The Steelers have until 4 p.m. on Saturday to set its 53-man roster, which means the team has to cut 22 players from its current roster.
While there doesn’t expect to be many surprise cuts coming from Steelers’ headquarters, a few veterans could be on their way out the door like linebacker Chris Carter and safety Will Allen.
Even though the Steelers have to cut 22 players, they can add 10 to their practice squad. With the NFL loosening the eligibility requirements it takes to get on the practice squad just two weeks ago, many of their cuts will end up right back with the team.
The one who will benefit the most will be Chartiers Valley’s Ross Ventrone. Ventrone wasn’t eligible for the practice squad this year until the league changed its rules to allow a fourth year guy eligible for the practice squad.
Here’s my (UPDATED) Steelers 53-man roster:
QB (3) – Ben Roethlisberger, Bruce Gradkowski, Landry Jones
Note: Still aren’t about to give up on a fourth-round pick yet.
RB (4) – Le’Veon Bell, LeGarrette Blount, Dri Archer, Will Johnson
Note: Archer and Johnson being able to be flexible makes it easy to keep four.
WR (6) – Antonio Brown, Markus Wheaton, Lance Moore, Martavis Bryant, Darrius Heyward-Bey, Justin Brown
Note: Heyward-Bey did enough over the past two weeks.
TE (3) – Heath Miller, Matt Spaeth, Michael Palmer
Note: The use of Archer in the passing game allows them to keep three tight ends.
OL (8) – Kelvin Beachum, Ramon Foster, Maurkice Pouncey, David DeCastro, Marcus Gilbert, Mike Adams, Guy Whimper, Cody Wallace.
Note: It’s always between eight and nine for offensive linemen. This year, Munchak will get only eight.
DL (6) – Cameron Heyward, Steve McLendon, Cam Thomas, Stephon Tuitt, Brett Keisel, Daniel McCullers
Note: Signing of Keisel bumps Josh Mauro to the practice squad.
LB (9) – Jarvis Jones, Lawrence Timmons, Ryan Shazier, Jason Worilds, Sean Spence, Vince Williams, Terrence Garvin, Arthur Moats, Howard Jones
Note: Steelers will choose potential (Jones) over experience (Chris Carter).
CB (7) – Ike Taylor, Cortez Allen, William Gay, Antwon Blake, Shaquille Richardson, Brice McCain, B.W. Webb
Note: Steelers need to look to the future when putting together this group.
S (4) – Troy Polamalu, Mike Mitchell, Shamarko Thomas, Robert Golden
Note: Will Allen can still play, but not as well as Thomas or Golden.
K (1) – Shaun Suisham
Note: No competition in camp means he’s the only option.
P (1) – Brad Wing
Note: Still could bring in a veteran punter.
LS (1) – Greg Warren
Note: Looks like he will be ready for the opener.
Practice squad: RB Stephen Houston, RB Josh Harris, TE David Paulson, OL Chris Hubbard, WR Derek Moye, DL Josh Mauro, DL Nick Williams, S Ross Ventrone, CB Isaiah Green, OL Wesley Johnson
For more Steelers info, check out the Steelers roundtable podcast featuring Alan Robinson, Ralph Paulk and Mark Kaboly (that’s me).
To download it: http://files.triblive.com/podcasts/sportstalk/828RO14.mp3
Also check out the podcast from my show — The Kaboly Show
To download it: http://sportstalk.triblive.com/download/825KAB14.mp3