UPDATE (8:25 PM): Corry has issued a correction that the contracts do not void until Friday, February 18th.
Our original story is below.
Five days after the completion of Super Bowl LVI in Los Angeles, the contracts of former Pittsburgh Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster officially voided Thursday morning, as expected.
According to former NFL agent and current CBS Sports salary cap and contract guru Joel Corry, Roethlisberger and Smith-Schuster joined 12 other players Thursday across the league that had their contracts officially void, making them free agents.
Of course, Roethlisberger had already previously announced his retirement, so it doesn’t affect his status, though it does make Smith-Schuster an unrestricted free agent for the second offseason in a row.
If you recall, Roethlisberger took a $5 million pay cut to return to the Steelers for the 2021 season, tacking on four voidable years in the process to lower his cap charge.
Along with Roethlisberger, Smith-Schuster returned for the 2021 season after failing to get a lucrative deal he was looking for on the open market. By returning to Pittsburgh, Smith-Schuster’s four additional years, 2022-2025, would all void automatically if he is on the Steelers’ roster on the fifth day after the 2021 Super Bowl, which lined up with when the voidable years on the contract Roethlisberger signed, making the two a tandem contract-wise.
“Specifically, the Steelers will have $10.34 million and $5.6 million salary cap charges from Roethlisberger and Smith-Schuster’s 2022 through 2025 contract years voiding,” Corry writes in his Agent’s Take column, leaving dead cap charges for the two former Steelers.
How that fully affects the Steelers’ salary cap outlook remains to be seen, as prior to the contracts voiding, Steelers Depot’s own cap guru Dave Bryan had the Steelers with a little over $33 million in cap space in late January, though just over $25 million of that was useable as more than $8 million was already spoken for.