4 free agent OLB’s Steelers should sign to replace T.J. Watt

Trent Murphy #93 of the Buffalo Bills. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
Trent Murphy #93 of the Buffalo Bills. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /
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Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Noah Spence (52) Mandatory Credit: Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports /

Steelers should sign Spence

At one point in time, Noah Spence was an ascending star and one of the hotter college pass rushers. Personal issues forced him to transfer and fall to the second round of the draft. He came onto the scene strong with 5.5 sacks as a rookie, but he never quite reached those heights again. Now, he finds himself on the Bengals practice squad, but he would be a great fit for what the Steelers need as a depth edge rusher.

The best part about him right now is he is still young enough to take a step or two forward. He’ll be 28 years old this season, meaning that he should still have a few years of strong play left in the tank. As well, he can play on special teams, which is valuable for a depth linebacker. It’s been a while since he has been seeing a defense regularly, but he would do well as a third or fourth option on a depth chart.

Charlton would take on the majority of snaps in place of Watt while Spence would serve in the role that Charlton is serving in now. This puts a lot of pressure on Charlton to succeed, but the team seems high on him, and he has looked solid in limited work. Spence would be a good insurance option while allowing for the players already on the roster to still get their work in.