PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker Alex Highsmith said he’d like to get a deal done on a new contract before the team reports to St. Vincent College for training camp late next month, and he remains optimistic that one will eventually get done.
“That’d be awesome,” Highsmith said on Tuesday during the first day of Steelers mandatory minicamp. “We’ll see what happens. But I’m confident in the way things are going. We’ll see what happens. I just want to be able focus on ball.”
Highsmith has been focusing on ball, as he’s been a regular participant at Steelers organized team activities for the last three weeks and was again suited up for the first day of minicamp on Tuesday. That’s something that is a bit of a departure from what some of his predecessors have done, with players like Minkah Fitzpatrick, Diontae Johnson and T.J. Watt choosing to “hold in” — attend but not participate — while they were negotiating new deals over the last few seasons.
“For me, you know, I’ve had to work for everything I’ve got,” Highsmith said. “I just have the mentality that I just have to outwork everybody. Just from me being a walk-on in college, I’ve kind of kept that mentality. I just want to keep that with me wherever I go and wherever I end up in my career.”
Highsmith said on Tuesday that he isn’t sure if that will continue if things drag on until the summer, when the pads go on in Latrobe, but he’s content to be working on his craft with his teammates for right now.
“We’ll see when that time comes, but for right now, I’m working,” Highsmith said. “Just being here, being with the team, being with the guys, it’s great.”