The Pittsburgh Steelers found another piece to their defensive puzzle on Tuesday when the team announced it had signed former Jacksonville Jaguars defensive lineman Tyson Alualu to a two-year deal. [DavidL]
Per the Associated Press Alualu visited the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday. This was the first of several stops for the free agent. Instead, he ended up sticking around, won over by the chance to join a perennial contender, something that never materialized with the Jaguars.
“Had some tough years out in Jacksonville and wanted something to change, a good change,” Alualu said. “Excited to be here.”
Tyson was a steady but not a spectacular performer. For this reason, Jacksonville chose Alualu with the 10th pick in the 2010 NFL Draft out of California. At this point, many thought the team would choose local hero Tim Tebow to run the offense.
After seven seasons, Alualu is still in the league. He can offer the Pittsburgh Steelers another veteran in the locker room. On the other hand, Tebow is playing Class-A baseball for the New York Mets. Furthermore, in his career in Jacksonville, he spent time inside at tackle and outside at an end. Consequently, he recorded 17.5 sacks. All things considered, at 6-foot-3 and 295 pounds, he could move around the field in defensive coordinator Keith Butler’s scheme.
“Wherever they want me to play, I’m all for it,” Alualu said.
Right now, Alualu is listed with the second team at defensive end behind Cameron Heyward. If he moves inside, he could backup Javon Hargrave over center.
Alualu’s speed is an asset. Above all, he runs a 4.87 40-yard dash. In fact, in the first game of the regular season on September 12, Alualu recorded his first career NFL sack. It came in a 24–17 victory over the Denver Broncos. Meanwhile, over the course of the season, Alualu started all 16 games, recording a total of 38 tackles and 3.5 sacks. The National Football Post, Pro Football Weekly, and the Sporting News named Alualu to the All-Rookie Team following his rookie season