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Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 Exit Interviews: Arthur Maulet and William Jackson III

Both cornerbacks may be questioning their role with the 2023 Steelers.

NFL: DEC 18 Steelers at Panthers Photo by John Byrum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 NFL season has come to a close. Because the Steelers are among the 31 teams who did not finish fulfilling their ultimate goal, they are in the process of wrapping up their season and moving forward into 2023.

Since the Steelers conduct exit interviews with all their players, we here at BTSC thought we would do the same. By outlining two players each day, we will be able to look at their season in retrospect as well as looking toward the future. Since Coach Tomlin has previously stated he starts his interviews with rookies, first year players, and those heading into free agency, we will do the same. To start, I paired a potential free agent with players on rookie contracts. Now that both of those categories are done, I’ll pair players under contract as we work through this process to eventually cover the entire Steelers roster.

Next up are cornerbacks Arthur Maulet and William Jackson III.

Arthur Maulet

Las Vegas Raiders v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Gaelen Morse/Getty Images

Position: Cornerback
Years with the Steelers: 2
Years in the NFL: 6
Contract Status: Signed through 2023
Contract Details: $2,290,000 salary cap hit for 2023. Would cost the Steelers $500,000 in dead money if released and save $1,790,000.
Games played in 2022: 17 regular season
Games started in 2022: 6 regular season
Snaps (regular season): 481 (defense), 152 (special teams)
PFF score: 56.5 (90th of 118)
Notable stats: Maulet had 59 tackles and 2.0 sacks along with a forced fumble, 3 passes defensed, and an interception in 2022.

Notes: The Steelers utilization of Arthur Maulet changed throughout the season. Called on more early in the season, Maulet settled into a roll over the final seven games and which he did not play even 20 snaps a game. With one more year left on his contract, and being a very specific type of cornerback with the role of being the slot corner in running situations, the specific nature of Maulet’s usage could make him more replaceable. At this time, there’s no reason for the Steelers to move on from Maulet, but there’s also no reason for them to have him locked into a position where finding another cornerback that also covers the same skill set would be out of the question.

William Jackson III

Washington Commanders v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Position: Cornerback
Years with the Steelers: 0
Years in the NFL: 6
Contract Status: Signed through 2023
Contract Details: $12,176,471 salary cap hit for 2023. Would cost the Steelers $0 in dead money if released and save $12,176,471.
Games played in 2022: 4 regular season (with Washington)
Games started in 2022: 4 regular season (with Washington)
Snaps (regular season): 204 (defense)
PFF score: 49.6 (DNQ for ranking)
Notable stats: Jackson had 16 tackles and two passes defensed for Washington in 2022.

Notes: The cost of acquiring William Jackson III at the trade deadline for the Steelers was merely the more than $2.77 million in salary for the remainder of the year. Unfortunately, that salary went for nothing as Jackson did not play. Reportedly, the terms of the trade fell through due to Jackson not taking the field, so the Steelers do not have to swap the draft picks as part of the original agreement. The only question that remains now is if the Steelers are interested in playing Jackson more than $12 million in 2023 with really nothing to build on from 2022 to know if he’s worth the investment. Almost anyone familiar with the situation sees no way the Steelers keep Jackson for next season under this price. Whether or not they simply release him and move on or try to sign him to a different deal is the biggest question moving forward. While Jackson is unlikely to draw a large contract from anywhere else, perhaps he will give the Steelers some consideration for paying him what they did last season for nothing in return.

Make sure you check back each day for another set of exit interviews. If you have missed any of the previous articles, they are listed here:

Kenny Pickett & Mason Rudolph
George Pickens & Miles Boykin
DeMarvin Leal & Larry Ogunjobi
Connor Heyward & Zach Gentry
Mark Robinson & Devin Bush
Jaylen Warren & Benny Snell Jr.
Calvin Austin III & Derek Watt
Najee Harris & Terrell Edmunds
Pat Freiermuth & Trent Scott
Dan Moore Jr. & Jesse Davis
Isaiahh Loudermilk & Chris Wormley
Tre Norwood & Damontae Kazee
Pressley Harvin III & Marcus Allen
Kendrick Green & J.C. Hassenauer
Alex Highsmith & Malik Reed
Kevin Dotson & Tyson Alualu
Ahkello Witherspoon & Cam Sutton
Myles Jack & Robert Spillane
Minkah Fitzpatrick & Karl Joseph
Levi Wallace & James Pierre
Miles Killebrew & Elijah Riley
T.J. Watt & Jamir Jones
Montravius Adams & Tae Crowder
Cam Heyward & Jonathan Marshall
Chris Boswell & Christian Kuntz