If the Pittsburgh Steelers are going to try to sign fourth-year starting free safety Sean Davis to a contract extension this offseason, then they haven’t shown it yet, at least to the player’s knowledge. Davis told reporters recently that as far as he knows, his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, has not heard from the organization about a possible new deal. He is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in 2020.
But if he had his way, he would only have one football home in the NFL, as he told Chris Adamski of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
“This is the best spot to be “, he told the beat writer. “I hear all the incoming guys, everyone, saying, ‘there’s no place like Pittsburgh’. So I don’t wanna experience anything different. I just want to stay in Pittsburgh because I love it in Pittsburgh”.
Davis was a second-round draft choice in 2016 out of Maryland. Selected as a safety but also with a mind toward his versatility, he opened his rookie season as the team’s primary slot defender in part due to injuries, but that changed as first-round cornerback Artie Burns gained playing time and pushed William Gay into the slot.
After suffering an injury, Davis was shelved for a few weeks before re-emerging in a rotation with Robert Golden at strong safety in the middle of his rookie season. He would rotate for two games before taking over the starting job full-time.
He has started every game since, but moved to free safety in 2018 after Mike Mitchell—who started there for the past four years—was let go. Morgan Burnett was brought in to play strong safety, but the role ultimately went to 2018 first-round pick Terrell Edmunds.
Davis and Edmunds are now entering their second season together as a duo, and one can only hope that that comes with a better on-field connection. The safeties have to communicate well, both verbally and non-verbally, to know what each other is doing.
Will this be the last season for the pair, however? It is truly an unknown whether or not Davis will be brought back in 2020, or if the Steelers will even attempt to hold contract negotiations. It’s possible that they could decide to let the season play out to determine how Davis looks further at free safety before committing to him long-term.
If he does leave, he wouldn’t be the first player to talk about how much he would love to stay in Pittsburgh only to sign somewhere else. Keenan Lewis, Emmanuel Sanders, and Jerricho Cotchery are just a few recent examples, though it’s not clear that the Steelers ever made any serious effort to keep Lewis, favoring Cortez Allen (mistakes were made).