The Pittsburgh Steelers are now into the regular season, following the most unique offseason in the NFL since at least World War II. While it didn’t involve a player lockout, teams still did not have physical access to their players, though they were at least able to meet with them virtually.
Even training camp looked much different from the norm, and a big part of that was the fact that there will be no games along the way to prepare for. Their first football game of the year was to be the opener against the New York Giants.
As the season progresses, however, there will be a number of questions that arise on a daily basis, and we will do our best to try to raise attention to them as they come along, in an effort to both point them out and to create discussion
Questions like, how will the players who are in new positions this year going to perform? Will the rookies be able to contribute significantly? How will Ben Roethlisberger look—and the other quarterbacks as well? Now, we even have questions about whether or not players will be in quarantine.
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 or should the Steelers have interest in signing Jordan Berry to the practice squad?
The Pittsburgh Steelers have already made a number of tweaks to their 53-man roster since the ‘final’ roster cuts were made. First, they claimed former quarterback Joshua Dobbs off waivers, and waived Devlin Hodges. Then they signed former safety Sean Davis and released veteran Curtis Riley. Finally, they signed punter Dustin Colquitt and released Jordan Berry, who’s been with the team for the past five seasons.
In the Covid-19 environment, and with the expanded practice squad, it seems as though more teams are taking advantage of the resource to carry an additional specialist into the 2020 season. The Steelers already have one in Corliss Waitman, a rookie college free agent, whom they didn’t get a chance to look at in-game. In fact, he doesn’t have any game tape since 2018, because he was ruled ineligible to play in college in 2019.
The Steelers were content to go into the season with Berry, or so it seemed, who had been their punter for the past five years. Even after deciding to work out Colquitt, it was reported for a day or two that they were unsure if they would sign him.
A couple of things to consider are in play. For one thing, Waitman does have the ability to kick in an emergency as well, and it’s more valuable to have a specialist in waiting who can do both. On the other hand, he could be terrible. Concerning Berry, in addition, he is a well-known commodity to him, who even if on the practice squad would readily sign with another team in need of a punter if that situation arose. Failing that, and whether he is on the practice squad or not, he figures to be a phone call away if they need a punter.