Steelers To Release CB Patrick Peterson

Patrick Peterson‘s Steelers stay may end up being capped at one season. After cutting Keanu Neal on Thursday, the Steelers are moving on from the All-Decade defensive back.

Pittsburgh is cutting Peterson,’s Adam Schefter reports. This always loomed as a possibility due to the accomplished cornerback’s age and contract. Peterson signed a two-year, $14MM deal that came with less than $6MM guaranteed. The Steelers will pick up $6.85MM in cap savings by making this move.

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Coming to Pittsburgh after two seasons in Minnesota, Peterson played both corner and safety for his third NFL team. Injuries prompted the Steelers to try Peterson as a regular safety, and while it will be interesting to see if that is a consideration for the aging DB going forward, he appears to no longer be in the team’s plans. The Steelers will center their cornerback corps around 2023 second-round pick Joey Porter Jr. A younger complement to Porter is expected to arrive this offseason.

Peterson reached the 200-start plateau during his season in Pittsburgh, making 16 starts and playing in every game for the team. The former Cardinals star has displayed durability in his 30s, and he provided a Steelers team missing multiple pieces at safety some help as it crafted a late-season playoff push. Peterson intercepted two passes and broke up 11 more last season. Pro Football Focus still rated the ex-Cardinals and Vikings starter outside the top 80 among corners. Peterson allowed a 91.5 passer rating as the closest defender in coverage — up from his two Minnesota marks.

Peterson’s 200 starts rank seventh among corners in NFL history. Four of the players in front of him (Darrell Green, Ronde Barber, Champ Bailey, Ken Riley) are in the Hall of Fame; the eight-time Pro Bowler is likely to join them in Canton down the line.

The Steelers will need to come up with a new Porter supporting cast. Levi Wallace played out a two-year deal, and Chandon Sullivan and James Pierre are also unsigned. Peterson was set to earn $3.85MM in base salary and count $9.8MM against Pittsburgh’s 2024 cap. With Peterson’s deal moving off the books, the Steelers are set to hold more than $15MM in cap space. It is likely the AFC North team will create some more room ahead of free agency.

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