A day after finalizing their 53 man roster, the Pittsburgh Steelers made a flurry of moves to their practice squad. Chief among them was to resign 4th round pick cornerback Doran Grant and 6th round pick linebacker Anthony Chickillo to the practice squad.
Both of them made the Steelers initial 53 man roster, but the Steelers cut Grant and Chickillo to make room for running back Jordan Todman and defensive end Cashaud Lyons who were cut by the Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers respectively.
As of 11:00 p.m. on Monday September 7th, the Pittsburgh Steelers 2015 practice squad stands like this:
Isaiah Burse, wide receiver
Anthony Chickillo, outside linebacker
Jordan Dangerfield, safety
Matt Feiler, offensive tackle
L.J Fort, linebacker
Doran Grant, cornerback
Xavier Grimble, tight end
Barrett Jones, center
Shakim Phillips, wide receiver
Fitzgerald Toussaint, running back
Of the ten players, Chickillo, Dangerfiled, Fort, Grant, and Philips sent training camp with the Steelers, the rest are cast offs from elsewhere in the NFL.
While practice squad players are clearly not considered to be top-line talent, current Steelers such as Ramon Foster, James Harrison and Doug Legursky spent time as practice squad apprentices. Last year the Steelers put Nick Willams and Josh Mauro, both promising young defensive lineman, on the practice squad, only to see them poached away.
Both men are currently employed by NFL teams, and given the Steelers desperate need for depth on the defensive line, it is safe to say that Mike Tomlin and Kevin Colbert wish they’d never left Pittsburgh.