Linebacker Jason Worilds didn’t waste any time before signing the transition tag that the Steelers placed on him before free agency got underway this offseason, but there hasn’t been the same kind of urgency when it comes to reaching agreement on a long-term deal that would keep Worilds in Pittsburgh beyond the 2014 season.
Worilds is guaranteed $9.745 million under the terms of the tag and the Steelers’ overall cap situation left many thinking that they’d like to find a way to sign Worilds because it would mean a lower cap number in 2014. The last three months have brought neither an agreement nor much sign that one is in the offing, although Worilds said Tuesday that he hasn’t given up hope.
“Absolutely, as far as long term,” Worilds said, via the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “You put so much time and effort in with these guys, so you want to be here for the duration of your career.”
Worilds doesn’t turn 27 until next March and set career highs in 2013 with 11 starts, eight sacks and 54 tackles. Building on that production would put Worilds in good position to get paid next offseason, although the Steelers would have the right to tag him again in order to assure his return to Pittsburgh.