Having been quiet for most of free agency, the Steelers made a move today, announcing in a press release that they’ve re-signed free agent wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey. According to the club, it’s a one-year contract for Heyward-Bey.
Heyward-Bey, 28, was active for all 16 games for the Steelers last season, but didn’t see much action, earning just five targets on the year. He grabbed three balls for 33 yards, both career-worst marks. It was also Heyward-Bey’s first year without a receiving touchdown. Still, the veteran wideout was enthusiastic about returning to Pittsburgh.
“It’s great to be back,” Heyward-Bey said. “I just wanted to stay here and be a part of a great organization and play for a great coach. That is what Coach [Mike] Tomlin is. I wanted to be back. For most guys free agency is tough, but I knew what I wanted. I knew the timing would take a little bit. For some guys it’s tough dealing with the unknown, but I knew what I wanted. I wanted to come back here.”
Having spent a year getting comfortable with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers’ offense, perhaps the former seventh overall pick will see his role expanded a little for 2015, but he’ll still fall behind Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant, Markus Wheaton, and perhaps others on the team’s depth chart. In all likelihood, Heyward-Bey will contribute primarily on special teams, as he did in 2014.
Financial terms weren’t disclosed, but I’d expect a minimum salary benefit contract for Heyward-Bey.