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Steelers claim Jamir Jones off waivers, release Derrek Tuszka

The Pittsburgh Steelers welcome a familiar face back to the team in Jamir Jones.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Buffalo Bills Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers have been working on their 53-man roster since the league mandated cut downs happened on Tuesday, and their tweaking continued Thursday. In a surprising move, the team made the decision to bring back a familiar face and claim Jamir Jones off of waivers after he was released from the Jacksonville Jaguars. To make room for Jones on the roster, the Steelers decided to release OLB Derrek Tuszka.

Jamir Jones signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers in April 2021 as he participated in Notre Dame‘s pro day after he was not on an NFL roster in 2020. Jones managed to find his way onto the Steelers 53-man roster to start the season ahead of sixth-round draft picks Quincy Roche. Jones appeared in three games for the Steelers in 2021 with one start where he played 36 defensive snaps and had three tackles and a quarterback hit. Following Week 3, Jones was released by the Steelers in favor of keeping Derrek Tuszka. To start the 2022 season, Jones was brought back at the expense of Tuszka remaining on the roster.

Jones was claimed off waivers when released by the Steelers and spent the majority of the 2021 season with the Los Angeles Rams. In 10 games with the Rams, Jones had five tackles and a quarterback hit. He was released prior to Week 16 and was claimed off waivers by the Jacksonville Jaguars where he appeared in the final two games of the season with two tackles. Jones initially made the Jaguars 53-man roster on Tuesday, but was released Wednesday when Jacksonville was awarded five players off of waivers.

As for Derrek Tuszka, he appeared in 15 games with the Steelers in 2021 where he played 247 defensive snaps and 194 on special teams. Tuszka had 18 tackles and 2.0 sacks in 2021, along with a forced fumble.

The Steelers depth at the OLB position now looks vastly different than it did throughout training camp.

  • T.J. Watt
  • Alex Highsmith
  • Malik Reed
  • Jamir Jones

Jones’ familiarity with the Steelers organization not only played a role in his return, but his ability to also understand the defense and schemes will help him get acclimated sooner than most would expect.

Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they fill out their practice squad and prepare for the Week 1 matchup vs. the Cincinnati Bengals.