According to a Wednesday morning report, Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert could be close to accepting an offer from the Detroit Lions to become their new front office leader.
According to Mike Stone of 97.1 The Ticket, the Lions have made an offer to Colbert and one that the Steelers longtime general manager is ‘close’ to accepting, the station reports Wednesday morning. The report goes on to say that it is now up to the Steelers to make a counteroffer to prevent Colbert from leaving the franchise he’s been in charge of running since 2000.
“I just got off the phone with a trusted source who has told me that the Lions have made an offer to Kevin Colbert, and it’s pretty close to happening,” Stone said Wednesday morning on the Stoney & Jansen Show. “I’m not going to say it’s done or anything like that. Someone I know pretty well, somewhat connected, said that they’ve offered the job to Kevin Colbert, and unless the Rooney’s come up with some kind of crazy counteroffer he might be coming back.
“I’m not confident enough to say it’s done or to say breaking news, but a source has told me that the Lions have offered the gig to Kevin Colbert, and it’s close.”
Colbert, who has claimed that he is now year-to-year with the Steelers since last offseason, is currently under contract with the Steelers through the 2021 NFL Draft. There have been previous major media reports the last few weeks that the Lions, who Colbert essentially got his start with as their director of pro scouting from 1990-99, have the Steelers longtime general manager in their sights this offseason.
“Sources told me twice that the Detroit Lions — a trusted source — have offered Kevin Colbert, the head honcho of the Pittsburgh Steelers, the opportunity to come back home and be in charge of everything of the Detroit Lions. The ball is in Kevin Colbert’s court,” Stone reportedly said. “Nothing is done, nothing has been decided. But they have, according to the source, offered him the job.”
Colbert leaving the Steelers to continue his career with the Lions would be quite something. Many have speculated that the Steelers longtime general manager might be close to retiring as he’s now in his mid-60s.
“My status is what it is, and everybody’s comfortable with that”, Colbert said in September about his future with the Steelers past the 2020 season. “That’s where we requested to be, and Art Rooney was comfortable with that. Coach Tomlin was comfortable with that. And it’s really about us focus on 2020. And when we talk about that, trust me, we never lose sight of what’s going to happen in 2021, be it I be here or I not be here”.
Should Colbert indeed wind up leaving the Steelers for the Lions, either Omar Khan or Brandon Hunt would likely be in line to succeed him. Khan, however, has had interest in him from the Houston Texans and Carolina Panthers so far this offseason.
Obviously, we should find out fairly soon if Colbert is indeed leaving the Steelers for the Lions.
UPDATE: Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports Wednesday morning that the Steelers have not received a request for permission from the Lions to speak to Colbert. They cannot talk to Colbert without the Steelers’ consent, he reports.