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Saturday, August 31, 2013

Steelers activate Miller, Dwyer among cuts to get to 53

In moves that should be shocking to nobody who reads this blog regularly, the Steelers activated Heath Miller from the PUP list on Saturday and released running back Jonathan Dwyer, their leading rusher from 2012.

Miller likely won't be ready to play in the regular season opener, but shouldn't miss too much time as he continues his comeback from a torn ACL.

Dwyer, meanwhile, had lost the trust of the coaching staff after showing up overweight again in the offseason. He had also shown a lackadaisical attitude over the years, showing up late for meetings and such - things that are obviously frowned upon.

The release of Dwyer means the Steelers will go into the opener next week with Isaac Redman, Felix Jones and LaRod Stephens-Howling as their primary ballcarriers until Le'Veon Bell is ready to go.

Bell, who is off crutches and moving around much better, has been in and out of his walking boot as well. He's likely at least two weeks from returning to action.

Recent draft picks Alameda Ta'amu, a nose tackle taken in the fourth round in 2012, cornerback Terry Hawthorne, a fifth-round pick this year, and wide receiver Justin Brown, a sixth-round pick this year, were also released.

In addition to Dwyer, veterans released included linebacker Marshall McFadden, cornerback Josh Victorian, tight end Jamie McCoy and punter Brian Moorman were released.

McFadden was beaten out for an inside linebacker spot by Kion Wilson and Vince Williams, Victorian by Curtis Brown and Moorman by Drew Butler.

First-year players released included wide receiver Kashif Moore, running back Alvester Alexander, tight end Nathan Overbay and tackle Joe Long. Veteran linebacker Brian Rolle and safety Ross Ventrone were also released.

Eight undrafted rookies were also released, wide receiver Reggie Dunn, offensive linemen Mike Golic Jr., Joe Madsen and Chris Hubbard, defensive end Brian Arnfelt, linebackers Alan Baxter and Terence Garvin and cornerback Devin Smith.


Anonymous said...

Congrats Dale, you beat everyone else to release these cuts. The best scoop is on this blog for sure!!!

A couple surprises to me: Baxter,Marshall McFadden.

Arnfelt is obviously a surprise but I think they are banking on him passing waivers and he might. It is a gamble because he is the next Chris Hoke.

Like you said, Dwyer is not a surprise even though the kid has talent. The writing was on the wall when they traded for Felix Jones. Tomlin put an extra nail in his coffin every time he fumbled the ball in the preseason. It is not a surprise he was drafted so late. Some people have the passion to play in the game but a lot of very talented players just don't. That said, somebody will pick him up.

Mrs. Isaac Redman

adamg said...

Congrats to Derek Moye. Nice to see a local WPIAL product wearing the black and gold.

Dale Lolley said...

Not surprised Arnfelt didn't make it. He's destined for the practice squad if he makes it through waivers.

McFadden and Baxter did surprise me. One of them not making it wouldn't have done so. But both is a little shocking.

Anonymous said...

They kept 5 tight ends. They were forced to do so because of injuries. Spaeth will be placed on IR, designated to return, which can't be done until the 3rd. Palmer will be released when Miller is healthy enough to play. I imagine they will add either another offensive lineman when Spaeth no longer counts against the 53, or perhaps a linebacker. They kept only 8 of each. I wouldn't be surprised to see Whimper replaced with someone after Week 1. I would also like to hear an update on Will Johnson. Michael Robinson is available. He would be an upgrade whether Johnson is healthy or not.

Steve-O said...

Any projections on who makes the Practice squad? I'm hoping J. Brown and T. Hawthorne get there.

Anonymous said...

Good call on the NTs. Who do you project on the practice squad, barring they clear waivers. Is this Ziggy's last year in black and gold?

adamg said...

Can't see them wasting the IR/DR on Spaeth in case a key player would get hurt in the reg season. He's a very spare part now that Miller is returning in the next couple of weeks.

Dale Lolley said...

I would think Baxter, Hawthorne, Long, Brown and McFadden would be gimmees assuming nobody grabs them. Ta'amu as well.

As for Ziggy, I think he's looked good thus far. The run defense has been outstanding. Wouldn't be surprised if they re-signed him at season's end.

adamg said...

I see Det cut Jake Scott. Don't know how much he has left in the tank, but he's got a better pedigree than Guy Whimper. Given Colbert's past connections with Det...

I think the usual practive is to sign PS players who fill in gaps in the roster. I'd think the PS will be heavy on OL and DL, but also think Hawthorne and Brown will be part of it.

Lance said...

Good stuff as always Dale. No big surprises for me as well, although I thought Baxter had a legit shot at the 53. I can see the staff keeping an eye open for O-line depth.

Count me as on that also thinks Ziggy is holding his own. Fans want to see big plays, sacks, TFL, etc. from the linemen, that is just not the responsibility in the 3-4, the fact is no one has been running on this D for a while, and if preseason is an indicator, it looks like this D will be stout against the run again. Don't get me wrong, Ziggy is not my favorite player, but I am ok with him as a starter.

I also think your practice squad is spot on as long as waivers are cleared, very rare that most will not.