Allen Robinson passing his physical will send him to a fourth NFL team. The Rams will assume much of Robinson’s 2023 payout — as a result of the three-year, $46.5MM deal they authorized in 2022 — and could only offload that contract for a 17-spot jump in the seventh round. The Steelers adjusted Robinson’s contract further before the trade became official, with Ian Rapoport of NFL.com indicating (via Twitter) the wide receiver will collect a $3.84MM signing bonus from his new team. That will help reduce his cap hit. As for 2024, Rapoport adds Robinson’s base salary will drop from $15MM to $10MM. Two void years are also present on Robinson’s Steelers deal, per OverTheCap, which indicates the 10th-year veteran will be tied to a $5MM cap number this year and a $10MM hit in 2024. While Robinson’s $5MM 2023 salary is locked in, nothing is guaranteed for 2024.
The Steelers sought an experienced option at receiver, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Gerry Dulac, due to second-year players George Pickens and Calvin Austin being expected to play significant roles in 2023 (Twitter link). Robinson will join Diontae Johnson, who is going into his fifth season, as veteran options. This might lead to the Steelers addressing other positions with their Day 2 draft capital; the team has taken eight wideouts on the draft’s second day since 2013.
Here is the latest from the AFC North:
- Four years after working together on a dysfunctional Browns team, Odell Beckham Jr. and Todd Monken reunited with the Ravens. Beckham said he and the recently hired Baltimore OC have a great relationship. In 2019, however, Monken served as a non-play-calling OC under Freddie Kitchens, who was fired after one season. Midway through that disappointing Browns slate, cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot notes Beckham initiated a clear-the-air meeting with Monken in an effort to move parties onto the same page. Browns wideouts perceived Kitchens and the team’s QBs at the time to be “cliquey,” and the disconnect led to shouting matches between wideouts and coaches. The Browns disbanded the Beckham-Baker Mayfield partnership midway through the 2021 season. Although Monken ran the offensive meetings during the week in 2019, Cabot adds the future Georgia staffer did not have much play-calling input. The Ravens will count on Monken, who now has a third NFL OC opportunity, and OBJ to elevate their offense next season.
- Amari Cooper may miss some offseason time due to a core surgery he underwent this offseason. Cooper did not miss any games last season, but Cabot adds he underwent this procedure in February. Kevin Stefanski said the team will not rush Cooper back, so it stands to reason the ninth-year wideout may not be a full OTAs participant. Cooper, 28, put together his sixth 1,000-yard season in 2022; two years remain on his Cowboys-constructed contract.
- It might take a bit longer for Chidobe Awuzie to return to work with the Bengals. The veteran cornerback suffered a torn ACL during a Halloween matchup against the Browns. He is targeting a return by Week 1, Kelsey Conway of the Cincinnati Enquirer tweets. The Bengals no longer have Eli Apple under contract, but they signed Sidney Jones in free agency. Jones joins Mike Hilton and Cam Taylor-Britt as the top healthy Bengal corners. One season remains on Awuzie’s deal.
- While the Steelers gave Bud Dupree a physical, Dulac notes the former Pittsburgh first-rounder’s free agency visit did not include contract talks. Dupree, who played for the Steelers from 2015-20, signed a one-year, $3MM deal with the Falcons last week. A number of veteran edge rushers — Yannick Ngakoue, Frank Clark, Leonard Floyd and Jadeveon Clowney among them — remain unsigned. The Steelers will likely be seeking a low-cost option to be their third edge rusher behind T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith. Malik Reed held that role last year; Reed has since joined the Dolphins.