Broncos Sign Mark Barron, Remains Cap Liability for Steelers


Joe Sargent/Getty Images Mark Barron #26 celebrates with Joe Haden #23 of the Pittsburgh Steelers after intercepting a pass against the Cincinnati Bengals on September 30, 2019.

This past Thursday we learned that the linebacker-poor Denver Broncos invited Mark Barron in for a workout. Today we learn from multiple reports—including Ian Rapoport of NFL Network and—that the Broncos have decided to sign Barron to a one-year contract, this in the wake of inside linebacker Justin Strnad’s season-ending wrist surgery.

Barron made nine starts and played in 15 games for the Steelers last season, recording 82 tackles, along with three sacks, an interception and a fumble recovery. He signed a two-year $12 million contract with the Steelers in March 2019, but Pittsburgh released him on March 16 of this year in an effort to realize salary cap savings.

Mark Barron: Salary Cap Liability

Now Barron is the team’s biggest ‘dead money’ liability for 2020, counting $2.875 million against the team’s salary cap, more than a million dollars more than former wide receiver Donte Moncrief, who recently signed with the New York Jets but still carries a $1.75 million cap charge for 2020.

Barron was a top prospect coming out of college—an All-SEC player at the University of Alabama in 2009, 2010 and 2011, and an All-American in 2011 as a safety.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made him the seventh player picked in the 2012 NFL Draft, one spot ahead of Ryan Tannehill, now the starting quarterback of the Tennessee Titans. Barron played for the Buccaneers through 2014, when he moved on to the then-St. Louis Rams.

Over the course of his NFL career Barron has appeared in 119 regular season games, contributing a total of 710 tackles, with 12 sacks and nine interceptions, plus five forced fumbles and four recovered fumbles. Barron played for the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII, a 13-3 loss to the New England Patriots.

He came into the NFL as a strong safety, but over the course of his career he transitioned to inside linebacker, the position he played in Pittsburgh.

Last month Barron put his $2.6 million Chatsworth, California Chateau with Mountain Views up for auction, with the director of luxury real estate for Heritage Auctions saying that Barron tried to sell the house through “more conventional ways” before resorting to the auction process.

“I know they were exhausted with the traditional process,” said Nate Schar. “The market hasn’t responded in an efficient enough manner, and this seller is motivated to sell.”

Joe Haden Celebrates 3-Year Anniversary with Steelers

In other news today, Steelers cornerback Joe Haden commemorated his third anniversary in Pittsburgh by sending out a tweet highlighting the fact that it was three years ago today that he was “Cut by the Browns!”

“I knew I had a lot of ball left in me!” he added, which has turned out to be true.

Last season he started all 16 games for the Steelers en route to Pro Bowl honors, making 65 tackles, plus five interceptions and 17 passes defensed. In three seasons in Pittsburgh he has started 42 games, intercepted eight passes and been in on 148 tackles, to go along with a total of 36 passes defensed.

Later Haden sent a follow-up tweet in which he said he still loves the city of Cleveland, just not the Browns organization. “Steelers organization gets it!” he concluded.

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