The Pittsburgh Steelers will send right tackle Marcus Gilbert to the Arizona Cardinals for a 6th round 2019 NFL Draft pick, a smart move by both clubs.
While everyone in Pittsburgh is waiting for the Antonio Brown dominoes to fall, general manager Kevin Colbert is working the phones. In a rare NFL trade ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Friday that the Steelers are sending right tackle Marcus Gilbert to the Cardinals in exchange for a sixth round pick.
Pittsburgh Steelers Get
2019 6th Round Draft Pick
Arizona Cardinals Get
RT Marcus Gilbert
Grade: B+ for Pittsburgh
Gilbert is 31 years old and due just shy of $5 million for the 2019 season. That is the final year of his deal. This is an expected move for the Steelers. Reports surfaced, from Schefter, on Friday morning that team was exploring trading the veteran tackle.
Pittsburgh drafted a replacement for Gilbert last year in Western Michigan’s Chukuma Okorafor in the third round of the 2018 NFL Draft. Clearly the team feels that the developmental tackle is ready to step in. Clearing the $5 million from the books also will help Pittsburgh attract some free agents in an effort to get back in the playoffs.
Grade: A for Arizona
Arizona is desperate for help along the offensive line. The unit last year was one of the worst in the NFL and started Joe Barksdale, a free agent this offseason, at right tackle. Gilbert’s prowess in pass protection should mesh well with new coach Kliff Kingsbury’s spread out offense. That will go a long way in developing whoever is under center for the Cardinals next year.
Gilbert allows Arizona to address the other needs in free agency in the draft with giving up very little capital. He pairs with D.J. Humphries to form a competent tackle duo, which is saying a lot given the state of the offensive line a year ago. The Cardinals can now focus on the interior of their line, defense and skill positions in the new league year.