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A List of Quarterbacks Who Will NOT be on the Steelers Roster in 2021

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

A List of Quarterbacks Who Will NOT be on the Steelers Roster in 2021

By: Parker Abate, @parkerabate


The Pittsburgh Steelers organization is known for building talent within. The Steelers draft, develop, extend key players and repeat this process over and over. Forget about the lack of cap space the team currently has, General Manager Kevin Colbert does not make big splashes, and when he does, it makes sense. Trading for Minkah Fitzpatrick and moving up in the draft to take Devin Bush 10th overall in the 2019 NFL Draft are examples of non-characteristic transactions. Steelers fans have these aggressive moves fresh in their minds and expect another one this offseason, specifically at the quarterback position. The quarterbacks on the Steelers roster in 2021 will be Ben Roethlisberger, Mason Rudolph, Dwayne Haskins Jr., and possibly a draftee (unlikely). Cutting Roethlisberger or a retirement would save the team some money, but Roethlisberger has always said he would play out his contract and the guys listed below are not going to sit on the bench.

Here is a list of quarterbacks (for several reasons), who will not be a Pittsburgh Steeler in 2021.


1.) Aaron Rodgers

Let’s get this one out of the way. Players say dumb things when they are upset. Rodgers postgame press conference when he questioned his future could simply have been a wake up call to the Green Bay Packers organization to draft properly this year instead of a quarterback in the first round and running back in the second like they did in 2020. Both were unnecessary for a Packers Super Bowl run this season. Aside from that, even if he is one the market (The Packers cap space is a mess), the Steelers are not trading for him. It is not happening. Did I mention the cap space for Pittsburgh? The Steelers are almost $30 million in the hole. Rodgers cap hit is 37.5 million in 2021.


2.) Deshaun Watson

It is rumored that the Houston Texans are looking for three first round picks in exchange for Watson, maybe more. The eye popping number that intrigues Steelers fans is that his cap hit is only $16 million in 2021. However, it skyrockets to over $40 million a year in 2022 because of his contract extension. The Steelers are set to have plenty of cap space in 2022, but are not going to pass along first round picks in multiple years, let alone three. Watson will find a home on a team that has plenty of draft capital and millions more in cap space than the Steelers.


3.) Matthew Stafford

Stafford’s cap hit in 2021 is $33 million. Stafford is 32 and has some solid years of football left in him. It will be interesting to see what he does in an established organization committed to winning. With that said, it won’t be the Steelers. The Detroit Lions are similar to the Texans and have a lot of rebuilding to do. Trading Stafford is going to make sense for them, but not for the price the Steelers would offer. An expensive trade for a quarterback in his 30s who has not won a playoff game is not a move the Steelers will make.


4.) Sam Darnold

Out of all quarterbacks possibly on the move, Darnold’s financial hit for a potential new team is not of concern because he is still on his rookie deal. Darnold has not had weapons around him for the New York Jets and his numbers are not eye popping. His price may not be too steep to pay. Why won’t the Steelers make a move? Rudolph and Darnold were both drafted in 2018. Simply put, the Steelers trust Rudolph, he has been a part of the organization and he holds a better career completion percentage and passer rating than Darnold. Additionally, as both rookie deals near an end, Rudolph will be easy to resign at a low cost because he has not started consistently since being drafted in 2018.


5.) Carson Wentz

Another quarterback, another big contract that the Steelers will not pick up. With cap hits the next four years over $30 million, the Steelers are not going to make a move to a quarterback whose play was abysmal in 2020. The Steelers believe in the quarterbacks on the roster and out of all rumored available quarterbacks, Wentz, especially, will never see himself in a Pittsburgh Steelers uniform.


Honorable mention of who also will not be a Steeler: Jameis Winston, Cam NewtonMitch Trubisky and well… just about every other household quarterback name. The Steelers will stay in house for 2021 which means the quarterbacks on the roster and maybe a draftee if it seems like the perfect fit on draft night. If Roethlisberger retires suddenly, I would still be shocked for the Steelers to make a splash over letting Rudolph and Haskins duel it out in training camp.


What do you think the Steelers quarterback position will look like in 2021? Let me know in the comments below, #SteelerNation.

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