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Steelers Hope to Sign Russell Wilson Long-Term



Pittsburgh Steelers OC Search Darrell Bevell Russell Wilson

Even with acquiring Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields, who’s 25 years old, the Steelers still plan on extending Russell Wilson after the 2024 season, according to Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Wilson turns 36 in November, but according to multiple reports, Mike Tomlin made it clear that Wilson will be the starter over Fields this season. The team signed Wilson for just $1.21 million on the veteran minimum, as Denver owes him nearly $38 million in guaranteed salary in 2024.

Fields is due $3,233,448 and the Steelers will now have the rights to his fifth-year option. The Steelers have a fallback plan if Wilson doesn’t work out as the starter, and a potential long-term answer at the quarterback position.

How the 2024 season unfolds will determine what kind of contract Wilson receives. If he balls out, he might receive another hefty contract. But, if things go sideways and Fields overtakes the starting role, would he want to return to Pittsburgh?

Fields took a small step forward in 2023, his third year as Chicago’s starting quarterback. The Ohio State alum threw 370 times, completing 227 for 2,562 yards and 16 touchdowns. He threw nine interceptions and maintained an 86.3 passer rating and a 5.29 adjusted net yards per attempt.

In 2022, he was 192 of 318 for 2,242 yards, 17 touchdowns and 11 interceptions, an 85.2 quarterback rating and 4.63 adjusted net yards per attempt.

Statistically, Wilson had a rebound in 2023 after a rough season in 2022. Last year, Wilson started 15 games for the Broncos, completing 297 of 447 passes (66.4%) for 3,070 yards, 26 touchdowns and eight interceptions for a 98.0 passer rating and a 6.04 adjusted net yards per attempt. 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.

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.

Wilson was asked about his issues in Denver on Friday at his introductory press conference, and he described the struggles in his first season with a lat injury, and in his second season, he felt much better about his level of play.

“I think it’s all about how you look at it,” Wilson said. “In life, a lot of times when things don’t go your way, you can look at it as disappointing [or] you can look at it as growth moments. For me, my first year [in Denver] I had my lat. I was playing on it, pushing through it. Should I have done that? You know, you compete every day. You got to do what you got to do. Everything didn’t go our way. This past year, I felt like myself again. I felt like myself again, so I can’t wait to just put on the cleats and go after it.”

One thing is clear, the Steelers have at least options with Wilson and Fields in the quarterback room now. They’re on cheap contracts, too. Pittsburgh’s QB depth chart is under contract for under $4.5 million total.