Steelers Use Transition Tag On LB Jason Worilds

The Pittsburgh Steelers will not let outside linebacker Jason Worilds go without a fight as they have decided to use the transition tag on him.

The transition tag comes with a $9.754 million cost associated with it and the Steelers must accommodate that number in their rule of 51 number at the start of the new league year.

Should Worilds sign a deal with another team during free agency, the Steelers will have five days to match it. If they don’t, they will not receive anything in the way of compensation for losing him.

For now, it appears as though the Steelers will let another team decide the market value of Worilds and then decide where to go from there.

Prior to the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine, Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert said it was doubtful the team would use a tag this year.

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • Berlusconi

    Great. If he is going to stay one additional year he can prove that the second half of last season was not a fluke.
    Also the Steelers could wait another year to see what happens with Woodley (if they keep him) and if JJ develops in a good starter.

  • Paddy

    I expected as much, must have freed a lot of cap room today

  • Paddy

    Not guaranteed that he will stay with Steelers

  • Jefferson_St_Joe

    Wow. I hope this works out better than when they tagged Starks. I wouldn’t have paid Worilds that much for 2 years.

    There will need to be some terminations to accommodate this.

  • Lamarr56

    So is this a 1 year 9 million dollar deal if there is no offer? Sorry nfl business confuses me.

  • steeltown

    Hmmm.. bold move

  • Berlusconi

    Indeed, still an aggressive move by the Steelers and very surprising (to me)

  • Paddy

    I think Ike Tayor might be history

  • moderatelysane

    Holy shit. Didn’t expect that.

  • 804Stiller

    It would be too much $$$ on OLBs to keep both. We pretty much have to let 56 go unless someone comes in with a crazy, long term deal that we wouldn’t match for 93. We just can’t keep them both IMO. Plus, it stunts the growth of 95.

  • Paddy

    There will be an offer, just not as many as Worilds would want

  • Madi

    The last time they used this (Max Starks, if I’m not mistaken), they brutally butchered the whole thing. Hopefully they know what they’re doing this time.

    To me this is a sign they want to sign him long-term. I’m one that believes he’s not a one-hit wonder, and thinks what we saw late last year was the real deal. That said, we can’t pay him and Woodley so much money. Perhaps they will try to ink Jason and release LaMarr, and if they can’t get it done then they keep both for 2014 and re-evaluate next year, after seeing how their bodies hold up?

  • PA2AK

    not sure if it makes much of a difference, but doesn’t this tactic seem to put the Steelers stamp on…’yeah, he’s worth a lot of money’? Teams that were considering paying a high price for his short resume may be less gunshy now that the Steelers have basically said he’s worth it?

    Then again, could be a sign that he isn’t worth it…considering Steelers recent track record with high $ contracts on the defensive side of the ball haha.

  • Chris Ranieri

    Leave it to Colbert and the boys to make a move that I (and I would assume most) had never heard of. I support this. I also feel like this means Worilds will not be a Steeler after next year. IMO

  • Craig Ressler

    Why am I getting the gut feeling we are going to lose him and get no compensatory picks for losing him?

  • PA2AK

    My birthdays never work out quite like this!

  • PA2AK

    It’s a high price to pay, but there is no shortage of fools in the NFL. I was blown away when Kruger et. al. got such huge deals last year for such minimal bodies of work. If someone offers much more than this, we have to let him go right?

  • Brandon James

    Honestly, not a bad move. Much smarter than throwing the franchise tag on him. Hopefully the can lock him up long term, but as of now I do not see how woodley would not be cut/forced to take a paycut.

  • StrengthOfVictory

    Has to, at the very least, send the message to Worilds that he’s wanted in Pittsburgh. And not just in a casual “wouldn’t it be nice” sort of way.

  • Craig Ressler

    That was kind of my thinking too, man!

  • shawn

    aggressive would have been to offer him a decent but fair deal and lock him up if possible before FA … not sure i like this at all

  • Eric MacLaurin

    Better too much for one year than too much for 4.

  • shawn

    do u like this move over offering him a deal before FA ?

  • Brandon James

    Exactly. God forbid he gets an extra 2mil for just the season, and if we don’t want to lock him up long-term this gives us the perfect 1-year transition to move on from woodley. I don’t mind it

  • falconsaftey43

    could have been what the Steelers thought was decent and fair was not something Worilds would accept, banking that on the open market he thinks he can get more. This is a great solution to that proposed problem. It let’s the market say how much he is worth, and still lets the Steelers decide if he is worth paying that much.

  • shawn

    the market is over 8 mil + are we really going to match that ?? i dont think we should … so not sure about how it plays out, but looks like if we dont match we dont get compensation either from the looks of the article ??

  • chris ward

    Wow, big move by the Steelers to put the transition tag on Worilds. Did not expect this.

  • srdan

    if nobody offers Worldis anything, steelers are obliged to pay him 9mm next year.

    If someone offers him a deal, steelers have 5 days to match that exact deal. If not, he is gone.

    So what you could expect is if someone wants 93 to play for them, they would look at the steelers current salary cap situation and try to make a deal in such a way that the steelers would have the least chance to match it. In this case, they will offer him for example 20 mill tthe first year, 1mm every year after that because that organization thinks the steelers can’t match that first year salary. Those are not realistic numbers, but you get the point.

  • PA2AK

    that’s my first though. this, like the franchise tag…doesn’t lock him up beyond a year either. We’ll be in the same boat next year.

  • James Kling

    Don’t like the use of the transition tag: almost as expensive as a franchise tag, none of the protection. The only way this works out IMO is if the Steelers tag him, no one makes an offer, and we work out a reasonable extension.

  • srdan

    It puts a stamp on it “he is worth a lot to us”. Rightfully so. We have no depth.

  • srdan

    We never had a shot of getting comp pics for him. He is an URFA.

  • srdan

    Im happy with a new set of socks lol

  • falconsaftey43

    right no compensation right now in terms of draft picks (as opposed to a non exclusive franchise tag which would net 2 first round picks). They still get comp picks the next year same as if they didn’t tag him as I understand it, so likely 3rd or 4th next year.

  • Tullydew

    They do get a compensatory pick in 2015 if he signs elsewhere

  • srdan

    i agree.

  • ilamarca

    They can negotiate at any time including after June 1 when they can free up half of Woodleys dead money.

    In essence, they could offer Worilds a front loaded contract with the $9m designated to him today, plus up to $6m more of Woodleys money. After that, the contract provides cap relief starting in year 2 since he made his money in year 1.

    At the same time, they dont have to make that decision for 6 months and get to see how Woodley looks in the meantime.

    BUT, its also not too hard to offer Worilds that front loaded contract in year 1 that the Steelers, with their minimal cap space, cannot match.

  • PA2AK

    right, but what I mean is, it takes away most ‘outsiders’ concerns with his ability to perform going forward. Everyone is working off the same limited tape, but the Steelers know him much better than everyone else. The hesitancy of other teams would have revolved around the doubt of his abilities going forward. This seems to erase that doubt as best as possible for other teams.

  • Tullydew

    They will get a comp pick if he leaves. Just like any FA, ex. Wallace, Lewis etc. They will get it in 2015

  • PA2AK

    and no depth? I thought we had f’n darth vader in Jarvis Jones!? He’s going to be the #1 LB in the league this coming season right? :-)

  • Craig Ressler

    I mean is that right? It may be, I am not sure with some of the URFA/RFA stipulations. But I guess more so, part of my point was, is there not a way we could tender/tag him, whatever, and be able to reap a compensatory pick if we lose him? The above comments explaining the transtion tag seem to suggest there is and one of the downfalls of tagging him this way was no compensation.

  • PA2AK

    but not as of this designation, correct?

  • PA2AK

    especially the thermal work boot socks…THE best

  • srdan

    The undertone to this whole situation is that 93 believes he should get 9 mill a year average. So, the steelers put a tag on him to pay him that much.

    I don’t think a team will offer him a per year 9mm deal, so assuming that a team offers him 7mm per year, the steelers could match it, or Worldis may turn down the 7mm per year and play for the steelers for 9 next year. Taht way he can’t be locked up below of what he thinks he is worth.

    Good move on the steelers part. They value him. Short of someone front loading that contract to 11mm next year in salary cap money, it’s unlikely he is leaving. Steelers already promised him 9.

  • cp72

    Wonder by doing this will it force them to cut Ike to get them under the cap by start of the new year.

  • Kyle Owens

    So now The Steelers can not cut Woodley and have 9 million in cap space tied up in Worilds. Is Ike going to be released for a player that the Steelers may lose anyway? Can someone explain the pro’s of tagging Worilds? Because I don’t see any. All this did was set Worilds’ starting price at 9 million which is too high for a player that couldn’t beat out Chris Carter for the starting spot when James Harrison went down.

  • Ken

    yes

  • Ken

    I guess they wanted to keep him or Woodley – so they went with the one that’s most likely to stay on the field..

  • srdan

    i see your point. Or the other team may look at him as he is worth much more to them than me because they have no depth. You konw what I mean. I don’t think its telling other teams anything they don’t know.

    Dude was a beast last year.

  • Craig Ressler

    Again, that is how I am thinking too, man!

  • Tullydew

    No the only difference between Franchise tag and Transition tag is the franchise tag gets compensation for the upcoming draft. If someone signs Jimmy Graham the Saints get a 1 in 2014 and a 1 in 2015. The transition tag receives no such compensation. The team just gets regular compensation like a normal FA (a year later). Just like Wallace and Lewis leaving last offseason the a Steelers receive picks this year.

  • cp72

    That incorrect. Gonna get a comp pick for Wallace.

  • Eric MacLaurin

    Ike will take a paycut

  • Joe Schenk

    I dont really understand this..it seems like there are no pros to doing this at all? Please comment if im wrong but I just dont understand

  • PA2AK

    true. i think I’m just paranoid about anything other than ‘he’s a steeler for the foreseeable future’. lol. i think we will be much better off (money, performance, short/long term) with Worilds than Woodley.

  • Jason White

    Yeah but there is no depth behind him. As I told a Ravens fan on Twitter the transistion tag on Worilds has nothing to do with Jarvis. Worilds plays on the left side while Jarvis plays on the right side. If we lose Worilds then Woodley is gonna have to man the left side and there is nobody behind him for when he gets hurt.

  • cp72

    May not have a choice.

  • PA2AK

    No wonder NFL contracting is a mess…they sound like our laws!!! And here, I thought a franchise tag locked the guy up for the upcoming year! So a team can still offer them a contract (just doesn’t happen often because of the $ of the tag) even if they are franchised?

  • shawn

    well if they get the comp pick the following year … no real loss … but i thought the play was to stand their ground and only offer so much or let him walk … now it looks much like sanders they are n’t really sure how much they want to pay for him

  • Kyle Owens

    Cons: Can’t cut Woodley until this plays out
    Make have to release Ike if he doesn’t take a pay cut
    Tie up 9 million in salary cap space

    Pros: This will be great episode of the Terrible Podcast

  • PA2AK

    Tulleydew…you some sort of NFL contracting wizard? WTF happened to football?! lol

  • shawn

    i dont see a lot of upside either … really dont

  • cp72

    To me it sounds like it’s a way to buy time. It’s a safe way to see what the market is and have a chance to see how the numbers jive with the grand scheme of things. If he gets an offer deemed to high you walk away. This also might discourage some activity for him. Maybe teams will look elsewhere to guys that there are no strings attached.

  • Josh Knepshield

    I agree. Harrison and Woodley stunted the growth of Worilds as well.

  • Tullydew

    The Franchise Tag gives a team like the Saints the ability to match any offer Jimmy Graham signs with another team. However if they don’t match they get two 1st round draft picks from the signing team. It pretty much locks up the player b/c 1st round draft picks in the NFL are treated like gold. Giving away two of them to sign a player doesn’t happen much

  • PA2AK

    I know…i’m just being a d!ck because of all the hype around JJ last year. Projecting from that hype…we may only need one OLB next year in the almighty JJ!

  • PA2AK

    thanks!

  • Tullydew

    Not a wizard….just a follower of this website!! Lol

  • PA2AK

    Aint that the truth. Glad I found this place. LOADS of good information.

  • WilliamSekinger

    I’m not to familiar with the transition tag. The Steelers will have 5 days to match an offer to Worilds if he indeed does sign it. Does match mean here what it does in UFA terms? An exact match of the contract?

  • pittsburghjoe

    The move was wonderful!! It basically says they want him back up to a certain price. They will let the market set the price, and if its too high…See ya later, and thank you for the half season of production you sump pump.

  • Tullydew

    Kudos to Dave and his staff. Most informative website for Steeler fans and it’s not even close.

  • PA2AK

    yup…he’ll take a hefty haircut…the rest of that little ‘do’ he’s got up there, lol. I think Ike stays. Of any current steeler that understand the business and where his value is in terms of the rest of the league vs. with the steelers…it’s Ike.

  • WilliamSekinger

    by giving him a transition tag, it would be less likely Worilds would sign a contract elsewhere. If he does nothing he returns to the Steelers and makes 9.7 mil this year. Reports were his market value was in the range of 5 years 35-40 mil. The transition tag is more money albeit for only 1 year.

  • steeltown

    They may have put offers on the table.. maybe both sides couldn’t come to an agreement, so this way the market sets the price and the ball is still in our court

  • Madi

    Reading the comments confused me…

    If another team signs him and we choose not to match, do we get the regular comp pick that we would have had if we never tagged him? (Likely a 4th or so in 2015) …Or is that gone for good now?

  • WilliamSekinger

    I believe it is gone for good now.

  • Melly

    I think Ike will drop his salary to the 2.5-3million range. I get the sense he loves being a Steeler and he is quite fond of the Rooneys!!!!

  • Luke Shabro

    I actually like this move quite a bit. My guess is Worilds did not like what the Steelers were offering and/or wanted to at least see what his value was. Steelers still have the opportunity to sign him long term and Worilds still has the opportunity to see how the market is. I wouldn’t necessarily call the second half of last season a fluke but I didn’t want them paying the guy 8 million or more a season long term. Now he can prove it. And if he doesn’t hopefully they have drafted a kid or two in the 2014 draft

  • Craig Ressler

    Thanks for the clarification.

  • Madi

    I hope not. I was looking forward to that pick.

  • Craig Ressler

    Yeah, I guess that being the case I would have rather them spend the extra 1.7 million or whatever the difference in the franchise/transition tag is.

  • Nolrog

    There are two different kinds of compensation picks, which is somewhat confusing. The RFA one, which we would have gotten the Patriot’s #3 last year for signing Sanders (a pick I would have taken every day of the week and twice on Sunday). There is also the compensation pick, where we get a pick based on a complicated formula the NFL guards like the formula to Coca Cola (this is the case with Wallace and Keenan Lewis.) If Worilds gets a deal that the Steelers don’t match, it would be at least a #4 or a #3 (these picks are awarded by the league and are not taken away from the team that does the signing, unlike the RFA compensation pick.)

  • shawn

    It will be interesting to see if we ever find out if they did put an offer on the table … problem i see is the market is over inflated and we won’t be getting good value if we match

  • joed32

    They were able to sign Max to a long term deal the next year an he turned out to be a solid LT. I don’t see how they butchered it.

  • NW86

    I’m sure that’s exactly what they tried first. It takes 2 sides to agree to a contract – must be Worilds and the Steelers didn’t agree on what a “decent and fair” deal was.

  • shawn

    if that is the case, thats too bad … dont really want to get into a bidding war with a guy that thinks he’s worth a kings ransom from a half season’s of work …

  • Madi

    He always had his highs and lows – I like the move to sign him. But a 1 year, $7 million contract? He was nothing special before that and was our third OT at the time! For the $7 million, he sat on the bench until Marvel Smith went down with his back. We won the Super Bowl that year, and Starks helped, but almost $1 million per game is not a good deal. They could have just signed him to a regular contract for less than they wound up giving him a year later. The only reason it wasn’t a complete disaster is that Smith got hurt. Otherwise it’d have been $7 million to ride the pine.

  • joed32

    God works in mysterious ways. LOL