‘Mutual Interest’ Between Steelers & Rival’s $43 Million WR

The Pittsburgh Steelers have already landed one big name this offseason that came at the expense of an AFC North rival: Former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Patrick Queen.

tyler boyd pittsburgh steelers

Now it looks like they could try to pry a starter away from another division rival.

According to The Athletic’s Mark Kaboly on March 13, there is “mutual interest” between the Steelers and former Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd.

The team was expected to look at receivers this offseason to fill their need at WR3 after Allen Robinson struggled in the role in 2023.

Now they’ve traded Diontae Johnson, making wide receiver an even bigger priority.

The Under-Appreciated Bengals Receiver

When talking about the Bengals’ passing attack, there are two receivers that get most of the attention.

Those two are Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins.

Before those two arrived in Cincinnati, Boyd was on his way to a pretty impressive career of his own.

Boyd had consecutive 1,000-yard seasons in 2018 and 2019 despite being thrown to by a declining Andy Dalton.

The QB upgrade he had been waiting for came in 2020, but it was unfortunately accompanied by the arrival of Higgins.

Boyd still made 79 catches for 841 in spite of the new competition for targets and Joe Burrow’s ACL tear.

The following year, Chase was added to the mix and immediately established himself as a star at the position. Boyd still ended the season with 67 catches for 828 yards.

As the young stars continued to develop, Boyd’s role shrunk, but he was still a productive third option.

He made 58 catches for 762 yards in 2022 and then followed it up with 67 catches for 667 yards in 2023.

Unfortunately, the team just can’t afford to keep Boyd around after giving Burrow his big extension, franchise tagging Higgins, and preparing to give Chase his own big extension.

Tyler Boyd’s Potential Fit With the Steelers

Boyd is a player who was seen as a potential option for the Steelers well before the team traded Johnson.

He grew up in Pennsylvania and played his college ball at Pitt.

He even told Pittsburgh Sports Now in January 2024 that he would like to play for the Steelers at some point in his career.

“You never know,” Boyd told PSN. “I love coach Tomlin. He’s probably one of the realest dudes in the sport’s business. Obviously, I played at Pitt, and I had a lot of run-ins with him and talked to him just about football. His personality is more like a father figure, it’s a great connection, but who knows? Even if I don’t go after this year, I could do a one-year deal at the end of my career and maybe finish up, but who knows.”

Pittsburgh needs somebody dependable to step into Johnson’s role and it doesn’t get much more dependable than Boyd.

He could also be surprisingly affordable for a player of his caliber.

Gabe Davis and Darnell Mooney are both set to make $13 million per year on the contracts they just signed.

Boyd made a bit under $11 million per year on his most recent deal and Pro Football Focus has him projected to earn around $8.25 per year on the next one.

At 29 years old, the Steelers should get prime years out of Boyd for the duration of any contract they’d sign him to, so his age shouldn’t be a concern.

If the Steelers can make the money work, then Boyd is an ideal, low-risk option to be Pittsburgh’s WR2 in 2024.

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