The Pittsburgh Steelers announced a roster move on Monday, bringing back linebacker Jayrone Elliott to the 53-man roster and quarterback Devlin Hodges to the practice squad.
We have agreed to terms with LB Jayrone Elliott and signed QB Devlin Hodges to the practice squad.@BordasLaw TRANSACTION: https://t.co/oqZIaF5IIR pic.twitter.com/EktLNdKQFA— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) September 10, 2019
On Monday, the Steelers announced they had traded third-string quarterback Joshua Dobbs to the Jacksonville Jaguars in exchange for a 2020 fifth-round draft pick. The roster opening gave the Steelers to bring back Elliott who was signed late in the preseason. As many recall, Elliott forced a fumble in the first quarter of the Steelers final preseason game against the Carolina Panthers and subsequently returned it for an 88-yard touchdown. In two preseason games with the Steelers, Elliott had five tackles and the sack which led to his touchdown.
Out of the University of Toledo, Elliott signed as an undrafted free agent with Green Bay in 2014. Over three seasons with the Packers, Elliott appeared in 38 games and tallied 47 tackles, one fumble, one interception, and four sacks. Traded to the Dallas Cowboys at the end of the preseason in 2017 for a seventh-round draft pick, Elliott only lasted two games on the roster before being released by the Cowboys.
Elliott signed with the New Orleans Saints in 2018, but failed to make the 53 man roster. With three accrued NFL seasons, Elliott was no longer eligible for the practice squad. Earlier in 2019, Elliot signed in the off-season with the Miami Dolphins but was released prior to training camp.
In his four years at Toledo, Elliott amassed 70 tackles, an interception, and a fumble recovery. Elliott also tallied 16 sacks in his career, nine of which came during his senior season in 2013.
With the Steelers historically carrying three quarterbacks, Devlin Hodges was brought in to the practice squad in the position vacated from promoting Johnny Holton to the active roster just before the Steelers Week 1 game. In a break from recent tradition, the Steelers are keeping their third quarterback on the practice squad for the time being.
Nicknamed “Duck” due to his award-winning duck calling, Hodges was 20 for 38 passing for 190 yards in the preseason while throwing two touchdowns and one interception in three games in which he appeared. Many believed Hodges had performed well enough to beat out Dobbs for a spot on the 53-man roster, but the Steelers originally chose the third-year player over the rookie.
Breaking the FCS record for passing while at Samford University in Alabama, Hodges thew for 14,566 yards and 111 touchdowns. Appearing in 44 games in his four seasons with the Bulldogs, Hodges completed 69% of his passes (1,310 completions on 1,896 attempts).
One interesting item of note is Hodges was not originally signed by the Steelers immediately following the 2019 NFL draft. Much like the recently released Tuzar Skipper now of the New York Giants, Hodges earned a spot on the preseason roster via tryout at rookie minicamp.
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