The Pittsburgh Steelers have released running back Jaylen Samuels from their practice squad, cutting ties with their fifth-round pick from the 2018 NFL Draft.
Samuels had been on the practice squad the entire 2021 season after being released from the 53-man active roster at the outset of training camp.
The Steelers got a lot out of Samuels in his first two season. He rushed 122 times for 431 yards in 2018 and 2019, but saw his role with the team gradually decrease with the additions of Benny Snell in 2019 and Anthony McFarland in 2020. Last season, Samuels carried the ball just nine times for 28 yards.
It was McFarland’s return to health that precipitated Samuels’ departure, as the Steelers had six healthy running backs for practice at that point. The team elected to keep special teams ace and part-time fullback Trey Edmunds on the practice squad instead of Samuels.
After Samuels’ release, the team signed defensive tackle Chris Slayton to their practice squad. The team was shorted a defensive lineman when Carlos Davis was placed on injured reserve to make room for McFarland’s return.