The Pittsburgh Steelers promoted Stillwater graduate and rookie defensive end Brian Arnfelt to their 53-player active roster on Saturday. The Steelers are scheduled face the Cincinnati Bengals in a Sunday night game that will be broadcast nationally on NBC at 7:30 p.m.
The transaction follows injuries to defensive end Brett Keisel and nose tackle Steve McLendon. Keisel remains sidelined by a foot injury and McLendon is questionable because of an ankle injury. To make room for Arnfelt, the Steelers released linebacker Kion Wilson.
Arfelt, a 6-foot-4, 298-pounder who wears No. 69, has spent the entire season on Pittsburgh’s practice squad after being one of the final players cut following a promising training camp. In four preseason games, he made five solo tackles and eight total stops. After clearing waivers, he was among a group of eight players signed to the practice squad.
The Northwestern University graduate traveled with the Steelers to London for their 34-27 loss to the Vikings on Sept. 29.
During a four-year playing career at Northwestern, Arnfelt contributed to the winningest senior class in that program’s history. He served as a captain for the Wildcats as a senior when he racked up 25 tackles, including six for a loss, and three sacks in 13 games.
Arnfelt, who finished his master’s degree in sports administration at Northwestern this past summer, totaled 47 tackles and three sacks in 37 career games for the Wildcats. He also graduated with a degree communications studies and minors in business institutions and legal studies.
While competing for the Ponies before graduating in 2008, Arnfelt helped Stillwater to its most recent state tournament appearance in football as a junior in 2006. He also competed in the shot put at the state meet as a senior.
Following Sunday’s game against the Bengals, Arnfelt and the Steelers (5-8) will travel to Green Bay to face the Packers on Dec. 22 and close out the season by hosting the Cleveland Browns on Dec. 29.