— The godfather of the zone blitz stands at midfield, giving his Pittsburgh Steelers defense a one-word, pre-snap call whenever full-team training camp drills commence.
Then, Dick LeBeau, 75 years young with a Hall-of-Fame reservoir of expertise siphoned across five decades as a ball-hawking cornerback and coach, walks to the sideline to observe how his signal is dispersed.
He is using camp to construct a speed bump in the regular season against the rising wave of turbo-charged, no-huddle, read-option offenses.
"You're going to see these up-tempo offenses more and more across the league this season," LeBeau told USA TODAY Sports. "So very early during our practice sessions, the offense will go a lot of no-huddle attack so our guys get comfortable with not only their up-tempo conditioning, but they get comfortable with the mechanics of getting the call relayed when you can't get huddled up.
"You need to practice that because the up-tempo is another tool offenses have now to pressure defenses."
The Steelers open Sept. 8 against the Tennessee Titans. And guess what? Tennessee's Jake Locker, who was a dual-threat quarterback at the University of Washington, might be asked to showcase those talents in his second season as a full-time NFL starter. Pittsburgh will likely be the first team to fully witness Locker's unleashed mobility in tandem with the talents of fleet Titans tailback Chris Johnson on options runs.
LeBeau will be ready as zone-blitz force meets zone-read finesse.
"Coach LeBeau is here refining his game for what the fast-break style of 2013 football is," Steelers free safety Ryan Clark says. "There's nothing coach LeBeau hasn't seen.
"He's just trying to find ways to shorten our terminology, get us our calls quickly so we can just play football. ... In the past, we've been kind of scrambling with making calls. He's been fine-tuning that to where we control how his calls are disseminated through just one word."
Veteran linebacker Larry Foote is LeBeau's mouthpiece.
"Instead of saying the entire defense, coach will give us a key word," Foote, heading into his 12th NFL season, says. "Coach will say, 'Bus' or 'Bussie' for Jerome Bettis. As soon as guys hear 'Bus,' they know their assignments. We work on those shorter calls in our meetings and on the playing field.
"The key thing is having the young guys pick it up quickly."
LeBeau, who intercepted 62 passes (seventh-most in NFL history) from 1959 to 1972 with the Detroit Lions, has orchestrated the league's No. 1 defense in four of the past six seasons including the last two.
"I don't know that anybody totally knows the secret because they haven't stopped it," LeBeau says of the read option.
But the Steelers did contain Robert Griffin III to 8 yards rushing, 177 yards passing with a 47.1% completion rate in their 27-12 win over the Washington Redskins last October.
"When you've got those great read-option quarterbacks, you can't make a mistake. It puts more pressure on your defense to be right," LeBeau says. "You can't afford to surrender the big play. Make them go the hard way."
Coach Mike Tomlin says Pittsburgh's defense will be ready to say, "not so fast," if Locker does indeed follow in the read-option footsteps of RG3 and Colin Kaepernick.
"In today's NFL, there are a myriad of things you have to be prepared for whether no-huddle or read option," Tomlin said. "We have to make sure we use this time to prepare to stop them. ... Even if it is not in our personality offensively, we have to make sure our defense receives the proper looks to defend people."
On the first day of camp, Tomlin tweaked third-year cornerback Cortez Allen after he was burned by wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders on a 35-yard strike from Ben Roethlisberger.
"Cortez, they aren't going to be throwing at Ike (Taylor, the Steelers' No. 1 corner)," shouted Tomlin. He took the opportunity to hammer home that point as Allen replaces Keenan Lewis, who signed with the New Orleans Saints in free agency.
"You know who they'll be throwing at come September," Tomlin said. "Cortez needs to understand that. I'm sure he does.
"We're here building a world championship-caliber team. We've got a lot of work to do."
Fortunately for Tomlin, his tireless coordinator is already on the case.