NFL Trade Rumors: Pittsburgh Steelers Legend Cameron Heyward Sitting Out OTAs, Seeking Extension

The Pittsburgh Steelers are apparently at odds with one of their veteran leaders. According to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, three-time All-Pro defensive lineman Cameron Heyward intends to skip organized team activities as he seeks a contract extension.

As Fowler notes, Heyward has never missed an offseason program since joining the Steelers as a first-round pick way, way back in 2011. Heyward has appeared in a ludicrous 194 games for the Steelers, earning six straight Pro Bowls from 2017 to 2022. He's in the final year of a four-year, $65.6 million extension signed in 2020.

Heyward and the Steelers are in the same delicate situation many teams run into with franchise legends. Heyward's contributions with the Steelers deserve recognition, but he's also 35 years old and coming off a down season in which he missed six starts and tallied a mere 2.0 sacks. Heyward wants security as he nears the end of his career, but his production no longer merits a significant investment. If they were truly ruthless, the Steelers could even justify cutting him to spare themselves his $16 million salary.

Ultimately, Heyward and the Steelers have too much positive history to throw away. More importantly, no rival team should consider him an asset worth trading for or committing major money to. Odds are, the best deal available to Heyward will be the one Pittsburgh offers. So long as the Steelers don't insult him, Heyward will likely remain a Steeler for life.

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