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Welcome to Steel Town Xazavian Valladay

By John Toth

Photo Credit- Arizona Sports

This past week the Steelers signed running back Xazavian Valladay who was released by the Houston Texans. He ran 4 times for 8 yards in the Texans first preseason game, and was then released afterwards.

He played his college ball at Wyoming and at Arizona State and although he wasn’t invited to join the combine, he ran a 4.46 40 yard dash during his Pro Day. Valladay had two 1,000 yard seasons at Wyoming and this past season at Arizona State he ran for 1,192 yards and 16 touchdowns. Though he was not drafted, he was a player who got a lot of interest after the draft.

His speed and cutback ability are his strengths. He averaged 5.5 yards a carry this past season, and he attacks the outer edges of defenses putting pressure on the second level. He has good hands and works well in space, and could be used in passing situations.

He tends to lose balance and does not do well at the point of contact with his slender build. He will bounce a lot outside instead of taking what is given to him up the middle.

The Steelers have Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren and signing Valladay could be a warning to Anthony McFarland. With the lack of depth at running back, Valladay could add another option for a team that is lacking a true 3rd-down back. For many this signing may go unnoticed, but it just may be worth paying attention to as the Steelers march on towards cut day.

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