UPDATE (4:04 PM): The team has officially announced Jackson’s release. The team also announced they have released CB Carlins Platel, a 2022 undrafted free agent. Platel spent the season on IR.
Our original story is below.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are expected to release CB William Jackson III, a move that has been expected to happen since the 2022 season ended. That info comes via Aaron Wilson, who tweeted the news a short time ago.
The Score’s Jordan Schultz was the first to tweet the news.
Jackson, who was originally selected in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals out of Houston, joined the Steelers in October after being acquired via a trade with the Washington Commanders. That trade compensation, a conditional 2025 sixth-round pick from the Steelers for a conditional 2025 seventh-round pick from the Commanders, never materialized in terms of picks exchanged as Jackson never played a down in Pittsburgh due to a back injury.
Jackson reportedly was only able to make it through one practice with the Steelers before issues with his back resulted in him being placed on the team’s Reserve/Injured list in the middle of November. While Jackson was able to resume practicing in January as part of him having his 21-day window opened, he was never activated back to the team’s 53-man roster.
When Jackson arrived to the Steelers via the trade, he did so sporting a 2023 base salary of $9.25 million, a March roster bonus of $2.5 million and other bonuses totaling $437,500. Those numbers resulted in his 2023 salary cap charge being scheduled at $12,187,500, which was way too high for the Steelers to carry.
With Jackson’s contract soon being terminated, the Steelers will instantly save $12,187,500 in 2023 salary cap space prior to the player’s displacement in the team’s Rule of 51.
For his NFL career, Jackson, who is now 30 years of age, has played in 75 regular season games on his way to registering 205 total tackles, five interceptions, 51 passes defensed, and one sack.
After spending his first four NFL seasons with the Bengals, Jackson signed a three-year, $40.5 million contract with Washington as an unrestricted free agent on March 16, 2021. $26 million of that contract was guaranteed with $21 million of that amount being guaranteed at signing.
As for the Steelers waiving of Platel, the team will not save any cap space as a result of that move.
Platel, who was injured late in the Steelers’ 2022 preseason finale against the Detroit Lions, spent all of last season on the Reserve/Injured list on a split salary of $430,000. He was originally signed by the Steelers last May as an undrafted free agent out of South Carolina product by way of Assumption College after impressing enough during the team’s rookie mini camp as a tryout player.