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Steelers Re-Sign RB Trey Edmunds, OL Jarron Jones to Future Contracts

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The Steelers have re-signed running back Trey Edmunds and offensive lineman Jarron Jones to a reserve/future contracts for the 2021 season, the team announced on Friday.

Edmunds’ singing comes just three days after the Steelers waived him. The team removed Edmunds from the injured reserve list on Tuesday and put him through waivers. He would have been a restricted free agent at the end of the season, but clearing waivers made him a street free agent and eligible to be re-signed to a future contract.

Edmunds, 26, just finished his third season with the team. He appeared in four games, playing mostly on special teams, before suffering a hamstring injury in the team’s Week 10 win over the Cincinnati Bengals that caused him to spend the rest of the season on the injured reserve list.

In 2019, Edmunds saw his most extensive playing time, and carried 22 times for 92 yards for a 4.2 yards per carry average while also racking up six tackles and an interception on special teams.

Edmunds was waived by the Steelers earlier in the 2020 season, but was re-signed by the club on Nov. 10.

A 6-foot-2, 223-pound running back out of Maryland, Edmunds spent his rookie season in 2017 with the New Orleans Saints before catching on in Pittsburgh. He is the older brother of Steelers strong safety Terrell Edmunds.

Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman Jarron Jones (74) practices at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex preparing for a Week 6 matchup against the Cleveland Browns, Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020 in Pittsburgh, PA. (Karl Roser / Pittsburgh Steelers)

Jones spent the entire 2020 season on the Steelers practice squad, and then the practice squad injured reserve after suffering an injury late in the season. The Steelers originally signed Jones in April after he spent time with the New York Guardians of the XFL. The Steelers released the Notre Dame alum at the outset of training camp and signed him to the practice squad.

In October, Jones was arrested and charged with two felonies after police responded to a call for domestic disturbance at a home in the city’s Crawford-Roberts neighborhood. Jones allegedly strangled his girlfriend, hit her and the face and struck her with a gaming console, police allege.

A preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for April 13 in front of magistrate Kim Berkeley Clark after being postponed twice.

Steelers Transactions

Report: Steelers Restructure Contract of DL Cam Heyward

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The Steelers have restructured the contract of veteran defensive lineman Cam Heyward, according to a report by Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.

Heyward is entering the first season of a four-year, $71.4 million contact extension that he signed last September.

His contract calls for a $4.5 million salary and a $6 million roster bonus for the 2021 season, along with $4.05 million of prorated signing bonus for a total salary cap hit of $14.55 million.

With a full restructure, all of Heyward’s roster bonus and his salary for 2021, save for the $1.075 veteran minimum, will be converted into a signing bonus, paid out now and spread out of the four years of the contract for salary cap purposes.

That will make Heyward’s salary cap hit for 2021 $7.481 million, a savings of nearly $7 million.

Heyward is one of only a couple players the Steelers can restructure this offseason, along with fellow defensive lineman Stephon Tuitt and kicker Chris Bowell. The team is not expected to be able to get under the salary cap with restructures alone, and releasing or extending players may also be required.

Heyward, 31, started 15 games for the Steelers in 2020, recording 54 tackles, seven for a loss and four sacks. He also had 19 quarterback hits, three passes defended and an interception.

After the season, Heyward was named second-team Associated Press NFL All-Pro, the third time in his career he’s been named an All-Pro player. He was also selected to the 2021 NFL Pro Bowl, the fourth straight season he was elected to play in that game.

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Steelers Transactions

Steelers Sign OT Aviante Collins to Future Contract

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The Steelers have signed free agent tackle Aviante Collins to a future contract for the 2021 season, the team announced on Tuesday.

Collins, 27, visited with the Steelers on Jan. 22. He spent the last four seasons with the Minnesota Vikings after joining that team as an undrafted free agent out of TCU in 2017.

Collins played in three games in 2017 and two in 2019 for the Vikings, and spent all of the 2020 season on the practice squad, except for a one-week elevation in Week 11, in which he did not play.

The 6-foot-4, 292-pound tackle its a free agent after the Vikings decided to allow his practice squad contract to expire at the end of the season.

The Steelers have several free agents at the tackle position, including longtime starting left tackle Alejandro Villanueva, 2019 starting right tackle Matt Feiler and 2020 starting right tackle Zach Banner and backup Jerald Hawkins.

The Steelers have 2020 starting right tackle Chukwuma Okorafor under contract and Anthony Coyle, Jarron Jones, John Leglue and Brandon Walton signed to futures contract.

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Steelers Transactions

Former Steelers QB Devlin Hodges Signs with LA Rams

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Former Steelers starting quarterback Devlin “Duck” Hodges has signed a future contract with the Los Angeles Rams for the 2021 season, he announced on Twitter on Sunday.

Hodges signed with the Steelers in 2019 on a rookie camp tryout out of Samford. He earned a contract at rookie camp and impressed in training camp, causing the team to feel comfortable trading third-string quarterback Josh Dobbs to Jacksonville.

After injuries to Ben Roethlisberger and Mason Rudolph, Hodges was pushing into service, playing in eight games and starting six for the team in 2019.

Hodges threw for 1,063 yards while completing 62.5% of his passes. He threw for five touchdowns and eight interceptions for a 71.4 quarterback rating. The Steelers went 3-3 in games Hodges started.

After the Steelers re-acquired Josh Dobbs in the 2020 offseason, Hodges was bumped to fourth on the team’s depth chart and was not activated at any point during the 2020 season.

The Steelers replaced Hodges by signing former Washington first-round pick Dwayne Haskins to a reserve/future contract last week.

Hodges, wide receiver Deon Cain, running back Wendell Smallwood and kicker Matthew Wright were the only four players that finished the season on the Steelers’ practice squad that were not retained by the team.

Cain has signed with the Baltimore Ravens, while Wright has inked a contract to join then Detroit Lions.

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