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Steelers All 91: RB James Conner

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All 91 is a Pittsburgh Steelers Now series profiling each of the 91 members of the Steelers 2019 training camp roster.

30 • James Conner, third-year running back

Last year: Played in 13 games and made 12 starts in his second NFL season and his first as the team’s primary rusher after Le’Veon Bell never signed his contract.

Stats: Maintained his 4.5 yards per carry average from his rookie year, but did so on a much larger scaled. He had 215 carries for 973 yards and 12 rushing touchdowns.

Conner also hauled in 55 passes out of 71 targets and scored one receiving touchdown.

Accolades, Highlights:

Made his first Pro Bowl in 2018. Was No. 62 on the NFL Top 100.

James Conner Lands at No. 62 on NFL Top 100

Camp outlook: The Steelers expect to have a more-balanced offense in 2019, so that will mean more from the running backs, but with the addition of Benny Snell and the team more comfortable with the play of Jaylen Samuels going into 2019, those extra carries aren’t going to be guaranteed for Conner.

Projected role: Conner will be the Steelers’ primary early-down ball carrier, at times playing in twin-tailback sets with Samuels. Third downs are less clear.

Coverage links:

James Conner not Resting after Breakout 2018

James Conner Stars In New Adidas Ad, But Remains a Reluctant Star

Double Trouble? Steelers Working Conner, Samuels Together at RB as Part of NFL-Wide Trend

James Conner Not Taking No. 1 Spot for Granted

James Conner Wins Dapper Dan Award

The rest of the 91:

Steelers

Highlights from Steelers Practice 9/18/20

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James Conner tested out his injured ankle and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw passes to JuJu Smith-Schuster, James Washington and Chase Claypool during practice on Friday, September 18, 2020.

This practice was in preparation for the Steelers week 2 game on Sunday against the Denver Broncos.

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NFL

Cam Heyward Named NFLPA Community MVP for Week 1

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Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Cam Heyward has been named NFLPA Community MVP for Week 1.

Heyward was honored for installing his first Little Free Library, a book-sharing box placed in underserved communities around the Pittsburgh area.

Little Free Library is a non-profit organization that “inspires a love of reading, builds community, and sparks creativity by fostering neighborhood book exchanges around the world.”

The installation of the book-sharing boxes marks the launch of the Rufus and Judy Jordan Literacy Project, a new initiative of the Cameron Heyward Foundation that will work to promote children’s literacy and honor his late grandparents, both of whom were lifelong educators in Pittsburgh.

Drafted in first round of the 2011 NFL Draft out of Ohio State, Heyward has spend his entire career in Pittsburgh. He is a three-time Pro Bowler, and has twice received First-Team All-Pro honors.

Heyward and the Steelers agreed to a four-year, $71.4 million contract extension on Sept. 6 that will allow him to retire in Pittsburgh and make him the highest-paid defense player over the age of 30 in NFL history.

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Steelers

Highlights from Steelers Practice 9/17/20

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The Steelers finally experienced a practice with almost everyone on the roster able to take the field. Only two players did not take part in practice before their week 2 game against Denver.

Alex Highsmith and Minkah Fitzpatrick stood out from the rest on Thursday, September 17, 2020.

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