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Will Former Steelers First Round Pick Be Traded?

The Pittsburgh Steelers played their first game of the 2022 preseason on Saturday night, giving fans a glimpse of the teams potential this season. However, one player looked unchanged from last year and could be traded by the team.

Football is back ladies and gentlemen, and so are your Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers played host to the Seattle Seahawks on Saturday night in a game that was about as exciting as it gets for a preseason matchup of mostly backups. For the top takeaways of the night, check out this in-depth piece on our site: Takeaways From The Steelers Preseason Opener Win

Devin Bush’s Struggles Continue For The Steelers Ahead Of 2022

Devin Bush spent much of last season chasing his stellar performances from his rookie season, as well as opposing ball carriers. Many chalked up his poor performances to him still recovering from a devastating ACL injury in 2020, myself included. It was easy to give him the benefit of the doubt after the electrifying rookie season that he had after the Steelers traded up in the first round to select him at number ten overall.

Here we are now in 2022, and Devin Bush hasn’t shown any signs of improvement according to sources at training camp, as well as the performance we saw last Saturday night. The former Michigan Wolverine star put up a goose egg on the stat sheet recording zero tackles, and sat back and watched as plays unfolded in front of him.

This is starting to become really concerning with Devin Bush. #Steelers #NFL — BlitzVideos✨ (@BlitzVideos) August 14, 2022

It is difficult to tell whether it’s all mental for Bush, or if his body is just a shell of its former self. One thing is certain though, and that is the fact that Devin Bush’s time with the Steelers is expiring at a rapid pace. Pittsburgh chose to pass on Bush’s fifth-year option this past offseason, showing a lack of trust in his ability to return to his former glory. The minimal separation between Bush and backup linebacker Robert Spillane does not bode well for the former top ten pick, and could result in being trade bait, or just being flat out benched this year.

Bush’s Comments About His Future Add Questions For Steelers

The struggling fourth-year linebacker had some choice words for the media after practice Monday regarding his future with the Steelers. When asked if this year would possibly be his last chance to prove he belongs with the team, Bush did not sugar coat how he felt. “I mean, it’s the business,” Bush replied. “I mean, I’m going to still be in the NFL. So we’ll see.”

Devin Bush would continue on to say, “I don’t think I’ve got nothing to prove…I’m a first-rounder, a top-ten pick. That’s never going to change.”

Quotes like these are typically not something you want to hear from a man you invested a significant amount of capital in to be able to draft, and is now facing a make or break season. Not only that, but the Steelers badly need his efforts as a team that struggled tremendously in stopping the run last year.

His words also came off to many as if he really doesn’t care too much about being with the Steelers beyond this season, or in general. Mostly because he knows if it doesn’t work out with Pittsburgh, he’ll still be cashing checks elsewhere next season.

Devin Bush was just asked if he feels like this is his last chance to hang around with the #Steelers beyond this year. “I mean, I’m still going to be in the NFL. So we’ll see.” @937theFan — Josh Rowntree (@JRown32) August 16, 2022

What’s Next For Devin Bush? Will He Be Traded From The Steelers?

There’s a multitude of possibilities as far as what could come next for Bush and the Steelers. The most ideal situation is a return to form. Pittsburgh saw an abundance of potential in him during the draft process and felt justified in giving a steep haul to the Denver Broncos to be able to select him tenth overall back in 2019. While seeing the seemingly disgruntled linebacker build off of his spectacular rookie season would be relieving for fans and the organization, at this point it feels like a long shot.

A more likely scenario would be Devin Bush and Robert Spillane sharing reps at middle linebacker alongside Myles Jack, the Steelers’ big-time free agent signing. In addition to that, we could see a higher percentage of packages and plays involving an extra defensive back like Tre Norwood or Damontae Kazee. After the season, we would most likely see Devin Bush hit the free agent market, putting an end to his time with the Steelers, and cementing the notion that trading up for him just didn’t quite work out.

A possible trade scenario involving Bush is a bit unlikely, but definitely not out of the question at this point. The Steelers could choose to move Devin Bush prior to the trade deadline, if not sooner, to recoup some of their lost assets before losing him for nothing at the end of the season when his contract expires.

With Roquan Smith recently requesting a trade from the Chicago Bears, it has gotten many fans talking about what a linebacking core consisting of Roquan Smith and Myles Jack could potentially look like. A trade like that will certainly cost any team willing a substantial trade package. Could it be possible for Omar Khan and the Steelers to put together a package consisting of Devin Bush, a player such as Chase Claypool, and a respectable amount of draft picks? A move like that would certainly solidify the Steelers defensive backfield for years to come.

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