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Steelers Pickup Fifth-Year Option On DE Cam Heyward

Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers locked up defensive end Cam Heyward through the 2015 season by picking up his fifth-year option, Alan Robinson of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review reports.

A provision of the NFL labor agreement that went into effect in 2011 allows teams to exercise a fifth-year option on first-round draft picks starting with the 2011 season, when Heyward was chosen.

For players selected from 11th to 32nd in the first round, as Heyward was, the option-year salary is determined from the average of the top 25 players at the same position, but with the top three salaries eliminated. In Heyward’s case, that would be an estimated $7.5 million to $8 million, but that won’t be determined until all such salaries are settled for the 2014 season.

Heyward was the No. 31 overall pick in 2011. He is making $1,289,322 this season, the last in a four-year rookie contract worth a total of $6,705,048.

The Steelers had until May 3 to decide whether to pick up Heyward’s fifth-year option, but did so on Tuesday, the first day that offseason workouts began.

Matt Loede has been in the sports media for over 16 years, with experience covering the MLB, NBA, and NFL. On Sunday’s during football season, you can hear Matt on national networks like Fox Sports Radio, Associated Press, and others. Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Matt studies and talks football inside and out, and is anxious to share his thoughts and comments with readers on a daily basis.

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