Predicting the Pittsburgh Steelers Next Move


Dec 29, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Brett Keisel (99) pumps the crowd up against the Cleveland Browns in the second half at Heinz Field. The Steelers won the game, 20-7. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers were relatively quiet since the end of the regular season up until this week when they had a busy week of extensions, re-signings, tags and cuts. They’re still a scooch over the $133 million salary cap for 2014 so obviously there is still more work to be done. After everything that’s transpired over the course of the week, what’s next for the Steelers?

Predicting teams’ moves just before free agency opens is already tough business, it’s even tougher when we’re talking about the Steelers. Not normally active in free agency outside of re-signing their in house guys, it’s really tough to predict whether or not the Steelers will spend any time in the next few weeks courting free agents from other teams. What is more likely to happen next will be in regards to the salary cap.

The Steelers spent this past week adding and subtracting to their salary cap. They tagged Jason Worilds as the transition player only to get him signed to the tender the next day, costing around $9.75 million to them in 2014 if a new long-term deal isn’t negotiated. To create space they restructured/extended the contracts of two veterans and fan-favorites Heath Miller and Troy Polamalu, whose cap numbers were expected to be high for 2014. Their last moves involved cuts to the expected Levi Brown but also to Curtis Brown and Larry Foote.

There are many other issues the Steelers need addressing this offseason now that the Jason Worilds situation is relatively under control. They need running backs other than Le’Veon Bell and they have three defensive end free agents in Brett Keisel, Ziggy Hood, and Al Woods that need to be addressed as well.

We’re likely to see more cuts made but almost more likely to see more restructures/extensions made before Tuesday at 4:00 pm. Ike Taylor’s future still seems to be up in the air as his $7 million 2014 salary seems awful big but there’s no telling if he’s up for a pay cut or if the Steelers will have to cut ties with the veteran corner back, leaving them awful thin at that position. There’s still LaMarr Woodley’s albatross of a contract to deal with as well. They also have three free agent wide receivers where surely one of them could be re-signed to a deal financially reasonable.

I’d guess the next move the Steelers post would be more cuts or a combo of restructures and cuts kind of like we saw this week. Always good to put out positive news along with the negative. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that we’re going to here Ike Taylor has agreed to a restructured pay cut and save the team a few million on the salary cap while retaining his veteran experience in the secondary.

What do you think the Steelers next move will be before free agency officially opens?

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