While Mike Mitchell is set to test the open market, a return to Pittsburgh is still in the cards. Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports (via Twitter) that coach Mike Tomlin and general manager Kevin Colbert spoke to the veteran safety today and expressed interesting in bring him back in 2018. While Mitchell is planning on hitting free agency, Pelissero notes that the “door remains open.” The veteran was released by the Steelers earlier this week.
The 30-year-old has spent the past four seasons in Pittsburgh, where he’s started each of his 61 games. Mitchell appeared in 13 games this past season, finishing with 53 tackles and two passes defended. Pro Football Focus ultimately ranked him 62nd among 87 safety candidates.
Mitchell was slated to carry a $5MM salary in 2018, which was not workable for the Steelers given their limited room. The safety will have to compete with a deep free agent class and declining skills in pursuit of a new deal, but he should be able to find work as a veteran presence in the secondary. The Steelers could apparently be that team, as Mitchell would realistically be an upgrade over some of their current options, including Robert Golden and J.J. Wilcox.
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