The Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2021 season is over, already eliminated from the postseason after suffering a 42-21 loss at the hands of Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs. They just barely made the postseason with a 9-7-1 record and a little help from their friends.
This is an offseason of major change, with the retirement of Ben Roethlisberger, the possible retirement of general manager Kevin Colbert, and the decisions about the futures of many important players to be made, such as Joe Haden, Stephon Tuitt, JuJu Smith-Schuster, and others—some already decided, some not.
Aside from exploring their options at the quarterback position, the top global priority, once again, figures to be addressing the offensive line, which they did not do quite adequately enough a year ago. Dan Moore Jr. looks like he may have a future as a full-time starter, but Kendrick Green was clearly not ready. Chukwuma Okorafor was re-signed, but Trai Turner was not. James Daniels and Mason Cole were added in free agency.
These are the sorts of topics 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. There is rarely a concrete answer, but this is your venue for exploring the topics we present through all their uncertainty.
Question: What is your reaction to the Steelers making Minkah Fitzpatrick the highest-paid safety in the NFL?
Yesterday, the Steelers completed a new four-year contract extension with veteran safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, tying him to the team for the next five years. extension brings a new-money value of $18.4 million per year, making him the highest-paid safety in the NFL.
I avoid calling him the highest-paid safety in NFL history, even though it’s technically true in its most literal sense, but adjusting for salary cap inflation, it’s certainly not the case. Troy Polamalu’s last big contract extension in 2011, adjusted for the cap inflation of today, would be worth more than $21 million per year.
But the reality is that Fitzpatrick’s new money totals more than Polamalu made in his entire career over 12 years—which is, of course, what happens, when the best players in the league get paid relative to an increasingly larger portion of the gross profits of the game.
So, regardless of qualifiers, the Steelers now employ the highest-paid safety in the game. How do you feel about it?