While the head coach and general manager visit pro days around the country, the front office has stayed quite busy entertaining a couple of free agents.
The two in question are former Steeler great James Harrison and former Jacksonville Jaguar Maurice Jones-Drew.
Let me blunt here; the Steelers need to say “thanks but no thanks.”
Harrison played last year in Cincinnati after he chose to not take a pay cut in Pittsburgh. While the Steelers clearly need depth at the outside linebacker position, signing the older and slower James Harrison does very little for the team.
Linebackers typically are major contributors on special teams and there’s no way Harrison will be doing that. Yes, he could provide some advice and knowledge to Jarvis Jones and Jason Worilds but the cost both contractually and logistically makes no sense.
As for Jones-Drew, here’s a guy that rushed for an average of just 3.4 yards per carry last year. That’s a full yard less than his career average. Ironically, this is the exact issue that Le’Veon Bell and the running backs struggled with last season.
Jones played in 15 games last season while playing in just five the year before due to a knee injury. At 28 years old, MJD is entering the final phase of his career at running back. There are reports that he has lost some weight and is ready to go but still, why would the Steelers want to bring in a guy on the downside?
The Steelers need a change of pace back who can move the sticks on third downs and who can fill in capably should Bell need a series off. I’m not sure MJD is that guy.
Don’t be overly intrigued by the names here. The Steelers need to get younger, not more ‘experienced.’
Marc Uhlmann Co-owns and writes for www.steelcityblitz.com. He can be heard weekly on Trib-Live Radio.