The Pittsburgh Steelers are now in Latrobe at Saint Vincent College, where they have held their training camp sessions since 1966. While the vast majority of the legwork of building the 90-man roster is done, there is always some fine tinkering to do. Now it’s time to figure out who is worthy of a roster spot, and what their role will be.
The team made some bold moves this offseason and in some areas of the roster look quite a bit different than they did a year ago. That would especially be the case at wide receiver and inside linebacker, where they’re bound to have new starters.
How will those position groups sort themselves out? How will the young players advance into their expected roles? Will the new coaches be up to the task? Who is looking good in practice? Who is sitting out due to injury?
These are the sorts of questions among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked, though there is rarely a concrete answer, as I’ve learned in my years of doing this.
Question: Assuming that he does, is Joe Haden the only player who will reach a contract extension with the team this summer?
As everybody who has been following the team long enough should know, the Steelers’ principle negotiation period for working out contract extensions tends to be when training camp opens up through to the start of the regular season (Troy Polamalu once inked an extension on a plane heading to the location of a season opener).
With the Steelers now in Latrobe, the negotiation window is officially wide open, and cornerback Joe Haden confirmed that the two camps are discussing their options pertaining to getting the 30-year-old under contract beyond the 2019 season.
Haden signed a three-year contract worth $27 million in 2017, so he is currently scheduled to be a free agent in March. The team wants to avoid that possibility, but the numbers have to work. However, when there’s a scenario in which both sides really want to get a deal done, as it is in this case, it tends to happen.
But Haden isn’t the only one looking for a new deal. Mike Hilton seems to realize he’s likely not going to get one this year, but Javon Hargrave and Sean Davis are two more realistic possibilities. It will come down to money (and the Steelers figuring out how to fit it into the salary cap), but I wouldn’t be surprised if at least one of them got wrapped up.