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2024 NFL Draft

Steelers among Several Teams Interested in Northwestern LB



Pittsburgh Steelers 2024 NFL Draft Prospect Northwestern LB Bryce Gallagher

The Pittsburgh Steelers continue to work diligently throughout the month of April ahead of the NFL Draft to find new talent, especially on the defensive side of the ball.

Northwestern linebacker Bryce Gallagher is one player that Steelers are showing interest in, according to Bradley Locker of Steel Curtain Network. He spent the past five seasons with the program, playing in 41 games from 2019 to 2023, making 316 tackles, 162 solo, 15.0 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, two interceptions, five passes defended, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.

Most of Gallagher’s production came in the past three seasons, as he served mostly as a reserve special teams player his first two seasons, making just five appearances.

He made a career-highs in sacks with 5.5 in 2021, solo tackles with 58 in 2022 and tackles with 120 in 2023. His 120 tackles last season ranked tied second in the Big Ten and 20th in the FBS, alongside Wisconsin safety Hunter Wohler.

Gallagher competed at Northwestern Pro Day in early March, doing the 40-yard dash, shuttle run, vertical jump and position work. Steelers director of college scouting Mark Sadowski was in attendance to watch Gallagher.

The Steelers are not alone in showing interest in Gallagher, who will likely end up as one of the top undrafted free agents (UDFA) this month.

He has set visits up with NFC North teams in the Green Bay Packers and the nearby Chicago Bears, as well as the New England Patriots. The Carolina Panthers, Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions and Indianapolis Colts have also shown interest in Gallagher.

The Steelers have drafted just three players ever from Northwestern. This includes running back Frank Aschenbrenner with the 38th pick in the Sixth Round in the 1947 NFL Draft and both offensive tackle Trai Essex with the No. 93 overall pick in the Third Round and running back Noah Herron with the No. 244 overall pick in the Seventh Round of the 2005 NFL Draft.

Essex spent seven seasons with Pittsburgh from 2005-11, winning two Super Bowls and playing in 74 games, while starting 28, including all 16 in 2009.