Aug 10, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Ziggy Hood (96) on the sidelines against the New York Giants during the first half at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Free Agency: Pittsburgh Steelers See Ziggy Hood, Jonathan Dwyer Sign Elsewhere


So far in NFL free agency, the Pittsburgh Steelers have gained one, but lost four.

According to a Thursday morning report from Jaguars beat writer John Oehser, defensive lineman Ziggy Hood has agreed to terms on a contract with Jacksonville. Combine that news with the Wednesday departures of running back Jonathan Dwyer (Arizona), fullback/tight end David Johnson (San Diego) and defensive end Al Woods (Tennessee).

That exodus is countered by the signing of free-agent safety Mike Mitchell, but the Steelers’ depth has taken a hit in the past 24 hours.

Hood, 27, was a first-round pick of the Steelers in 2009 and never missed a game in five seasons with Pittsburgh. He matched his career high in sacks last year with three and chipped in 26 tackles primarily from the defensive end position. In the wake of Woods’ departure, Hood’s flight to Florida turns up the heat on Pittsburgh to add at least one D-lineman in the upcoming draft.

Related: What can Mike Mitchell bring to the Steelers?

The 24-year-old Dwyer penned a deal with Arizona in the hopes of rejuvenating his somewhat-stalled career. After decent part-time results in 2012, the former Georgia Tech rusher got just 49 carries last fall. Former Steelers offensive coordinator and current Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians added Dwyer to help fill the void left by the retired Rashard Mendenhall.

Johnson, 26, would qualify as a fringe player, but he has made his name in his blocking ability, especially in the running game. His most prolific offensive season was 2011, when he started 16 games and made 12 catches for 91 yards.

Keep it here on City of Champions for more coverage of NFL free agency from a Pittsburgh perspective.

Tags: NFL Free Agency Pittsburgh Steelers Ziggy Hood

  • Nine

    Okay, so we lost 4 backups….

    • Matt Gajtka

      Yeah, pretty much. Figured I’d group them all together.

    • TiVoMan

      Yeah, but a team needs good back-ups, too! The way the Steelers have been sitting on their hands, they may have a few more back-ups and starters to replace!!! If you think they can add all of te pieces they need in the draft, just go back and check the “fruit” from the B&G’s “pickings” from the past 5-6 years of drafts. Not a good record, to say the least—-some rotten fruit, a lot of unripe (untested—eg, Wheaton) fruit, and very little good fruit (Thomas? Bell?—-I still think we will long regret passing on Lacey when we took Bell). If things don’t improve drastically before the draft, can you say r-e-b-u-I-l-d?( While Ben gets older and more battered while we wait for that awful “r” period to yield good fruit!)

  • bk

    We can always bring back Isaac Redman.