The Steelers have claimed center Ryan McCollum from the Detroit Lions and released center Nate Gilliam, the team announced on Tuesday.
This marks the Steelers’ fifth cut of the day after they had trimmed their roster down to 85 earlier in the day. It is the third offensive line transaction the Steelers have made after releasing Jake Dixon and Chris Owens prior to Tuesday’s 4 P.M. cut down.
Ryan McCollum was undrafted out of Texas A&M in 2021. Afterward, he signed with the Houston Texans and made it onto their practice squad. McCollum would later be signed from the Texans practice squad by the Detroit Lions in October. Throughout the rest of the season, McCollum would remain on Detroit’s active roster, but he was released on Monday before the cut-down deadline. McCollum was a four year starter for Aggies, becoming captain for the team in five games during the 2020 season.
Gilliam’s release by the Steelers does come as much of a surprise. The Steelers had a number of issues with his snaps during the entirety of training camp. As such, he was demoted to the fourth-string center at one point and worked more at guard. The Wake Forest product was on the practice squad late in the season, and was re-signed in January to a futures contract. Gilliam also worked with the Los Angeles Chargers prior to Pittsburgh.
The Steelers now have shuffled the deck on the offensive line chairs, as they have brought McCollum in off waivers and signed William Dinkle from the Eagles. It appears that the Steelers wanted to get some new fresh faces on the team to see if anyone else could push for the practice squad spots. McCollum now will likely be the third team center behind Mason Cole and J.C. Hassenauer, who man the first and second units.