The Pittsburgh Steelers have made their final roster cuts, and with the news comes several surprises of players who are no longer on the team's roster, but are now searching for employment. For some, it won't take long as they will clear waivers and be placed on the team's practice squad. For others, it will be a simple transaction of placing an injured player on injured reserve to free up a roster spot.
Of the players who were released, the biggest surprise might be running back Josh Harris. Harris, who saw snaps in the team's playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens in the 2014 AFC Wild Card game, was expected to back up DeAngelo Williams during Le'Veon Bell's absence to start the season. However, due to a shoulder injury in the early portion of camp, and a foot injury in the team's preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, he was left with only two games to prove his worth. In the Buffalo Bills and Carolina Panthers game Harris didn't show much, averaging only 2 yards per carry. Harris could be signed to the practice squad if the team feels he is capable of showing more with more time in the system.
A surprise for many might be the release of versatile offensive lineman Doug Legursky, but it is expected Legursky will return once Maurkice Pouncey is placed on the short-term injured reserve list.
Other surprises among the many who were released is 7th round draft pick Gerod Holliman. After flashing incredible ball skills in college, notching 14 interceptions in his final year at Louisville. However, Holliman didn't show much in the preseason, and a large part of that was not being able to get on the field. When coaches put players like Alden Darby and Jordan Dangerfield on the field over Holliman, it speaks of Holliman and his ability at the NFL level. Like Harris, Holliman will likely be sought after for the practice squad if he clears waivers.
Most of the tough decisions the Steelers faced were made for them through injuries and trades, but the team keeping players like Roosevelt Nix and Tyler Murphy could also be thought of as surprises. With Nix in the lineup and the team keeping Will Johnson, look for Johnson to carry the ball in the first two games behind DeAngelo Williams while Bell is out for suspension.
Although the team has gotten to the league-mandated 53 players, their roster is far from written in stone. Look for the team to make moves as they monitor the waiver wire of quality players who are being released by other NFL teams.