Which Steelers offensive linemen needs replaced the most?
What should the Steelers do with Chukwuma Okorafor?
Chukwuma Okorafor: 61.2 grade, 62.8 PB, 55.7 RB, 4 penalties, 3 sacks, 41 pressures
Average: 85.4 grade, 83.4 PB, 80.2 RB, 5.7 penalties, 3 sacks, 19.1 pressures
Chukwuma Okorafor Cap Charge: 13 million, 6.9 million savings
The longest-tenured member of this offensive line, Okorafor was drafted in the third round of the 2018 draft. Taken when the tackles still had capable starters, Okorafor was given the chance to develop on the bench as he served as the swing tackle early in his career. He stepped in as the right tackle in 2020 and has manned the position ever since.
By far, Okorafor is the most consistent name on this list as a blocker. His swings aren’t as high or low as the other two names being discussed. That said, his overall play is still mediocre. While he doesn’t have stretches of horrendous play, he also lacks stretches of great play. Instead, he is consistently average or below average.
This is shown in his PFF stats, as his penalty and sacks given up are more in line with the average, but his overall blocking isn’t that great. He is a safe option, but a safe option that lacks the potential to be any better than he currently is.
While he could play left tackle, if need be, he lacks the functional strength to kick inside to guard. While still young at only 25, he has been in the league for five years. He showed some growth going from a liability to an average player, but the growth has stopped there. I doubt he grows much more as a professional.
The issue with Okorafor is his cap hit. The team can save over half of that 13 million by cutting him. That 6.9 million could cover most, if not all, of a free agent’s first-year cap hit at tackle. As well, I do think he could be replaced with Moore if the team needed him there.
We will ultimately know if Okorafor is going to stick around early in the offseason, as he has a 4-million-dollar roster bonus that kicks in shortly after the new league year begins. If he is released, it will be before that money kicks in. His strengths are his consistency while his negatives are his lack of potential moving forward and his cap hit.