Former Viking Re-Ups with Steelers

Team Could Land Kirk
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The Pittsburgh Steelers’ season ended a week and a half ago in a playoff game at the Buffalo Bills, a commendable year for a team that couldn’t quite solve the quarterback position.

Former Viking Re-Ups with Steelers

And with the season over and housekeeping in order, Pittsburgh reunited with former Minnesota Vikings cornerback Kalon Barnes this week.

with Steelers
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Steelers beat writer John Farabaugh tweeted Tuesday, “The Steelers have signed CB Kalon Barnes, DB Thomas Graham, ILB Tyler Murray, OLB David Perales and S Josiah Scott to reserve/future contracts.”

The move indicates Barnes will be in the mix this spring and summer for a roster spot with the 2024 Steelers, a club Barnes joined briefly in September. The Green Bay Packers also worked out Barnes in early September, but no deal came together. He then joined the Steelers roster, was released, and landed with the New York Jets and Cleveland Brown for brief stints.

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This is Barnes’ career resume to date:

  • Carolina Panthers (2022)
  • Miami Dolphins (2022)
  • Minnesota Vikings (2022)
  • Pittsburgh Steelers (2023)
  • New York Jets (2023)
  • Cleveland Browns (2023)

Barnes, 25, was on the outside looking in during Vikings roster trimdowns last August and did not get an invitation to the practice squad like 16 others.

In December 2022, the Vikings grabbed Barnes from the Miami Dolphins practice squad. He experienced special teams action down the stretch of 2022 for the Vikings against the New York Giants (regular season game) and Chicago Bears. The Baylor alumnus was then retained by general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah this offseason and battled for a roster spot at training camp and in the preseason, to no avail.

Vikings Sign One of Fastest Players in NFL History
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Pro Football Network ranked the league’s fastest players in July, and Barnes made the cut — at No. 2. His 4.23 forty at the 2022 NFL Combine was the fastest by any defensive player in the event’s history.

During the draft process, few traits excite onlookers more than speed. Of course, the track record for “fastest guy in the draft” rarely translates to automatic stardom in the pros. But the sizzle of a team adding a weapon with comic-book speed is indeed enchanting. Sizzling speed is Barnes’ dance.

Barnes played all four years at Baylor, tallying 3 interceptions in 35 collegiate games.

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At the moment, these are the cornerbacks under contract in Pittsburgh:

  • Joey Porter Jr.
  • Patrick Peterson
  • Chandon Sullivan
  • James Pierre
  • Levi Wallace
  • Darius Rush
  • Cory Trice Jr.
  • Thomas Graham Jr.
  • Kalon Barnes

In addition to Barnes, Peterson, and Sullivan — yes, Pittsburgh employs three former Vikings corners — the Steelers have center Mason Cole on their roster, an ex-Viking.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by