The Pittsburgh Steelers like to exercise as many resources as they can to gain intelligence on players. Sometimes that includes knowing a little something about their family. That has played a role in seeing several sets of siblings join their roster over the years.
While they’ve parted with some—they broke up the Edmundses and the Davises, and Derek Watt is currently a free agent—they may have a shot at reuniting another fraternal pair. After signing Nate Herbig as a free agent, he hopes the Steelers draft his little brother next month.
And he’s not shy about letting everyone know about it. Asked if he was already in assistant general manager Andy Weidl’s ear, with whom he worked in Philadelphia, he told reporters at his introductory, “Oh, it’s over already. I came in the building screaming it. Like, come on, let’s get him here. Nick Herbig: stud. Absolute stud. I should be his agent”.
“If there’s one guy I can’t block, it’s Nick Herbig”, he added.
Big brother Nate is a 6’4” interior offensive lineman out of Stanford, a former college free agent who is still only 24 years old with four years under his belt. Little brother Nick, declaring as an underclassman edge rusher out of Wisconsin, is projected to go somewhere in the early middle rounds.
Nate reportedly signed a two-year, $8 million contract with the Steelers. Versed primarily at the guard positions, particularly on the right side, he figures to compete with Kevin Dotson, due to be a free agent next year, for the starting left guard job.
Having logged more than 2000 offensive snaps across 44 games and 28 starts since entering the league, Herbig does bring experience with him, but it is not clear if he will be a starter or a quality reserve. He does have some center capability as well, even if he is better suited to play center.
As for little brother Nick, he would fill a need for the Steelers as a third edge rusher behind T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith. While the Steelers have “preliminary interest” in reuniting with Bud Dupree after he was recently released, there is currently no way of knowing how realistic that is.
A full-time starter for the Wisconsin Badgers, Nick Herbig put up 20 sacks over the past two seasons along with 30 tackles for loss, and four forced fumbles. He could be a valuable rotational piece at a time that the Steelers are acutely aware of their lack of quality depth at the position.
Many fans want to cry nepotism whenever the Steelers add a player whose family has also been on the team, but all of them have had to justify their presence. That includes even the infamous Derek Watt, who may or may not wind up back in Pittsburgh.