Though the Pittsburgh Steelers reportedly offered WR Diontae Spencer a practice squad spot, he won’t end up signing there. The Denver Broncos have claimed Spencer off waivers, per the Denver Post’s Ryan O’Halloran.
Spencer’s value largely stems from what he offers in the return game. During the preseason, he averaged more than 14 yards per kick and chipped in with a 35 yard kick return. He also carried the ball twice for 48 yards and added another four receptions for 39 yards.
The Steelers signed him to a futures deal after Spencer had spent several years in the CFL, most recently with the Ottawa Redblacks. Spencer lost out to Ryan Switzer to be the team’s primary return man.
Pittsburgh, in a mild surprise, opted to keep just five receivers. They released Johnny Holton, Eli Rogers, and Spencer along with Tevin Jones, Trey Griffey, and Brandon Reilly. The team will have at least one receiver on the practice squad and probably two. All but Rogers are eligible.
Spencer appears to be the only player the Steelers cut who were claimed. Media reports indicate Pittsburgh wasn’t awarded anyone on waivers.
UPDATE: Spencer was the only Steeler claimed.