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Predicting Steelers First Round of Roster Cuts

The Pittsburgh Steelers need to trim their roster before 4 p.m. ET Tuesday, Aug. 17.

PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Steelers will trim their roster from 90 to 85 on Tuesday, Aug. 17, beginning their journey to 53 by Aug. 31.

This is the first of three rounds of cuts before the Steelers have their 2021 roster. Players who are hunting for a practice squad spot won't be moved at this time. Really, it's the players who have run out of reps for the Steelers to give them that will end up being the first five gone.

Teams have until 4 p.m. Tuesday to decide who stays and who goes. The Steelers have plenty of candidates. These five should be the first ones off the roster, though.

T.J. Carter, Nose Tackle

There's a lot of defensive linemen in Pittsburgh who ride that "average" line. Unfortunately, they're here to fill gaps while those with potential but are still developing wait their turn.

Carter is below that line. He isn't Henry Mondauex or Isaiah Buggs, and he certainly isn't Carlos Davis or Isaiahh Loudermilk.

The Steelers have too many defensive linemen that are in line for reps to worry about keeping another one around. Therefore, Carter finds himself on the outside looking in after the first five cuts.

Malcolm Pridgeon, Guard

The Steelers are more worried about meshing their starting offensive line than finding third-stringers. In front of Pridgeon is B.J. Finney, who's still fighting for a roster spot, and Rashaad Coward, who was in contention to start until this past weekend.

Pridgeon is just in a position group that doesn't need him right now. The Steelers wouldn't have many reps to award him in the final two preseason games, and so, they'll likely cut him before Tuesday at 4 p.m.

Jamar Watson, Linebacker

Watson has not impressed at training camp. He's slow in coverage, is clearly behind a pretty decent group of backup inside linebackers, and when he tries to play the outside, he gets lost in the defense.

The Steelers tried to find a place for this linebacker but there doesn't seem to be one. Pittsburgh wants to see what guys like Ulysees Gilbert III and Jamir Jones can do during this second half of camp, not players like Jones.

Brandon Walton, Offensive Tackle

Walton has had off days and on days, but he's within a group that's probably going to keep Joe Haeg over him - even if they shouldn't.

Walton is last in a group of tackles fighting for a roster spot. The Steelers will look to utilize Aviante Collins and Chaz Green over the next two weeks to try and take reps off Chuks Okorafor and Zach Banner.

There's not enough room for this many offensive tackles. Walton is the first to go.

Tony Brooks-James, Running Back

This was a toss-up between Brooks-James and Pete Guerrero. Both could find themselves gone in the next 48 hours or on the roster. Really, it depends on which of the two they feel has had a better week leading up to cuts.

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Brooks-James has played well in a limited capacity, but he's been here longer than Guerrero. That shouldn't say a ton, but it might be enough for Pittsburgh to try and see more of Guerrero in the next week.

Neither will make the team, but only one will be gone in the first round of cuts. Brooks-James is the assumption.

Noah Strackbein is a Publisher with AllSteelers. Follow Noah on Twitter @NoahStrack, and AllSteelers @si_steelers.

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