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How departed Steelers are doing elsewhere

As the Pittsburgh Steelers prepare for their Week 7 matchup against the Rams in Los Angeles, one of the many story lines is two players on the Rams from the Steelers 2022 roster who have currently found success with their new team. With cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon and guard Kevin Dotson currently making an impact in Los Angeles, as well as the Steelers already facing several other former players in the first five games, perhaps it is a good time to see how recently departed Steelers are doing elsewhere in the NFL.

For this exercise, we will be looking strictly at players who finished the 2022 season on the Steelers 53-man roster. Someone such a wide receiver Chase Claypool who was traded midseason last year has been left out at this time since there were plenty of other players. Additionally, a player such as Myles Jack who was with the Philadelphia Eagles for a while before deciding to retire, will not be looked at because they have not played in a regular season game in 2023.

Listed with each player will be their new team, how much they have played this season, and some key statistics. All stats with the exception of sacks surrendered and Pro Football Focus (PFF) scores are coming from Pro Football Reference. The other two categories are from PFF.

Cam Sutton
Detroit Lions

6 games, all starts
100% of the defensive snaps
1 pass defensed
20 tackles
70.8 PFF score

Sutton signed a very lucrative deal which pays him $33 million over three seasons with the Detroit Lions. Although he hasn’t come down with an interception through their first six games, Sutton has played 100% of the snaps that he’s been making a significant impact in the Lion’s secondary.

Ahkello Witherspoon
Los Angeles Rams

6 games, all starts
95% of the defensive snaps
2 interceptions
4 passes defensed
12 tackles
66.6 PFF score

Through six games, an argument could be made that Witherspoon has been the Rams most impactful defender outside of Aaron Donald. While it could frustrate Steelers fans that Witherspoon is showing such promise, he did so at times with the Steelers. The problem with Witherspoon was his inconsistency as well as his availability due to injury. Whether or not Whitherspoon will be able to avoid these two things with the Rams throughout the season remains to be seen, but he has started off on the right foot.

Arthur Maulett
Baltimore Ravens

4 games (1 start, 2 inactive)
25% of total defensive snaps, 37% of snaps in games played
3 passes defensed
1 sack
7 tackles
64.8 PFF

After having a disagreement when it came to a contract extension for Maulet following the NFL draft this past spring, the Steelers granted him his release and he landed in Baltimore. Seeing a similar role in their defense, Maulet was inactive the first two weeks of the season but has been utilized much more over the last three weeks including getting a start against the Tennessee Titans.

Kendrick Green
Houston Texans (IR)

4 games (1 start, 2 inactive)
51% of total offensive snaps, 72% of snaps in games played
0 sacks surrendered
58.9 PFF

Landing in Houston after training camp when the Steelers traded him, Kendrick Green got a helmet right away and logged three special teams snap the first week of the season. But for Week 2 Green became the starter at guard and played every snap until he was hurt against the Steelers late in the game. Unfortunately, Green landed on the Reserve/Injured List (IR) and a return this season may be unlikely.

Kevin Dotson
Los Angeles Rams

3 games (3 starts, 1 inactive)
47% of total offensive snaps, 99% of snaps in games played
2 sacks surrendered
85.3 PFF

Another player traded following the preseason, Kevin Dotson was inactive for the Rams first three games before moving into the starting lineup due to injuries in Week 4. Through three games, Dotson is now the highest graded guard according to PFF. While in Pittsburgh, Dotson showed some really great offensive line play at times, but, much like Ahkello Witherspoon, struggled with inconsistency as there were costly penalties and surrendered sacks. Dotson has two games scored in the 80s with the Rams by PFF with one grade coming in the 60s. To compare, Dotson and also saw two grades in the 80s with a Steelers last year but with plenty of others that were not. Whether or not Dotson and can keep up this pace with the Rams will be interesting to watch.

Robert Spillane
Las Vegas Raiders

6 games, all starts
100% of the defensive snaps
2 interceptions
1 sacks
49 tackles
70.4 PFF

Already facing the Steelers earlier this season, Robert Spillane has played every snap on defense for the Raiders through six games. Additionally, he’s come down with a couple key interceptions. The biggest improvement with Spillane in Las Vegas appears to be in his pass coverage which has scored much higher this year than his time in Pittsburgh.

Devin Bush
Seattle Seahawks

3 games (1 start, 2 inactive)
16% of total offensive snaps, 24% of snaps in games played
3 tackles
68.7 PFF

While Seahawks fans thought they were getting a steal of a former top 10 pick, things haven’t been all sunshine and rainbows for Devin Bush so far in the Pacific Northwest. A healthy scratch for the Seahawks twice this season, including their most recent game, Bush is merely a rotational piece at this time. But I guess he was right when he said last year we was still going to be in the NFL even if it wasn’t with the Steelers.

Terrell Edmunds
Philadelphia Eagles

6 games (2 starts)
64% of the defensive snaps
0 passes defensed
1 forced fumble
19 tackles
63.3 PFF

Playing every game so far this season, Terrell Edmunds is not being utilized as much as he was in Pittsburgh as he is playing just shy of 2/3 of the snaps in Philadelphia. Credited with one forced fumbles so far this season, Edmunds isn’t setting the world on fire with the Eagles but also hasn’t proven to be a liability through their first six games.


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