A month ago Peter King said he’d like to see Jameis Winston on the Steelers roster, a week ago Matt Bowen of ESPN claimed the QB would be the perfect fit, and on March 15th former NFL QB and NBC reporter Chris Simms threw his two cents into the mix. Could these reporters just be making statements based on Winstons similar play style to Big Ben? Possibly, but could these guys also know something that we don't? Probably.
The first two occurrences I laughed it off as nothing more than offseason filler, but with Simms claim I started to think it’s a (very slight) possibility.
Now it’s important to remember that Chris Simms played for Coach Tomlin in Tampa Bay from 2003-05, so when it comes to Steelers news I tend to pay a little more attention when Simms speaks.
But their are two giant hurdles in the way of the 2019 NFL passing yards leader joining the black and gold.
Number 1: Salary cap
Number 2: A demotion
When it comes to a contract number the Market value calculator on Spotrac.com predicts Winstons value at $26.4 Million dollars per year. Even with the inflated salary cap (of $198.2 million) the Steelers couldn't come anywhere near that number.
Then when it comes to actually getting on the field. Jameis, would have to be 100% on board with spending the year on the bench. This is still Ben Roethlisberger’s team and with his gigantic contract he's not going anywhere anytime soon.
The only possibility I see of Jameis suiting up for the Steelers is if the other 31 teams make that decision for him.
If no one offers Winston the big money deal and a starting spot, then he’s going to be forced into a back-up role, and why wouldn't he want to be in a situation where he fits the system, and could see the field if Ben’s elbow isn't 100%.
The only comparable deal would be what Teddy Bridgewater took to remain as Drew Bress’ backup. It would have to be under $10 million and for no more than 2 years.
I just can’t see one QB needy team offering less than $10 million dollars, but then again stranger things have happened.
What do you think? Does the Winston to Pittsburgh rumors have any legs or are these nothing but offseason filler? Let us know in the comments below!