It is common place for the Pittsburgh Steelers to make a move in Free Agency, and then call it a day and pack up to prepare for the NFL Draft. After signing tight end Ladarius Green to a 4-year contract, the cap strapped Steelers could certainly follow suit and focus all of their attention on the upcoming Draft selection process.
However, per Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com, the Steelers are still searching for some free agents, but this time on the defensive side of the football. Per Fowler, the team is taking a long look at former Detroit Lions defensive end Jason Jones.
"Steelers are exploring pass rush help - they've expressed interest in Lions DE Jason Jones, according to sources. He's an edge rusher with size to slide inside if necessary. Steelers like hybrid options. Jones (6-foot-5, 275 pounds) started 15 games for Detroit last season with 31 tackles and 4.5 sacks."
Jones certainly has the versatility and size the Steelers covet in a pass rusher, but many fans might be scratching their head wondering why they would be looking at a 4-3 defensive end? After all, the team plays a 3-4 defense...yes, the same 3-4 defense Dick LeBeau turned into a household name during his tenure with the team.
However, for those who pay close attention, the team has slowly been transitioning out of the base 3-4 defense and into 4-3 defense, or more specifically a 4-2-5 team. The Steelers deployed 4 down linemen more often than not in 2015, and the transition will require versatile defensive linemen, like Cameron Heyward and Stephon Tuitt -- and even Jason Jones.
Although this might be a culture shock for many, even GM Kevin Colbert hinted at the transition to a 4-3 defense, or a hybrid variety of the 4-3, in his recent meeting with local reporters. The times they are a changin', and if the Steelers could add Jason Jones to their depth chart, it could aid their interior pass rush within their sub packages.