“Take YOUR HAT….Your COAT….AND LEAVE! i#steelernation”
Take YOUR HAT…. Your COAT…. AND LEAVE! i#steelernation
— Joe Haden (@joehaden23) March 12, 2022
It is also worth noting that the time of his Tweet is 5:15 AM.
What could have Haden so fired up in the early Saturday morning hours?
Haden Is An Unrestricted Free Agent
Haden, who turns 33 next month, is a free agent.
He spent the past five years with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Prior to that, he was with the Cleveland Browns for seven years.
His last deal with the Steelers was a two-year contract for $22.4 million.
Haden has no plans to retire.
Haden Opted For Free Agency Instead Of Extension Negotiations
His contract extension talks were reportedly happening last August but the direction changed in September when Haden decided he wanted to test the free-agent market.
Rumor has it the Steelers are in contract talks with Joe Haden to extend the 32 yr old CB who is currently in his final year of contract.
— STEELCITYNATION (@SCityNATION412) August 10, 2021
After approaching the Steelers about an extension to finish his career in Pittsburgh, Pro-Bowl CB Joe Haden has decided to play out his contract and test the free agent market in 2022 when the cap is expected to increase significantly, per his agent @DrewJRosenhaus
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 1, 2021
What Could It Mean?
Haden has never been an unrestricted free agent in his career.
This is foreign territory for him.
Perhaps, he is finding the experience unsettling, rejuvenating, and frustrating, all at the same time.
We can only speculate what he is thinking as only he knows for sure.
Haden In 2021
He was sidelined with a foot injury and only played in 12 of the Steelers 2021 games.
With the lost playing time, his productivity suffered.
His 2021 stats are the lowest since the 2017 season when he suffered a broken fibula that caused him to miss games.
He had 26 solo tackles and 12 assisted tackles in 2021.
At One Point Haden Wanted To Retire A Steeler
Haden’s turnabout decision to become an unrestricted free agent was somewhat unexpected because at one point he said he wanted to finish his career in Pittsburgh if possible.
Drew Rosenhaus, agent for Steelers’ Pro-Bowl CB Joe Haden, has approached the team regarding an extension for his client, who is now going into the last year of his contract. “Joe wants to finish his career with the Steelers if possible,” Rosenhaus said this morning.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 10, 2021
He had a heartfelt message for the city and its fans at the end of the season.
On January 17, Haden posted:
“Steelers Nation…I love u Guys! The Love I have felt from day One here has been unbelievable and I can’t thank you guys enough! We will see what the future holds! #GoldsPlan #ImNotDoneBalling!”
Steelers Nation….. I love u Guys! The Love I have felt from day One here has been unbelievable and I can’t thank you guys enough! We will see what the future holds! #GoldsPlan #ImNotDoneBalling! pic.twitter.com/oOpqSSPoBQ
— Joe Haden (@joehaden23) January 17, 2022
His Saturday morning Tweet gives us an indication of what a nerve-racking time it is for players as teams quietly are making decisions on how to handle their current free agents before the league-wide free agency period opens on March 16.
Haden could end up a Pittsburgh Steeler in 2022.
It may come down to money and how many other teams express interest in him after March 16.
Haden is just one of the many interesting NFL storylines that will make the upcoming week an interesting one in the NFL World.