The draft is complete. Free agency is all but over. It’s now time to get a feel for what the final 53 man roster will look like. A few things strike you right away when trying to piece together this roster. The lack of depth at linebacker and wide receiver are alarming to say the least. A major injury to a starter at any of those positions could be a major problem. There’s also the fact that the Steelers do not have a true free safety on this team. With all that said, here’s the best guess on who will make the final 53 this season:
QBs (3): Ben Roethlisberger, Landry Jones, Mason Rudolph
No real surprises here, Josh Dobbs should make it through to the practice squad.
RBs (3): Le’Veon Bell, James Conner, Jaylen Samuels
Samuels is an interesting piece that could line up in multiple positions on offense.
WRs (5): Antonio Brown, Ju Ju Smith-Schuster, James Washington, Darrius Hayward-Bey, Quadree Henderson
I’m picking Henderson over Hunter because of his return ability. We can leave a light on for Eli Rogers to beat them both out however.
OL (8): Alejandro Villanueva, Ramon Foster, Maurkice Pouncey, David DeCastro, Marcus Gilbert, BJ Finney, Jerald Hawkins, Chukwuma Okorafor
This is the deepest position on the team. Hawkins will be pushed for his roster spot.
TE (3): Vance McDonald, Jesse James, Xavier Grimble
The Steelers did not add any tight ends in the off-season so its status quo here.
FB (1): Roosevelt Nix
Nix may be the best fullback in the league at this point.
DL (6): Cam Heyward, Stephon Tuitt, Javon Hargrave, Tyson Alualu, LT Walton, Daniel McCullers
McCullers will have competition, but his size will once again win him the 6th defensive line spot.
OLB (6): TJ Watt, Bud Dupree, Anthony Chickillo, Keion Adams, Farrington Huguenin, (Arthur Moats)
This is about as thin as it gets. I have Moats in parenthesis, fill in any discarded outside linebacker with a pulse from now until September.
ILB (5): Vince Williams, Jon Bostic, Tyler Matakevich, LJ Fort, Matthew Thomas
Also a very thin position. Steelers fans should keep a close eye on Matthew Thomas. There is lots of athletic ability there. At this point why LJ Fort is still around is a mystery to me. If he couldn’t beat out Sean Spence last year, why is he still here?
C (5): Artie Burns, Joe Haden, Mike Hilton, Cam Sutton, Brian Allen
Another deep group on this team, maybe the best they’ve had in some time.
S (5): Sean Davis, Morgan Burnett, Terrell Edmunds, Marcus Allen, Nat Berhe
Again no true free safety among this bunch. One has to wonder if the team would have been better off signing Tre Boston or Eric Reid over Morgan Burnett.
SPECIAL TEAMS (3):
K (1): Chris Boswell
P (1): Jordan Berry
LS (1): Kameron Canaday