2022 Pre-Training Camp Roster Review: Defensive End

Wormley and Heyward

The last time that we took a look back at the Pittsburgh Steelers’ roster in review, it was weeks before the 2022 NFL Draft took place. It would be safe to say that quite a bit has changed since then. The changes apply to almost every position on the roster. Some are major changes and some minor, though some have remained largely static.

We are closing in on the opening of the Steelers’ several weeks of training camp. This year, it’s back at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe. It would be a good time to pause and take stock of where the team stands at each position as we head into the most critical process of the offseason.

Position: Defensive End

Total Positional Figure: 7
Additions: 2
Deletions: 1

Players Retained:

Cameron Heyward: The nucleus of the team at this point and coming off of perhaps the best season of his career, Heyward is just looking to see postseason success after years of disappointment.

Chris Wormley: Wormley proved necessary last season with Tuitt and then Tyson Alualu absent. He started every game he played in and had a career year with 51 tackles and seven sacks—a stat line that doesn’t really accurately portray the strengths and weaknesses of his game.

Isaiahh Loudermilk: A fifth-round rookie last year, Loudermilk faced a lot of skepticism when he was drafted, but his improvement in play over the course of the season has at least some encouraged about how he can develop.

Henry Mondeaux: Mondeaux has been a bit player for the past two seasons, but it’s difficult to foresee him making the 53-man roster again, particularly with Alualu’s return and the addition of Montravius Adams mid-season, along with the drafting of DeMarvin Leal.

Daniel Archibong: Added to the practice squad at the start of the 2021 season, Archibong was called up due to injury for two games, playing 13 snaps. He was retained after the season on a Reserve/Future deal.

Players Added:

DeMarvin Leal: A third-round pick out of Texas A&M, Leal may be talented, but is looking at possibly spending his rookie season as a healthy scratch.

Larry Ogunjobi: Needing somebody to replace Stephon Tuitt, the Steelers signed Ogunjobi on an $8 million deal. They’re not identical players, and won’t play the exact same role, but it’s a safe bet that he is the closest thing to it.

Players Lost: 

Stephon Tuitt: You know the story and the background here. Emerging from the shadow of tragedy, Tuitt decided it was time to move on to other things.

Notes and Camp Outlook:

Fixing the run defense is priority number one, and finding people who can help will be the key. It starts with figuring out how best to use Ogunjobi, I think, and who will have what roles. How important will Wormley be now that they have Ogunjobi?

The biggest question will be whether they keep six or seven defensive linemen. Can Leal be a positive contributor as a rookie? If so, they may be more inclined to go with six, especially if both Ogunjobi and Adams can play up and down the line. Things get interesting if they only carry six, as it would mean a job lost for Wormley, Loudermilk, or Adams.

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