The Steelers have been super busy this week, resigning Antonio Brown, placing the franchise tag on Le’Veon Bell and getting into negotiations with Lawrence Timmons. Now the Steelers have, at least for now, taken care of Ross Cockrell by placing a 4th round tender on him, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.
Steelers place original round tender on restricted free agent cornerback Ross Cockrell, per source. https://t.co/06S7WCGbcp— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) March 3, 2017
This doesn’t stop Ross Cockrell from negotiating with other teams if he so chooses but even if Cockrell was offered a higher offer, the Steelers can choose to match it due to Cockrell being a restricted free agent and not a unrestricted free agent.
The Steelers have made it clear they wish to keep all their homegrown talent within the organization and while Cockrell was drafted by the Buffalo Bills, the Steelers were very much interested in him throughout the whole 2014 draft process and that is why they scooped him up immediately off waivers.
Cockrell has proven to be a reliable player throughout his time and there was no reason for the Steelers to not place a 4th round tender on him. This could allow the Steelers more time to negotiate a new longer term contract for Cockrell.
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