I don’t expect this (year) to be much different from what we normally are (during free agency), [...] If there’s a quality player we can sign, who makes sense for us and is a good fit both as a player and (within our) cap situation, we will certainly look at it.
There you have it, Steeler Nation. There will be no big spending during the free agency period for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Of course, I am not exactly sure if anyone expects anything different from a strategy perspective for this franchise
Unlike the Washington Redskins, the Steelers have used the free agent market over the last two decades to find solid ‘glue guys’ for their roster. Names like John L. Williams, Kevin Greene, Ray Seals, Jeff Hartings, James Farrior and Ryan Clark come to mind when I think free agency. By that I mean solid, affordable and somewhat under-the-radar signings who turned into fantastic additions during their stints with the team.
Even if the Steelers wanted to deviate from the status quo, they would probably have a difficult time doing it with their current cap situation. With expensive veterans still on their payroll (Ike Taylor, LaMarr Woodley, Troy Polamalu, etc.), Pittsburgh’s brass will need to do plenty of restructuring with the players already on their roster to simply stay cap-compliant.
Plus, if the Steelers do decide to release some of their veterans before their contracts expire, then they will have a whole mess of dead money (present and future) to deal with in the aftermath of those potential moves.
As problematic as being under the cap could be, I am nevertheless interested to see what types of moves the Steelers make during the free agency period. Granted, I know that they will never be considered ‘in the running’ for some of the period’s highest-paid players. Yet it would be nice to see those in charge looking to add some veteran depth to their offensive line and secondary.
Pittsburgh has holes all over their roster right now, and they could have even more once the free agency period starts since 21 of the team’s players will be unrestricted free agents (UFAs) this March. Although the team will likely not make many ‘big splashes’ once again the spring, finding some more ‘glue guys’ would definitely help this team in transition.
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