Mike Tomlin Is Jumping For Joy That Nick Bosa Is Holding Out, But Says Pittsburgh Steelers Will Still Prepare To Face Reigning DPOY

The Pittsburgh Steelers are set to face the San Francisco 49ers in one of the many marquee matchups to begin the 2023 NFL season.

The matchup will feature two franchises who’ve combined for 11 Super Bowls wins and have some of the greatest players and coaches to ever grace the gridiron suit up for them. 

This matchup is expected to be no different, with Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin carrying an NFL-record 16 consecutive seasons without a losing record to begin a coaching career. He’ll match wits with Niners head coach Kyle Shanahan, who’s recognized around the league as one of the brightest offensive minds in the game.

Talent Will Be All Over The Field, No Nick Bosa? 

And while there will be plenty of talent on display on both sides of the ball, the game was also supposed to feature the last two Defensive Player of the Year award winners in Steelers edge rusher T.J. Watt, the 2021 recipient, and Niners edge rusher Nick Bosa, the reigning DPOY. But Bosa is holding out, and with each passing day it seems as if he won’t be in the Steel City for Sunday’s kickoff. But don’t tell Tomlin that. The Steelers coach was adamant that his team is very much still preparing as if he’ll show up before Sunday.

“Yes, we are preparing for Bosa,” Tomlin said Tuesday. “It’s prudent for us to assume that he is gonna be there and prepare in that vein, as opposed to be surprised. We were in a minor circumstance with a dynamic rusher a couple years ago in T.J. We got a deal done at the 11th hour. He showed up in the stadium, and he was T.J. Watt that day. So that’s what those guys do. They show up, and they are who they are.”

“We expect him to be there. It’s the prudent approach to take, and if he’s gonna be there, we know the type of player that he intends on being,” Tomlin said. “So that’s something to be dealt with.”

With Or Without Bosa, Steelers Will Have Their Hands Full

Having the aforementioned Bosa is always a great thing for the Niners defense, but they have the most talented linebacker duo in the league in All-Pro Fred Warner and his partner in crime Dre Greenlaw. Safety Talanoa Hufanga has established himself as one of the game’s best at the position, and the 2022 first-team All-Pro selection has drawn comparisons to former Steelers legend and Pro Football Hall of Famer Troy Polamalu. 

So, it’s safe to say the Niners’ defensive cupboard won’t be bare if Bosa and the team don’t reach an agreement in time for Sunday’s heavyweight tilt. But having the elite edge rusher makes everyone’s life a whole lot easier for San Francisco. 

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