Now that the 2019 season is over, with a team other than ours having been crowned champion and there being much work to do to return to that status, it’s time to take stock of where the Pittsburgh Steelers stand. Specifically where Steelers players stand individually based on what we have seen happen over the course of the past season, and with notice to anything that happens going forward.
A stock evaluation can take a couple of different approaches and I’ll try to make clear my reasonings. In some cases it will be based on more long-term trends, such as an accumulation of offseason activity. In other instances it will be a direct response to something that just happened. So we can see a player more than once over the course of the summer as we move forward.
Player: FB Roosevelt Nix
Stock Value: Down
Given that he only played in three games last season, ultimately ending up on the injured reserve list because of a lingering back injury, this should be an obvious enough assessment. Roosevelt Nix has seen his playing time on offense dwindle on offense in recent years anyway, but he remained a crucial part of their special teams units.
For what it’s worth, there are no indications that his roster spot would be under any kind of threat other than his own health. After all, it’s not as though he makes a ton of money. He signed a four-year contract in 2018 that was only work just a hair under $7 million, and his cap hit for 2020 will only be a bit under $1.9 million. Minus displacement, the Steelers wouldn’t even save half a million if he were to be released.
Still, it goes without saying that he has to get himself health. It’s actually not the first time he ended up spending the remainder of a season on injured reserve. That was also the case back in 2016, a season in which he only played 10 games, though he has only missed one other game in his five-year career outside of those two seasons.
Nix’s primary value remains on special teams. He has recorded 34 tackles in his career with two forced fumbles and a recovery, and also has a blocked punt to his name. He might not be the greatest runner on fake punts of all time, but he sure knows how to celebrate.
At this point, I find it unlikely that the Steelers would in any way use the fullback significantly on offense anymore. If Nix ever sees 100 run-blocking snaps in a season, it would be quite a surprise. It’s just not how they run the team, and frankly, the numbers in recent years have not supported it in terms of run success rate.