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Inside the ropes: Rookie LB Jones improves as practice goes on

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Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013, 8:21 p.m.

• Rookie outside linebacker Jarvis Jones struggled to shred defenders in drills against tight ends. Jamie McCoy had little trouble keeping him off balance. LaMarr Woodley spent time working on Jones' technique. Jones showed far better form during the 11-on-11 drills as he consistently flushed the quarterbacks out of the pocket.

Al Woods, playing end and nose tackle, was as effective on the practice field as he was against the Giants in the preseason opener. He frustrated most offensive linemen, including guard Kelvin Beachum. Woods continues to gain ground on Steve McLendon.

• Rookie quarterback Landry Jones caught a lot of heat from coach Mike Tomlin, who yelled several times, “Come on 3.” Jones, who fumbled his first snap against the Giants, looked jittery at times. He regained his composure to complete a couple of tough throws.

• Isaac Redman said he tripped himself up as he ran up the back of an offensive lineman when he sustained a stinger. But he also took a solid shot from linebacker Lawrence Timmons, who dished out a few hard hits. Timmons planted his shoulder into rookie running back Le'Veon Bell, who dropped to the ground.

• Mike Golic Jr. went down after a head-to-head blow with an offensive lineman. The Steelers' trainers determined there was no danger of a head injury, and he returned to contact drills moments later. Golic had a small bandage on his forehead as he left the practice field.

• Cornerback Josh Victorian took a lot of first-team reps during 11-on-11 drills. He and cornerback William Gay worked as nickel backs. Gay is likely start at right corner, but Victorian pushed him during practice.

• Safety Robert Golden quietly had another solid practice. He and rookie Shamarko Thomas were steady in pass coverage as both put themselves in position to make plays. Golden is challenging for a roster spot by showing versatility in defending the run and pass.

­— Ralph N. Paulk

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