Donovan Woods tenure on the active squad did not last long, as the Steelers released him yesterday and replaced him with linebacker Rocky Boiman. Joining him on the waiver wire is Keiwan Ratliff, a cornerback whose addition to the team prior to the draft surprised many. The Steelers replaced Ratliff with NFL veteran cornerback Corey Ivy.
All of these moves were designed to bloster the Steelers special teams, which have allowed 4 kickoff for returns, on touchdown on a strip during a punt return, and allowed another on-sides kick that set up another touchdown.
Ratliff, it should be noted got a lot of playing time early in the season during Troy Polamalu’s first stint on the injured list, and failed to impress.
Woods had joined the active roster last week, after the Steelers let go of Arnold Harrison, but the failed to shake up the Steelers special teams, as Kansas City returned the opening kick off 97 yards for a touchdown giving them an automatic 7 points in a game the Chiefs would later win by 3.
Will These Moves Work?
Can Ivy and Boiman contribute to the Steelers special teams? It is hard to say. Special teams is normally the province of the young in the NFL. It is a path that rookies use to make a name for themselves.
However, the Steelers youth have not embraced the opportunity, and it is almost impossible to imagine a scenario where these veterans would come in and make the positions worse.
On the contrary. Steelers Director of Football Operations has an excellent record with bringing in “street free agents.” Let’s hope Colbert’s streak of luck continues.
The Steelers also released running back Justin Vincent from their practice squad and signed offensive lineman Jonathan Palmer. Mike Tomlin confirmed that Charlie Batch does have a fractured wrist, but insisted the Batch would only be out from 2-4 weeks.
The Steelers will hold a roster spot for Batch, depending on how surgery goes.