When Watt pressed for a reason for the delay in the negotiations, his agent was stalling because they could get more money from the Steelers.
But the reigning sacks leader overruled the approach and went to the office of Steelers president Art Rooney II.
He then declared that he was accepting the offer and excused himself to start his workout.
The stalemate ended with Watt signing a four-year, $112 million extension that will start in the 2022 season.
— NFL (@NFL) September 9, 2021
The deal gives him a $28 million annual average, making him the highest-paid defensive player in the NFL.
He will get $80 million in guaranteed money, including his $35 million signing bonus, $1 million base salary for 2021, $22 million for 2022, and $20 million in 2023.
With Watt playing for Pittsburgh until 2025, the Steelers front office hopes to sign the other building blocks towards their seventh Super Bowl title.
Here are the players in their fold that they might target for a long-term agreement.
Who Will Succeed Big Ben?
The 2021 NFL season may be Ben Roethlisberger’s last.
He gets one more crack at winning a title, and it isn’t easy to see him playing beyond 2021.
But who will take the reins as the Steelers’ starter under center?
Dwayne Haskins among 3rd-year QBs this preseason:
👏 72.3 Passing Grade (1st)
👏 3 big-time throws (1st) pic.twitter.com/9JKKD6lMZc
— PFF (@PFF) August 31, 2021
However, they must sign both Haskins and Dobbs to give them a shot to compete.
Haskins will be earning $850,000 while Dobbs gets $1,040,000.
It’s not ground breaking money, but both showed some promise during the preseason.
The Steelers hope that Roethlisberger will play the majority of the snaps this season.
But they will prepare one of their backups to continue the franchise’s winning tradition.
Eric Ebron For An Extension?
Ebron signed a two-year, $12 million contract with the Steelers before the 2020 season.
He was solid throughout the year with 56 catches for 558 and five touchdowns.
The Steelers would like to see a big year from him to offer a longer deal.
Taking a quick look at the Steelers 1st team offense from preseason. Eric Ebron still can’t catch but Pat Freiermuth looks like a real red zone threat. Obvious depth at WR for Pitt so IF Bills can’t consistently pressure Big Ben, could be some success for Steelers pass game.
— Matt Parrino (@MattParrino) September 6, 2021
Aside from running short and intermediate routes, Ebron will be an extra blocker if the revamped offensive line runs into trouble.
Ebron cannot be complacent this season because Pat Freiermuth can take his place.
The rookie tight end from Penn State had solid performances during the preseason, and the Steelers might want to see more of him in-game.
Will Pittsburgh Bring Juju Back?
Juju Smith-Schuster is on a one-year, $8 million deal with Pittsburgh.
There will be several teams interested in his services once the 2021 season ends.
He had a career-high nine touchdowns in 2020 to go with 831 yards on 97 receptions.
Smith-Schuster also caught 13 balls for 157 yards in their playoff loss to the Cleveland Browns.
Been waiting 8 months for this weekend. LET’S GO! pic.twitter.com/yl3xsa2iBn
— JuJu Smith-Schuster (@TeamJuJu) September 10, 2021
He does have his share of controversial statements in the past.
But he will be of big help to any team that he plays.