Lawson signed his rookie contract Monday, BuffaloBills.com reports.
The real question is how much time Lawson's recent shoulder surgery ends up costing him during the first year of his contract. Right now, the team seems to still love the value they got in the middle of the first round, and Lawson's attitude in offseason practices seems to be impressing anyone. However, it may be awhile before we see him in action again. Manny Lawson will serve as the placeholder for Shaq Lawson's presumed starting OLB spot while the rookie continues to heal.
Watkins expects to be ready for the start of training camp July 30, TSN.ca reports. "For training camp, I think I'll definitely be available," Watkins said. "I might sit out two or three days. It's all about how I feel within those days. The goal is to come back and be prepared for training camp."
Watkins had surgery in April to address stress fractures in his left foot, with most reports suggesting he had a Jones fracture, which is a common injury that typically sidelines players for 8-12 weeks. The timetable puts him on track for training camp, and he's no longer wearing a walking boot or limping. Still, Watkins made it clear he'll take a cautious approach, even conceding that he'll need to test his foot out when the Bills open camp. Given the high rate of re-injury with foot fractures, the team may opt to be even more cautious than Watkins wants.
Hughes finished the 2015 season with 52 tackles, five sacks, four passes defensed, two forced fumbles, and one fumble recovery. He played in all 16 games for the fourth straight season, while seeing action on 92.5 percent of the defensive snaps.
Hughes picked up 67 points in standard IDP scoring after putting up 90 the previous season, and that's mostly due to the drop in sacks. If your league counts passes defensed, he closed that gap a bit. In truth, almost every member of the Bills' defensive line struggled with Rex Ryan's new system, and there's little reason Hughes can't get back to double-digit sacks in 2016 as his familiarity in a complex scheme grows. Hughes also took some dumb penalties in 2015, and it won't sit well with the coaching staff if he doesn't clean that up permanently.
Bell (knee) said Tuesday he will be 100 percent healthy for the start of training camp, Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
Bell is already doing individual work, including running and cutting, at the first round of OTAs. Although the Steelers will likely take things slow, Bell is nearly seven months removed from tearing his MCL, which should give him more than enough to get ready for camp. Despite suffering season-ending injuries the past two years, he has a strong argument to the first running back drafted, offering an unparalleled combination of running ability, receiving skills and team context.
Green, who underwent ankle surgery following the 2015 season, expects to be ready in advance of training camp, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
Green dealt with some ankle issues last season, but the situation was addressed by the procedure. The Steelers put the tight end through a physical before inking him to a four-year, $20 million deal, so evidently there's no real injury concerns on their part. In any case, Green fills a big need for the Steelers at the tight end position following the retirement of Heath Miller, who caught 60 passes for the team in 2015. While Miller -- a long-time fixture in the Pittsburgh offense -- isn't an easy act to follow, Green is viewed as a player with untapped potential, after having worked behind Antonio Gates in San Diego over the past four seasons.
Bryant was never under consideration of being cut by the Steelers despite his recently imposed year-long suspension, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports.
Bryant's multiple violations of the league's substance abuse policy triggered a minimum one-year suspension from the league, but the Steelers never considered releasing him, according to general manager Kevin Colbert. Instead, Pittsburgh will hope Bryant makes the necessary changes to his life to get reinstated next year, when he would have two years remaining on his contract with the team. With Bryant suspended, Steelers receivers Markus Wheaton and, more specifically, Sammie Coates, will be looked upon to take advantage of their increased opportunities this season.
Mitchell confirmed Friday that he's had surgery on his left shoulder and left hand this offseason, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports.
Mitchell has been afflicted by injury throughout his two seasons with the Steelers, but no DNPs dot his game log during that stretch. In 2015, he racked up a career-high 80 tackles (58 solo), while contributing three interceptions, two forced fumbles, and two fumble recoveries. It's unclear if he'll be ready for the start of the offseason program in April, but his availability for the 2016 season doesn't appear to be in peril.