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Report: Steelers Interested in Potential Free Agent Center Ryan Jensen



Ryan Jensen

The Pittsburgh Steelers are interested in acquiring free agent center Ryan Jensen, according to a report by Dan Graziano of ESPN.

Jensen, 30, spent the last four seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after starting his NFL career in Baltimore. He was elected to his first Pro Bowl after the 2020 season and was a part of Tampa’s Super Bowl LV-winning team that season.

Jensen had signed a four-year, $42 million contract with the Tampa in 2018 that had $22 million in guaranteed money and made him the highest-paid center in the NFL, so he likely won’t come cheaply as a free agent.

The Steelers will also have competition in attempting to bring Jensen back to the AFC North, Graziano also reported that the Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals, along with the New York Jets, are showing interest in Jensen and that the Bucs would like to re-sign him, as well.

Spotrac has estimated Jensen’s market value at $10 million per season. The Steelers currently have approximately $18 million in usable salary cap space and have the ability to make at least that much additional room with restructurings and releases between now and the start of free agency’s contact period on March 14.

Pittsburgh has an incumbent center in Kendrick Green, but the 2021 third-round draft pick struggled with his transition to the position after playing mostly guard at Illinois and was replaced by journeyman backup J.C. Hassenauer down the stretch run of the season.

The Steelers believe Green can play center or guard, so an acquisition like Jensen would likely shift Green to right guard, where 2021 starter Trai Turner is a free agent and is not expected to be retained.

Other top free agent centers include Matt Paradis from Carolina, where he played for new Steelers offensive line coach Pat Meyer, Ben Jones from Tennessee, Justin Britt from Houston ad Ted Karras from New England.

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