The Steelers obviously made a mistake when they signed wide receiver Donte Moncrief to a two-year, $9 million contract this offseason: Moncrief has managed just four catches for 18 yards so far this season. But give the Steelers credit for not compounding the mistake by costing themselves a compensatory draft pick.
The Steelers have released Moncrief today, which will be big for them in the 2020 NFL draft.
That’s because the NFL’s complex compensatory pick formula awards extra picks to teams that lose more free agents than they sign — with the caveat that players who last less than 10 weeks with their new teams don’t count toward the compensatory pick allocation.
In the Steelers’ case, the signing of Moncrief would have cost them a third-round compensatory pick for losing running back Le'Veon Bell. But because Moncrief has now been released before Week 10, the third-round pick for Bell is expected to go back to the Steelers.
Moncrief leaves having already made $4.3 million from the Steelers. Not bad for four catches. At least the Steelers get their compensatory pick back.