Steelers rumored to be interested in Jadeveon Clowney

Tommy Jaggi
Jadeveon Clowney #90 of the Seattle Seahawks (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Jadeveon Clowney #90 of the Seattle Seahawks (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

The Steelers may be tight against the cap, but here’s why they’ve been ‘poking their nose around’ to see if they can sign Jadeveon Clowney.

Jadeveon Clowney is a name that has drawn a lot of buzz this offseason. The former number one overall pick and three-time Pro Bowl edge defender was seeking a massive new deal. However, when the pandemic swept through, Clowney became an afterthough. Now, it appears that the Pittsburgh Steelers are one of the teams interested in the star defender.

According to a report from Pro Football Network, the Steelers have been ‘poking their nose around’ do see if Clowney would be willing to sign with them. Here’s what PFN Insider, Tony Pauline, had to say:

"“A source close to Clowney told me the Pittsburgh Steelers have been poking their nose around to see if they can sign him. I don’t think he’s going to end up with the Steelers… With the Steelers, they’re strapped at the cap. They don’t have a lot of room. They’d have to make room and the situation would have to be right.”"

Despite their current financial situation, it’s not hard to believe that Pittsburgh could be interested in one of the NFL’s most dominant forces off the edge. Though Clowney hasn’t produced the out-of-this-world numbers that match his freakish combination of length, strength, and athleticism, he’s a player that is at the center of constant double-teams.

With just over $4.7 million in spending money, according to Over the Cap, clearly, the Steelers are in no position to make a legitimate run at Clowney this year. However, after initially stating that he wouldn’t sign for less than $20 million per season, Clowney has since rescinded that statement and is reportedly willing to take $17 million annually.

This is just a shade over what Bud Dupree is currently making on the franchise tag. This begs the question: Would the Steelers have signed Dupree had they known they could have had Clowney for essentially the same price?

Make no mistake: Jadeveon Clowney is a better player than Bud Dupree; no matter how badly you want to convince yourself otherwise. Though Dupree is coming off a more productive season in 2019, Clowney is constantly one of the NFL’s most double-teamed players for a reason and he has dealt with injuries throughout his career that have often kept his stats from being elite.

In order to make this deal work with Clowney, the Steelers would likely have to find a trade partner for Bud Dupree and his $15.828 million tag he is earning this year. The Seahawks made a similar move for Clowney last season. It cost them two backup players and a third-round pick.

While we don’t know if there’s a team that would be willing to pay a third-rounder for Bud Dupree in addition to giving him a massive contract extension, the Steelers could ultimately have Clowney and either a third or fourth-round draft choice if they are willing to trade Dupree.

Unfortunately, it’s more likely that Clowney ends up on another AFC North team like the Baltimore Ravens. After they recently cut Earl Thomas, the Ravens could be looking for a way to improve their defense before the start of the season.

dark. Next. Pittsburgh Steelers roster locks heading into 2020 season

Though Jadeveon Clowney is highly unlikely to sign with the Steelers due to their current financial situation and Pittsburgh’s history of low free agency spending, it’s a fun hypothetical. If they were willing to trade Bud Dupree, it’s interesting to envision a defensive front that includes Clowney in addition to T.J. Watt, Cameron Heyward, and Stephon Tuitt.