Now that training camp is over with the Pittsburgh Steelers back in Pittsburgh and gearing up for what they hope will be a much more productive season, it’s time to take stock of where the team stands. Specifically, where Steelers players stand individually based on what we have seen and are seeing over the course of training camp and the preseason and the regular season as it plays out. A stock evaluation can take a couple of different approaches and I’ll try to make clear my reasoning for each one. 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. Because of this, we can and will see a player more than once over the course of the season as we move forward.
Player: OL Jesse Davis
Stock Value: Purchased
Reasoning: The Steelers acquired veteran offensive lineman Jesse Davis on Tuesday from the Minnesota Vikings in exchange for a conditional seventh-round draft pick in 2025, the conditions of which are not yet known. For the time being, he projects to be the team’s top backup tackle—because there is nobody else.
Seeing the retooled offensive line continue to struggle throughout the preseason, new general manager Omar Khan and company were busy on the phones in the final days before the 53-man roster cuts were due. Jesse Davis was the lineman that they came down with, but he is not the only one that they inquired about.
A former college free agent out of Idaho, Davis spent his first five seasons with the Miami Dolphins, playing the last three years under Brian Flores, recording 72 starts in 80 career games since 2017. He has played and started games at virtually every line position but center.
Last season, however, he struggled playing at right tackle, his tape shows, and many feel that he is better at guard. Yet with the Steelers having cut all of their backup tackles—Joe Haeg, Trent Scott, and Chaz Green being the most notable—they don’t really have any other options for the time being.
Pittsburgh did retain J.C. Hassenauer and Kendrick Green as interior players, neither of whom have any capacity to play outside, among their reserves. It would be redundant for Davis to be inside unless further roster moves are made.
Davis, who will turn 31 in mid-September, was acquired for very little, in a move from the Vikings that was a product of him losing a starting battle at left guard to Ed Ingram, a rookie second-round draft pick. Even with the trade, they still have 10 offensive linemen on their 53-man roster.
Head coach Mike Tomlin praised Davis’ versatility when he spoke about the team’s new acquisition yesterday, but at least the way the roster is currently constructed, he is inevitably going to be asked to focus on playing tackle, much as Matt Feiler and Chris Hubbard had been asked to do in the past.