3 reasons Steelers will take a center early in the 2021 NFL Draft

Offensive lineman Creed Humphrey #56. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
Offensive lineman Creed Humphrey #56. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /
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Center Austin Reiter #62 of the Kansas City Chiefs. (Photo by Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images) /

Free agency is not a realistic option for Steelers

Though there are several quality centers that could potentially hit the market this offseason if not re-signed by their current teams, free agency does not seem like a realistic option for the Steelers for several reasons. For starters, the players who could potentially be available at the position will be out of Pittsburgh’s price range. Cheifs center Austin Reiter, for example, is projected to make $11.4 million in yearly value, according to Spotrac.com.

But he isn’t the only center that is going to get paid this offseason. Other potential candidates like Corey Linsley, David Andrews, Ted Karras, and Matt Skura are projected to make between $7-12 million per year on their new deals and the Steelers won’t have the funds to offer them.

In addition to being short on money, all of the available centers in free agency this year are players who are nearly as old as Maurkice Pouncey. Even if the Steelers were to try to go that route, they probably wouldn’t want to replace their 11-year veteran with a player nearly as old at the position. They will likely want a player they can start to rebuild around. Pittsburgh may add a cheap veteran center for depth purposes once they free up cap space, but free agency doesn’t seem like the way to go to find Pouncey’s replacement. They are much more likely to do so in the NFL Draft.