The news out of Pittsburgh wasn’t good for Racine native John Clay.
Clay, the former Park High School and University of Wisconsin standout who was injured during Sunday’s practice, was waived by the Pittsburgh Steelers Tuesday after the Steelers activated offensive tackle Max Starks from the physically unable to perform list. The Steelers signed rookie running back Jason Ford to take Clay’s spot on the roster.
The 24-year-old Clay was injured during Sunday’s practice and was taken off the field on a cart.
“John Clay has a hip or groin injury,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said on Steelers.com. “We don’t know the significance of it. He went down in a lot of pain. We’ll evaluate him and see where he is.”
Reports said Clay may have a torn quadriceps muscle.
The Steelers had the day off Monday and returned to practice Tuesday.
Clay declared for the NFL draft after his junior season at Wisconsin, but went undrafted. He signed with the Steelers as an undrafted free agent and spent the majority of the season on the practice squad. After running back Rashard Mendenhall went down with an ACL injury, Clay was activated for a game against the St. Louis Rams Dec. 24 and responded with a 10-yard touchdown run on his only carry in the Steelers’ 27-0 victory.
Clay played in one more game and finished the season with 10 carries for 41 yards.
Starks was signed by the Steelers just before the start of training camp and missed the first two weeks of practice while rehabbing from a torn ACL in his right knee.
Ford, who played collegiately at the University of Illinois, signed with the Houston Texans in May as an undrafted free agent.
The Steelers placed Clay on the waived/injured list, meaning they are responsible for Clay’s salary until the injury has healed.
The Pittsburgh Post Gazette reported that once Clay clears waivers, he can be re-signed and placed on injured reserve.