Every year there are one or two surprise cuts. I'm talking about a guy(s) most of us would say is a near "lock" that ends up not making the final 53. Tomlin has shown a propensity to keep his draft choices over mediocre veterans and i think that pattern will continue. Here are a few names i believe could be on the bubble. Again i'm not saying they are absolutely going to get cut but i believe they are in danger:
McHugh - Spaeth is a better pass catcher than McHugh, and if Miller or Spaeth got hurt i believe we could/would limit our offensive sets to the single TE formations and get by just fine. So what is his real value here? I view him as an adequate blocker but he is certainly not plowing open holes "Dan Kreider-style". We could go with just the two TE's (Miller, Spaeth) and either a running type fullback (Summers, Dwyer) or a true blocking back (D. Taylor) and get by just fine.
Summers - With the drafting of Dwyer, i'm failing to see the necessity of Summers. He's not that good of a road grader fullback and he's not quick or strong enough to play halfback in a pinch. Plus we have some nice depth at RB now which could very easily make him expendable/replaceable.
Gay - If he's so bad that we're bringing in McFadden and anointing him the number two CB even before camp begins, what is Gay's future with this team? A perennial back up? What does he honestly bring to the table that our young(er) guys couldn't do within a year? Very little. I think Lewis, Burnett, and possibly even Butler could be at Gay's level by mid season, given any morsel of real game experience. He's not very physical, he's not a ballhawk, and he's not good at special teams. That's a recipe for the fast track out of Pittsburgh.
Eason - There are really only two tasks we require of our DE's. Stuff the run. And occassionally put a little pressure on the QB. Eason is average at both of these skillsets and i don't think his upside is very high. I don't see him as starter material so why keep him around when Harris could give you about the same thing? I realize Eason brings a little bit of experience, and he is improving, but overall he brings nothing spectacular. He could be gone in favor of Harris or even Worthington if he shows good technique.
Warren - For the love of Pete, will someone else on this team please learn to long snap already? How hard could it be? Seriously? It's a skill. That's it. Just practice a few extra hours a day. Done. If Pouncey can pick it up quick enough we can save a roster spot for the entire season. That would be huge.
Logan - Don't get me wrong, I appreciate his return abilities, especially after watching Davenport two years ago, but the problem with Logan is he can't get on the field offensively. He's not beating out any of our RB's or WR's, especially with the young talent we just drafted. All he does is return kicks and that is just not acceptable anymore. I would be very surprised if Sanders/Brown were not just as productive as Logan in the return game or at least close enough. Logan is in serious jeopardy.
Hartwig - Before the uproar begins, let me say i do believe Hartwig is a near lock. However, i also believe the whole "Pouncey must begin at RG talk is a bunch of crap". Let someone else make the line calls. We just hired a new OL coach, who has no attachment to Hartwig. I fully expect Pouncey to compete for the starting center position in training camp and has a very good chance of winning it. The ONLY reason Hartwig is on our roster is because our younger players have not developed yet. Hartwig is gone next year for sure. To cast him off a year early is not out of the question. He is a terrible center. Just because he started last year does not make him starting center quality (see William Gay).