Trevor Wood was the only Pittsburgh Steelers’ UDFA listed at dual positions, giving him a little more intrigue than a typical free agent. Though he’s listed as a tight end and long snapper, he envisions himself as much more a tight end. Wood is a long snapper in the sense Mike Hilton is a free safety or that I am the pilot of a 747. Only in case of absolute emergency.
That’s what he told the Trib’s Chris Adamski, who profiled Wood late last week. From the article:
“Wood downplays his “long snapper” label, calling himself the “emergency” snapper and saying “I’ve definitely done more tight end” through OTAs. So, it doesn’t seem as if Wood, as things stand now, is being given an equal shot as Kameron Canaday in an effort to unseat Canaday as the Steelers long snapper.”
While it sounds like Wood is getting some work in as a snapper during practice, it’s unclear if he’ll be used in that role during games. That might be a risky endeavor while the team is trying to evaluate their kicker situation with Chris Boswell, who struggled mightily, and Matthew Wright, a rookie kicker who probably doesn’t need a kinda-sorta long snapper if he wants to make a good impression.
But as we noted with Sutton Smith, the more you can do, the better. That’s how Wood sees his versatility.
“I did it in college, I did it in my Pro Day, and I guess they liked it as another asset,” Wood told Adamski. “So that’s something I want to keep working on.”
In college, at Arizona before transferring to last season to Texas A&M, he even played defensive end, starting the Wildcats’ 2017-2018 bowl game. He even logged a pair of punts that year, traveling 36 and 40 yards.
But primarily, his role appears to be that of a tight end. It’s an area where depth is lacking. There’s no favorite as a #4 tight end. He’ll battle Christian Scotland-Williamson (whose roster spot will again be exempt) and Kevin Rader for a practice squad role. Perhaps Wood’s ability to wear so many hats will give him the edge. Certainly can’t hurt.
If you’re wondering who the Steelers’ backup long snapper will be come the regular season, those honors go to Vance McDonald. Far from his natural position, sure, but also a far cry from James Harrison. McDonald actually was Rice’s long snapper in college for the final two games of his senior season. If you attend training camp, you’ll see him get some work in during the early parts of practice.