The 2020 NFL Draft is drawing near, which seems to be a fitting time to take a look back at the rookie seasons of the Pittsburgh Steelers class from the 2019 NFL Draft. People start talking about the quality of a draft class before said class is even completed, of course, but now we have a year of data to work from.
Over the course of the next several days, I will be providing an overview of the team’s rookies, as well as an evaluation of each rookie that the Steelers drafted, while also noting any undrafted free agents that were able to stick around. This will not include the likes of Robert Spillane and Tevin Jones because they were first-year players, not rookies.
The Steelers went into the 2018 NFL Draft with 10 selections, including two in the third round and three in the sixth, but ended up trading their second-round pick to move up in the first round. They received additional third- and fifth-round picks for trading Antonio Brown, a sixth for Marcus Gilbert, and the other sixth was part of the Ryan Switzer trade the year before.
Continuing a recent trend, the class has proven to be top-heavy in terms of early results, though there are still opportunities for those selected by them in the later rounds of the draft to develop into bigger contributors as well.
Player: Trevor Wood
Draft Status: Undrafted
Starts: 0 (0 games)
Trevor Wood was one of the team’s initial college free agent signings following the 2019 NFL Draft. Listed initially as a tight end and long snapper, the combination intrigued some fans who thought it would be economical to have a long snapper who also plays another position.
The reality is that no team in the league has a long snapper who actually plays on offense or defense, even in a limited capacity, even if some may have done so at the college level. Long snapper is a very specialized skill, and it’s best to have your long snapper simply focus on doing that. It’s not like they take up much cap space.
But given that Kameron Canaday, who had been the long snapper for the prior two seasons, was coming off a somewhat shaky year with three holding penalties and a botched snap that resulted in a missed kick, it was a legitimate thought that his job could be in jeopardy.
While he did a bit of work at long snapper during training camp, he never played it during the preseason, and he also didn’t play tight end particularly well, either, despite injuries allowing him to gain a significant number of reps and snaps.
He did last the entire preseason, but was ultimately released with the roster cuts at the end of the preseason. He remained unsigned after that, and the Steelers chose to carry Kevin Rader and Christian Scotland-Williamson on the practice squad over him.