The Steelers will have enough cap space to sign him this time around
The last time J.J. Watt was a free agent, the Steelers did not have enough cap space to accommodate this player accordingly. It is unknown if the franchise even offered him a contract before he made his decision. Nonetheless, he would go to one of the highest bidders with a chance of winning at the time, the Arizona Cardinals.
It was a shocker as many did not hear anything about the desert being in play for his services. It did make sense after the fact, but this marriage has not gone according to plan. The Cardinals have not seen the post-season success that they were imagining when they made the deal.
Now it looks like unless Watt has an outstanding comeback year, this will end with him walking away and looking for a new opportunity. If he produces at last season’s output, he could struggle to look for a nice value contract in his favor. He has not been performing near the peak of his career as he continues to slow down in production.
The Steelers will have the cap space to sign this player next offseason as they currently sit on a heap of spending cash. That amount will change with different contract extensions, contract restructures, and other free agency signings next offseason. At this moment, they are projected to have nearly 40 million in spending cash.