The Steelers announced the signings of third-round pick Markus Wheaton and fifth-round selection Terry Hawthorne on Thursday.
A wide receiver from Oregon State, Wheaton will compete to be one of the Steelers’ top receivers beyond starters Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown. The Steelers have been willing to play young receivers right off the bat in recent years, with Mike Wallace one example. However, Sanders and Brown also earned reps as rookies, with both garnering more opportunities as the 2010 campaign progressed.
Timed at 4.45 seconds in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine, Wheaton hauled in 91 passes for 1,244 yards and 11 touchdowns as a senior.
Hawthorne will vie to be a reserve cornerback in his first NFL season. The Illinois product made 26 collegiate starts.