The Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2021 offseason practices concluded last week. Next up for the team is their annual training camp, which should get underway in the latter part of July. Ahead of training camp, we will preview the team’s 90-man roster three players at a time for you as part of a 30-post series. This Steelers 90-man roster preview that includes outlooks for each player goes alphabetically by last name to make it easy to follow along with.
The next three players we will preview today are Trey Edmunds, B.J. Finney, and Minkah Fitzpatrick.
RB Trey Edmunds — Edmunds started the 2020 regular season on the Steelers practice squad. In October, however, the backup running back and special teams contributor found himself on the Steelers 53-man roster for a span of about six weeks. An injury, however, resulted in Edmunds being placed on the team’s Reserve/Injure list in Week 12 and he remained there the remainder of the season. Edmunds logged just seven offensive snaps in 2020 and another 26 on special teams. He failed to register any stats in his limited playing time. The Steelers waived Edmunds in early January from Reserve/Injured and re-signed him to a Reserve/Futures contract a few days later.
Outlook: This year’s training camp is likely going to be the end of the road for Edmunds. He would need a lot to happen at the running back position to make the 53-man roster this summer and his main upside right now is that he has special teams ability. The best thing that Edmunds can likely hope for is that he somehow lands on the Steelers practice squad again to start the regular season. That even seems like a huge longshot as we sit here in late June.
C/G B.J. Finney — Finney had a tremendously tough 2020 season after signing with the Seattle Seahawks as an unrestricted free agent last March. COVID prevented Finney from training properly for fear of him hurting himself and it essentially resulted in him showing up at his new NFL team out of shape. The Seahawks ultimately traded Finney to the Cincinnati Bengals later in the season and the former undrafted free agent out of Kansas State didn’t receive any offensive playing time with them, either. He ultimately logged all of 31 special teams snaps in 2020 and that’s it. Predictably, the Bengals parted ways with Finney earlier this year and the Steelers signed him back to one-year deal for the minimum.
Outlook: Finney comes back to his original NFL team with a good shot to make the 53-man roster in September. He’ll be expected to push rookie center Kendrick Green for the starting spot in training camp first and foremost. Some of Finney’s best NFL snaps to date have come at guard so he figures to have a great chance at sticking on the roster this summer as at least a backup interior swing player, a role he held with the Steelers for a few seasons prior to 2020. The Steelers don’t have many center options on their 90-man roster right now so that helps Finney’s cause for now.
S Minkah Fitzpatrick — Fitzpatrick’s 2020 season included the former first round draft pick leading the team in interceptions with four and total tackles with 79. He returned one of those interceptions for a touchdown as well. He also registered 11 pass breakups in 2020 to go along with a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Fitzpatrick was voted a first-team All-Pro and Pro Bowler after the 2020 season ended and he is now unquestionably established as one of the best free safeties in the NFL entering the 2021 season. The Steelers unsurprisingly picked up Fitzpatrick’s fifth-year option for the 2022 season several weeks ago.
Outlook: Fitzpatrick is now expected to pick up in 2021 where he left off at in 2020. He’ll hopefully continue to be the Steelers biggest playmaker in the defensive secondary once again in 2021 and an even bigger leader on defense. Just how much Fitzpatrick will move around in the Steelers secondary in 2021 is the biggest question heading into this year’s training camp. If things play out in 2021 like many hope they will, Fitzpatrick will once again be voted first-team All-Pro after the season ends.
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