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T.J. Watt Sees Chukwuma Okorafor ‘Gaining Confidence’ In Tough Battles In Training Camp

Realistically, Pittsburgh Steelers proper sort out Chukwuma Okorafor received’t should face off in opposition to a greater go rusher within the NFL all season lengthy — and possibly for his complete profession — than the one he finds himself going in opposition to every day in coaching camp at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe.

Okorafor finds himself lined up throughout from the reigning Defensive Player of the Year every snap in coaching camp, placing his toes to the fireplace instantly from a go safety and run blocking standpoint early in camp. Though Okorafor didn’t get to arrange in opposition to Watt final season in coaching camp as Watt carried out a hold-in for a brand new deal that he ultimately acquired, the 2 are moderately accustomed to one another, going in opposition to each other in practices all season lengthy.

As Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin likes to say, “iron sharpens iron”, and that’s what Watt believes is occurring with Okorafor early in coaching camp at Saint Vincent College.

Speaking with reporters Wednesday prior to practice on Chuck Noll Field, Watt praised Okorafor, stating he believes the veteran offensive sort out is gaining increasingly more confidence on the place and believes he’s making the star go rusher higher, whereas in flip making himself higher total.

“I think he’s gaining confidence and it’s always good to see,” Watt said to reporters Wednesday, according to video via “Obviously we’re very comfortable with each other now, whatever it is, 3, 4, 5 years going against each other. I’m gonna get the best of him sometimes, and he’s gonna get the best of me sometimes. But as long as we’re getting better together, that’s all the matters.”

The Steelers are hoping that Okorafor is getting higher working in opposition to Watt every day, contemplating the Steelers invested closely in him early in free company, retaining the 25-year-old offensive sort out who seems to have totally locked down the best sort out job in the interim in Pittsburgh.

Okorafor was beforehand aiming to make the shift again to left sort out forward of the 2021 season, however an damage to Zach Banner pressured the Steelers to shuffle the deck chairs a bit, transferring Okorafor again to proper sort out and inserting then-rookie Dan Moore Jr. into the lineup. Now, coming off of disastrous season total as a complete offensive line unit, the Steelers are on the lookout for a man like Okorafor to emerge as not solely a pacesetter up entrance, however one of many Steelers’ greatest offensive linemen total.

Going in opposition to Watt every day in Latrobe will definitely assist Okorafor get higher in a rush and really discover his recreation total at proper sort out. Iron will proceed to sharpen iron, making the Steelers higher in the long term for it.

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