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How he fits: MyCole Pruitt

The Steelers signed veteran tight end MyCole Pruitt to a one-year contract.

Pruitt (6-2, 245) is a bit undersized, but he has played as a move tight end/fullback throughout his nine seasons in the NFL.

Initially a fifth-round pick of the Vikings in 2015 out of Southern Illinois, Pruitt showed excellent athleticism at the NFL Scouting Combine, posting a 4.58-second 40-yard dash and 38-inch vertical jump.

Pruitt has spent time with six different NFL teams, but has become a favorite of new Steelers offensive coordinator Arthur Smith.

See photos of Steelers newly-signed TE MyCole Pruitt

After playing for the Vikings, Bears and Texans, while also spending some time with the 49ers, Pruitt joined the Titans when Smith was the tight ends coach in 2018.

In 2022, he left Tennessee as a free agent and was signed by the Falcons, where Smith had moved as head coach.

In 109 career games, 39 of them starts, Pruitt has 71 receptions for 748 yards and 12 touchdowns. In his past two seasons with the Falcons, Pruitt caught 25 passes for 260 yards and five touchdowns. Pruitt has been considered an above-average run blocker at the tight end position in his career.

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He'll join a crowded tight end room with the Steelers that already includes starter Pat Freiermuth, second-year pro Darnell Washington, a third-round pick in 2023, third-year pro Connor Heyward and Rodney Williams on the Steelers' roster.

All four were on the Steelers' roster for the majority of last season, with Williams holding down a spot as a special teams player.

Smith has liked to use multiple-tight end sets as a coordinator, meaning the Steelers could keep four tight ends again in 2024.

Pruitt played 122 special teams snaps in 2023 for Atlanta, but Heyward and Williams were at 247 and 189, respectively, with Williams getting to that total despite being on the practice squad for the first four games of the season.

Pruitt would be competition for that third or fourth tight end spot, or could serve as insurance in case of an injury at the position prior to the start of the season.

He also gives the Steelers another player, along with recently signed wide receiver Van Jefferson and running back/return man Cordarrelle Patterson, who played for Smith in Atlanta last season.

That could be critical in terms of providing veteran leadership as the team installs a new offense under Smith.