By: Josh Taylor, KDKA-TV Sports
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Jaylen Samuels is no stranger to doing more than one job. So it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that he’s taking on multiple tasks during Pittsburgh Steelers’ OTAs.
Samuels, selected 165th overall by the Steelers in the fifth round of this year’s draft, says he’s learning the running back and slot receiver positions, which is actually a scaled down description of the multiple positions he played at North Carolina State. He was listed on the roster as a tight end, but also played at tailback, fullback and wide receiver.
“I’m just trying to take it one day at a time, learn one position at a time, and then expand on that so I can play faster,” said Samuels.
During his college career, Samuels rushed for 1,107 yards on 182 carries and caught 201 passes for 1,851 yards with 28 total touchdowns in 50 games. His overall versatility makes him a more than capable potential backup for starting running back Le’Veon Bell.
Besides his overall body of work on offense, Samuels also says he’s trying to learn as much as he can both on offense and special teams. He also averaged 19.2 yards on 12 kick returns in college.
“It’s hard at first, but I’ve been doing it all my life,” he said. “Once I get it, it’s going to start to come easy. I’m going to start to learn more plays, getting more comfortable around the guys, learn from the vets, and I’ll be able to play faster and make more plays.”
Samuels is competing for a roster spot with returning players James Conner, Fitzgerald Toussaint, and Stevan Ridley.