Since fan favorite Heath Miller decided to call it a career and retire from football, the Pittsburgh Steelers knew they had to address the tight end position one way or another. Options were available in free agency, but many expected them to target tight end in the NFL Draft.
The team decided to take the free agency route and officially signed former San Diego Chargers tight end Ladarius Green to a 4-year contract.
Ladarius Green gets a four-year, $20 million deal with the Steelers. Truly a year-to-year deal. He gets $6M in 2016, $11M in first 1 years.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) March 10, 2016
The move certainly changes the dynamic of the Steelers' tight end depth chart. Before the signing, the team had Matt Spaeth and Jesse James as their only experienced tight ends. With Green in the mix you have a great list of player who all bring a different skill set to the team. Spaeth is known as a blocking tight end, James is developing into a large target with improving blocking skills and Green could be the interior weapon the Steelers have lacked the past few seasons.
Green spent his entire NFL career in San Diego after being drafted in the 4th round of the 2012 Draft. Green is a large target, standing at 6-feet 6-inches, and was able to showcase his skills in 2015 due to injuries to veteran Antonio Gates. Green caught 37 passes for 429 yards and 4 touchdowns -- 11.6 yards per catch average -- in 13 games played.
Green very well could be the final piece to the Steelers' offensive puzzle. His athleticism will give the team an interior threat they haven't had with Miller since he injured his knee, and most would say he never had since being drafted in 2005. Green with Ben Roethlisberger, Le'Veon Bell, Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant, DeAngelo Williams, Markus Wheaton and a formidable offensive line very well could make up the best offense in the entire NFL in 2016, and beyond.