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Steelers defense dominates goal-line drill

| Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012, 7:10 p.m.
Steelers running back Chris Rainey gets loose during goal line drill during practice at St. Vincent College Aug. 12, 2012. Chaz Palla | Tribune Review
Steelers running back Chris Rainey dives for the endzone during goal line drill during practice at St. Vincent College Aug. 12, 2012. Chaz Palla | Tribune Review

• The Steelers were down to two running backs — Chris Rainey and Baron Batch, neither of whom has carried the ball in a regular-season game — for the second goal-line drill of training camp Sunday. Predictably, the defense dominated by stopping the offense on six of seven plays from just inside the 2-yard line. On the first three plays, the offense lost 8 yards. “From where I stood, it looked like Larry Foote owned the whole drill,” coach Mike Tomlin said.

• Running back John Clay (hip/groin) was taken off the field on a cart in visible pain, while offensive lineman Doug Legursky strained a quadriceps and is listed as day to day. With Isaac Redman (groin) and Jonathan Dwyer (shoulder) sitting out for a second successive day, the running back corps was thin. Tight end Jamie McCoy lined up some at fullback. Wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders, per usual for a Sunday, was given the day off. Wide receiver David Gilreath returned after being out Saturday.

• Unlike the numerous younger players in camp trying to win jobs, outside linebacker Brandon Johnson is a seven-year veteran. With James Harrison and Jason Worilds still on the physically unable to perform list, Johnson got additional playing time and made two tackles, one for a loss, plus a special teams tackle against the Eagles on Thursday. He played one quarter at inside linebacker, another at outside linebacker. “I made some plays, but I've got to make more for the amount of time I was out there,” Johnson said. “I really only made a few good plays, so I've got to have a better understanding of my defense, where my help is.”

— Alan Robinson

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