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Adam Podlesh: 'I thought to myself, at best, I'm going to have a special needs child and wife'

The harrowing story of the former Steelers punter Adam Podlesh, who was robbed of a chance to make the team's 2014 roster due to a placental abruption suffered by his wife during delivery of their son, Carter.


Adam Podlesh will go down in Steelers transactions history as a player who signed a contract with the team. But he never donned a uniform nor even punted in a practice, let alone a preseason game. He never made the roster.

Podlesh's wife was pregnant with the couple's son when Podlesh signed a one-year deal with the team in April. She was due around the time training camp would begin. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin and Podlesh agreed Podlesh would be with his wife when she delivered and he'd report to the team a few days later.

That would never happen.

ESPN's Tania Ganguli penned an excellent feature on the struggles of this never-to-be Steelers punter, showing the heart of the Steelers' organization never abandoned the Podlesh family and how considerations above football are factored into the decisions of a team in certain circumstances.

Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger slaughtered the Colts.

Podlesh was favored to win the team's starting punter job, but rookie Brad Wing won it by default, more or less. It had to be even more difficult for Podlesh, a cancer survivor who has bounced around the NFL ever since a successful run of punting in Jacksonville and Chicago.

Perhaps he'll get a shot next year in Pittsburgh. Wing has been neither spectacular nor terrible, sitting at 17th in the league with a net average of 39.5. Either way, he should have the support of Steelers Nation, and the hope of all fans is that he'll get an opportunity to continue his career.

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