The Pittsburgh Steelers ended the 2019 season much as they did the 2018 season, by allowing their playoff fate slip out of their grasp. Slow starts and slow finishes permeated both campaigns, with strong runs in between. But while the results were the same missing the playoffs, the means were quite different.
Yet again, they find themselves undergoing the exit meeting process earlier than anticipated, which means so are we. But that they still managed to go 8-8 without Ben Roethlisberger, and with the general quality of play that they faced along the way, I suppose things could have been worse.
While we might not know all the details about what goes on between Head Coach Mike Tomlin and his players during these exit meetings, we do know how we would conduct those meetings if they were let up to us. So here are the Depot’s exit meetings for the Steelers’ roster following the 2018 season.
Player: RB Tony Brooks-James
Experience: 0 Years
It’s somewhat eye-opening to think about the fact that the Steelers were already the third team for Tony Brooks-James since going undrafted out of Oregon in 2019. The 190-pound back was originally signed by the Atlanta Falcons after participating in their rookie minicamp.
They let him go at the end of training camp, however, but he did not remain on the street for long. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed him to their practice squad at the start of the season, and he would remain there for a little over a month.
After being released in early October, Brooks-James finally got an opportunity with the Steelers, who signed him to their practice squad on the 15th. He would be promoted to the 53-man roster at the beginning of November, but then released a couple of weeks later, so his entire stint with the team lasted about a month.
But he was active during that time. Despite only playing in three games, he totaled eight rushing attempts, including six in the game against the Los Angeles Rams, though he managed just 11 yards. He had one carry for a four-yard loss in the following game, after which he was released and replaced with Kerrith Whyte, another rookie running back signed off the practice squad of the Chicago Bears, who would stick for the remainder of the season.
Brooks-James, who also participated in kickoff returns for the Steelers—a role Whyte would also take over—would later be signed to the practice squad of the Minnesota Vikings in December. He remains in the north after signing a futures contract with them. For his career, he currently has seven rushing yards on eight carries and 32 kick return yards on two returns.