Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin knows the value of building a physical defense, but he also knows the toll those hits can take on the players lined up opposite of them. Perhaps it shouldn't be a surprise, then, that Tomlin has opted to give third-year Steelers running back Najee Harris “less physical reps” at this year's training camp, according to Brooke Pryor of ESPN.

Steelers RB Najee Harris, 25, has proven to be as durable as they come, playing in all 17 games in each of his first two seasons while piling up a whopping 694 combined total touches.

The Steelers may be opting to play the long game with Harris, especially after he started last season with a steel plate in his cleat to help deal with a foot injury. After removing the plate, Harris got better as the year went on, compiling at least 85 total yards in seven of his last nine games in more of a return to his usual workhorse role.

Tomlin and the Steelers may be more aware of limiting Harris's workload heading into the season, as Jaylen Warren mixed in heavily with the starters in Pittsburgh's first preseason game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It's worth noting that Warren was the more efficient back last year, so it's possible that the Steelers will look to get him more involved and take some of the heavy lifting off Harris's shoulders during the regular season, as well.

Mike Tomlin has traditionally preferred to ride one running back rather than split carries in the past, however, and he may just be limiting Najee Harris's usage at Steelers training camp and throughout preseason to keep him fresh for a big workload during the 2023 NFL regular season.