For decades, the word defense has been synonymous with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Traditionally home to some of the biggest defensive names in the NFL, superstars like Troy Polamalu had the contracts to match and the Steelers were consistently among the highest spending teams when it came to their defense.
As the strength of the team has shifted to the offense, so have the salary cap dollars, with more than $100 million currently required to cover all the offensive players. However, while the Steelers have the most expensive offense in football heading into training camp, it is a different story on the defensive side of the ball.
Only the New Orleans Saints have less money committed to their defense than the Steelers total of $62,556,880 in 2017. Specialist salary cap website OverTheCap.com has the Saints accounting for $61,885,810 in cap charges by comparison. On the other end of the scale are the Denver Broncos, a team spending almost as much on defense as the Steelers spend on offense at $98,781,770.
Cameron Heyward might have the highest cap charge for any player on Pittsburgh’s defense at $10.4 million, but the defensive line group ranks just 26th in earnings according to figures from OverTheCap. However, even though the biggest cap hit among linebackers is Ryan Shazier with a modest $3.025,020, the Steelers rank 16th in the league at the position.
Safety turns out to be Pittsburgh’s most expensive position group when looking at league rankings. Helped by the cap charge of Mike Mitchell at $8,135,416, the second highest charge for any Steelers’…
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