It’s yet to be seen if the Pittsburgh Steelers will draft another tight end this year to help fill the void left when veteran Heath Miller retired this past Friday. If they don’t, the odds of former undrafted tight end Xavier Grimble making the final 53-man roster in 2016 will certainly increase.
According to Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert talked briefly about Grimble on Wednesday while in Indianapolis preparing for the 2016 NFL scouting Combine and he reportedly said the team liked what they saw last year out of the USC product, who spent all of the 2015 season on the team’s practice squad.
Colbert said Steelers “liked what we saw” of TE Xavier Grimble, who spent most of last season on the practice squad. Grimble is 6-5, 257.
— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) February 24, 2016
Grimble, who entered the league as an underclassman in 2014 as an undrafted free agent with the New York Giants, spent time during his rookie season on the practice squads of the San Francisco 49ers and New England Patriots. After failing to make the 49ers final roster last season out of training camp, Grimble was signed to the Steelers practice squad.
During his college career at USC, Grimble caught 69 passes for 731 yards and 11 touchdowns. At his 2014 pro day, he measured in at 6’4″, 257-pounds and ran reportedly ran the 40-yard dash in 4.90 seconds.
“I think Xavier is going to be an All-Pro in the NFL,” former USC interim head coach Ed Orgeron told FOXSports.com just prior to the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine. “He has unusual body size for a tight end that looks like a left tackle. He can block, run and catch, and he’s a great young man.”
it certainly will be interesting to follow what Grimble’s progress this year during the offseason practices and training camp and even if the Steelers do wind up selecting another tight end in this year’s draft, perhaps there’s a chance the former undrafted free agent can challenge veteran backup tight end Matt Spaeth for his roster spot.
“We’ll see if we add a veteran (in free agency) or draft a tight end,” Colbert said at the combine.