A 5-step guide to a quick and successful Steelers rebuild

Heisman winner Alabama quarterback Bryce Young Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Heisman winner Alabama quarterback Bryce Young Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /
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Joe Haeg #71 of the Pittsburgh Steelers (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /

Steelers third step: Make smart free agent moves

While the desire to attack free agency and go after the top names will always be there, time and time again teams have proven that the best long-term way to succeed in this league is by making smart decisions in free agency and not breaking the bank. Even if the notably frugal Colbert retires, the team shouldn’t become a top spender in free agency next offseason.

Even with an estimated 44 million dollars in cap space next offseason, money will have to be set aside for re-signings and the draft class. That said, the Steelers should have more money than usual to work within 2022. They don’t need to go on a spending spree, but one or two quality guys that can start for a few years makes sense here. There are a few names that make sense, but the team should target positions that they haven’t had success in drafting before.

A cornerback and safety would make a lot of sense here. As would a transitional quarterback that would fit well into the offense. Those three signings along would likely take up most of the Steelers salary cap space. Anything left can go towards some mid-tier guys (think Joe Haeg type of contracts) and minimum-salary players who get a shot at the roster.

The goal in 2022 should be quantity more so than quality. Yes, the one-three top free agents they bring in will have to be good players that can contribute for two or more seasons but adding in as many young and cheap options to provide roster flexibility is key. This opens up the draft more as well as gives you a roster of young and hungry players that are looking to earn a bigger contract. While 2022 will feature a rotating cast of players at some positions, the hope is that you can pull together a full season and find a gem or two along with the top players that were signed.