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Steelers Roster Cuts: 4 surprises and 4 disappointments on cut down day

The Pittsburgh Steelers have trimmed their roster from 90 to 53, and we cover the biggest surprises, and disappointments, after the dust settled.

Carolina Panthers v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

In one day, the Pittsburgh Steelers, along with the rest of the NFL, had to make some extremely difficult decisions when it came to trimming their roster. Unlike the past when teams could trim their roster from 90 to 75, and then 75 to 53, this year it was one cut down from 90 to 53.

In other words, a lot of players got some bad news Saturday.

As for the Steelers, it is worth looking at some surprises, and some disappointments, when it comes to the team’s decisions which were made to get the roster number to 53.

Just for clarification, a surprise would be someone who wasn’t necessarily expected to make the roster, while a disappointment would be someone who should have made the roster, but for whatever reason didn’t.

Here we go...


Daniel McCullers — The biggest reason this was a surprise was how L.T. Walton, and Tyson Alualu, could both play nose tackle if Javon Hargrave got injured. Nonetheless, McCullers plays special teams and goal line situations, and the team must value that enough to give him a roster spot.

Terrell Watson — It isn’t as if I haven’t been rooting hard for “the nightmare”, but how many times have fans seen a player who performs well in the preseason get cut based on the number game, and the depth chart above them. Nonetheless, Watson steamrolled his way through Fitzgerald Toussaint and Knile Davis to make this team. A pleasant surprise.

Xavier Grimble — Maybe I just didn’t recognize the reported strides Grimble was making as a blocker, but it seemed as if Grimble and Vance McDonald were both the same type player. Good size and speed, lacks consistency as a pass catcher. Nonetheless, Grimble lives to play another game, and it will be up to his blocking to prove his playing time.

Mike Hilton — Similar to Watson, fans have been pulling hard for the former Ole Miss cornerback, but he left the team no choice but to keep him. The small, but big, Hilton did nothing but make plays, and his next challenge is to continue his style, and productivity, into the regular season.

Honorable Mention: Justin Hunter, Jerald Hawkins, Coty Sensabaugh, Cameron Sutton (injured), Brian Allen


Senquez Golson — There is no way anyone would rank higher than Golson on the disappointed list. The former 2nd round draft pick played ZERO preseason snaps. Not one. He barely practiced since entering the NFL. As a big supporter of Golson after years one and two, it was time to cut their ties and take their losses with a player riddled with nothing but injuries.

Colin Holba — When you spend a 6th round draft pick on a long snapper, you better hope he makes the team. Unlike the Buccaneers who blew a second round pick on a kicker, the Steelers now look at a wasted pick in Holba after his release. Antonio Brown and Tom Brady are freaks of nature in round six, but this still stings.

Fitzgerald Toussaint — At a time when the running back depth chart was as thin as ever, an injury likely did him in. The lower body injury suffered by Toussaint opened up the door for Terrell Watson to run through it, literally. The man who some remember only for the fumble in Denver in the 2015 playoffs, is now unemployed.

Knile Davis — Davis was supposed to be the primary kick returner, something he excelled at in Kansas City, and a backup running back for the Steelers in 2017. Instead, he was cut due to being ineffective at both positions. Thankfully, the Steelers didn’t put a lot of money into Davis as a free agent acquisition.

Honorable Mention: Demarcus Ayers, David Johnson, Johnny Maxey, Trey Williams