PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Steelers signed eight players to the practice squad on Wednesday out of a maximum of 16.
Defensive tackle Carlos Davis, guard Bill Dunkle, offensive lineman John Leglue, center Ryan McCollum, running back Anthony McFarland Jr., outside linebacker Hamilcar Rashed Jr., safety Elijah Riley and wide receiver Cody White were all signed to the practice squad after being waived by the team on Tuesday.
McFarland, the Steelers’ fourth-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, was one of the team’s most notable cuts on Tuesday, and his return will provide the Steelers with experienced depth at the running back position. He missed most of the 2021 season with an MCL sprain, but had showed promise in competition with Benny Snell and Jaylen Warren for a backup running back spot this preseason.
Davis was the Steelers’ seventh-round pick in 2020, and also spent most of 2021 dealing with an injury. The Steelers have seven defensive linemen on the active roster, with Davis the only one added to the practice squad so far. His twin brother Khalil Davis and Henry Mondeaux were both with the team in 2021 and part of the final round of cuts.
Rashed looked to have a roster spot locked down after impressing this preseason since being claimed on waivers from the New York Jets, but the Steelers’ 11th-hour trade for Malik Reed pushed Rashed to the practice squad, where he is the No. 5 outside linebacker.
Riley also came to the Steelers from the Jets late in camp and impressed. He is the fifth safety, and with Damontae Kazee banged up, could be in line for an early-season call up to the active roster.
White will start on the practice squad for the third straight season. He was called up last year after an injury to JuJu Smith-Schuster and played in 15 games, making five catches for 33 yards.
Leglue, a versatile lineman that can play all five positions, will again serve as a super sub for the line from the practice squad. In his second year with the team in 2021, he got called up and started five games at guard after injuries to Kendrick Green and Kevin Dotson.
Dunkle and McCollum were both late additions to the Steelers training camp roster. Dunkle was cut by the Philadelphia Eagles and McCollum by the Detroit Lions.
The Steelers can add eight more players to the practice squad at their discretion. Up to two practice squad players can be activated to the game-day roster each week without needing to be added to the 53-man roster. Each practice squad player can be called up three times in a season before they must be added to the 53-man roster.