Drama brewing between Pittsburgh Steelers and top star over new contract: ‘You gotta do what’s right for you’

Pittsburgh Steelers
Credit: Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports

It is that time of year for players to leverage their availability for better contracts and now the Pittsburgh Steelers are the latest team with a star player willing to stay on the sidelines in search of a new contract.

Much of the key parts of the NFL offseason are in the rearview. In March free agency opened and all of the top players in this year’s market signed with new teams. April brought the annual NFL Draft and all of the elite prospects in this year’s class are with their first NFL franchise and are readying for their rookie seasons in the league. Now, we are entering the holdouts part of the offseason.

Also Read: 6x Pro Bowler holding out from Pittsburgh Steelers in search of new contract

  • Cameron Heyward contract: Four years, $65.6 million

There has been a lot of debate about the future of San Francisco 49ers star receiver Brandon Aiyuk, and if he could be a camp holdout as he seeks a huge raise in the final year of his contract. However, the Pittsburgh Steelers are already in the early stages of a months-long holdout scenario with a top star.

This week brought rookie minicamps around the league, and voluntary minicamps will follow next week. It’s an event that many veterans do not attend but Steelers captain Cameron Heyward is making an early public stance that he is not happy with the fact that he is in the final year of his contract and has no plans of being at voluntary camp this month.

“You gotta do what’s right for you,” Heyward said on a new edition of his podcast “Not Just Football with Cam Heyward.” “I’m training hard. It’s nothing I’m not doing on and off the field. I’m doing everything possible. We’ll get there when we get there.”

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  • Cameron Heyward stats (2023): 11 games, 2 sacks, 33 tackles, 3 QB hits

The six-time Pro Bowler is in the final year of a four-year, $65.6 million extension he signed in 2021. Heyward is a team captain and a major part of the current Steelers roster, however, at 35 years old the organization may be hesitant to lock themselves into a multi-year deal and want to take a wait-and-see approach to see if he is fully recovered from the torn groin muscle he suffered last season.

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