Ex-Steelers Linebacker Visiting With Saints: Report

Joe Schobert Steelers

Joe Sargent/Getty Images Ryan Tannehill of the Tennessee Titans is tackled by Joe Schobert of the Pittsburgh Steelers on December 19, 2021.

Former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Joe Schobert is visiting with the New Orleans Saints, this according to Nick Underhill, who covers the Saints for New Orleans.Football.

Schobert, 28, has been looking for a new team ever since the Steelers cut him on March 17, 2022. His release was no surprise, as he had been labeled the team’s top cut candidate, owing to his $8.75 million salary for 2022. When Pittsburgh signed former Jaguars linebacker Myles Jack to take his place on the roster, it was clear his days in Pittsburgh were numbered.

Schobert — 6-foot-1 and 240 pounds — was a fourth-round pick of the Cleveland Browns in the 2016 NFL Draft, selected No. 99 overall out of Wisconsin. He spent four seasons in Cleveland and authored a Pro Bowl campaign in 2017, which led to a five-year, $53.75 million free agent contract with the Jaguars.

Yet he managed just one year in Jacksonville before the Jaguars dealt him to the Steelers on August 12, 2021, with Schobert’s wife breaking the news ahead of Tom Pelissero of NFL Network. The Steelers confirmed the trade two days later, revealing that the former Browns linebacker would be coming to Pittsburgh at the cost of a 2022 sixth-round pick.

The trade became necessary after linebacker Vince Williams retired on the eve of training camp, a mild surprise considering that Williams signed a new contract on April 15, 2021, a month after the team terminated his existing contract to save $4 million against the salary cap.

Schobert went on to start 15 games in 2021 and was second on the Steelers in tackles (70 solo, 112 total), per Pro Football Reference. He also had a half-dozen passes defensed, an interception and a forced fumble.

Thus far in his career Schobert has appeared in 93 regular-season games (with 80 starts). During that time he was been responsible for 661 tackles (406 solo), including 23 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, 26 quarterback hits, 10 interceptions, 10 forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries.

The pick that the Steelers sent to the Jaguars in the Schobert trade (No. 198 overall) was ultimately utilized by the Philadelphia Eagles, who used it to select SMU tight end Grant Calcaterra.

The Outlook for the Steelers at Inside Linebacker

The Steelers are moving forward with an inside linebacker group that features Jack and former Top 10 overall pick Devin Bush Jr. (who is in a contract year, as the Steelers declined to pick up his fifth-year option).

The unit also features Robert ‘Front of the Plane’ Spillane, Ulysees Gilbert III, converted safety Marcus Allen, 2021 fourth-round pick Buddy Johnson and 2022 seventh-round pick Mark Robinson, the latter of whom has just one season’s worth of experience as a linebacker, having converted from running back during his time at Ole Miss.

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Steelers Release Former Raiders Fourth-Round Pick

Meanwhile, on Friday the Steelers released cornerback Isaiah Johnson from injured reserve, this according to Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network.

Pittsburgh signed Johnson to its practice squad on December 14, 2021, and inked the former Raiders fourth-rounder to a one-year Reserve/Futures contract in January 2022. The 26-year-old — who has 19 games of regular-season experience — was waived injured on May 10, setting the stage for him to be released from IR with an injury settlement.

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