Key Departures: Byron Leftwich (TB)
Competition to Watch: Dixon v. Batch for the #2 spot
1. Ben Roethlisberger, 2. Dennis Dixon, 3. Charlie Batch<RB
Key Departures: Gary Russell.
Competition to Watch: Mendenhall v. Parker for the feature back.
4. Rashard Mendenhall, 5. Willie Parker, 6. Mewelde Moore<Possible Practice Squad Material: Justin Vincent. He could sneak onto the practice squad another year.
7. Frank Summers<Thanks for Coming to Camp: Ryan Powdrell.
Key Departures: Nate Washington.
Key Additions: Shaun McDonald.
Competition to Watch:<8. Hines Ward, 9. Santonio Holmes, 10. Limas Sweed, 11. Shaun McDonald, 12. Mike Wallace (KR)<Thanks for Coming to Camp: Tyler Grisham, Steven Black Cedric Goodman.
Possible Practice Squad Material: Jayson Foster. Foster could stick as depth in the slot WR/KR role.
13. Heath Miller, 14. Matt Spaeth, 15. Sean McHugh
Miller and Spaeth occupy the more traditional TE role, although Spaeth seemed to be unimpressive as both blocker and receiver last year. Could his job be in jeopardy? McHugh is more in the FB/H-back role, for what little he was used, but rookie David Johnson may have been drafted to test him.
Dezmond Sherrod is back for another try to prove his worth as a blocker.
Possible Practice Squad Material: David Johnson.
Key Departures: Marvel Smith.
16. Max Starks, 17. Tony Hills<LG
18. Chris Kemoeatu, 19. Trai Essex
Essex is currently listed on the Steelers roster as RG, but that undoubtedly will change with Kraig Urbik being drafted to push Darnell Stapleton at that spot. Jeremy Parquet is listed at LG, and it seems like a no-brainer that Essex will move to depth and push Parquet out.
20. Justin Hartwig, 21. AQ Shipley<Possible Practice Squad Material:<RG
Key Departures: Kendall Simmons.
22. Kraig Urbik, 23. Darnell Stapleton<Possible Practice Squad Material: Ramon Foster.
24. Willie Colon <Offense: 24 players.
1. Casey Hampton, 2. Chris Hoke
Last year, the Steelers carried their NT depth 3-deep, with Scott Paxson in as well. Paxson looks more like a 4-3 DT, and unless he switches to DE I think the Steelers can find better overall talent. Age is a concern with Hampton and Hoke, but the front office will likely address this issue next year.
3. Aaron Smith, 4. Nick Eason<RDE
5. Brett Keisel, 6. Ziggy Hood<
Thanks for Coming to Camp: Steve McClendon, Jeff Bradley.
Possible Practice Squad Material:<LOLB
7. LaMarr Woodley, 8. Bruce Davis, 9. Arnold Harrison<LILB
10. James Farrior, 11. Keyaron Fox
Fox has shown ability on STs, but could turn out to be a decent LB in his own right. With the sudden departure of Foote, Fox looks to be all but a lock.
Key Defection: Larry Foote.
12. Lawrence Timmons, 13. Donovan Woods
Woods may be the best bet for additional depth behind Timmons. He was the starting QB at Oklahoma St. before transitioning to safety, and while his biggest contribution has come on STs, he could benefit from sticking to a position and learning another year under Coach Butler. Woods has a better frame to play inside than Bailey, Frazier, or Harrison, but he will be pushed by small-school want-to guys Andy Schantz (Portland St.) and Tom Korte (Hillsdale).
Thanks for Coming to Camp: Tom Korte.
Possible Practice Squad Material: Andy Schantz.
14. James Harrison, 15. Andre Frazier, 16. Patrick Bailey
Bailey sticks more by virtue of being a STs demon.
17. Ike Taylor, 18. Keenan Lewis<Key Departures: Bryant McFadden.
Key Additions: Keiwan Ratliff.
19. William Gay, 20. Deshea Townshend, 21. Joe Burnett (PR)<FS
Key Departures: Anthony Smith.
22. Ryan Clark, 23. Roy Lewis
What happens at FS depth is a huge mystery. Roy Lewis had a nice showing at camp last year, and worked out at safety. Keenan Lewis certainly has the size to transition here.
24. Troy Polamalu, 25. Ryan Mundy, 26. Tyrone Carter
With so much youth behind the starters, I suspect Tomlin may keep Carter as a safety net. Mundy could play either safety spot, whereas Carter looks like someone best suited only to strong. Carter can also still play STs.
Defense: 26 players.
1. Jeff Reed
Reed is in a contract year.
Thanks for Coming to Camp: Piotr Czech.
2. Daniel Sepulveda<Thanks for Coming to Camp: Dirk Johnson
3. Greg Warren<Thanks for Coming to Camp: Mark Estermyer.
Special Teams: 3 players.