If the Pittsburgh Steelers are without Stephon Tuitt Sunday, they’re likely to call up an extra defensive end. And it’s looking like that guy will be Johnny Maxey.
Maxey is getting first team reps throughout the week from the PPG’s Chris Adamski.
Practice squad rookie Johnny Maxey said he took 1st-team reps at DE with Hargrave/Walton.
Coaches told him they're evaluating him this wk
— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) December 21, 2016
A UDFA out of Mars Hill, he made enough of an impression in training camp to make the team’s practice squad. In his final year in college, a Division Two school in North Carolina, he recorded 82 tackles and three sacks to earn him second-team All-Conference honors.
He worked out at a Regional Combine, running a 4.9 in the 40.
Even if called up, his expected contribution would be minimal but one injury could thrust him into a major role. First game of an NFL career, playing in a game to decide your team’s fate against your fiercest rival. No pressure.
Maxey will be competing with the slightly more experienced Caushaud Lyons, a second year player the Steelers claimed off waivers at the end of the 2015 training camp.
Any call-up will likely happen Saturday afternoon, the last day teams can add players to the 53 from the practice squad. The team will monitor Tuitt throughout the week and let him have all the time possible before making a decision on his Sunday availability.
If the Steelers make a move, Daryl Richardson is the likely man to be shuttled down, assuming DeAngelo Williams does finally play this weekend.