Former Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd told The Clemson Insider on Tuesday, though he feels he did not get a true opportunity to make the Pittsburgh Steelers, he has no ill feelings to what he calls a great organization.
“They are one heck of an organization,” Clemson’s all-time leading passer said. “I have nothing but respect for them. I love that organization. They are first class. They have great players and great coaches and I have nothing but respect for the Pittsburgh Steelers.”
Boyd was told of his release following Monday’s practice, and the team officially released him at 9 a.m. on Tuesday. He has 24 hours to be picked up by another team off waivers. If that doesn’t happen then he is officially ruled a free agent.
The Steelers told Boyd he was being released because backup quarterback Bruce Gradkowski had returned from a shoulder injury he sustained in the off-season, and they wanted to see more out of third-string quarterback Landry Jones. They also told Boyd they were concerned with the depth a wide receiver so they wanted to keep an extra wide receiver in camp.
“I will keep pushing through it,” Boyd said. “I don’t know if I ever really got an opportunity with the Steelers. I mean, I got an opportunity, but I don’t feel like I really did.”
Boyd agrees it did not help his chances that former Boston College quarterback Tyler Murphy emerged as a possible Kordell Stewart (Slash) -type player in camp, who can play both wide receiver and quarterback. Murphy gives Pittsburgh an option, if it decided to keep him, to help the team in some capacity as well as flex ability when they do finalize their 53-man roster.
“Tyler makes sense from that standpoint,” Boyd said. “I could see that happening, but I don’t think they would have invested in me if they planned to do that to begin with. When I spoke with (General Manager) Kevin Colbert, before I signed, he told me I was not competing with Tyler Murphy. I was competing with Landry Jones.
“They brought Tyler in as a wide receiver. They never really expected him to do what he has been able to do when they brought him in.”
Boyd is currently driving back to South Carolina, but he says if he gets a call from another NFL team, he will pull into an airport and will head out immediately. He said being on the Steelers roster the last couple of months has been a great experience.
“Their offense with Ben (Roethlisberger), Le’Von Bell and Antonio Brown reminds me a lot of those Dallas teams in the 1990s with Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Michael Irving. They are that good,” Boyd said. “They will be hard to stop. They were fun to play with and fun to watch.
“Ben is sick. He is the best quarterback I have ever seen in person. He just does things that amaze you. He is unreal and is a great quarterback. I really learned a lot watching those guys.”
Despite the reports he was behind in the playbook and he was not sure of himself, Boyd said none of that is true.
“I was not struggling like people might think,” he said. “I knew if I could just have my chance, and could get in a game, I was going to make it happen. I was going to make plays. I knew I was, but I did not get that opportunity.”
Now Boyd is just hoping he gets that chance somewhere else.