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Steelers Waive Highly Touted Practice Squad Tackle

The Pittsburgh Steelers have waived highly touted practice squad tackle Kellen Diesch, the team announced on Monday.



Pittsburgh Steelers OT Kellen Diesch
Pittsburgh Steelers tackle Kellen Diesch at practice on Jan. 3, 2024. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

The Pittsburgh Steelers have waived offensive tackle Kellen Diesch, the team announced on Monday.

Diesch spent all of the 2023 season on the Steelers practice squad, and had participated in the team’s rookie minicamp at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex over the weekend, before being released.

A 6-foot-7, 300-pound tackle, Diesch joined the Pittsburgh practice squad on Aug. 30 after having spent training camp with the Chicago Bears. The third-year pro out of Arizona State is extremely athletic, and posted a 9.75 Relative Athletic Score coming in his pre-draft testing in 2022 thanks to a 4.89-second 40-yard dash, 4.43-second shuttle, 32.5-inch vertical, and 9-foot-2 broad jump.

A Dallas native, Diesch started his college career at Texas A&M. He played four seasons with the Aggies, mainly as a reserve. He transferred to Arizona State in 2020 and immediately became a starter and two-time All-Pac 12 selection.

Diesch was listed as one of the best practice squad players in the NFL by CBS Sports last season, but was never elevated for a game with the Steelers. Pittsburgh did not have many injuries along the offense line last season, and Diesch had been stuck behind starters Dan Moore Jr. and Chuks Okorafor, first-round pick Broderick Jones, Dylan Cook and Spencer Anderson.

This offseason, the depth chart at tackle is just as crowded, with the Steelers again using a first round pick on a tackle, landing Washington’s Troy Fautanu. He’s replacing Okorafor at right tackle, but the Steelers still have Moore, Jones, Cook and Anderson.

They also signed two external free agents this offseason in Tyler Beach and Devery Hamilton, both of which were retained on the roster over Diesch.

With his release, the Steelers now have one vacant slot on their 90-man offseason. They already signed one player that was a tryout at rookie camp last weekend, veteran cornerback Anthony Averett, and could be making space to add another.

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May 13, 2024 8:30 pm

Didn’t know he was highly touted. First I’m hearing of him. Just getting used to the team needing a WR, Harris wanting to leave, Tomlin needing to be fired, missing out on Dupree etc… and more negativity from the media as usual….