Steelers Agree to $41 Million Deal With All-Pro From Division Rival - Sport News

Steelers Agree to $41 Million Deal With All-Pro From Division Rival

The Pittsburgh Steelers have started out free agency by taking big swings on major talents.

On March 10, they went out and got a new starting quarterback for the 2024 season, signing Russell Wilson to a one-year deal.

Then they were pretty quiet for the first day of the NFL’s legal tampering period. They only signed a punter while many bigger moves were made across the league.

On day two of the legal tampering period, they added another star at a position where they badly needed an upgrade.

To make the move even sweeter for the Steelers, the star they signed most recently played for one of their division rivals.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, All-Pro former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Patrick Queen told Marcus Spears that he has agreed to a deal with the Steelers.

The deal is worth $41 million over three years.

Queen Made Ravens Regret Their 5th-Year Option Decision

Queen has been a solid contributor since he was drafted by the Ravens late in round one of the 2020 draft.

As a rookie Queen struggled a bit with missed tackles, but racked up 106 tackles, 9 tackles for a loss, 2 forced fumbles, 3 sacks, and an interception. He earned the third most votes in the Rookie of the Year voting after his first season.

The following year, he continue to get involved for the defense, making 98 tackles with 10 for a loss. He laso had a couple of sacks and a forced fumble.

Queen got better in year three, bringing his tackle total up to 117 with 9 for a loss. He also defended 6 passes, intercepted 2 of them, and had 5 sacks for a very well-rounded output.

Despite his strong 2022 season, the Ravens decided not to exercise the fifth-year option of his rookie contract, making 2023 a contract year for the standout linebacker.

He responded with the best season of his career.

As a part of the NFL’s most successful defense in 2023, Queen set a career high with 133 tackles with another 9 for a loss, while once again defending 6 passes and adding 3.5 sacks.

Queen formed one of the NFL’s most formidable inside linebacker duos with Roquan Smith.

Queen ended up being voted into the Pro Bowl and earned a spot on the NFL’s All-Pro Second Team.

Now he represents a big improvement for a team that the Ravens are going to face at least twice every year for the duration of his new contract.

A Big Need for the Steelers

The Steelers had an inside linebacker problem during the 2023 season.

It wasn’t the strongest spot on the roster for them from the start of the year and then they ran into major injury issues.

Both Kwon Alexander and Cole Holcomb suffered season-ending injuries in 2023.

That left the team to turn to multiple practice squad players at the position to close out the season.

As a result of the team’s problems at the position they struggled in coverage against tight ends at times. They were also a bit below league average against the run, allowing 4.3 yards per carry.

Adding Queen should help on both of those fronts. He has proven himself to be strong in pass coverage and aggressively attacks against the run in a way that will fit well with the physical style the Steelers are known for.

With Queen and Elandon Roberts in the middle of the defense, the Steelers just turned a weakness into a strength early on in free agency.

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