Now that the 2021 offseason has begun, following yet another year of disappointment, a fourth consecutive season with no postseason victories, it’s time to take stock of where the Pittsburgh Steelers stand. Specifically where Steelers players stand individually based on what we are seeing over the course of the offseason as it plays out. We will also be reviewing players based on their previous season and their prospects for the future.
A stock evaluation can take a couple of different approaches and I’ll try to make clear my reasonings. In some cases it will be based on more long-term trends. In other instances it will be a direct response to something that just happened. So we can see a player more than once over the course of the season as we move forward.
Player: OLB Cassius Marsh
Stock Value: Up
Reasoning: With Bud Dupree and Olasunkanmi Adeniyi parting in free agency, and with Jayrone Elliott not being retained, Cassius Marsh is squarely positioned to at least make the roster in 2021, if not serve as the number three at the position.
A seven-year veteran, Cassius Marsh has seen quite a lot over the course of his NFL career. He has been on as many teams as he has logged years in the league—including three teams in 2020, the final of them being the Pittsburgh Steelers.
They signed him off of the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad in early December after he had played in seven total games prior to that with both the Colts and the Jacksonville Jaguars, with whom he originally signed at the outset in 2020.
A couple of weeks back, the Steelers decided to bring him back on a one-year deal, at which point he now stands as a top reserve on the depth chart, with the only players ahead of him being T.J. Watt and second-year Alex Highsmith, following the free agency departures of Bud Dupree and Olasunkanmi Adeniyi.
When Highsmith went down with an injury in the playoff loss, it’s worth noting that it was Marsh whom the coaches put on the field ahead of Adeniyi last season. The latter was a restricted free agent this offseason, and they elected not to retain him, which is not a surprise, given that they showed that they valued Marsh more.
The key for the veteran, though, is the fact that he can be a quality special teams player. The Steelers are very likely to add at least one pass rusher, likely in the draft, but that should keep him around. They only have Christian Kuntz and Jamir Jones behind him at this point.