Examining the Pittsburgh Steelers' roster:
Rookie Brendon Kaye would really have to outplay Jones to take the 2013 fourth-round draft pick's spot on the roster.
RUNNING BACKS (4)
The Steelers can stash one or two running backs on the practice squad in case they are needed because of injuries. Why carry a fourth running back on the 53-man roster -- Johnson is a hybrid fullback/tight end -- if is he is not going to see the field.
WIDE RECEIVERS (5)
After watching the first two practices of training camp I agree with the observation that offensive coordinator Todd Haley made last month: Some good wide receivers are not going to make the team because of a numbers crunch. Heyward-Bey is one of my last ones in as far as the 53-man roster.
TIGHT ENDS (3)
I had Rob Blanchflower making the team in my initial projection of the 53-man roster. But I only hear good things about Palmer and how valuable he is as a special-teams player. Blanchflower makes the team if the Steelers keep four tight ends though I pretty much count Will Johnson as a tight end
OFFENSIVE LINEMEN (8)
A veteran group will be tough to crack for fifth-round draft pick Wesley Johnson, and he may need the Steelers to keep nine linemen to make the team. If the Steelers think they can sneak the versatile Johnson onto the practice squad they keep the veteran Whimper over him.
DEFENSIVE LINEMEN (7)
I'm sticking with Keisel returning to the Steelers at some point during camp or the preseason. He can still help the Steelers as a situational player and they will have a rotation at left defensive end.
I'm trying to find a place for Terence Garvin on the 53-man roster because I like him and think the Steelers do as well. I think sixth-round pick Jordan Zumwalt is headed for the practice squad unless the Steelers are confident he can play outside as well as inside.
Isaiah Green will be part of the discussion though his chances are hurt if the Steelers only keep five cornerbacks. I have six making the team -- for now.
This position appears to be as set as running back. The biggest question is whether Allen will hold off Thomas as remain the Steelers' No. 3 safety. I like Robert Golden but he could be a numbers-crunch casualty.
Podlesh has yet to report to camp because his wife is due to give birth any day now. He will have to hold off Brad Wing, whose talent is undeniable but lacks Podlesh's experience and NFL track record.