Connect with us

Steelers

Report: Steelers, TE Vance McDonald Restructure Contract

Published

on

The Steelers have restructured the option on the contract of tight end Vance McDonald, according to a report by Adam Caplan of Sirius XM NFL Radio.

McDonald had a two-year, $11.9 million option, with $5.5 million in salary in each season and $900,000 in workout and roster bonuses this season.

Instead, according to Caplan, McDonald will convert $5.5 million of his salary into a signing bonus. It’s not clear exactly how much of that bonus will be deferred and thus removed from the Steelers’ 2020 salary cap.

McDonald, 29, has been the Steelers’ primary starter at tight end over the last two seasons since coming over in a trade from the San Francisco 49ers in 2017.

He’s started 14 games in each of the last two seasons and has 102 catches for 1071 yards and eight touchdowns in his three seasons in Pittsburgh.

After a 50-catch, 610-yard season in 2018, McDonald saw his production decrease in 2019 thanks to an early season injury and the loss of starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, which depressed the receiving stats of all Steelers pass-catchers in 2019. McDonald finished his third year in Pittsburgh with 38 catches on 55 targets for 273 yards and three scores.

With backup Nick Vannett set to become an unrestricted free agent on Wednesday, McDonald’s outstanding contract option represented one of the Steelers’ biggest offseason question marks going heading into the new league.

As more details become available about the specifics of McDonald’s new contract and the salary cap implications of it, this story will be updated.

Steelers

James Conner Surprises Dad with New Truck

Published

on

One major goal athletes set out to achieve in their career is to be able to give back to those who raised them and helped them. Steelers running back James Conner was able to do that in a big way when he was able to buy his father a truck.

Conner tweeted a video of the entire exchange and moment. Mr. Conner, and that’s referring to James’ dad, was shocked, even going as far as to start handing his son the keys to the truck, assuming it was actually his. James made sure to let his dad know the new truck was a gift. While it’s unclear the exact model of the truck, it’s clearly all black and said to be a new 2020 edition.

The whole Conner family can now drive the truck down to Heinz Field to watch James and the Steelers play next season (if fans are allowed, of course). And who knows what kind of gift James may buy for his loved ones if he can take his game to another level and earn a new contract, something James has been vocal about hoping is with the Steelers. 

Continue Reading

Odds

Roethlisberger, Gronkowski Co-Favorites to Win Comeback Player of the Year

Published

on

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski are co-favorites to win NFL Comeback Player of the Year at +400.

Roethlisberger played just two games in 2019 before suffering a season-ending elbow injury against the Seattle Seahawks.

Entering his 17th season, Roethlisberger should be primed for success this season with the help of a reloaded receiving core that added former Indianapolis Colts tight end Eric Ebron and Notre Dame-product Chase Claypool at wideout.

Roethlisberger would be the second Steelers quarterback to take home the hardware. Tommy Maddox was awarded the honor back in 2002.

Gronkowski is not returning from an injury, but the former All-Pro tight end is making a comeback all the same.

Gronkowski ended his retirement after just one season to reunite with quarterback Tom Brady in Tampa Bay. One of the biggest mismatches in NFL history, Gronkowski’s 79 touchdown catches are tied for the third-most ever by a tight end.

If he were to win, Gronkowski would join quarterback Chad Pennington as the only other player to win Comeback Player of the Year twice. He won it previously in 2014.

Texans defensive lineman J.J. Watt has the next best odds at +600.

The best odds in the division behind Roethlisberger belong to Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green at +1000, fourth-best overall.

Continue Reading

Steelers

Steelers Coaches Return to Team Facility

Published

on

With the NFL announcing that coaching staffs can return to team facilities, the Steelers wasted no time getting back to work.

Steelers coaches, including head coach Mike Tomlin, returned to the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on Friday morning.

With Pennsylvania switching over to the “Green Phase” of its COVID-19 reopening plan Friday, the Steelers were one of the organization permitted to welcome back their staffs, but only if they adhere to local and state guidelines.

The team shared a few photos of Tomlin entering the facility, including an image of the 14-year head coach getting his temperature taken in the lobby. Daily checks are clearly part of the league’s protocols with regards to reopening.

To this point, the bulk of the NFL’s offseason has been conducted remotely, including the Draft and free agency.

Tomlin is most likely excited to return to some sense of normalcy. He discussed how challenging the adjustment had been on a conference call last month.

“We face a lot of challenges, my mentality, and the group mentality is going to be they are challenges that everyone faces,” said Tomlin. “From that standpoint it’s going to be fair and the playing field is going to be level. We have to be light on our feet. There is going to be a period of adjustment from a scheduling standpoint as we gain our footing in terms of logistics of what day-to-day looks like and things of that nature.”

“The entire National Football League will be going through it and I just think if we perform relatively better than others, we put ourselves in position to be that team at the end of the journey. That is always our mentality regarding the start of a season.”

The only team employees that had previously been allowed in facilities were athletic trainers and rehabbing players.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has not yet announced when all player will be permitted to return, but did note in his memo to clubs Thursday that the league is first attempting to finalize their COVID-19 testing program.

Continue Reading

Steelers Now in Your Mailbox!

Enter your email address to subscribe and get notifications of new posts in your mailbox.

Moon Golf

Copyright © 2020 Pittsburgh Sports Now / Steelers Now. In no way affiliated with or endorsed by the Pittsburgh Steelers or NFL.

Steelers Now in your Inbox

Sign up and get all of our posts sent directly to your inbox!

Thank you!

Oops!

Send this to a friend