The Pittsburgh Steelers activated defensive back Linden Stephens from the practice squad COVID-19 reserve list, the team announced on Monday.
Stephens had just been re-signed to the practice squad on Dec. 12 before being placed into the COVID-19 protocol the following day.
Stephens, 26, was first signed by the team on Oct. 13. Stephens was signed after the Steelers lost cornerback Mark Gilbert, who was signed by the Detroit Lions.
He was released on Dec. 9 as the Steelers cycled through some backup specialists options with a number of active COVID-19 cases on the team. With Stephens’ return, and the subsequent addition of practice squad guard Malcom Pridgeon to the list, the team has just two players impacted by the virus at the moment. Nose tackle Montravius Adams Sr. missed Sunday’s game against the Titans while on the COVID-19 list.
Stephens has been with eight NFL teams, including two stints with the Seattle Seahawks. The 6-foot, 193-pound native of Euclid, Ohio first joined the New Orleans Saints as an undrafted free agent out of Cincinnati in 2018.
In 2020, he re-joined the Seahawks via waivers, and was promoted to the active roster on Sept. 23 following two weeks on the practice squad. Stephens played in 13 games for Seattle last year, playing mostly on special teams.
Stephens was with Washington this offseason, but was waived in August and joined the Baltimore Ravens practice squad. Baltimore released him on Oct. 4.