Now that the 2021 offseason has begun, following yet another year of disappointment, a fourth consecutive season with no postseason victories, it’s time to take stock of where the Pittsburgh Steelers stand. Specifically where Steelers players stand individually based on what we are seeing over the course of the offseason as it plays out. We will also be reviewing players based on their previous season and their prospects for the future.
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. 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 season as we move forward.
Player: DL Demarcus Christmas
Stock Value: Sold
Reasoning: The Steelers released first-year defensive lineman Demarcus Christmas last week in a move that corresponded with their signing second-year kicker Sam Sloman to the 90-man roster. He was waived with an injury designation.
The Steelers are deep at the defensive line position, including seven players who were on the 53-man roster a year ago, another who was on the practice squad, and a rookie fifth-round draft pick. Calvin Taylor is the one remaining from the practice squad. Until the first of this month, Demarcus Christmas had been another.
First signed in early November, Christmas spent the final two months of the 2020 season on the Steelers’ practice squad. Originally a 2019 sixth-round pick by the Seattle Seahawks out of Florida State, he spent his rookie season on the PUP list. He was on the Seahawks’ practice squad last year until October 6, and was without a job until the Steelers signed him a month later.
That’s all we know about him at this level. Collegiately, he recorded 106 tackles and 3.5 sacks with one forced fumble over 44 games. He had the talent and the physical attributes to get himself drafted, but they decided to make room for an extra kicker.
Now, to get technical, this isn’t so much a selling, at least not right now, and not yet. He was originally waived with an injury designation, which is still a waiver, but also means that he will revert to the team’s Reserve/Injured List if he is not claimed. That has already happened, and so that’s where he is, but eventually they’ll work out an injury settlement.
It’s unclear what injury he may have, but chances are it’s a minor one. it wasn’t mentioned during OTAs or minicamp, but that’s not entirely out of the ordinary. In the meantime, they have young players like Isaiahh Loudermilk, Carlos Davis, Isaiah Buggs, and Henry Mondeaux to get a closer look at in training camp later this month and in August.