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Broderick Jones Okay With ‘Whatever’ Steelers Plan is at Tackle

Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Broderick Jones is preparing to play anywhere along the offensive line.

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Pittsburgh Steelers OT Broderick Jones
Pittsburgh Steelers OT Broderick Jones at OTAs, May 21, 2024 - Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

PITTSBURGH — Broderick Jones played out of his ‘natural’ position in Year 1 with the Pittsburgh Steelers, but once the team drafted Troy Fautanu, it appeared that could be changing. General manager Omar Khan swiftly declared at the NFL Combine that Jones would play left tackle eventually. Fautanu coming into the picture would make that path much clearer, especially since Fautanu is working at right tackle to kick off his career.

But for now, Jones is playing both sides. Is that the usual way to go about it? Probably not, but Mike Tomlin has not shown much care at this point as he feels his tackle room will mesh together. The exposure to how Fautanu looks on the right side and how Jones is adjusting to both sides in his second year remain critical points for moving forward. With Dan Moore Jr. uncomfortable at right tackle and sticking only on the left side, either Jones and Fautanu will battle it out on the right side, or Moore will be usurped, likely by Jones, at the left tackle spot.

Steelers OT Broderick Jones

Steelers OT Broderick Jones against the Buffalo Bills, Jan. 15, 2024 – Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

“I‘m not overly concerned about it at this juncture,” Tomlin said. “We’re developing skills relative to our position, so left and right is less and less important. Same things are going on at corner. DJack [Donte Jackson] and Joey [Porter] flipped a little bit today. Others flip a little bit. Particularly this time of year, we haveto be open to flopping people to not become one-dimensional in terms of right and left. So that we give ourselves the flexibility to put our best people on the grass when it’s appropriate. But it’s not appropriate right now. We’re in the infancy of this thing. And so, you know, that’s that.”

Broderick Jones admitted at the end of last season that he was more comfortable on the left side than the right side, but that is more than what Moore has said to this point. Pittsburgh did at least try Moore on the right side in previous years but always moved him back to strictly left tackle due to severe struggles on the right side.

What is the plan moving forward? Well, the plan is that there is no concrete plan. Whoever rises above the crop as the two best tackles will play Week 1 against the Atlanta Falcons. Fautanu has to earn his keep, while Jones needs to show he can transition back to the left side with enough confidence that Pittsburgh can play him there.