The Pittsburgh Steelers are now in Latrobe at Saint Vincent College, where they have held their training camp sessions since 1966. While the vast majority of the legwork of building the 90-man roster is done, there is always some fine tinkering to do. Now it’s time to figure out who is worthy of a roster spot, and what their role will be.
The team made some bold moves this offseason and in some areas of the roster look quite a bit different than they did a year ago. That would especially be the case at wide receiver and inside linebacker, where they’re bound to have new starters.
How will those position groups sort themselves out? How will the young players advance into their expected roles? Will the new coaches be up to the task? Who is looking good in practice? Who is sitting out due to injury?
These are the sorts of questions among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked, though there is rarely a concrete answer, as I’ve learned in my years of doing this.
Question: Will Zach Gentry be on the 53-man roster on opening day?
It’s funny, though actually not surprising, that there are seemingly just as many questions now that we have the 53-man roster set as there were when we were still at 91. That is, of course, because the roster is not yet actually ‘set’. They’re merely down to 53 players, and those 53 players can still change over the coming days.
If we do see a change made to the 53 players currently on the roster, then arguably the most likely is to see the Steelers add a tight end from outside. A number of notable tight ends who could potentially serve in the number two role have been made available or put on waivers, including the tight end whom they literally put a waiver claim on earlier in the offseason.
The Steelers have shown over the past three years that they are content to have Xavier Grimble as their number three tight end, but the question now becomes whether or not they are comfortable with him as the number two, which could have a ripple effect on the rookie, Zach Gentry.
If the team isn’t comfortable with where the two and three spots are on the depth chart, then it’s realistic that they will have the opportunity to add a reasonable body who has a chance of being an upgrade. That could come at Grimble’s expense, but more likely, it would be the rookie Gentry waived with the hopes of him clearing waivers to be re-signed to the practice squad.
And so now I put it to you: will Gentry still be on the 53-man roster when they head to Foxboro? What would you put his odds at heading into the day after the initial roster cuts?