The Pittsburgh Steelers are still in search for a running back to add to their thin backfield. Earlier during the offseason, the Steelers lost Rashard Mendenhall to free agency and released Chris Rainey due to off-the-field issues. Currently, Pittsburgh only has running backs Isaac Redman and Jonathan Dwyer on their depth chart.
Today, the Steelers are set to meet with free-agent running back LaRod Stephens-Howling. The four-year veteran was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the seventh round of the 2009 NFL Draft. Stephens-Howling has primarily been a backup through out his short career, and could be a good addition to Pittsburgh’s backfield for 2013.
Redman and Dwyer didn’t prove last season that they are worthy of being a feature back for the Steelers. Stephens-Howling’s added versatility would be good for Pittsburgh’s running back-by-committee. The 25-year old running back has the youth that the Steelers could use. In addition, the fact that Stephens-Howling doesn’t have much wear-and-tear on his body is a definite plus.
Not only could Stephens-Howling contribute in the running game, he can also be an asset as a returner on special teams. In 2009 and 2010, Stephens-Howling, who played at the University of Pittsburgh, returned a total of three touchdowns on kickoff returns.
The Steelers already has met with running back Ahmad Bradshaw last week. However, there is some concern about his health.
I believe that out of all of the available free-agent running backs, Stephens-Howling is probably Pittsburgh’s best bet. Not only will he be a good fit for their offense, he is perhaps the best talent the Steelers can get for a cheap price.
Clyde A. Speller is an NFL writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @ClydeASpeller, or add him to your network on Google