Connect with us

Steelers News

Steelers Voluntary Offseason Program Kicks Off Today



Steelers HC Mike Tomlin on Stan Savran

The Pittsburgh Steelers are one of 25 NFL teams to begin their voluntary offseason program today. While the first phase of the voluntary offseason program consists of activities limited to meetings, strength and conditioning, and physical rehabilitation, the players do not need to show up if they choose not to. Luckily, for the Steelers, it is unlikely that team suffers any opt-outs this year.

The last time that the Steelers faced the potential of a player not showing for the voluntary offseason program, which is different from organized team activities or OTAs, was when Diontae Johnson was a no-show for the start of the 2022 season.

The Steelers ended up agreeing on a two-year extension with Johnson later that offseason.

While today is the official start to the team’s offseason programs, phase three of the offseason program is when the work really ramps up for the players. In phase three, which begins on May 21 and runs though June 6, is when organized team activities start. The organized team activities will be the first time that many of the new faces of the team can make an impression in the coaching staff.

During OTAs, teams are allowed to conduct 10 days of organized team practice activities in which no live contact is permitted, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

Any team event is voluntary, including OTAs, until mandatory minicamps open on June 11. This is because all teams, just like the Steelers, do not have their rosters completed yet. After this initial phase of the offseason program, the NFL Draft is next as it takes place in just over a week. Within two weeks of the conclusion of the draft, the rookies will come to town to participate in a weekend rookie minicamp.

While the offseason programs are officially underway, some veteran Steelers players have already linked up with newcomers such as Russell Wilson and Justin Fields to begin the chemistry building process which is a vital piece of team building and one that can make-or-break a team when September rolls around.