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Cutting down the Steelers roster to 53

-- Chaz Palla Steelers running back Baron Batch will make the final cut.

— Chaz Palla
Steelers running back Baron Batch will make the final cut.


Mark Kaboly  | Tribune-Review


Training camp is quickly coming to a close at St. Vincent College.


Three weeks of practices may not be enough time for Mike Tomlin to form an opinion on his final 53-man roster that he will call the 2013 Pittsburgh Steelers, but it is plenty enough time for me.


So, as I break camp Thursday so I can get ready for this thing called my wedding over the weekend (and subsequent honeymoon to Hawaii), what better time but to set forth the Steelers 53-man roster than now?


There has been a lot of questions who the Steelers fifth receiver might be since Plaxico Burress was placed on injured reserve. My answer is … I guess you are going to have to read on to find out.




QUARTERBACK (3) – Ben Roethlisberger, Bruce Gradkowski, Landry Jones

Notable cut: None

Comment: There’s really no surprise here. Landry Jones might have been outperformed slightly by John Parker Wilson in camp, but Jones gets the edge because he’s a fourth-round pick.


RUNNING BACK (6) – Le’Veon Bell, Isaac Redman, Jonathan Dwyer, Larod Stephens-Howling, Baron Batch, Will Johnson (FB)

Notable cut: None

Comment: The uncertainty of Redman, Dwyer and even Stephens-Howling returning next year forces the Steelers to keep Baron Batch.


WIDE RECEIVER (4) – Antonio Brown, Emmanuel Sanders, Jerricho Cotchery, Markus Wheaton

Notable cuts: Justin Brown, David Gilreath, Derek Moye

Comment: The Steelers kept only four receivers last year and very well could do the same this year. Their fallback plan is that they can easily sneak one or two of their young and talented receivers onto the practice squad.


TIGHT END (3) – Heath Miller, David Paulson, David Johnson

Notable cut: Matt Spaeth (placed on IR/designated for return after final cutdown)

Comment: What likely will happen is that the Steelers will add a tight end after the final cuts come down in the league in early September. If that’s the case, they could keep four tight ends and make a sacrifice somewhere else.


OFFENSIVE LINE (9) – Maurkice Pouncey, Ramon Foster, David DeCastro, Mike Adams, Marcus Gilbert, Kelvin Beachum, John Malecki, Guy Whimper, Joe Long

Notable cut: D’Anthony Batiste

Comment: The Steelers could also look via the waiver wire in early September to fill a backup spot, if not, the unit is pretty easily put together based on their training camp performance.


DEFENSIVE LINE (7) – Ziggy Hood, Steve McLendon, Brett Keisel, Cameron Heyward, Al Woods, Alameda Ta’amu, Nick Williams

Notable cut: None

Comment: Al Woods’ versatility of being able to play nose and end could make this a six-man unit, but defensive line coach John Mitchell will fight for a seventh … and get it.


OUTSIDE LINEBACKER (5) – LaMarr Woodley, Jarvis Jones, Jason Worilds, Adrian Robinson, Chris Carter

Notable cut: Alan Baxter

Comment: Baxter played well enough to make the roster, but will likely find himself on the practice squad instead


INSIDE LINEBACKER (4) – Lawrence Timmons, Larry Foote, Marshall McFadden, Stevenson Sylvester

Notable cut: Kion Wilson

Comment: McFadden and Wilson could be interchanged, but McFadden’s upside will be the determining factor over Wilson.


CORNERBACK (5) – Ike Taylor, Cortez Allen, William Gay, Curtis Brown, Josh Victorian

Notable cut: Isaiah Green

Comment: Victorian is in a battle for that fifth cornerback spot on the roster with Green. At this point, Victorian has been just a little bit better than Green.


SAFETY (4): Troy Polamalu, Ryan Clark, Shamarko Thomas, Robert Golden

Notable cut: None

Comment: This position is pretty cut-and-dry. Golden is a little bit of a sleeper because he is much better than Thomas at this point.


SPECIALIST (3) – Shaun Suisham, Brian Moorman, Greg Warren

Notable cut: Drew Butler

Comment: The punter battle will ultimately come down to hang time and Moorman is a little better in that area than Butler.


OK, have fun and keep my updated until I return.






Author: Mark Kaboly

Mark Kaboly is the Pittburgh Steelers beat writer for the Tribune-Review. Mark has covered more than 300 NFL football games in all 32 NFL cities as well as four Super Bowls -- XL in Detroit, XLIII in Tampa, XLV in Dallas and 50 in San Francisco. A Belle Vernon Area graduate, Mark earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English with a specialization in journalism from California University of Pennsylvania. Mark lives in Port Vue with his wife, Jennifer; daughter Briella; and boys Rocco and Bugsley Pug

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