5 second-wave free agents Steelers must sign to fill roster

Geno Atkins #97 of the Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
Geno Atkins #97 of the Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /
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Jesse James #83 of the Detroit Lions (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /

TE Jesse James

The entirety of the Steelers offseason has floated around the idea of the team resigning former tight end Jesse James, and after the first wave of free agency, it appears as though a deal could be struck. James didn’t live up to expectations with the Lions which prompted his release, and now he could be a return target for the team that drafted him.

While James isn’t a dynamic threat, he is consistent and works hard at what he does. While the team wouldn’t want him to start, you could do a lot worse than him as your number two. Even if the team wants to target a tight end in the draft, having James to block and provide depth would be well worth it. It is unlikely Eric Ebron is with the team past this season, so having a veteran body in the room would be helpful.

The team should offer James a moderate contract that is spread out over two seasons. That way his first-year cap hit is smaller, and it keeps him on the roster through next season. He’s a fine overall tight end that would make this group stronger overall. As well, he can help a rookie transition into the starting role over time. While his comments leaving Pittsburgh weren’t great, the team would be wise to get him back on the roster.