As the clock ticks closer to the date when the rosters must be paired down to 53, the closer the Steelers get to the decision of whether or not to keep free agent running back, Isaac Redman. Without a doubt, Redman has turned some heads in training camp, but with the rise of fellow rookie, Stefan Logan, and the need to undoubtedly increase field position in the return game, Logan could be the unlikeliest of players to have a hand in Redman not making the roster. Redman has been working on special teams as well, but is clearly not a threat to fellow special team ace, Carey Davis and Davis can carry the rock in an emergency situation as well. Although I currently have Redman as making the final 53 man squad in my prediction, it is in no way a lock. By carrying Redman, the Steelers in essence would have to carry 5 running backs on the roster. Logan is listed as a wide receiver officially, but can play running back as well, God forbid.
Redman\’s two touchdown performance against the Arizona Cardinals in week one of the pre-season is long in the rear view mirror as is his performance in the camp goal-line drills. If Redman were to be released in the final round of cuts, he would have a 99% chance of clearing waivers and a chance to sign to the practice squad. The Steelers coaching staff know what they have in Redman, Redman can continue to work on his conditioning and knowledge of the special teams and running back position and be one injury away from making the 53 man squad. In the mean time, the Steelers will give Willie Parker, Rashard Mendenhall and Carey Davis every opportunity to prove they can handle short yardage and goalline carries. If all three are unable to, Redman is a roster move away.
In closing, carrying 5 running backs on the final 53 man roster is fruitless, especially if one is your special teams ace in Davis. Davis has to be active on Sundays and for Reman to stand on the sideline for 3 carries a game is taking away from a game day roster spot that is needed. If Parker, Mendenhall, Moore or Davis were dinged up going into the season, it would be feasible to carry Redman, but with Moore clearly recovered from his hamstring injury and Davis ankle injury being a slight sprain, Redman undoubtedly now will be part of the final roster cuts and headed to the practice squad. The final 53 man roster is a numbers game and Redman is number 54 at this point and time.