2023 has already seen a number of changes made at the linebacker position for the Steelers, but the team is still making moves. A deal is in place with Kwon Alexander pending a physical, reports ESPN’s Brooke Pryor (Twitter link).
The veteran visited Pittsburgh in May, signaling that a deal could be close. It took well into July for one to materialize, but it will give the Steelers added depth and experience at a spot which has been heavily renovated in recent months. Alexander spent his first season in the AFC last year by playing with the Jets, and he will likely have a similar role in Pittsburgh to his most recent one..
The soon-to-be 29-year-old logged a snap share of 49% in New York, by far the lowest of his career. Alexander had steadily seen his playing time decrease in recent years, though, so it came as little surprise that he was relegated to rotational duty. He made 69 stops last season, adding six tackles for loss and one forced fumble.
CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson tweets that no guarantees have been made with respect to Alexander’s playing time upon arrival. A strong showing in training camp could earn him a first-team spot, though, something which is in flux given all the additions made at the second level this offseason. Cole Holcomb received the largest investment amongst Pittsburgh’s new linebackers (three years, $18MM), a group which also includes fellow free agent signings Elandon Roberts and Nick Kwiatkoski.
Questions remain regarding how the Steelers’ new-look LB unit will fare, but it appeared to have a sufficient number of new faces heading into camp that further moves may not have been needed. Alexander should nevertheless provide consistent play in at least a rotational capacity as Pittsburgh looks to bolster its front seven as part of the wider effort to return to the postseason.