On its face, “rookie minicamp,” sounds like a three-day weekend for the new guys. For rookies to dip their toes into NFL waters. To get a feel for their coaching staff, how a NFL practice works, and living in their new city. But when it comes to tryout players, they don’t all have to be rookies. Often, veterans get invited on for their own trial run. And the Minnesota Vikings are bringing in former Steelers’ DL Isaiah Buggs to their minicamp this weekend.
That’s according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, who tweeted out the news Friday morning.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) May 13, 2022
Buggs was drafted in the sixth round of the 2019 draft by the Steelers, reuniting with former college coach Karl Dunbar. He appeared in 29 career games for the team, registering seven starts with six of them coming in 2021 after Tyson Alualu was lost to a season-ending ankle fracture. But Buggs and the Steelers’ run defense struggled to their worst season in franchise history. Buggs became a weekly inactive towards the end of the season and was released on January 8th. He signed to the Raiders’ practice squad a week later but wasn’t retained on a futures deal in the offseason. Now, he’ll try to earn a contract with the Vikings.
Pittsburgh will roll with Tyson Alualu and Montravius Adams as its top two nose tackles this season, with Carlos Davis and perhaps Khalil Davis battling behind them. Alualu had been playing excellent run defense prior to his injury while Adams impressed after being signed off the Saints’ practice squad last year. Pittsburgh added DeMarvin Leal in the draft to hopefully give the team a deep defensive line, especially if Stephon Tuitt returns.
The Steelers will begin holding their rookie minicamp starting today through Sunday. They will have a long list of tryout players, though it’s rare for them to bring in veterans like the Vikings are doing with Buggs.