The Pittsburgh Steelers made significant roster moves on Monday, parting ways with quarterback Mitch Trubisky, offensive tackle Chukwuma Okorafor, and punter Pressley Harvin III. Trubisky’s departure marks the end of a tenure that began in March 2022, when he joined the team with high expectations but struggled to deliver on the field.
Initially tasked with replacing the retired Ben Roethlisberger, Trubisky’s stint as the starting quarterback was marred by inconsistency and underperformance. After starting four games, he was benched in favor of rookie Kenny Pickett.
Trubisky faced further challenges this season, filling in for an injured Pickett but failing to secure victories against formidable opponents like New England and Indianapolis. Ultimately, he was replaced by Mason Rudolph, the third-string quarterback.
The decision to release Trubisky not only signals the end of his tenure but also frees up significant salary cap space for the Steelers over the next two seasons, approximately $11.5 million. Alongside Trubisky, the team also cut ties with Okorafor, a mainstay on the offensive line who started 59 games for the Steelers since being drafted in 2018.
Despite signing a lucrative contract extension in 2022, Okorafor’s benching midway through the season hinted at his impending departure, especially with the emergence of rookie Broderick Jones.
As for Harvin, the decision to move on from the young punter comes after three years of inconsistent performances. While he showed promise at times, the Steelers opted not to retain him for the final year of his contract, signaling their intention to explore other options in the offseason.
With Trubisky gone, Pickett emerges as the sole quarterback under contract for the upcoming season, with Rudolph set to enter free agency in March. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin expressed interest in retaining Rudolph, who played a pivotal role in securing victories that helped the team reach the playoffs.
Trubisky’s departure from Pittsburgh marks the end of a challenging chapter in his career, which began with high expectations as the No. 2 overall draft pick in 2017.
Despite flashes of athleticism, his tenure with both the Chicago Bears and the Steelers was marred by inconsistency and unresolved issues with decision-making and mechanics.