With center Maurkice Pouncey facing a three-game suspension for his actions against the Cleveland Browns last Thursday, the Steelers decided to beef up their depth on the offensive line on Wednesday by re-signing interior lineman J.C. Hassenauer to their practice squad.
Hassenauer, 25, spent the offseason and training camp with the Steelers after playing for the Birmingham Iron of the AAF in the spring. The 6-foot-2, 295-pound Alabama grad has mostly played center, but also suited up for the Steelers at guard in training camp. He played in all four preseason games with the Steelers this August.
With Pouncey out, veteran backup B.J. Finney is expected to start at center. The Steelers also have rookie guard Derwin Gray on the active roster and second-year center Patrick Morris on the practice squad.
Pouncey’s appeal was held on Tuesday, but the results of that have not yet been made public. He is not allowed to practice while suspended.
Rader was in his second stint on the practice squad this year after also working with the Steelers all offseason. Rader is a Pine-Richland and Youngstown State alum.