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Wednesday April 21 2021
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With McDonald hurt, Steelers add Seahawks TE Nick Vannett

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The Pittsburgh Steelers have acquired tight end Nick Vannett from the Seattle Seahawks for a fifth-round pick in the 2020 draft.

Pittsburgh is in need of help at tight end. The team placed Xavier Grimble on injured reserve Wednesday with a calf injury sustained against San Francisco on Sunday. Veteran Vance McDonald is dealing with a shoulder issue that makes his status for Monday night’s game against Cincinnati uncertain.

Vannett, a third-round pick in 2016, had 48 receptions for 463 yards and four touchdowns in three-plus seasons with the Seahawks, including four catches for 38 yards so far in 2019.

Coach Mike Tomlin called the move necessary to provide the team with depth. McDonald exited in the first half of Pittsburgh’s loss to San Francisco last Sunday. Grimble played extensively in McDonald’s absence but will be out at least the next two months.

Tomlin said Wednesday he’s “optimistic” that McDonald will be available against the Bengals (0-3) and called Vannett’s addition “significant.”

The trade is the second in as many weeks for the winless Steelers (0-3), who acquired defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick from Miami on Sept. 18 in a deal that sent Pittsburgh’s first-round pick in 2020 to the Dolphins.

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