Steelers Sign Fort To Practice Squad, Release Galambos

The Pittsburgh Steelers made a practice squad change Wednesday morning that included a few linebackers being shuffled.

One day after being released from the Steelers 53-man roster, linebacker L.J. Fort was signed to the practice squad. To make room for Fort on the 10-man squad, linebacker Matt Galambos was released.

Fort was released from the 53-man roster so that fellow linebacker Steven Johnson could be re-signed. Fort registered two special teams tackles in the Steelers Sunday opener against the Cleveland Browns.

Galambos was signed this year as an undrafted free agent out of Pittsburgh. After failing to make the 53-man roster at the start of the season, he was signed to the practice squad.

  • Thomas

    Oh thank God! He will be back on roster before season’s end fo sho

  • D.j. Reynolds

    I’m glad to hear we still have him. Risky move, but seems to have turned out well for us!

  • srdan

    Colbert doing his thing again.

    I wonder how much of the moves are the “New Steelers” now that the Dan is no longer with us. I wonder if he pushed for stability over trying to imporve the fringe of the roster.

  • Richard

    Maybe Johnson got an offer from another team, thus initiating our counter moves.

  • Ray Istenes

    Still don’t get it.

    Fort > Johnson in my book all day long.

  • falconsaftey43

    They seem to like Johnson better on ST, which is the role of the 4th ILB. Plus they get to keep both this way.

  • Kenneth Wilt

    This whole thing is weird to me. Too many moves and it really doesn’t impact us very much.

  • Talyn Scarbrough

    Maybe, we didn’t really do anything out of the ordinary by Colbert standards except more trades and acquisitions. We didn’t bring in pro bowl talent (Joe Haden excluded), we just worked on depth and filling in a few missing pieces like Vance Mcdonald. Granted, Vance hasn’t shown up but Outlaw did and so long as we improved the position does it really matter who stepped up?

  • NCSteel

    Whack a mole

  • falconsaftey43

    OMG! I can’t believe he made it to the practice squad! How did literally every team not put in a waiver claim for this All-Pro LB we foolishly released!?

  • srdan

    haha you gotta read your first two sentences. That is what I was pointing out.

    But yes I do think it matters that it’s outlaw out there. In the redzone, probably not. But between the 20s we need a tight end who can stretch the field and attack the middle of the field. He just isn’t athletic enough.

  • Conserv_58

    IMO, these moves make perfect sense as it relates to the depth at the LB position. Fort and Johnson provide veteran depth that Galambos can’t. It’s no secret that the ILB depth is the weakest on the team and I think this is Colbert’s way of adding more experienced depth at that position. What is perplexing is that these moves put Johnson above Fort on the depth chart.

    According to the Steelers’ official depth chart, Tyler Matakevich is Vince Williams’ backup. When I looked at which player backs up Shazier there is no name listed.

  • stan

    Its not like the team has had to fight off other offers in the past. I was presuming this would happen.

  • falconsaftey43

    You must have missed to multitude of fans the other day saying this was going to be the doom of the Steelers, that Fort was sure to get claimed and be a star for the Patriots haha. A lot of fans always think whoever we cut is getting claimed and will be amazing somewhere else.

  • Dirque Leyr

    Johnson is not eligible for the practice squad. Plus if he started on the roster for the first game, his contract would be guaranteed which makes cutting Johnson should another Practice Squad need/roster need easier. This is about working the rules for roster flexibility not straight X >Y.

  • Bradys_Dad

    OK, All-Pro may be a reach (unless this was sarcasm in which case I applaud you) but I am very happy that LJ is back with us. I like his play and attitude. Absolutely no doubt he’ll be back on the 53 before the season’s over. Injuries will practically guarantee this.

  • Conserv_58

    It has nothing to do with the Steelers changing their core philosophy.

    If you read Colbert’s statement after the final cuts were made he provided clarity as to why he made the trades he did, when he did. It had everything to do with the NFL’s change in their cut down policy, a policy change that Colbert said he didn’t like or agree with.

    Most notably was, once all of the cuts were made to get team’s rosters down to the mandated 53 players, it caused an unprecedented flurry of trades that in the past didn’t happen in when teams were afforded two cut down dates, one to get to 75 players and the second to get to the final 53. The reason for the unprecedented flurry of trades was because teams were now entering the week leading up to the their first regular season games and it caused a mad scramble to sign players teams had their eyes on and to get them in and ready before the first game.

    As can be seen that change in the NFL’s cut down policy didn’t allow teams the extra week to bring in the players they were interested in and get them acclimated to their system.

  • falconsaftey43

    extreme sarcasm haha. a lot of fans were freaking out yesterday that he’d be claimed (as people always do). And of course he wasn’t claimed (because it almost never happens). I like Fort too, had a good pre-season. Johnson is still probably the better ST player (which is mostly what the 4th ILB is doing), and this juggling has allowed them to keep both for now, so good stuff.

  • Conserv_58

    I forgot about Johnson not being elegible. Thanks for reminding me. It explains why, on paper, Johnson is ahed of Fort on the depth chart.

  • falconsaftey43

    Not to mention he made similar trades the last two years for Boykin and Gilbert, and trading away Brad Wing. Nothing new, just happened to make more of them this year.

  • srdan

    But that is my point. Certainly there was more activity from our FO. Time will tell.

  • Conserv_58

    Correct, but as Colbert said the new cut down policy forced teams to have to make the flurry of trades they did because they were entering their first week of the regular season. They didn’t have that additional week that the old policy gave them to get players acclimated.

  • srdan

    I don’t think the core philosophy has changed at all. And yes, we made trades last few years. But there was a lot more trading and signing this year from us. I think part of it is that Colbert really is in win now mode, and he saw opportunities to improve. But I do wonder if in teh past there were chances to replace Goldens back up role and Rooney pushed for stability. Who knows.

  • Conserv_58

    Did you bother to read my post? I explained why there was more activity, especially based on Colbert’s explanation for doing so.

  • srdan

    But i’m not sure your point is valid. If you call it a preseason, who cares if it is in one or two weeks for how many trades you make?

  • Conserv_58

    It is valid based on what Kevin Colbert had to say about why he didn’t like the change to the cut down rule.

  • srdan

    What did he say, i must have missed it.

  • Conserv_58

    Colbert admitted that there is a win now mentality to how he conducted his business. Didn’t Tomlin say they’re putting their chips all in on this season or was it Colbert?

  • Conserv_58

    You basically repeated what I said.

  • Conserv_58

    I don’t know about that because LJ was doing a very good job on ST’s.

  • srdan

    Right, but don’t you think we have had this put all your chips into this season for the last 3 years. It feels like it’s been superbowl or nothing. But this year the moves reflected it. I just wonder if Dan disagreed with changing the roster. Certainly we have been the least turned over roster in the NFL for some time now. Do you agree?

  • LucasY59

    posted this yesterday on the article about the team releasing Fort and signing S.Johnson: Fort to the PS? it couldve been the plan from the start, not gonna guarantee SJ’s veteran salary so keep LJ through week 1 (which gives Fort a little extra $) and then swap him and Steven out after the 1st game, gives them 5 ILBs that are roster worthy but only uses 4 spots on the 53, better deal for LJ than just going straight to the PS after the cutdown from 90, and Johnson should be ok with it also since he is collecting a game check (until they need a roster spot for a different position?) Moats could also factor into this a little since he is somewhat position versatile (or was earlier in his career)

    *glad LJ was able to be signed back, like I said above it makes the overall ILB depth better (and they dont have to keep 5-6 ILBs on the 53 roster like they did last yr) also glad Fort was willing to sign on the PS, I think he understands there isnt enough room (at this time) for him but the organization still values him and want him on the team, and that it is a good organization to be part of with the possiblity of being on a successful championship contending team

  • Conserv_58

    Look it up. It shouldn’t be difficult to find since it was only a couple of weeks ago. In fact, the Depot had a thread related to Colbert’s interview.

  • Conserv_58

    No. I don’t think they had that mentality for the past three years. They didn’t have the sense of urgency three years ago that they do this year because Ben wasn’t thirty-five and seriously contemplating retiring.

    As far as Mr. Rooney disagreeing with changing the roster I highly disagree with that because there is no evidence proving that he meddled in the day-to-day operations. That’s not how Mr. Rooney operated. When he turned the team over to Art II, he stepped back and took on a role of an adviser to Art. Art has been the power behind the scene since his dad, Mr. Rooney turned control over to him.

  • falconsaftey43

    yes, that’s why we saw an increase in trades across the league. just pointing out that this type of trade in general were nothing new to Colbert.

  • nutty32

    They’ll probably flip-flop them again should an ILB get injured. Another poster was pointing out that having Johnson from Week 1 would have guaranteed his entire salary. This way, they can cut/waive injured Johnson w/o a financial hit. Johnson is the better special teamer.

  • Talyn Scarbrough

    I wasn’t attempting to contradict. I was only agreeing but not coming straight out and saying it lol. My bad for the confusion though. In retrospect shouldn’t have said “maybe”.

  • nutty32

    Also think people forget that any team can sign any player off any other team’s practice squad. They’re essentially free agents that get to stay in shape and practice with a team.

  • Dennis Nevinsky

    Reason for the move. Johnson wasn’t eligible for the practice squad. Fort was eligible for the practice squad. They kept for for the 1st game, then placed him on the Practice Squad. That way he will make the same $ as if he was a member of the 53 man squad. We then signed Johnson. Another team probably isn’t going to pay Fort more money than he is now making on the practice quad. Now we really have 5 inside linebackers.

  • Froggy

    LJ Fort is a 27-year-old marginal NFL player. Steven Johnson is a 29-year-old marginal NFL player. Neither of them has any chance to develop into a starter, and it’s actually kind of amazing if you think about it that some people are really concerned about which one is on the roster.

  • ND_Steel

    Maybe they didn’t look as hard at him since he was “terminated”?

  • Jason Dock Dudley

    fort is not very good and neither is johnson in the regular rotation. Both are good special teams player but it appears the team like johnson better. Also by doing the moves this way they do not have to pay johnson a years salary since he is vested and they keep forte which seemed to be something they want.

  • Jason Dock Dudley

    yes but they also have to agree to leave and the team taking them must keep them on the active roster for three weeks. The team can also block the move by activating said player to the active roster. They did that (block the move) with chickillo.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    when is jordan coming back?

  • Richard Edlin

    So, someone else wanted LJ Fort but the Steelers preferred Johnson? So the team cut Johnson, kept Fort and then once cut-downs finished (so that the other interest disappeared), they cut Fort and picked up Johnson, then placed Fort on the practice squad?

  • JoeZepup

    Galambos played a lot of special teams snaps and Danny Smith seemed to like him there. Any chance he can get back to the practice squad? Young ILB who could help us next year.