The Steelers hosted veteran linebacker Tanner Vallejo for a visit on Thursday, according to Aaron Wilson of KPRC2 in Houston. Vallejo’s visit comes from injuries at the inside linebacker position that have racked up. The team signed Tyler Murray to the practice squad on Wednesday.
The addition of Murray gives the Steelers five healthy linebackers entering the week of practice. He joins Mykal Walker and Tariq Carpenter on the practice squad, behind starters Elandon Roberts and Mark Robinson on the active roster. The Steelers have had their depth at linebacker depleted by season-ending injuries to Cole Holcomb and Kwon Alexander in the past two weeks.
Vallejo is an interesting player, who came out of Boise State and played on their 2014 Fiesta Bowl roster. In the 2017 NFL Draft, the Buffalo Bills selected Vallejo in the sixth round and he lasted just one season there with the team. Since then, he joined the Cleveland Browns in 2018. In 2019, he was with the Arizona Cardinals and Washington Commanders. But he found a home with the Arizona Cardinals from 2019 through 2022 until this year, where he joined the Minnesota Vikings but was cut in August.
Since that time, Vallejo has not found a new team. In addition, he played in all 17 games for the Cardinals a year ago. Vallejo has started in eight games, including seven over the last two seasons. In his career, Vallejo has racked up 114 tackles, six tackles for loss, and three forced fumbles. He is described more as a downhill player than anything, but his experience could lend itself as useful to Pittsburgh.
Pittsburgh still is relying upon the five players they have in the linebacker room now but could look to sign another veteran who could help out. Vallejo could be that player. However, he does carry some of the same skillset that Robinson and Roberts already carry on the roster.