Steelers' Kevin Dotson Downplays Concerns Following Mike Tomlin's Harsh Comments About Earning Starting Spot

Devon Platana
Pittsburgh Steelers OG Kevin Dotson downplays concerns following head coach Mike Tomlin's harsh comments about earning a starting spot on the roster.
Pittsburgh Steelers OG Kevin Dotson downplays concerns following head coach Mike Tomlin's harsh comments about earning a starting spot on the roster. / Frederick Breedon/Getty Images
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Some controversy was stirred up at Pittsburgh Steelers training camp over the weekend surrounding second-year offensive guard Kevin Dotson. The 2020 fourth-round draft pick was practicing with the second unit as opposed to seeing first-team reps, which prompted reporters to ask head coach Mike Tomlin why that was the case. As usual, Tomlin was honest as ever, telling reporters that Dotson needs to earn that starting spot.

It didn't take long before Dotson took to social media to address the situation by replying to Joe Rutter, a Pittsburgh-area reporter, who tweeted Tomlin's quote. Rather than take offense to it, the 24-year-old guard said that it's because Sunday was his first time practicing at training camp since dealing with an offseason ankle injury.

Pittsburgh Steelers News

If Dotson was a seasoned veteran, this situation might be different. However, he's a sophomore who's started in just four career NFL contests (13 games total). He's yet to earn the benefit of being awarded a starting spot right out of the gate, which is why he has to prove that he deserves one to Tomlin and the rest of the Steelers coaching staff at training camp. Nevertheless, the fact that he's in good spirits about Tomlin's quote shows that he knows his role on the team.

Dotson showed potential in his rookie season, taking three penalties without allowing a sack in 358 offensive snaps. It's a small sample size, but his 66.2 overall Pro Football Focus grade shows that the potential is there for him to be an everyday contributor.

The Steelers are going to need Dotson and the rest of their offensive line to be at the top of their game ahead of the 2021 NFL season. Pittsburgh has +4400 odds to win Super Bowl 56, according to FanDuel Sportsbook, which shows that there's a lot of room for improvement.


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