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Steelers 2020 Free Agent Market Watch: The Inside Linebackers the Steelers Can’t Afford

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BTSC takes a look at the top free agents at each position whether or not they are in the Steelers price range. Here are the interior linebackers.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cleveland Browns Photo by: 2019 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images

Disclaimer: The author realizes that the Steelers are burning in Salary Cap Hell and can’t pony up much money for free agents. However, you never know what they have planned and it’s the author’s responsibility to highlight the free agent options. It’s like the lyrics in the Guns ‘n Roses hit, November Rain...”Nothin’ lasts forever and we both know hearts can change. And it’s hard to hold a candle in the cold November rain.” Well, kind of.

The Steelers are fairly strong at ILB with Vince Williams and Devin Bush Jr. starting. Should Mark Barron remain, he adds depth. After that is the untested Ulysses Gilbert III and Robert Spillane. Tyler Matakevich is a free agent and likely will depart. If the unlikely occurs and they do add at this position via free agency, here are the available free agents should a Steel City Money Miracle occur.

ONCE AGAIN. THE AUTHOR REALIZES THAT THE STEELERS DO NOT HAVE THE FUNDS FOR MANY OF THESE PLAYERS. HOWEVER, THIS IS THE LIST OF WHO IS AVAILABLE TO THE ENTIRE LEAGUE AND THE STEELERS. YOU CAN CRITICIZE THE IDIOT AUTHOR IN FACEBOOK OR BLEACHER REPORT COMMENTS FOR WASTING YOUR TIME AND NOT KNOWING ANYTHING AT ALL, AGAIN AND AGAIN. HOWEVER, THESE WILL CONTINUE TO APPEAR.

Should the Steelers or the competition be shopping, the market is listed. One more time, the author is aware that Steelers have little room under the cap. But if you read the entire article, you’ll be able to amaze your friends, family, coworkers and people in line at the bank or supermarket with your vast knowledge of NFL Free Agents.


Joe Schobert - Cleveland Browns

Age 27, 6’1”/245 lbs.

2019 Stats: 16 games, 127 tackles, 2 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, 4 interceptions

No. 48 PFF Position Ranking

Overall Grades: 59.1 (Average), Run Defense 47.1 (Below Average), Pass Rush 62.3 (Average), Coverage 67.6 (Above Average)

Schobert always shows up against the Steelers. He’s a blue collar guy that can do a little bit of everything. He’s the kind of player that can end up in New England or Baltimore and end up All-Pro.


Cory Littleton - Los Angeles Rams

Age 26, 6’3”/228 lbs.

2019 Stats: 16 games, 125 tackles, 4 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, 2 interceptions

No. 7 PFF Position Ranking

Overall Grades: 78.9 (High Quality), Run Defense 64.7 ( Average), Pass Rush 77.3 (High Quality), Coverage 82.3 (High Quality)

The former Special Teams standout found his way into the Rams lineup and became a quality and versatile defender that excels in pass coverage. Littleton covers Tight Ends well, which is a valuable trait. However, he is less of a force against the run. Nonetheless, Littleton will likely get a nice payday.


Nick Kwiatkoski - Chicago Bears

Age 26, 6’2”/243 lbs.

2019 Stats: 16 games, 63 tackles, 3 sacks, 1 forced fumbles, 1 interception

No. 15 PFF Position Ranking

Overall Grades: 72.6 (Above Average), Run Defense 67.1 (Above Average), Pass Rush 81.8 (High Quality), Coverage 68.7 (Above Average)

After Danny Trevathan got hurt, Kwiatkoski stepped in and played at a very high level. He continues to improve and could be a star at the position.


Blake Martinez - Green Bay Packers

Age 26, 6’2”/237 lbs.

2019 Stats: 16 games, 157 tackles, 3 sacks, 0 forced fumbles, 1 interception

No. 52 PFF Position Ranking

Overall Grades: 58.7 (Average), Run Defense 47.0 (Below Average), Pass Rush 76.3 (High Quality), Coverage 64.1 (Average)

The Stanford product is another quality coverage guy that isn’t as strong against the run. Martinez racks up tackles, but misses in double digits as well. Martinez can start in this league, but isn’t a top tier guy.


Kamalei Correa - Tennessee Titans

Age 25, 6’3”/241 lbs.

2019 Stats: 16 games, 37 tackles, 5 sacks, 0 forced fumbles, 0 interceptions

Not Ranked PFF Position Ranking

Overall Grades: 67.8 (Above Average), Run Defense 61.2 (Average), Pass Rush 58.9 (Average), Coverage No Grade

Correa can play on both the inside and outside in a 3-4 defense, starting five games down the stretch at a quality level at a crucial time for Tennessee. At the right price, Correa could be a steal.


Other Notable Free Agent Inside Linebackers:

Tyler Matakevich - Pittsburgh Steelers

Josh Bynes - Baltimore Ravens

Hasson Riddick - Arizona Cardinals

Nick Vigil - Cincinnati Bengals

Sean Lee - Dallas Cowboys

Vontaze Burfict - Oakland Raiders

Kevin Pierre-Louis - Chicago Bears

Danny Travathan - Chicago Bears

Jamie Collins Sr. - New England Patriots


Poll

Regardless of affordability, what Free Agent Inside Linebacker would you like the Steelers to sign in 2020?

This poll is closed

  • 21%
    Joe Schobert
    (86 votes)
  • 18%
    Cory Littleton
    (75 votes)
  • 13%
    Nick Kwiatkowski
    (52 votes)
  • 2%
    Blake Martinez
    (10 votes)
  • 9%
    Kamalei Correa
    (38 votes)
  • 4%
    Tyler Matakevich
    (19 votes)
  • 0%
    Josh Bynes
    (1 vote)
  • 8%
    Hasson Reddick
    (32 votes)
  • 0%
    Nick Vigil
    (3 votes)
  • 9%
    Sean Lee
    (36 votes)
  • 4%
    Vontaze Burfict
    (19 votes)
  • 0%
    Kevin Pierre-Louis
    (1 vote)
  • 1%
    Danny Travathan
    (7 votes)
  • 4%
    Jamie Collins Sr.
    (17 votes)
396 votes total Vote Now