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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Steelers sign four more picks, release seven

The Steelers signed four draft picks today from this year’s NFL Draft, including wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders, linebacker Stevenson Sylvester, running back Jonathan Dwyer and wide receiver Antonio Brown. Financial terms of the contracts were not disclosed.

The Steelers made additional roster moves by releasing seven free agents, including wide receiver Jason Chery, kicker Piotr Czech, linebacker Derrick Doggett, punter Adam Graessle, nose tackle Cordarrow Thompson, center Bradley Vierling and cornerback Trae Williams.

Sanders (5-11, 180), out of SMU, was the Steelers’ third round pick (82nd overall) in the Draft and finished as the Mustangs’ career leader in receptions (235), touchdown receptions (34) and receiving yards (3,791). He was a first-team all-Conference USA selection last year as a senior after posting 98 catches for 1,339 yards and seven touchdowns. Sanders ranked sixth in the NCAA with 103 receiving yards per game in 2009.

One of three linebackers selected in this year’s Draft by the Steelers, Sylvester (6-2, 231) was the team’s third of three selections in the fifth round (166th overall). A first-team all-MWC selection for Utah, he was a two-year captain and the defensive MVP of the 2009 Poinsettia Bowl. Sylvester started all 13 games last year and finished with a team-best 81 tackles.

Dwyer (5-11, 229) was the Steelers first of two sixth-round picks (188th overall) in this year’s NFL Draft out of Georgia Tech. A first-team all-ACC selection his final two seasons, he earned the conference’s Offensive Player of the Year award as a sophomore in 2008 after leading the team with 1,395 rushing yards on 200 carries while earning All-America status. Last year as a junior, he matched his rushing total from the previous year with 1,395 yards on 235 attempts, the fourth-best rushing total in school history. Dwyer added 14 touchdowns in 2009.

Brown (5-10, 186) was Pittsburgh’s second of two sixth-round selections (195th overall) in this year’s Draft. He finished his career as Central Michigan’s all-time leader in receptions (305), which ranked second in MAC history. As a junior in 2009, Brown was named the conference’s Special Teams Player of the Year for the second straight season and earned first-team all-MAC honors as both a receiver and punt returner. He caught a school-record 110 passes for 1,198 yards and nine touchdowns last year.

With today’s signings, the Steelers now have six of their 10 draft picks under contract. Linebacker Thaddeus Gibson and defensive tackle Doug Worthington signed last week.


Patrick said...

cue the anonymous guy about me and the KOS. Hopefully the coverage teams are far better and we don't to spend a roster spot on that guy anyway.

and also Dale, I pretty much agree with you on the post below about Florio. I mean its no secret he is sensational in his reporting. The focus of the article should be whoever facilitated that event, not the Steelers. Sure Florio put a spin on it, but even so, a bunch of professional football players carelessly playing around with firearms is newsworthy (and incredibly stupid, you know how many people blow their fingers off at ranges?)

Anonymous said...

I think the real problem with the shooting event is not injury, but the idea that they were potentially using government guns and ammo therefore, inappropriately spending tax dollars. For example, it is easy to spend thousands upon thousands of dollars in ammo with a semi or fully automatic weapon. I'm all for a shooting party but when you have tax payers dollars being frivolously spent on pro athletes getting their rocks off... then I think it is justification for an accurate investigation.

Dale Lolley said...

Once the troopers say they were using private guns, not state issued weapons, it's the end of the story, period.
Thousands of people shoot - safely - at gun ranges every day. They have very strict rules at gun ranges.

Patrick said...

troopers can't lie? are these the same troopers who escorted Ben around nightclubs in GA?

I don't understand the line of thinking, that once a person potentially liable in this scenario, says what happened, it is the end of the story. My point is its not something to just sweep under the rug. Theres also this fact that makes it worth a story: "the state police entrusted the internal investigation to the man who organized the shooting party."

I don't think the Steelers players should be the focus of the article though, they aren't really guilty of much besides maybe being careless.

Phil said...

It is something to sweep under the rug, primarily because I and many others simply do not care.

You can get all up in arms about the principle of the thing or you can realize nothing happened, no one got hurt, and this has nothing to do with our favorite football team.

Anonymous said...

Why is everyone so upset that they fired guns off at a shooting range? Because MAYBE the guns were government property?

At worst this is a breach of some beauracratic protocol that the police agency might have.

I also like the Florio mentioned that they used military style weapons. These military style weapons he is so scared of can be had at most Gander Mts and Dunhams sporting good shops, they aren't anything special or scary.

Patrick said...

I don't really care much about the story, principles, etc. You could very well take out Steelers and put in the Pirates for all I care.

It's still a newsworthy story that happens to involve Steelers players. I just can't blame Florio for reporting it, even in the style he used.