For a brief time, there seemed to be a fly in the ointment, with Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporting that the organization was dithering about signing Dustin Colquitt in the wake of his physical.
Yet it seemed clear the Steelers were itching to make a change at punter.
As Dulac noted, the Steelers added punter Corliss Waitman to their practice squad, and “how many teams do that?”
Dustin & Craig Colquitt
But this afternoon the Steelers announced the signing via a post on the team’s web site.
If you’re not familiar with the Colquitt name, Dustin Colquitt is the son of Craig Colquitt, who punted for the Steelers between 1978 and 1984, averaging 41.3 yards per punt on 429 kicks, with a long of 74 yards. During his six seasons in Pittsburgh, Craig Colquitt never had a kick blocked, and he was the punter on two of Pittsburgh’s Super Bowl champion teams.
Dustin Colquitt has played his entire 15-year NFL career with the Kansas City Chiefs after he was a third-round pick of the Chiefs in the 2005 NFL Draft. Like his father, he attended college at the University of Tennessee. He has a career average of 44.8 yards per punt, having punted 1,124 times in 238 career games with a long of 81 yards. He is a two-time Pro Bowl selection, in 2012 and 2016. He has had only 98 career touchbacks as compared to 462 punts downed inside the 20-yard line.
Dustin Colquitt won Super Bowl LIV with the Chiefs last season, but the team released him in April in a cost-saving move. His 238 games are a franchise record for most games played.
Dustin also has a brother with extensive experience as an NFL punter. Britton Colquitt—also went to the University of Tennessee—has kicked for the Miami Dolphins, Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns and Minnesota Vikings.
Jordan Berry Released
To make room for Dustin Colquitt on the roster the Steelers released punter Jordan Berry, who had been with the team since 2015. Berry was entering the last year of his contract, which was scheduled to pay him $1.8 million this season. The Steelers realize $1.8 million in cap savings by virtue of the cut, but $375,000 in ‘dead money’ goes onto the team’s 2020 salary cap.
During the course of his Steelers career Berry punted 328 times for an average of 44.2 yards per punt with a long of 79 yards, that kick coming during his rookie year.
As of this moment, Corliss Waitman remains on the team’s practice squad, along with 14 other players. The Steelers have room to add one more player to the squad, possibly recently-released quarterback Devlin ‘Duck’ Hodges.
Steelers Team Captains Announced
In other news from today, the Steelers have announced their team captains for the 2020 season.
Ben Roethlisberger and Maurkice Pouncey are the captains for the offense, Cameron Heyward and T.J. Watt are the captains for the defense, and Jordan Dangerfield is the special teams captain.
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