The Pittsburgh Steelers released three players on Monday following Super Bowl LVIII, and among them was quarterback Mitch Trubisky.
NFL Network reported both sides spoke about the current situation in Pittsburgh, and the 29-year-old quarterback opted to get a fresh start in free agency.
Offensive lineman Chukwuma Okorafor, who has been with the team for six seasons, was also released along with punter Pressley Harvin. The moves saved Pittsburgh close to $13 million in salary cap space heading into the offseason.
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Mitch Trubisky #10 of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks on from the field during an NFL football game against the New England Patriots at Acrisure Stadium on December 7, 2023 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by (Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Most of that came from Trubisky, who was set to account for more than $7 million against the Steelers’ cap for the 2024 campaign. The Steelers ate $4.6 million in dead cap money, while saving $3 million.
Why is Trubisky’s release a relevant one? The first-round pick by the Chicago Bears was Kenny Pickett’s backup, so on the surface, it doesn’t seem like anything that would raise eyebrows.
However, with Mason Rudolph, the quarterback who started the Steelers’ playoff game against the Buffalo Bills this past season, set for free agency, Pickett will need a new backup.
Ryan Tannehill has been a name connected with the Steelers, as the veteran is also set for free agency after being benched in favor of rookie Will Levis with the Tennessee Titans this year.
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Jacoby Brissett, Tyrod Taylor, Sam Darnold and many more quarterbacks will be available who could give Pickett competition for next season.
Head coach Mike Tomlin once again led his group to the playoffs despite brutal offensive production that eventually led to the firing of offensive coordinator Matt Canada midway through the season (to the delight of many Steelers fans).
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mitch Trubisky (10) looks to pass during the regular season NFL football game between the New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers on December 07, 2023 at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh, PA. (Mark Alberti/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Pittsburgh finished 25th in total yards per game (304.3) and 28th in points scored per game (17.9), though they managed to squeak in as the final wild card team in the AFC with a 10-7 record.
The Steelers’ defense was a formidable group that kept their team alive in games, and though it wasn’t pretty, the offense managed to score just enough to get the job done. The defense also helped in that regard on occasion as well.
Trubisky initially began the 2022 season as the Steelers’ starting quarterback, with the rookie Pickett waiting behind him. After going 2-3 in his first five starts, Tomlin benched Trubisky in favor of Pickett.
This past season, Trubisky started just two games, both of which came late in the season when Pickett was injured. He went 0-2 in those games before Rudolph took over.
Quarterback Mitch Trubisky (10) of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks to pass in the first half against the New England Patriots at Acrisure Stadium on December 07, 2023 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
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Now, Trubisky will look to likely be a backup elsewhere in the league, while the Steelers will be smart with their next choice at quarterback.
Scott Thompson is a sports writer for Fox News Digital.