Player News - Steelers

Date: Team: Pos:

The Steelers declined OLB Jarvis Jones' 2017 fifth-year option.

It would have paid Jones an $8.4 million salary in 2017. It likely wasn't an easy decision for the Steelers, but Jones has failed to meet expectations as the 17th overall pick in the 2013 draft. He has just five career sacks.
Source: ESPN.com
May 2 - 8:57 PM

Steelers OLB James Harrison confirmed he will play in 2016.

Despite turning 38 this month, it was widely expected Harrison would decide to play another year. Harrison remained an effective pass rusher in a limited role last season, recording five sacks in 611 snaps. The Steelers need to develop their young pass rushers, but Harrison should once again provide a nice boost on the edge.
May 2 - 12:25 PM

The Steelers will use second-round pick Sean Davis at strong safety.

Davis shuttled between safety and cornerback at Maryland. "Primarily, we should plug him in at strong safety as Mike Mitchell’s primarily our free safety," said DBs coach Carnell Lake. "That’s where we’ll start and I’m assuming that he’ll wind up playing both positions at some point." Davis is a likely Week 1 starter, replacing Will Allen. Davis has some IDP potential as a rookie.
May 1 - 11:34 PM

Steelers re-signed QB Bruce Gradkowski.

He'll return as Ben Roethlisberger's primary backup. Gradkowski, 33, should be able to easily beat out Landry Jones and Dustin Vaughn in Steelers camp. He missed all of last season with finger and shoulder injuries.
May 1 - 7:17 PM

Steelers signed Jacksonville State DL Devaunte Sigler.

Sigler (6'4/298) earned 2014 Ohio Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Year before dealing with injuries as a senior, logging just 2.5 tackles for loss and two sacks in his final year at Jacksonville State. Sigler's pre-draft workouts also disappointed, managing a 25-inch vertical, 8-foot-3 broad jump, and sluggish agility scores. Undersized and underproductive lately with sub-NFL-baseline movement ability, Sigler is a long shot for a pro career.
Apr 30 - 9:19 PM

Steelers signed Florida State DL Giorgio Newberry.

Newberry (6'6/285) was a backup throughout his Seminoles career, seeing action at defensive end and tackle and even dabbling at tight end in 2013. He managed two career sacks and 3.5 tackles for loss. Newberry did show adequate athleticism at the Combine, running 4.94 with a 30-inch vertical. Not a productive collegiate and turning 25 during his rookie campaign, Newberry has very little upside. He'll try to hang around as a versatile end-tackle reserve.
Apr 30 - 9:18 PM

Steelers signed Duke P Will Monday.

Monday (6'4/212) punted for the Blue Devils all four years of his college career, setting a Duke school record for career yards per punt (46.5). 88 of Monday's 260 career punts (33.8%) were downed inside the opposing 20-yard line, a mark he improved to 47% as a senior. Monday has NFL-level leg strength, but will need to improve his hang time to last in the pros.
Apr 30 - 9:14 PM

Steelers selected Temple OLB Tyler Matakevich with the No. 246 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.

Matakevich (6'0/238) was a decorated college linebacker, earning the Nagurski and Bednarik Awards as a senior in addition to American Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Year. He piled up 40 career tackles for loss with seven sacks, seven interceptions, and four forced fumbles. Matakevich was exposed as a sub-par athlete in Indy, running 4.81 with a 31-inch vertical and 9-foot-4 broad jump. A "heart and soul" player whose game is built on aggressive relentlessness, Matakevich's size and speed deficiencies may limit him to special teams. His ceiling is probably a smaller version of A.J. Hawk.
Apr 30 - 6:24 PM

Steelers selected Houston WR DeMarcus Ayers with the No. 229 overall pick in the 2016 draft.

Ayers (5'9/182) was an undersized-if-prolific playmaker for the Cougars, parlaying 142 career catches into 1,687 yards (11.9 YPR) and nine touchdowns, also scoring once on a punt return and once on a kickoff. Ayers proceeded to disappoint at the Combine, running a painfully slow 4.72 forty with a 33-inch vertical. Ayers does have terrific hands, securing 99-of-101 catchable targets in 2015 according to College Football Focus. Ayers will try to make it as a situational slot receiver with punt return value.
Apr 30 - 5:52 PM

Steelers selected Washington OLB Travis Feeney with the No. 220 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.

Feeney (6'4/230) made 32 starts at UW, tallying 33 career tackles for loss, 15.5 sacks, five forced fumbles and four interceptions. He earned second-team All-Pac 12 as a senior. Also a prolific special teamer throughout his career, Feeney blew up the Combine with a 4.5-flat forty, 40-inch vertical and 10-foot-10 broad jump. A converted safety, Feeney's game lacks power and strength but he has top-shelf movement skills, long arms (33") and coverage prowess.
Apr 30 - 5:31 PM

Steelers selected LSU OL Jerald Hawkins with the No. 123 overall pick of the 2016 NFL draft.

Hawkins (6'6/305) turned pro following his redshirt junior season after starting 37 games for the Tigers, 25 at right tackle and his final 12 on the left. Hawkins possesses an NFL body with long arms (34 1/4"), but he got pushed around too often in the SEC and tested out painfully poorly, running 5.23 with a 23 1/2-inch vertical and 8-foot-4 broad jump at the Combine. Hawkins looks the part of an NFL left tackle, but doesn't move or play like one. He's a long shot to develop into a quality starter.
Apr 30 - 1:23 PM

Steelers selected South Carolina State DT Javon Hargrave with the No. 89 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.

Hargrave (6'1/309) was twice named Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Defensive Player of the Year, capping a dominant senior year with 22 tackles for loss, 13.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles. Hargrave helped himself at the Combine, running 4.93 with a 34 1/2-inch vertical and 29 bench-press reps. Hargrave is making a big jump in competition, but he plays with a relentless motor and offers the requisite traits to develop into an impact three-technique tackle.
Apr 29 - 10:58 PM

Steelers selected Maryland DB Sean Davis with the No. 58 overall pick of the 2016 NFL draft.

Davis (6'1/201) made 40 starts for the Terps, breaking out as a senior for five forced fumbles and three interceptions. Davis shuttled between corner and safety at Maryland and offers versatility. He's also a terrific athlete, running 4.46 at the Combine with a 37 1/2-inch vertical and 10-foot-6 broad jump. On tape, Davis needs to polish his coverage game — he coughed up 10 TD passes in his final two seasons — and was an inefficient tackler. He reminds of Jimmy Wilson as a safety-corner hybrid who may ultimately struggle to nail down a starting job at either position.
Apr 29 - 9:19 PM

Steelers selected Miami (FL) CB Artie Burns with the No. 25 overall pick in the 2016 draft.

Burns (6'0/193) made 23 starts in three seasons with the 'Canes, finishing on a high note with an ACC-best six interceptions in 2015. He ran 4.46 at the Combine, adding an explosive 10-foot-4 broad jump but marginal 33-inch vertical at Miami's Pro Day. Burns' strengths are his athleticism, ballhawking ability, and length (33 1/4-inch arms), while his primary weakness is frustrating game tape on which Burns has a tendency to get lazy and play undisciplined. Burns has No. 1-corner upside, but could also flame out quickly. Raw after spending so much time in track and field at The U, Burns is a boom-bust prospect.
Apr 28 - 10:57 PM

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review speculates the Steelers' decision whether or not to pick up OLB Jarvis Jones' fifth-year option could hinge on the draft.

"I think it is safe to say once we get through the draft it will affect how we do business with our veteran players," said GM Kevin Colbert. The No. 17 overall pick in 2013, Jones has failed to live up to expectations, especially as a pass rusher. He has just five sacks through three seasons, and Colbert was honest about the team's disappointment with his production earlier this offseason. The option would cost the Steelers $8.3 million in 2017. The deadline for a decision is May 2.
Apr 26 - 11:27 AM


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