The Steelers hosted defensive back Bryce Watts for a tryout on Tuesday at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, according to a report by Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network.
The tryout comes on the heels of injuries to both Minkah Fitzpatrick and Ahkello Witherspoon. Fitzpatrick is in the concussion protocol while Witherspoon is working his way back from a hamstring injury suffered Thursday in Cleveland.
Bryce Watts first signed with the Steelers following the 2022 NFL Draft. He was an undrafted free agent out of Massachusetts. However, Watts was injured during the team’s rookie minicamp and was shortly released with an injury settlement shortly thereafter.
The Steelers seem to be on the hunt for some help at defensive back and have played some musical chairs on the practice squad with the position. Last week, the team released Mark Gilbert from the practice squad and signed NFL veteran Quincy Wilson to the practice squad.
Watts moved around a lot while in college. He originally went to Virginia Tech from 2017-18 and started at cornerback in 2018 while appearing in all games as a freshman on special teams or as a defensive back replacement in 2017. He then transferred to the University of North Carolina prior to the 2019 season but sat out that year due to the NCAA’s transfer policy at the time. He later found himself at UMass prior to the 2021 season.
Declaring early for the NFL Draft, Watts racked up 50 tackles, 2 interceptions, and 10 pass deflections in his collegiate career. Now, after an unfortunate injury, Watts will hope to turn this tryout into a second opportunity in Pittsburgh.