Steelers Can Score Big From Bills Cap Casualties

The Buffalo Bills have gone on a fire sale, cutting players left and right in an effort to get under the salary cap and as All-Pros make their way out of Western New York, the Pittsburgh Steelers could be one of the teams to benefit from an AFC rivals’ difficult decisions.

Steelers Can Score Big From Bills Cap Casualties

One of the players turned into a cap casualty by the Bills’ belt-tightening is safety Jordan Poyer and as the Steelers work to build a Super Bowl-contending roster, he could be part of the solution.

The Steelers are facing questions at safety that were revealed as the position group suffered a litany of injuries during the 2023 season. Outside of superstar Minkah Fitzpatrick, the ranks are thin.

Damontae Kazee is cheap and can be dynamic at times but likely fits better as a situational reserve. Patrick Petersen is an option, but safety is not his natural position and a position change would serve only to extend his own career. Keanu Neal and his $2.7 million cap hit could be a cap casualty candidate himself. Miles Killebrew will be a free agent in a week, and there is little to no experience left behind them on the depth chart.

Poyer is an ultra-reliable player. He appeared in at least 15 games in six of his seven total seasons with the Bills, recorded 90 or more tackles in all but one year in Buffalo (and 100 tackles or more in four of those seasons). He doesn’t miss many tackles and has been historically stingy in coverage.

His numbers took a step back in 2023, but even as Poyer has aged, he’s found ways to make big plays. Last season was the first time since 2016 that Poyer didn’t come up with multiple interceptions and he forced an astonishing 48 fumbles during his time with the Bills.

The best part is that he wouldn’t even break the bank for the Steelers, who have some other, bigger needs to address with their limited cap space. Poyer is entering a free agency market that has not been kind to safeties recently. There were only two free agent safeties to sign contracts with an average annual value north of $10 million. Only seven signed for $7 million or more per year and as Poyer moves onto his age 32 season, the odds he’d get more than a two-year deal with any NFL franchise.

The Steelers need a safety and Poyer needs a home. He’s a proven difference-maker from a playoff team that can reinforce a defense that’s looking for an upgrade. There’s no reason why he can’t be an option for Omar Khan and the Steelers front office.

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