Free-agency tracker: Pittsburgh Steelers

This week, the AFC North blog will be taking a look at what each team has done now that the first wave of NFL free agency is over.


Signed (eight players): ILB Larry Foote, G Ramon Foster, WR Plaxico Burress, TE David Johnson, CB William Gay (Cardinals), QB Bruce Gradkowski (Bengals), TE Matt Spaeth (Bears) and LS Greg Warren.

Lost (seven players): LB James Harrison (released), WR Mike Wallace (Dolphins), CB Keenan Lewis (Saints), RB Rashard Mendenhall (Cardinals), G Willie Colon (released, Jets), S Ryan Mundy (Giants) and S Will Allen (Cowboys).

Top remaining free agents: NT Casey Hampton, OT Max Starks, QB Charlie Batch, LB Stevenson Sylvester, C-G Doug Legursky, TE Leonard Pope and QB Byron Leftwich.

What's next: Signing free-agent running back Ahmad Bradshaw has to be next. Running back is the biggest need on the team, and Bradshaw is the right fit and price for Pittsburgh. He had offseason foot surgery, which means he'll come at a discounted rate. That's important for the Steelers, who are currently $2.57 million under the salary cap. The Steelers let Rashard Mendenhall, the team's leading rusher from 2009 to 2011, go to the Cardinals in free agency. And, with Mendenhall hurt most of last season, the Steelers found out that Jonathan Dwyer and Isaac Redman are complementary backs, not starting-caliber ones.

If the Steelers get Bradshaw, that would likely be their last move before the draft (barring another restructured contract). Pittsburgh can make a couple of additions after June 1, when the team gets $5.5 million of cap space from releasing guard Willie Colon. The Steelers may have to wait until April 19 to see if the Patriots are going to sign restricted free-agent wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders to an offer sheet. Losing Sanders would make wide receiver the team's top draft need.

Existing needs: Running back, outside linebacker and wide receiver.

Here are the free-agency trackers for the Bengals, Browns and Ravens.