UPDATE: Roethlisberger’s deal is for $14 million, reducing his previously scheduled $19 million salary plus bonus. It will include at least one voidable year, which spreads out the cap hit and frees up $15 million in cap space.
#Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger's new contract for 2021 utilizes a signing bonus, minimum base salary and voidable years to free up about $15 million of cap space, per source. Big Ben takes a $5M paycut, from $19M to $14M, giving the team much-needed breathing room.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 4, 2021
The Pittsburgh Steelers announced on Thursday they have signed quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to a new contract for the 2021 season. Roethlisberger had been signed through the 2021 season, but his $41,250,000 cap figure was untenable with a declining cap this coming year.
There have been questions about Roethlisberger’s future for several years now, and they picked up steam when the Steelers 2020 season came to a close. The front office played relatively coy, noting the cap issues that needed to be resolved for Roethlisberger to return.
Roethlisberger’s previous deal was set to pay him $4 million in base salary and $15 million in a roster bonus. That plus $22,250,000 in previously paid prorated bonus money made up the $41.25 million cap hit. The team will carry $22.25 million regardless of the new deal. The real question is how much of a pay cut Roethlisberger is taking and what the cap hits look like if there are dummy years added on the end of the deal.
The Steelers QB depth chart currently includes Mason Rudolph and Dwayne Haskins, with Joshua Dobbs scheduled to become a free agent. Prior to Roethlisberger’s deal, the Steelers were projected to be $11.7 million over the salary cap.