Cap Cuts: Should Steelers Cut OG Ramon Foster?


The Steelers have lots of holes to fill in their roster – starters and backups included. That all can’t come from the draft, and the front office will need to pony up some serious cash if they want an impactful free agent.

The Steelers are currently $10 million under the salary cap. A contract extension with Ben Roethlisberger would increase their headroom even more.

There are several other cuts that could take place to really give this team a fighting chance in free agency. Troy Polamalu and his $6 million cap savings post-June 1st would be a big help, and we should all get emotionally prepared for that move. After Troy, however, the savings get significantly lower per cut.

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So, what about Ramon Foster?

Foster is slated to make $1.8 million in 2015 and serve as $2.15 million against the cap. That’s a rather favorable contract to have in a player’s final year. The team would save the $1.8 and only face $300k in dead money. Would the savings be worth it?

Well, if it meant landing a top corner like Chris Culliver or Da’Norris Searcy by waving an extra $2 million in signing bonus in front of them, I would say absolutely.

The Steelers have a fairly stable offensive line. An oddity for sure compared to the last five-plus years. Removing Foster would sure seem like a risk in disrupting that harmony.

The thing is, Foster has proven to be one of the weaker links of late – especially in the running game. Keeping Mike Adams out of this conversation, Foster is the worst ranked run blocking lineman on the offensive line. If the Steelers want to continue their successful running game (or better yet improve upon it) they need Foster to perform better.

I doubt that will happen at this point in his career.

There are options in the draft this year for the Steelers to nab a solid run blocker. I really like the look of La’el Collins out of LSU. The guy is a beat at run blocking. He’s often found in the second level still pushing back his original defensive assignment.

He was a tackle at LSU, but could easily make the transition to guard. Especially since his pass blocking skills won’t hold up on the edge in the NFL – hello Mike Adams. His start on the interior would not be entirely disruptive and would be a great quick project for OL coach Mike Munchak.

Cutting Foster is not an absurd idea, and replacing him with someone with better run blocking skills would be of great benefit to the Steelers.

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