The Steelers will elevate punter Brad Wing from the practice squad for the second straight week with punter Pressley Harvin III out with a hamstring injury, the team announced on Saturday.
In his first NFL game in over six years last week against the Houston Texans, Wing proved that he could still punt at an NFL level. Wing said he felt like he had to warm up to the game a little, but by the end, he was feeling about normal.
He led the XFL with a 47.6 per punt average this spring and was one of the few bright spots for the Steelers on Sunday, averaging 47.6 yards again, with one kick downed inside the 20 and another that should have been.
Wing called the moment “bittersweet,” with his return to the NFL coming amid the Steelers struggling as a team against a Texans team they did not expect to be blown out by last week.
Wing got his life straightened out and returned to football this spring, playing for Hines Ward’s San Antonio Brahmas of the XFL. He led that league in punting average and had the longest punt of any player in the league.
“I loved it, man,” Wing said. “I thought my football days were over, I thought I’d never play again, so I was just really grateful to be out there playing, and having Hines Ward just made it a whole lot sweeter.”
He was one of several players the Steelers tried out at punter since letting Braden Mann go at the end of the preseason. He said he wasn’t surprised that the Steelers were the team to give him another shot. Wing will automatically return to the practice squad after the game. The Steelers do not need to clear a spot on the 53-man roster to make Wing a game-day elevation. He can be elevated from the practice squad three times this season.