Justin Fields is set to become a free agent after the 2024 season as the Steelers decline his fifth-year option.

Adam Schefter reports that the Pittsburgh Steelers are unlikely to exercise Justin Fields’ fifth-year option, indicating that Fields is poised to enter free agency after the 2024 season.

The decision comes as no surprise, considering that Fields was slated to earn just over $25 million on the tag, a hefty sum for a quarterback projected to serve as a backup this season.

Fields was traded to the Steelers by the Bears in exchange for a 2025 sixth-round pick, potentially elevating to a fourth-round pick based on certain playing time thresholds in Pittsburgh. Additionally, the Steelers secured Russell Wilson with a reported league-minimum $1.2 million deal this offseason, positioning Wilson as the frontrunner for the starting quarterback role.

Despite chatter about a bustling trade market for Fields this offseason, with numerous teams seeking a new signal-caller, no substantial offers materialized. Instead, teams pursued alternative quarterbacks, such as Kirk Cousins joining the Falcons, Sam Darnold landing in Minnesota, Sam Howell heading to Seattle, and Gardner Minshew departing for Las Vegas, among others.

Now, Fields embarks on a career revitalization journey in Pittsburgh. While there remains a possibility that Fields seizes the starting job for the Steelers or assumes control at some point during the regular season, it presents his opportunity to demonstrate his potential as a dependable quarterback deserving of another shot at starting beyond 2025.

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