It's been a while since the Pittsburgh Steelers had a pass rusher as good as T.J. Watt. And they hope to have him on their side for a long time.
In an interview with KDKA, Steelers president Art Rooney II addressed Watt's future with the team. He made it clear that the team will do what is necessary to have Watt back in 2021 and beyond.
“In terms of T.J. Watt, it’s a good problem to have,” Rooney said. “We’re obviously going to do what we need to do to make sure he stays on the team into the future.”
T.J. Watt is heading into the final year of his rookie contract with the team. He's due a fully-guaranteed $10 million deal in 2021, but is clearly worth more than that now.
In 2020, T.J. Watt led the NFL with a career-high 15.0 sacks and 23 tackles for loss. He earned First-Team All-Pro honors for the second year in a row and made his third Pro Bowl. Watt is considered one of the frontrunners for the NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award too.
Watt has met and exceeded all expectations since the Steelers drafted him No. 30 overall in the 2017 NFL Draft.
In 62 games, Watt has 49.5 sacks, 230 tackles, 111 QB hits and 59 tackles for loss. He's recorded at least 13 sacks in each of the last three seasons.
That's the kind of productive player that any team would pay top dollar for. The only questions for the Steelers are how they'll work out the financials and whether they'll make T.J. Watt the highest paid defender in the league.