Pittsburgh Steelers guard Ramon Foster is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in less than nine weeks from now and the 10-year veteran made it clear this past week during an interview on 104.5 The Zone in Nashville, TN that he thinks he has at least a few more good years left in him.
“I’ll give it two to three, but that’s all depending on making it out without an injury,” Foster said when asked how many more years he thinks he can play in the NFL. “I get Ron [Foster] to come train with me because everybody that I was training with ain’t playing anymore around the area. So, how I feel in the offseason training, the body, the mind, everything. So, we’ll see.”
Foster had another solid season in 2018 that included him playing every offensive snap and he did so after missing the entire preseason and most of training camp with a knee injury. That successful season behind him, however, Foster just turned 33 years of age a few days ago and he’s easily in the top-20 oldest offensive linemen in the NFL currently.
Foster’s last contract that he signed with the Steelers back in 2016 totaled out at $9.6 million and his $3.2 million per season average wound up being a huge steal for the Steelers. To give that number some context, Indianapolis Colts left guard Quenton Nelson, the sixth-overall selection in the 2018 NFL Draft, signed a rookie contract that averages a little more than $5.97 million per season. That doesn’t seem to bother Foster, however, because he knows it’s good for his position whenever an interior offensive lineman gets drafted as early as Nelson did.
“I do,” Foster said when asked if he gets excited whenever he sees a guard get selected early in a draft like Nelson was this past year. “And you know why? Because the market goes up and it’s refreshing to see execs and front office guys say, ‘Hey, man, maybe it’s not just the left tackle, you know. Maybe we need to look at the centers and guards, too.’ And I think that’s huge for our sport and if you look at it, those d-ends that those left tackles block, they come inside. So, with that being said, it’s like, well we’re holding up our end of it also.”
While Foster was giving his interview on Thursday in Nashville, several fans of the Tennessee Titans were apparently attempting to recruit him on Twitter by telling him that the state doesn’t have any income tax. Foster was told that and replied that he was well aware of that.
“I know what states don’t have any, I’m telling you,” Foster said.
It certainly will be interesting to see what happens with Foster this offseason. If he makes to free agency he might just find a team willing to pay him more per season and give him more guaranteed money than the Steelers would want to. In short, if he wants to finish his NFL career right where it started in Pittsburgh, he might have to sign another three-year contract similar to the one he signed in 2016 with the only difference being that it’s adjusted up to match the 2019 salary cap environment.