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Draft Preview: The New Faces On The Roster

Now that the 2019 NFL Draft is just around the corner and we have gone through our position-by-position review of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ personnel movements this offseason, I thought it would be advisable to provide an additional recap of all the players the team has added since the Reserve/Future signings. Please let me know if I’m missing anybody who was on the 53-man roster in 2018 at the end of the season.

Steven Nelson: The biggest outside signing during the free agent period in Steelers history, Nelson was brought in on a three-year, $25.5 million deal to be a starting cornerback. He should pair with Joe Haden as, at least theoretically, the best pair the team has had since Ike Taylor and Keenan Lewis.

Mark Barron: The former safety turned linebacker signed a two-year, $12 million deal, and unless the Steelers draft an inside linebacker who pushes to start immediately, Barron should start. Even if he doesn’t, he will have a significant role. They may even use three inside linebackers together.

Donte Moncrief: Moncrief was signed on a two-year, $9 million deal, where he can serve either as a starting wide receiver or a number three depending on how James Washington develops and what they get out of the draft.

Robert Spillane: Spillane was an undrafted rookie last year with the Titans, and was signed in February. He spent about half the year on the practice squad and was briefly called up to the 53-man roster, but was released after that and remained unsigned. The inside linebacker had an interception against the Steelers in the preseason last year.

Malik Williams: Another February signing, the running back Williams was sparsely used in college but made plays when he was. He’s a bigger back the team likes. Spent camp with the Atlanta Falcons but was injured in the preseason.

J.C. Hassenauer: The Alabama product has never been on a 90-man roster before. He was the Birmingham Iron’s starting center for most of last season and was graded as one of the best interior linemen in the AAF.

Jack Tocho: A defensive back, also from the Iron, who can play both safety and cornerback, the Steelers are currently listing him as the latter, though he played safety in the AAF.

Kameron Kelly: Another AAF defensive back, he signed as a college free agent with the Dallas Cowboys last year but didn’t make it to the preseason. He was among the league leaders in interceptions with the San Diego Fleet, playing cornerback for most of that time, but with safety ability as well.

JT Jones: J’Terius Jones is an edge rusher who spent two summers with the Falcons the past two years with some time on the practice squad. He had some success in the AAF before hooking back up with an NFL team earlier this month.

Winston Craig: Yet another AAF signing, Craig is a defensive end who spent parts of the past two seasons on the Eagles practice squad.

Casey Sayles: Last but not least is Sayles, who was in camp for the Steelers last season as a former undrafted free agent in 2017 from the Rams. He is the third Iron player they signed, also playing defensive end, and was graded as one of the better interior defensive linemen in the AAF.

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