The New England Patriots announced Friday that they signed both Steward and long snapper Christian Yount to their 90-man team. The terms of the contracts have yet to be announced.
On Tuesday, the Buffalo Bills announced that they would be cutting linebacker Tony Steward from their roster. Shortly after the severing, Steward wrote a kind thank you note to the Bills, stating that he was grateful for the opportunity to work with the team and was looking forward to the next chapter in his career. It seems he didn’t have long to wait to see what the next big thing would be as the Patriots snapped him up.
This is a major opportunity for Steward who has only been playing in the NFL for a year. The 23-year-old played just seven games during the 2015 season before being put on injured reserve. The fact that he’s moving from a team with decent standing in the NFL to one of the best teams in the league shows a promising future for the young player. As a sixth-round pick in the 2015 draft, it’s not too surprising that he’s already making a name for himself in the NFL ranks.
Now, he’s joining Shea McClellin and Ramon Humber as brand new linebackers for New England. Steward will have to prove himself during the upcoming season if he wants much playing time. He’s still very young, so even if we don’t see much of him this season, the chances of hearing more about him in the future are good.
Christian Yount has been playing for five NFL seasons. He began his career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The six-foot-one, 250-pounder originally joined the Buccaneers as a rookie free agent from UCLA in 2011. He played for four years with Tampa Bay before going to play for the Cleveland Browns. He was released after a single season and didn’t play last year. Being signed onto the Patriot’s roster is a huge step in his career.
This is the best thing to happen to Tony this year. He’s had a difficult time after playing very little at the end of the 2o15 season and then being released by the Bills.
Steward’s personal life has taken some serious downturns this year as well. In February, Tony’s fiancée, 26-year-old Brittany Ann Burns, passed away after a long battle with ovarian cancer. Though she fought the disease bravely, the illness was caught too late for her to survive.
Burns was diagnosed with a very rare form of ovarian cancer in December, just two months before the illness took her life. After the diagnosis, the young NFL linebacker decided he would honor the life and impending death of his four-year girlfriend with a marriage proposal.
Upon her passing, he left a touching and heartfelt post on Instagram.
“You have the biggest heart I have ever seen in my entire life and I promise you that it will live on in me, our family and every single soul you have touched,” the message read accompanied by a photo of his lovely bride-to-be. “You are the strongest and most loving soul to step foot in this world. You have been my rock, my motivation, my heart, my soulmate, my everything since the day I laid eyes on you. Every single day of your life you have been a fighter and I know this because of the unbelievable family you brought me into.”
He later stated that he loved her “with every ounce of everything in him.” He closed it with the hashtag #FightLikeAGirl, something Brittany started when she discovered she had cancer. The social media icon took off immediately, and it became a representation for social media users to recognize both Tony and Brittany following her passing.
It seems only fair that something positive happen for Tony Steward’s life and career. He’s about to begin the next chapter as a linebacker for the New England Patriots, and big things are sure to come.
[Photo by AP Images]