Now in a spot the place I felt I may name residence, upbeat Melvin Ingram took off with Pittsburgh Steelers

PITTSBURGH – With 32 years and nine NFL seasons under his belt, outside linebacker Melvin Ingram is a seasoned veteran.

But Ingram stepped into his next chapter with the Pittsburgh Steelers and said he felt like he was just getting started.

“I feel 18,” said Ingram. “I’m a kid. I still have a lot inside me. I love football and my body feels great.

“Had an injury last year, but that’s part of the game. It’s a physical sport. Right now I’m 100, 200 percent healthy. I feel great.”

After a sustained knee injury that left him incapacitated for more than half of the 2020 season, Ingram went free agent when the Los Angeles Chargers let his $ 64 million four-year contract expire. He put together his best season of 2017 with 10.5 sacks and a defensive touchdown and ended his Chargers career with a total of 49 sacks, 7 fumble recoverys, 360 combined tackles and 108 quarterback hits.

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“That has no motivation for me,” Ingram said of his departure from Los Angeles. “It’s a business. I understand business. I’m not a person who makes it salty. You changed my life. Nine years ago you changed my life. Ten years ago you changed my life. That’s no motivation for.” me. Me, waking up every day and doing my job is the motivation. I have two children and a family. My family, my girl, my children, that motivates me. “

After an off-season rehabilitating his knee, exercising, and visiting teams, Ingram decided to sign a one-year evidencing deal with the Steelers – an organization that prides itself on a strong pass frenzy and has sacked the league for the last four seasons.

“I just felt like the program, the coaches, the team, everyone,” Ingram said, “it was a place where I could feel at home, a place where I could come in and fit in. Here Everything was great, except for the coaches, the players, the city, how they do everything. They welcomed me with open arms. “

To celebrate his restart with the Steelers, Ingram, a three-time pro bowler, chose a new jersey number and put on the number 8.

“This is a new place for me,” said Ingram. “New place, new beginning. But still the same. It was my first time playing soccer, my number was 44 – 4 plus 4 is 8, and Kobe [Bryant] is one of my favorite athletes. Kobe year. “

Ingram said the Steelers hadn’t discussed their specific plans for his role in defense, but defensive coordinator Keith Butler said he knew the outside linebackers needed the depth for a three-man rotation, much like they did with TJ Watts last year , Alex Highsmith and Bud Dupree.

Ingram was listed as Highsmith’s backup on the right outer linebacker on the Steelers’ first depth map released on Saturday.

“You always want three guys to play,” said Butler. “We did that last year. Alex came in and played that role well when Bud was here. So we all three played quite a lot. We think we now have three who will be able to play for” So we can rest for each other.

“It’s very difficult to get two outside linebackers out and let them play the whole game when they’re wrestling with guys who weigh 300 pounds. Have you ever wrestled with a 300-pound? Those fools are strong. You will tired of it, you know what I mean? “

During the first few days of the Steelers’ training camp, Ingram played against Highsmith mostly during team periods, while Watt only participates in individual exercises. Watt got to know Ingram through playing together in the Pro Bowl and through his brother Derek Watt during the time of full-back at the Chargers.

“He’s just a player who has a lot outside of the scrimmage line,” Watt said of Ingram. “He’s got a phenomenal spin move and just seeing him in person, he’s a mixed bag and I’m looking forward to working with him.”

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