Connect with us

Steelers News

FA Free for All Coming? Broncos Set to Release Quarterback Russell Wilson



Pittsburgh Steelers Russell Wilson

The Denver Broncos have informed quarterback Russell Wilson that he will be released after the start of the new league year on March 13.

Wilson played just two seasons of a five-year, $242.6 million contract with the Broncos, who traded to a acquire him from the Seattle Seahawks in 2022. The 35-year-old will now become one of the top free agents on the open market.

“Broncos Country, Thank You! Over these last two years, you have welcomed my family and me with open arms and have embraced us as members of the Denver community,” Wilson wrote in a social media post. “This city will always hold a special place in my heart. Our family grew here, we made countless memories and friendships, and formed relationships that will last a lifetime.”

Wilson was benched by the Broncos for the stretch run, after a contract dispute between him and the team over his contract guarantee for the 2025 season, and the Broncos are expected to release him this offseason.

Denver is just two seasons removed from trading for Wilson. The Broncos sent two first-round picks, two second-round picks, a fifth-round pick, quarterback Drew Lock, defensive lineman Shelby Harris and tight end Noah Fant to the Seahawks for Wilson on March 16, 2022.

A Super Bowl champion and nine-time Pro Bowler with the Seahawks, Wilson has struggled in Denver. He posted an 84.4 passer rating in 2022, which was by far the lowest mark of his career, and was sacked a league-high 55 times.

The Broncos fired head coach Nathaniel Hackett after just one season, trading more draft picks for former New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton this past offseason, and Wilson has been better with a 98 passer rating in 15 games this season.

But he didn’t prevent the Broncos from missing the playoffs and Wilson hasn’t come close to living up to his contract. The Broncos will absorb a gigantic salary cap hit if they move on from Wilson, but they can minimize it if they release him with a post-June 1 designation. That would still deal them a $34 million dead cap charge over each the 2024 and 2025 seasons. 

The Pittsburgh Steelers, who are seeking competition for incumbent starter Kenny Pickett, have been repeatedly linked as a potential free agent destination for Wilson. But a recent report by Diana Russini of The Athletic seemed to suggest that the team’s interest is not that significant.

Report: Steelers Not Interested in Signing Russell Wilson

Because the Broncos are on the hook for his $39 million in guaranteed salary in 2024 no matter where he plays, Wilson could sign elsewhere for as little as the veteran minimum, keeping most of his salary coming from Denver. With the Steelers’ relatively tight salary cap situation, Wilson could be among the top potential additions at quarterback.