The are plenty of big name free agents still available well into May, and Pro Football Focus believes one is a perfect fit to bolster the Pittsburgh Steelers’ offensive line.
PFF’s Ben Linsey sees former Carolina Panthers offensive tackle Russell Okung as an ideal candidate to provide Pittsburgh with a veteran anchor on the left side.
With the Steelers appearing to be gearing up for one more Super Bowl run with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, Linsey sees Okung as the perfect option to sure up his blindside this year.
“If that’s the case, it makes sense to bring on a reliable veteran to man the left tackle position on a one-year deal,” Linsey writes. “He would bring some stability to the left side in Pittsburgh’s effort for one final push with Roethlisberger.”
Pittsburgh is expected to start Chukwuma Okorafor at left tackle this season, but he has never played the position for the Steelers. He started 16 games last season at right tackle after stepping in for the injured Zach Banner in the season opener. Okorafor has played 1,187 snaps at right tackle and 74 at tight end.
Not only would Okung provide an experienced option for the Steelers given their youthful offensive line, but he would also likely come fairly cheaply this far into the offseason. According to PFF, Okung has played close to 9,000 career snaps, while Okorafor and Banner have played a combined 1,653.
An eleven-year veteran, Okung was originally a first round selection of the Seattle Seahawks in 2010, where he played the first six seasons of his career. He then spent a time with the Broncos, Chargers and Panthers.
Okung won Super Bowl XLVIII with Seattle and has earned a pair of Pro Bowl nods.