When we hear that 'big changes are coming' for the Pittsburgh Steelers, we temper our expectations. In the past, the team has had something very different in mind. The same can be said with their approach to free agency.
Though they have found some quality players over the past two years like James Daniels and Isaac Seumalo, there are a lot of signings that haven't amounted to much, and Pittsburgh is rarely willing to go out and spend top-dollar on a single player.
This is good news for a plethora of 2024 free agents who would love the chance to join the Steelers this offseason. These players have a connection with Pittsburgh's new offensive coordinator, Arthur Smith, and they would love an opportunity to leave one last stamp on the league by rejoining their former coach on the Steelers.
Ryan Tannehill, QB
This one makes sense for obvious reasons. Ryan Tannehill had by far the best years of his career in 2019 and 2020 when Arthur Smith was the offensive coordinator of the Tennessee Titans. Over the past three seasons without Smith calling the plays, Tannehill's production and efficiency have plummeted.
Eventually, Tannehill got banged up and he only dressed for 10 games in 2023 with the Titans. Now the veteran quarterback, who turns 36 this summer, could look for one more contract to close out his career. To him, there won't be a better landing spot than a Steelers team that lacks QB competition and now has the offensive coordinator who brought him his two best NFL seasons.
Mack Hollins, WR
When you are a 6'4'', 220-pound wide receiver, you can stick around in the league for a while if you are willing to block and play some special teams. This is something that Mack Hollins offers. The 30-year-old wide receiver played in 13 games with Arthur Smith and the Falcons last season. While Hollins' production isn't any more impressive than Allen Robinson's, he would cost the team a fraction of the price, and in some ways, he could take on Miles Boykin's role on special teams coverage.
MyCole Pruitt, TE
This just feels like a player that Arthur Smith would like to bring to Pittsburgh. MyCole Pruitt started 12 games for the Smith's Falcons over the past two seasons. Pruitt chipped in 5 touchdown receptions, but the versatile tight end was mostly used as an H-back and inline. Pruitt saw the best seasons of his career with Smith in 2022, and he would love the opportunity to rejoin his old head coach in Pittsburgh.
Olamide Zaccheaus, WR
Olamide Zaccheaus is a wide receiver who is seldom talked about. Admittedly, he had a very rough season as a slot receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2023. But prior to that, he was a solid player on the Falcons. During his two-year stint with Arthur Smith as the HC in Atlanta, Zaccheaus compiled nearly 950 receiving yards and recorded a respectable 114 targets. He wouldn't see that type of workload if he came to Pittsburgh, but he would have a chance to stick around as the team's fourth receiver.
Aaron Brewer, C
This is a very intriguing prospect who could find work in Pittsburgh. Aaron Brewer has been on the Titans since 2020 (so he worked with Arthur Smith), but he started and played all 34 games over each of the past two seasons in Tennessee. Brewer is an undersized center, but he was an excellent run blocker in 2023 and he's coming off the best season of his career at just 26 years old. It just so happens that the Steelers have a need at center.
KhaDarel Hodge, WR
KhaDarel Hodge is another wide receiver who spent the past two seasons playing with Arthur Smith in Atlanta. Hodge would be nothing more than a depth option at the receiver position, but he has over 1,200 special teams snaps under his belt and he would love to find work again with his former head coach.
All statistics courtesy of Pro Football Reference.