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Report: Steelers expected to tender restricted free agent TE Xavier Grimble

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The tight end will receive the lowest tender available to the Steelers in 2019, a one-year deal worth $2.025 million.

AFC Championship - Pittsburgh Steelers v New England Patriots Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers have only two restricted free agents to worry about this offseason, with B.J. Finney and Xavier Grimble both eligible for an RFA tender. But while many expect a tender for Finney to be something of a formality, it might comes as a surprise to learn that the Steelers have already decided to make an offer to the tight end.

If a report from Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network is to be believed, it is actually Grimble that the team has opted to tender first, with no news as of yet about an offer for Finney.

An original round tender is the lowest option Pittsburgh could offer Grimble this year if they wanted to prevent him from becoming an unrestricted free agent, but it still comes with a price tag worth $2.025 million as a one-year deal. Aside from the right of first refusal to match any other contract offer he may receive from another team, the Steelers would receive no compensation if he were to sign elsewhere.

Many will rightly question the value of signing a third choice tight end on the depth chart to a deal that pays him more than times the amount he earned in 2018 after he recorded a mere six receptions for 86-yards last season and was responsible for a critical fumble in a game against the Denver Broncos lost by seven points.

As obvious as it is that the Steelers are keen to hold on to him, it is hard to imagine that Grimble would have had many suitors on the open market. The tight end joined Pittsburgh as a member of their practice squad in 2015 having previously been with the New York Giants, San Francisco 49ers and New England Patriots. An undrafted free agent in 2014, Grimble has amassed a total of 236 yards from 22 receptions and scored three touchdowns in 44 games for the Steelers over three seasons.