The Pittsburgh Steelers signed former undrafted tight finish Dax Raymond to their roster final week and now the Utah State product ought to get an opportunity to earn a minimum of a follow squad spot with the staff throughout coaching camp. Earlier this week, Raymond was a visitor on the Aggies All of the Manner Podcast and he talked early in his interview about what led to the Steelers eager to signal him with out even placing him via a exercise.
“They instructed me that that they had seen my movie and so they had a fairly good draft grade on me coming into the draft final yr, however due to earlier accidents and whatnot, they had been hesitant, Raymond stated. “And now seeing that I used to be open and accessible, they nonetheless had curiosity in me, and so they thought that is their likelihood to seize me and so they did. And I’m completely satisfied about it.”
Raymond, who was signed initially by the Chicago Bears as an undrafted free agent in Might of 2019, opened final season on the groups Reserve/Injured checklist. He was then waived by the Bears with an damage settlement however did circle again to their follow squad in October. Raymond spent the ultimate 11 weeks of the 2019 common season on the Bears follow squad and this previous week he talked about what his rookie season was like.
“It was nice, it was my first yr within the NFL, Raymond stated. “I undoubtedly discovered so much in Chicago. There was a whole lot of tight ends, which made it actually onerous simply to get any alternatives. However I believe for me, it was an excellent yr simply to get my toes moist and study from older guys. And clearly the Bears waived me after the yr, however for me it was an excellent yr. I really feel like I developed a ton and I’m excited to take what I’ve discovered and assist the Steelers out in any approach that I can.”
Raymond additionally talked about what it’s like being a participant on an NFL staff’s follow squad.
“It’s a whole lot of enjoyable,” Raymond stated. “You get to mimic a whole lot of actually good tight ends. Every week I had the enjoyable problem of making an attempt to dam Khalil Mack each week. So, for those who’re training in opposition to him, you’re going to be prepared for anybody. So, I took that problem each week being follow squad and having Khalil Mack come at me daily.
“So, it’s enjoyable. You’re a part of staff. It’s the game-day you don’t get to exit on the sphere, which is difficult for positive as a result of that’s what we’re all there for is for the video games. And my game-day was the padded practices after I can go head up with Khalil Mack and different nice gamers.”
It’s apparent that Raymond is pleased with the time he bought to follow in opposition to Mack and that the Bears edge-rusher, who was the NFL’s highest paid defensive participant till just some weeks in the past, left an enduring impression on him.
“He taught me so much,” Raymond stated of Mack. “He undoubtedly put me in my place, that’s for positive.”
Raymond, nonetheless, is aware of that Mack most likely made him a greater blocking tight finish within the course of.
“I had no complaints about it,” Raymond stated. “You already know, it wasn’t actually about, am I going to beat him or how shortly is he going to beat me? So, so long as I might maintain my floor for a second longer every day, I used to be pleased with how I used to be doing.”
After coming from a staff within the Bears that had an unlimited quantity of tight ends on their roster final yr throughout coaching camp, Raymond admitted that he seemed on the quantity the Steelers had at that place and the form of competitors he confronted upon making the choice to signal with them.
“Yeah, for positive, you look at that,” Raymond stated. “You don’t wish to get too into it as a result of every thing’s modified day in and day trip. However they’ve an excellent tight finish room. There’s a ton of tight ends right here as effectively that I can study so much from. Yeah, me saying a ton of a struggle ends, it’s nonetheless half as many as there was in Chicago. That’s additionally an excellent factor. After I noticed that, that’s one other nice motive to come back right here.”
Signing with the Steelers also needs to end in Raymond having the ability to catch just a few passes from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger within the coming weeks and that’s one thing else that Raymond stated has him enthusiastic about touchdown with Pittsburgh.
“Oh yeah, that that’ll be a dream come true, that’s for positive,” Raymond stated about the potential for catching passes from Roethlisberger. “It’ll be a thrill when it occurs and you already know, I’ll be excited for it and I gained’t overlook it, that’s for positive.”