Updated: Jun 24, 2021
(Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images)
Five-time Pro Bowl guard Trai Turner was released by the Chargers in March after just one year with the team, as he missed seven games and had a big cap hit, so Los Angeles released him to free up more than $11 million in cap space.
Turner is still a free agent in late June, but it was reported last week by Adam Schefter of ESPN that he visited with the Steelers.
Turner recently said on SiriusXM NFL Radio that he expects to “make a splash sooner than later.”
Turner also said he wants to sign with a team that puts him “in the best situation possible to go out and win” and that he’s been working out with Hall of Famer Jackie Slater to get back to full strength after being hampered by a groin injury last season.
“I’m back at 100 percent,” Turner said. “Last year was a rough season for me with injuries and just overall COVID. You go through things and situations arise, but you work through it and you get through it. So, I’m feeling good. I’m just ready to come back and have a phenomenal season.”
Turner had a really bad year in 2020, but it should be considered that he wasn't healthy for a good portion of the season and he was playing on a new team in the middle of a pandemic. Some players adjusted to new teams better than others last year while dealing with COVID-19 protocols, but just look how things turned out for B.J. Finney in Seattle and Cincinnati.
The news of Turner visiting with the Steelers was somewhat of a surprise, but the Steelers could use some depth at guard and David DeCastro didn’t participate in minicamp due to an undisclosed injury. Perhaps it's something more than what the Steelers originally thought.
DeCastro dealt with an abdominal and knee injury last season, so he could have had surgery this offseason or it could have been a separate injury while training.
Mike Tomlin didn't reveal much, however, when he was asked last week by the media why DeCastro wasn't practicing.
"Again, if I thought injury circumstances or reasons why people were not participating were significant, I would share them with you," Tomlin said.
Turner is just 28 and was a third-round pick by the Panthers in 2014. Turner has 89 career starts under his belt and made the Pro Bowl every season from 2015-2019.