Pittsburgh Steelers Offseason Gradebook

CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 10: Morgan Burnett
CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 10: Morgan Burnett /

The offseason moves are no more for the Pittsburgh Steelers, but how did they grade in overall improvement this spring?

The Steelers offseason is mostly over in terms of personnel changes. They may sign someone like Eli Rogers when he becomes healthy but other than that, they are mostly done. They have completed offseason training programs and now it is time to grade the offseason.


This is an area that the Steelers have upgraded this offseason with the drafting of Mason Rudolph. He was thought of as a first-round pick and they were able to get him in the third round. The reports sound good in terms of Mason Rudolph’s start with the Steelers. Some think he will be the backup to Ben Roethlisberger.

Running Backs

The Steelers still have Le’Veon Bell and it is presumed that he will sign at the end of training camp, but before the season starts. They also added Jaylen Samuels in the draft.

Samuels is a fifth rounder who has the potential to play wide receiver and tight end when needed. He brings versatility to the backfield and it is also believed that he can play special teams.


The team extended the contract of Roosevelt Nix four years and that is good news as he is both a Pro Bowl fullback and one of their better special teams players.

Wide Receiver

The Steelers traded away Martavis Bryant, but that trade is looking good for the Steelers as there are rumors that he will be suspended. He is a dynamic receiver who has unlimited talent but is hampered by a substance abuse problem. The Steelers replaced him with a second-round pick in James Washington.

Washington is the type of receiver who is versatile and will probably make a bunch of plays because he is able to gain separation. The Steelers also do not have Eli Rogers on the roster, but as I mentioned before, he could be added before the season starts when he is fully healthy.

Tight End

The Steelers have pretty much the same tight end group as last year. The names are Vance McDonald, Jesse James and Xavier Grimble. Grimble lost his main competition for a roster spot when Jake McGee was put on injured reserve.

Offensive Line

The Steelers will feature the same offensive line as last year in terms of starters. However, there will be some changes in terms of who the backups will be. The Steelers lost Chris Hubbard in free agency and now he is probably going to be the right tackle for the Cleveland Browns.

Matt Feiler will probably be asked to play the role Hubbard played with his position flexibility. Chukwoma Okorafor was added in the draft and is probably now the left tackle of the future.

Defensive Line

The Steelers will bring back the majority of the defensive line back from last year. All six members of the defensive line are under contract. The main difference will probably be that seventh-round pick Joshua Frazier will be a backup nose tackle and sixth member of the defensive line.

Outside Linebacker

The Steelers will probably have the same top three playing outside linebacker. The two starters will probably flip sides and so T.J. Watt will play on the left side and Bud Dupree will play on the right side. Anthony Chickillo will probably be the top backup at both positions.

The change that I see coming is that I think Keion Adams will be the forth outside linebacker on the roster and Arthur Moats will be left on the street. I could see them bringing Arthur Moats back in the case of an injury.

Inside Linebacker

This is a position that has gone through some changes in the offseason. Vince Williams will still be the buck linebacker. The change will be Ryan Shazier’s position. I see the mack position coming down to a battle between Tyler Matakevich and Jon Bostic.

Bostic was a key free agent signing in the offseason. The loser of that battle will probably be the top backup at both inside linebacker positions. I also think Matthew Thomas is an undrafted free agent that could very well make the roster.


This position will probably stay the same, but with the only change being that William Gay will not be on the team. Instead, Cameron Sutton will become the top backup in the slot and on the outside.


This is the position that changed the most during the offseason. Sean Davis may move to free safety. Morgan Burnett was probably the biggest signing of the offseason. He will be the other safety.

Terrell Edmunds was the first round draft pick and I think he will probably start on the bench but will get some time as a dime linebacker. The Steelers also drafted Marcus Allen who was a steal in the fifth round.

Nat Burhe will probably take Robert Golden’s job as the upback on punts and will be a depth safety.


The Steelers have the Same specialists as last year with Chris Boswell being the kicker, Jordan Berry being the punter and Kameron Canaday being the long snapper.


The Steelers added some coaches and subtracted others. The biggest change is that Randy Fichtner will be the offensive coordinator. They also added Daryl Drake as the wide receivers coach. Losing Richard Mann is a big loss.

The Steelers also added Karl Dunbar to be the defensive line coach for the Steelers. He was formerly the defensive line coach for the Alabama Crimson Tide. The last big change is that Tom Bradley will be the secondary coach instead of Carnell Lake.


Overall I give the Steelers offseason a B+. They kept a lot of the team intact with all the offensive starters coming back and only changes on the offensive side of the ball in terms of depth. The defense saw some upgrades as they have Jon Bostic instead of Sean Spence. Morgan Burnett has replaced Mike Mitchell.

Next: How the Steelers plan to replace Shazier

Terrell Edmunds has upgraded the dime package. Also, Tyler Matakevich is healthy after this offseason. Overall, special teams has a lot of the same faces. So with that the Steelers made some upgrades to a #2 seed team.