Somehow, the Steelers still have a chance to make it to the postseason. Regardless of when their season ends, one of the team’s most popular players knows it could also be the end of the line for his career in Pittsburgh.
“I feel like I can still play,” defensive end Brett Keisel said Wednesday, per Mark Kaboly of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “We will see what happens. I try not to think about it too much because I am still here and still part of the team and still fighting with these guys. When the time comes, I will sit down with my family and decide what is best.”
Keisel’s contract expires in March, and he’ll be 36 in September. If he returns, he’ll likely make far less than the $2.825 million he earned in 2013.
“I know it’s a business,” Keisel said of the business he has navigated for 12 seasons in Pittsburgh, despite arriving as the team’s second seventh-round pick that year. He clearly hopes to stay for a 13th.
“I bleed black and gold,” Keisel said. “Everybody knows that. I am a Yinzer, and I love this city and plan on raising my family here.”
Still, the Steelers haven’t been bashful about moving on from a player when the time has come to do so. If the team wants to be in better position than the least likely member of a four-team Week 17 sixth-seed scrum, they need to make some changes on both sides of the ball.