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Insider Only Steelers Training Camp: Tuesday afternoon notebook

By Mike Bires
LATROBE — If you believe in several media reports, Michael Vick will soon sign with an NFL team. One report says as many as five teams are interested in Vick.
There are even some reports suggesting the Steelers may be interested in the former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick.
On Tuesday, coach Mike Tomlin offered up a classic denial non-denial.

“I’ll say the same thing that I said last time in regard to free agency,” Tomlin said. “If people are capable of helping us win, we are going to have a level of interest in those guys. I am never going to discuss free agents individually. I don’t think that is appropriate, I think that is fruitless and I think that conversation can be endless.
“If I start a conversation about Michael Vick then I would start a conversation about (former New York Giants wide receiver) Plaxico Burress and everybody else that turns up on the wire at some point. We do our due diligence and evaluate and look at potential guys that are capable of helping us win, guys that have a capable skill level. He is one of them, so we are doing our due diligence.”
In other words, Tomlin didn’t say the Steelers have an interest in Vick. But he also didn’t say they don’t.
Vick is hoping to sign with an NFL team after serving a 23-month prison term for his role in an illegal dog-fighting operation.
One of the highlights of Tuesday afternoons practice was the long touchdown pass rookie wide receiver Mike Wallace caught from veteran QB Ben Roethlisberger.
In a “hurry-up” period where the offense re-enacted the last minute of the first half or second half of a game, Wallace scored the only TD.
“It feels good to catch a TD from ‘Big Ben,’ ” Wallace said. “I’m just looking to go out and make plays.”
The second-team offense was stopped on downs in its “hurry-up” opportunity.
The third-team offense was stopped when rookie cornerback Joe Burnett intercepted third-team QB Dennis Dixon.
Golden Globe-winning actor Ving Rhames watched the Steelers practice Tuesday afternoon.
“I’m from New York City and I’m a New York Giants fan,” said Rhames, who’s appeared in such movies as “Pulp Fiction” and all three films in the “Mission Impossible” series. “And oh, by the way, we beat the Super Bowl champs last year.”
Rhames, 50, is in Pittsburgh to promote an upcoming movie titled “The Goods” which will be released Friday.
Before and during practice, Rhames spoke with wide receiver Santonio Holmes, strong safety Troy Polamalu, linebacker James Harrison and Tomlin.

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Mike Bires

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