The Pittsburgh Steelers have invited 33 players to the team’s three-day rookie minicamp (May 12 -14, 2023), a figure that does not include the team’s rookie draft picks, rookie undrafted free agents or 1st year players. All told, there are 51 players on Pittsburgh’s 2023 minicamp roster, including a few individuals who spent time with the club last year, like former Ohio State running back Master Teague and former San Diego State offensive guard William Dunkle, who is said to play “with a nasty streak.”
QB Bryce Perkins Appeared in 5 Games for the Rams in 2022
More notably, still, are some of the names on the tryout list, which includes a pair of quarterbacks. One is former Clemson and Northwestern QB Hunter Johnson, a former 5-star recruit who was ranked ahead of former No. 5 overall pick Tua Tagovailoa coming out of high school, but went on to throw for just 1,100 yards over the course of his college career.
The other tryout quarterback is former Rams signal-caller Bryce Perkins, who played collegiately at Virginia after transferring from Arizona State. Last year, Perkins — 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds — appeared in five games for Los Angeles (with one start) and completed 19 of 34 passes for 161 yards, with one touchdown pass and two interceptions, as per NFL.com. His lone touchdown pass came against the Kansas City Chiefs, a 6-yard toss on a 4th-and-1.
Johnson and Perkins are hoping to get a chance to come to training camp, where 1 of the 2 could compete with rookie undrafted free agent Tanner Morgan (Minnesota) for the 3rd-string QB job. Morgan is the cousin of former No. 1 overall pick Tim Couch.
Ex-Ravens TE Nick Boyle is Trying Out … as a Long Snapper
Yet another interesting name on the tryout list is veteran NFL tight end Nick Boyle, a former 5th-round pick of the Ravens (Delaware) who has played for Baltimore for the last eight seasons. According to Teresa Varley of Steelers.com, Boyle isn’t necessarily aiming to get signed as a tight end; instead, he’s trying out as a long snapper, hoping to get a chance to compete with current Steelers LS Christian Kuntz.
Boyle has appeared in 90 regular-season games, with 53 starts. But all but three of those starts came before 2021. To date he has been credited with a total of 121 receptions for 1,049 yards and four touchdowns, with a career long of 35 yards.
Other Notable Steelers Rookie Minicamp Invitees
Also getting a look-see at Steelers rookie minicamp are a pair of players with local ties, namely University of Pittsburgh linebacker Tylar Wiltz and Duquesne University wide receiver Dwayne Menders.
The Steelers also invited five players from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU’s) including Alabama State defensive lineman Brandon Gaddy, Fort Valley State cornerback Tyler Moore, Morgan State running back Alfonzo Graham, Virginia Union offensive tackle Darian Bryant and North Carolina A&T center Dacquari Wilson.
Former Jackson State head coach Deion Sanders (now the head coach at Colorado), recently blasted the NFL’s teams for drafting just one player from an HBCU, that being cornerback Isaiah Bolden, who played for Sanders at Jackson State.