The Steelers need to augment their veteran roster with quality talent this offseason. Here are three free agents Pittsburgh should pursue.
As an organization, the Steelers take great pride in drafting and developing their own players. They still cannot afford to sit out free agency altogether. This offseason represents a great opportunity for Pittsburgh to transform their roster from good to great with a few key additions.
The team won’t spend a fortune on the open market, but a few well-placed investments could pay big dividends for Mike Tomlin and his staff. The organization is keenly aware that the clock is ticking on Ben Roethlisberger’s time as an effective starting quarterback. Expect the Steelers to investigate a few young veteran signal-callers in free agency.
The team also will look to add an impact veteran to the offensive line. Alejandro Villanueva is a serious flight risk at left tackle. Pittsburgh will either need to install a rookie as his replacement or spend decent money in free agency on a more established player.
The defensive front could also lose edge rusher Bud Dupree. Finding a pass rusher in free agency is never a cheap proposition, but the Steelers can’t afford to let their front seven slip. An underrated free agent could be the crown jewel for Pittsburgh’s offseason. The team is very familiar with the first target on this list from his days playing against the Steelers for Baltimore.
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It’s possible Judon will be outside the team’s price range if his market goes as expected. On the other hand, he’s not a great fit for every defense. Judon is only really valuable if he’s permitted to rush the passer with reckless abandon from the edge without being overly concerned with other responsibilities.
Pittsburgh’s 3-4 defensive alignment gives its edge rushers a great deal of freedom on obvious passing downs. Judon could give the Steelers double-digit sacks without needing to play a lot on first and second down. That would make signing him a bit of a luxury move for a franchise that prides itself on its blue-collar attitude, but Judon could prove to be an upgrade over Dupree.