If McLendon becomes a solid starter at NT, then this looks like a good deal. If he gets blown away by run blocking OG's, not such a great deal.
Committed to him? With less than 2 mil in guaranteed money? I don't think so. This is a role player contract for a role player. Hell you'd pay a decent NT 7 or 8 million for one season, not three. If McClendon doesn't pan out, they can cut him next season for a cap hit of just over one million. I don't think that will be necessary, but we have not committed to him being the future at NT. In fact, I think the Steelers got a hell of a deal. McClendon has potential. If he turns out to be a decent starter or heavy rotation guy at NT and/or DE, this is an awesome bargain. In fact, McClendon's position flexibility gives us great options during the draft. It allows us to draft a DL (either DE or NT) if a very good one falls into our lap, or we can address more pressing needs and go with the DL group we have.
Hood and Keisel could be gone next year. If Ta'Amu gets his head on, he has plenty of talent to play the position. Our 2014 DL could be DE McClendon, NT Ta'Amu, DE Heyward. At this point, who knows?
I at times thought our Def played better with a more agile Hoke than times than Casey. But this is a similiar type contract to what Hoke probably had at his highest salary. So I think it is a fair deal with huge upside.
With the way the NFL is going, McClendon will probably see more snaps as a DT on a 4 man line than as a 3-4 NT.
Anyone know the numbers? How often are we even in a base defense anymore? Seems like we're always do the 4 man front Polka with the other team's OLine not generating any pressure.