Green (concussion) wants to sign with a new team and play this season, ESPN.com's Jeremy Fowler reports
Signed to a four-year, $20 million contract last offseason, Green was released by the Steelers on Thursday after failing a physical. He's apparently still dealing with symptoms from last season's concussion, which was at least the third significant head injury of his pro career. Green also dealt with ankle injuries each of the past three seasons, with the most recent one requiring major surgery last offseason and leading to an eight-game absence to start the 2016 campaign. He should draw interest from quite a few teams if he's eventually able to pass a physical, as his career marks of 14.6 yards per catch and 9.0 yards per target are top-notch for a tight end. Green only has eight touchdowns in 53 games through five seasons, but he's shown a penchant for scoring from distance that's rare at his position, with seven of those TDs spanning 19 or more yards. The Steelers, meanwhile, are left with Jesse James and Xavier Grimble at the top of the depth chart at tight end.
Green was brought in by the Steelers as an unrestricted free agent last offseason, but an ankle injury kept him on the PUP list for the team's first eight games before a concussion in Week 15 ended his 2016 campaign prematurely. He caught 18 passes for 304 yards and one touchdown on 34 targets during his six contests with Pittsburgh, but the veteran may struggle to catch on with another team if the issues with his head persist. Jesse James will now be the No. 1 option at tight end for the Steelers' offense moving forward, with Xavier Grimble factoring into the mix as well.
Green (concussion) is participating in Phase 2 of voluntary offseason workouts, ESPN.com's Jeremy Fowler reports.
Green had a disappointing first season in Pittsburgh, missing the team's first eight games while recovering from ankle surgery, and then sitting out the final two regular-season contests and all three playoff games due to a concussion. He did make a number of big plays in his six appearances, catching 18 of 34 targets for 304 yards and a touchdown, with five of his receptions going for 28 or more yards. The Steelers didn't select any tight ends in the draft, which suggests they still have high hopes for Green as a major pass-catching threat down the seam. He should be available for the rest of the offseason program, but his poor injury track record dates back to his time in San Diego, where he played 16 games just once in four seasons. His mounting history of head injuries is of particular concern.
Green isn't in the NFL's protocol for head injuries, yet he hasn't received clearance from the concussion suffered in Week 15, Mark Kaboly of DK Pittsburgh Sports reports.
A lengthy recovery from offseason ankle surgery pushed back Green's debut as a Steeler to Week 10, but he was only active for six games before a concussion reared its head in Week 15, keeping him sidelined during the team's run to the AFC championship game. Beset by concussions in the past, there's no telling when he'll rid himself of symptoms. For Green's sake, general manager Kevin Colbert expects the tight end to be a part of the Steelers' roster next season, per Dale Lolley of the Observer-Reporter. Having said that, Green's recovery will likely determine Colbert's course of action in upcoming months.
Green previously said that he's not considering retirement and hopes to return to the Steelers, but after missing the team's final two regular-season games and three postseason tilts due to his latest concussion, his status is not so certain from the team's perspective. Not only does Green have a history of head injuries, which, along with an ankle problem, contributed toward him making just six appearances this season, but the four-year, $20 million contract he signed with Pittsburgh last offseason makes his situation even more important to consider. Overall, the Steelers will have to weigh his availability and talent against his salary cap hit to ultimately decide whether his wish to remain with the team is granted.
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