offensive line in 2023 performed well, allowing the ninth-fewest sacks in the NFL and ranking as the 13th-best rushing offense. However, the team opted to make significant upgrades for the 2024 season, using their first two draft picks (and three of seven) on linemen, all of whom could start as rookies.

The only position that saw a starter depart was center, with Mason Cole leaving in free agency. Cole, who ranked as the league’s 29th-best center out of 36, will likely be replaced by veteran Nate Herbig or second-round rookie Zach Frazier from West Virginia. Herbig, though inexperienced at center, offers versatility across the line, but Frazier is the favorite to start.

At guard, fourth-round rookie Mason McCormick from South Dakota State is currently listed as the starting left guard on the team’s depth chart. However, the team’s best returning lineman from 2023, Isaac Seumalo, who played left guard last season, might move to right guard to accommodate McCormick. Seumalo has prior experience at right guard, making this a logical move.

The Steelers’ first-round pick, Troy Fautanu from Washington, is projected to start at left tackle, replacing Dan Moore. Although Fautanu was primarily a tackle in college, many believed his skill set suited guard or center. He will likely stay at tackle, with last year’s first-round pick Broderick Jones continuing at right tackle. According to Mark Kaboly of The Athletic, Fautanu has spent the initial days of organized team activities (OTAs) at right tackle behind Jones, suggesting he’s gaining versatility.

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Kaboly suggests this is part of the Steelers’ strategy to prepare Fautanu to fill in at either tackle position if needed. While it’s common for offensive linemen to need development time, the Steelers likely drafted Frazier, McCormick, and Fautanu with the intention of starting them.

It’s still early, and the rookies are finding their footing. Several camp battles are expected, and the team has time to sign a veteran free agent if necessary. If all three rookies start, it would be a rare occurrence, last seen in 2020 when the Dolphins started three rookie linemen and improved their record from 5-11 to 10-6.

The Steelers hope these changes lead to similar improvements, providing a solid foundation for a successful season.

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