After losing starting left tackle Kelvin Beachum for the remainder of the season to a torn ACL on Sunday, the Pittsburgh Steelers wasted no time adding another experienced tackle to their roster in the form of Byron Stingily, who had previously played for the Tennessee Titans. During his Tuesday press conference, head coach Mike Tomlin was asked if the fact that offensive line coach Mike Munchak knew quite a bit about Stingily played a role in the team signing him.
“We’re just getting ready to see what hes capable of,” said Tomlin of Stingily, who set career-highs with 10 games played and five starts in 2014 with the Titans. “Don’t know much yet. The fact that he has past experience with Munch [Munchak] was really irrelevant. He was the most experienced and most viable option in our estimation of the guys that were available. So we’ll just put him in the mix with the other guys and see what hes capable of executing and make decisions regarding who’s available, whether it’s him or someone else as we push throughout the week.”
One player who won’t be available to the Steelers on Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs to serve as a swing tackle is Mike Adams, who isn’t quite ready to resume practicing. Adams, who is now eligible to return at any time now that he has sat out the first six weeks of the season on the Reserve/PUP list, is apparently still trying to recover from his July back surgery. Tomlin said on Tuesday that he’s yet to check on Adams this week because he knows he won’t be playing this coming Sunday. As previously mentioned, Adams must begin practicing within the next three weeks if he wants to have any shot at being reinstated to the 53-man roster this season.
With Adams return slated to be later instead of sooner, odds are good that Stingily will dress on Sundays moving forward. Munchak was the Titans head coach when they drafted him in the sixth round of the 2011 NFL Draft out of Louisville, so regardless of what Tomlin said on Tuesday, I bet that indeed played some sort of role in the decision to sign him on Monday.
With Beachum out for the season, Alejandro Villanueva now becomes the team’s starting left tackle. Should something happen to him, however, starting right tackle Marcus Gilbert would more than likely switch over to the left side with Stingily coming off of the bench to fill the vacated spot on the right side.
While he did give up quite a few hurries in the 248 snaps that he played last season with the Titans, Stingily didn’t allow a sack. However, it should be noted that his Week 17 performance against the Indianapolis Colts was a forgettable one.