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Steelers sign former UVA/Florida TE Jake McGee

Can McGee follow in the footsteps of Virginia legend Heath Miller in the Steel City?

Virginia v Georgia Tech
Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers announced today via Twitter that they have signed former Virginia tight end Jake McGee.

McGee graduated from the University of Virginia in 2013, and then grad transferred to the University of Florida for his final year of eligibility (he redshirted as a first year in 2010). After a broken leg derailed his fifth year, the NCAA granted him one final year of eligibility and he finished his career at Florida before getting picked up by the Carolina Panthers, San Diego Los Angeles Chargers, and the Los Angeles Raiders.

McGee had some real highlight reel catches while a Wahoo...

He also caught the ball with both hands during his career at Virginia, but what fun are those? McGee finished his time in Charlottesville with 769 yards and seven touchdowns and was a preseason John Mackey Award and All-ACC Second Team selection.

Virginia tight ends have a bit of a history with the Steelers as Heath Miller played all 11 of his professional seasons with Pittsburgh, helping them win two Super Bowls in that span. Miller holds Steeler tight end records in receptions (592), receiving yards (6,569), and touchdowns (45). His 592 receptions is second most in Steeler history, behind only Hines Ward. McGee did wear #83 for the Wahoos...which was Heath’s number with the Steelers (insert thinking emoji...).

McGee will have to compete against incumbent starter Jesse James (Penn State), who had 39 receptions for 338 yards and three touchdowns last season. James played some in his rookie season in 2015, but was a backup to Miller. The Steelers also have Fordham rookie Phazahn Odom, second year Xavier Grimble (USC), and nine-year veteran David Johnson (Arkansas State) on the roster as tight ends.

In addition, the Steelers have former UVA wide receiver Canaan Severin on the roster. He had been signed in free agency by the Steelers following the 2016 draft, but dealt with an injury that kept him off the team all season.

The Steelers kick off preseason Sunday, August 20, against the Atlanta Falcons.