3 players the Pittsburgh Steelers shouldn't have let go in recent years

Steelers, James Conner
Steelers, James Conner / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
3 of 3

Javon Hargrave could have been a long-term option on the Steelers DL

This one is hard to blame the Steelers for. At the time Javon Hargrave was hitting the free agent market, Pittsburgh was in quite the financial bind and they already had a ton of money allocated to the defensive side of the football.

Just a few years earlier, the Steelers dished out a massive 5 year, $60 million deal to Stephon Tuitt. Though Tuitt had been injured on and off, he was a stud when healthy and he wasn't even in the prime of his NFL career. However, nobody realized at the time that Tuitt was going to retire and that his last football would come at the age of 27 in 2020.

If the front office had known what was going to happen, Hargrave could have been the player they handed this money. While Tuitt and Hargrave played different roles on the defense, both were very good when healthy.

not long after his departure, Hargrave quickly proved to be one of the best interior pass rushers in the league as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles. In 2021, he earned Pro Bowl honors for the first time after a 7.5-sack season, and in 2022, he recorded 11.0 sacks, 10 tackles for a loss, and 16 quarterback hits, according to Pro Football Reference. In hindsight, the Steelers would have made a different decision on the defensive line.

Next. 4 free agency do-overs for the Pittsburgh Steelers. 4 free agency do-overs for the Pittsburgh Steelers. dark