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Patrick Queen Says Mike Tomlin is Everything You Want in a Head Coach

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Pittsburgh Steelers LB Patrick Queen

PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Steelers significantly improved their inside linebackers room this offseason by signing Patrick Queen to a lucrative deal in free agency and drafting Chuck Bednarik Award winner Payton Wilson. The combination of the two should fill the gap that they’ve been missing since Ryan Shazier suffered a devastating career-ending spinal cord injury in December of 2017.

Veteran Elandon Roberts will also be in the mix and is expected to start next to Queen to start things off. In addition, Cole Holcomb is working his way back after suffering a season-ending knee injury. Overall, the Steelers have have four solid inside linebackers. It’s the best depth they’ve had at the position in years.

“We’re great,” Queen said at Day 2 of Steelers’ OTAs on Wednesday. “We’ve got the guys to do it, especially when Cole comes back. We’re going to be clicking on all cylinders. I can’t wait.”

Patrick Queen thinks Payton Wilson has traits that will lead him to become a star linebacker in the NFL.

“Athlete. Got that mindset. You can kind of tell the way he talks. He’s a really smart player,” Queen said of his first impressions of Wilson. “That’s the type of guy that you want in your room.”

So far, the linebacker corps have been meshing really well. It’s just about honing the communication skills and being on the same page consistently.

“It’s great, especially for like the first two days. We’re way ahead of where some people might be,” Queen said. “… So I think with us doing that right now, we’re doing a hell of a job.”

Queen signed with the Steelers after playing four seasons in Baltimore. It’s not often that a player signs with a division rival, but getting the opportunity to play for Mike Tomlin was an opportunity that he couldn’t pass on. So far, Tomlin has been as advertised.

“Yeah, he’s been cracking jokes the last (two) days, so I wouldn’t expect nothing less,” Queen said. “But he definitely (has) you in the right mindset before practice and during practice. It’s not just strictly football related. He will crack jokes, but there is also a time where he is serious and you can tell. It’s everything you would want in a head coach.”

Alan Saunders contributed reporting from Pittsburgh.