The Pittsburgh Steelers are a team with a long list of free agents entering this offseason, but that doesn’t make them unique by any stretch. In fact, all NFL teams face a list of players who are able to leave and find a new home every offseason. It’s part of the free agency era in the NFL.
With that said, not all free agents are created equal. Some will demand extremely high price tags, while others will linger through the opening of the new league year (March 15th) and even through the 2023 NFL Draft before a position needy team brings them in to fill a gaping hole.
Before we go any further, it is important to list the Steelers’ pending Unrestricted Free Agents (UFA). Here’s the complete list:
Unrestricted Free Agents (UFA)
Larry Ogunjobi - DT
Mason Rudolph - QB
Devin Bush - LB
Robert Spillane - LB
Cameron Sutton - CB
Derek Watt - FB
Jesse Davis - OL
Tyson Alualu - DT
Marcus Allen - S/LB
Terrell Edmunds - S
Malik Reed - OLB
Chris Wormley - DE
Damontae Kazee - S
Trenton Scott - OL
Karl Joseph - S
Miles Boykin - WR
Benny Snell Jr. - RB
Zach Gentry - TE
When you look at the aforementioned list, you will see plenty of names which are important to the Steelers’ fan base, but are they equally as important across the NFL landscape? According to a Top 50 list produced by ESPN, they aren’t.
Matt Bowen of ESPN put together his Top 50 free agent list, and of all the previously mentioned free agents for the Steelers, only one found their way onto Bowen’s list. That player? Pending free agent cornerback Cameron Sutton.
Here is the ranking, and what Bowen had to say about the designation:
28. Cameron Sutton, CB, Pittsburgh Steelers
Age entering 2023 season: 28
Sutton, a third-round pick in 2017, is coming off his best pro season, as he finished with three interceptions and 15 pass breakups. He’s a scheme-versatile corner who can find the ball in zone coverage or stick to wide receivers in man, with the transition speed to close on throws. Defensive backs with this type of ball production don’t stay on the market for long.
When looking at the Steelers’ list of free agents, the only other players who could have realistically been in consideration to be listed could be players like Terrell Edmunds and Larry Ogunjobi. Otherwise, the Steelers don’t have a lot of pending free agents who could be viewed as must-have players on the open market.
This can be a good thing for the Steelers if they have hopes and aspirations of retaining a lot of these players, but don’t be fooled by Bowen’s list. These are just his thoughts on who might be the most significant, and impactful, players preparing to hit the open market.
Which players make up his Top 10? Here they are below:
1. Lamar Jackson, QB, Baltimore Ravens
2. Orlando Brown Jr., OT, Kansas City Chiefs
3. Javon Hargrave, DT, Philadelphia Eagles
4. Daron Payne, DT, Washington Commanders
5. Geno Smith, QB, Seattle Seahawks
6. Mike McGlinchey, OT, San Francisco 49ers
7. Tom Brady, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
8. Saquan Barkley, RB, New York Giants
9. Jamel Dean, CB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
10. Daniel Jones, QB, New York Giants
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the rest of the 2023 offseason.