Steelers 2021 entire mock offseason: Building the future

Mike Hilton #28 of the Pittsburgh Steelers (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images)
Mike Hilton #28 of the Pittsburgh Steelers (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images) /
1 of 4

The 2021 offseason will determine how the Steelers stay competitive after Ben Roethlisberger retires. It will be full of tough decision-making as cap issues will make signings not as outgoing. 

Currently, the Steelers are well over the NFL’s salary cap and it will take some maneuvering to get under that. Even more creative thinking will need to occur so the team can re-sign their pending free agents or sign others in free agency. Maurkice Pouncey and Vance McDonald have retired and that will help the cap situation somewhat. With the addition of the cap being higher than most expected and Ben Roethlisberger’s restructure then this number will begin to wipe away.

Other restructures will occur as the black and gold look to bring players back and add to a team that is coming off winning the AFC North division. This team has many holes to fill with many players likely leaving via free agency due to the cap situation but that does not mean this squad cannot be competitive next season. It will take a great draft with immediate impact players and bargain free agents but it is not out of the realm of possibilities that this team is good next year. It will be Roethlisberger’s farewell season as he gets ready to walk away following this season. It is the last shot for this team before the rebuilding process will likely begin.  Rebuilding seems like a big task but that’s a worry for the next offseason.

Players to resign

Tyson Alualu, DL

Alualu is coming off his best season as a pro. He continues to be a great rotational player along this defensive front when Stephon Tuitt and Cam Heyward need to take a breather on the sideline. He should be able to come back on a short-term deal that is relatively team-friendly.

Mike Hilton, CB

Hilton is the best slot corner in the league as he continues to be a swiss-army knife for the defense. It could come down to deciding to keep him or Cam Sutton but that might not be the case. Hilton can blitz, run-stuff, and cover. His amazing ability in all three aspects of the defense makes him so dynamic.

Cam Sutton, CB

Sutton is another interesting free agent for the Steelers. He has shown the ability to have great coverage skills both inside and out. Other teams could come calling and that is when issues of bringing him back could arise. In this offseason scenario, Sutton returns on a one-year deal and gets rewarded next offseason after Joe Haden and Steve Nelson are scheduled to come off the books.

Ben Roethlisberger, QB (renegotiation)

This is one of the major milestones left in the road for the Steelers cap space issues being resolved. Roethlisberger is at the end of his career and he could still retire but it is more likely he comes back for one more year at a reduced amount. The team needs the cap space and their quarterback has already said he doesn’t care about how much money he makes for this season.