Pittsburgh Steelers' projected roster

Examining the Pittsburgh Steelers' roster:


Jones did some good things in the preseason opener despite operating behind a porous offensive line. He played the entire second half and No. 4 quarterback Brendon Kay did not see the field in the Steelers' 20-16 loss to the New York Giants.


Poole showed up big-time on special teams in the preseason opener, and the No. 4 running back will have to be able to contribute in that phase of the game. It's still early. The Steelers may only go with three running backs and Johnson as their fullback.


No change here, though Derek Moye and Darrius Heyward-Bey are still very much in the picture. Heyward-Bey, however, needs to get back on the field as he did not play against the Giants because of a concussion.


I don't see the Steelers keeping four tight ends with Johnson slated to play more there this season. Rookies -- and training camp roommates -- Rob Blanchflower and Eric Waters may be battling each other for a spot on the practice squad but it's still early.


I wanted another linebacker so I only have the Steelers keeping eight offensive linemen to start the season. Rookie fifth-round pick Wesley Johnson gets the nod over Guy Whimper and Chris Hubbard even though he barely played last Saturday night. His versatility will land the Vanderbilt product on the 53-man roster.


Defensive end Josh Mauro, an undrafted free agent, is in the discussion here after playing extensively with the second-team defense against the Giants. Defensive end Nick Williams, who spent his rookie season on injured reserve, also did some good things in the preseason opener.


I think Zumwalt is going to show he is a player now that his groin injury is behind the rookie sixth-round draft pick. Garvin is a good special-teams player and is athletic enough to play in pass coverage. I don't have to pick two of three from a group that also includes Jones if the Steelers keep 10 linebackers, though that may be a big if.


Blake is going to be the Steelers' No. 4 cornerback this season and he could make an impact after playing primarily on special teams last season. It is shaping up as a battle between Richardson, Isaiah Green and veteran Brice McCain if the Steelers only keep five cornerbacks.


Jordan Dangerfield, who signed a futures contract with the Steelers last January, continues to flash and warrants watching. Could Allen be in trouble if the Steelers want to get younger at safety?


Punter Adam Podlesh has yet to report to camp because of a personal matter, and the Steelers love the hang time Wing has displayed. The left-footed Aussie has to be more consistent, though, and will presumably find himself in a battle with Podlesh at some point.