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Steelers Transactions

Steelers Sign Athletic Rookie Running Back



Steelers Xazavian Valladay

UNITY TWP., Pa. — The Pittsburgh Steelers are set to sign running back Xazavian Valladay, his agent told Mike Garafalo of NFL Network.

Valladay was waived by the Houston Texans on Sunday and cleared waivers. The Steelers will sign him to a new contract, instead of making a waiver claim, which would have meant they would have absorbed the free agent bonus guaranteed to Valladay by Houston.

A 6-foot, 200-pound Chicago native, Valladay signed with the Texans this spring after going undrafted out of Arizona State. In his one season with the Sun Devils, Valladay played in 10 games, rushing 215 times for 1,192 yards (5.5 yards per carry) and 16 touchdowns. He led the team with 1,481 all-purpose yards.

Before his one season at ASU, Valladay was one of the best running backs in Wyoming history. He played four seasons with the Cowboys, racking up 3,281 yards and 19 touchdowns, leaving Laramie as the second-leading rusher in program history.

In the pre-draft process, Valladay showed elite speed, running a 4.46-second 40-yard dash, and also posted a 40-inch vertical jump and a 10-foot-3 broad jump. His overall Relative Athletic Score came in at a 9.46 out of 10.

When he first signed with the Texans, he was expected to be a player that could be an immediate contributor, drawing comparisons to former star UDFA running back Arian Foster.

The Steelers do not have an obvious need for Valladay, with their first three running backs — Najee Harris, Jaylen Warren and Anthony McFarland Jr. — seemingly locked into roster spots.

Darius Hagans, John Lovett and Greg Bell have played behind the first three. Only Hagans and Bell dressed in the preseason opener on Friday, with Lovett still working his way back from an undisclosed injury.

The Steelers will need to make a roster move to fit Valladay on their 90-man offseason roster, which is presently full.