The Steelers gave Starks a one-year tender offer of $6.895 million. Come March, if another team wants to sign Starks, the Steelers would have seven days to match an offer.
Unlike the franchise tag, the transition tag does not carry any draft choice compensation if the team that transitions a player decides to let him go.
Two years ago, the Seahawks placed the transition tag on guard Steve Hutchinson. The Vikings inserted two "poison pill" clauses in the contract, and the Seahawks did not match. They came back and signed wide receiver Nate Burleson from the Vikings, who was a restricted free agent that year.
Senior writer John Clayton covers the NFL for ESPN.com.