A busy offseason awaits the Pittsburgh Steelers and General Manager Kevin Colbert as more than 20 players enter free agency, and the winds of change are blowing at quarterback with 18-year veteran Ben Roethlisberger all but officially announcing his retirement.
Though there remains a number of holes on the Steelers’ roster ahead of the offseason and ultimately the 2022 NFL Draft, the Steelers will continue to be connected to veteran quarterbacks that will be available as free agents, or through trades.
One such quarterback that continues to gain steam as a connection to the Steelers this offseason is Las Vegas Raiders’ veteran Derek Carr.
With the Raiders undergoing significant changes in front office personnel and at head coach, Carr could find himself on the outside looking in on the future plans in Sin City, leading to rampant speculation that he could be moved this offseason, especially entering the final year of his five-year, $125 million deal.
NFL.com writer Marc Sessler hashed out five teams that could be fits for Carr earlier this week and listed the Steelers as one of the six.
“In the wake of Sunday night’s season-ending beatdown at Kansas City, I assume Ben Roethlisberger is finally where he needs to be: pounding strawberry daiquiris at some all-inclusive in Antigua. Back in Pittsburgh, the Steelers begin a search for his successor,” Sessler writes. “Mason Rudolph cannot be the final answer unless you root for the Ravens, Bengals or Browns. Mike Tomlin doesn’t seem like the guy to start over with a rookie, either, although making a move in the draft for hometown hero Kenny Pickett would thrill Yinzer types. Carr is an obvious upgrade over Mason or Dwayne Haskins and would give the Steelers direction instead of a one-year patch.”
Though he is in the final year of his contract, Carr will be just 31 years old entering the 2022 season and is in line for a significant pay raise coming off of a career year, throwing for 4,804 yards while completing nearly 69% of his passes, 23 touchdowns and 14 interceptions, leading the Raiders to the playoffs in a turbulent season, that included the resignation of Jon Gruden.
While Carr might not be the needle mover that names like Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson are at this time, there’s something to be said for the impressive leadership Carr showed in 2021, helping the Raiders withstand a number of off-field storylines that should have derailed their season.
Along with the Steelers, Sessler listed staying with the Raiders as the top option for Carr, and added in teams such as the Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, and Washington Football Team as trade options for Carr.