The Steelers have promoted tight end Kevin Rader to the active roster from the practice squad, the team announced on Tuesday.
Rader took the place on the active roster of Ray-Ray McCloud, who was placed on the COVID-19 Reserve List on Tuesday.
His activation coincides with an injury to starting tight end Eric Ebron. Ebron suffered a knee injury in the Steelers’ Week 11 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers. Head coach Mike Tomlin said on Tuesday that he is unsure if Ebron will be able to practice this week.
Rader is in his third season with the Steelers. He spent most of the 2019 season on the team’s practice squad. In 2020, Rader re-signed with the team and again spent most of the season on the practice squad before being elevated for the Week 17 game at Cleveland and the Wild Card playoff game against the Browns.
This season, Rader was elevated to the active roster for the Week 9 game against the Chicago Bears. He played one offensive snap and caught his first career pass for one yard.
As this is a standard elevation, Rader will have to clear waivers if the Steelers wish to return him to the practice squad after Ebron heals.