Steelers agreed to terms with TE Ladarius Green on a 4 year contract. Photos by AP.
The Steelers jumped into the free agent market on Thursday, signing tight end Ladarius Green to a four-year contract.
"I am real excited. Everyone seems excited, I am excited," said Green. "Everybody knows the history of the Pittsburgh Steelers. It's an historic team. The offense is explosive. They have a great quarterback, great receivers and running backs, and a great offensive line. It's a great team."
When Heath Miller retired, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin made it clear.
"You don't replace a Heath Miller," said Tomlin. "You simply do the best you can to move on and understand the attributes of those that follow are theirs and you don't try to look for them to be something they are not."
Green is the player they have chosen to 'move on' with. Green, who was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in the fourth round in 2012, said the one thing that was encouraging was hearing that the coaches want him to just be himself.
"That is real encouraging," said Green. "You can tell that is what they feel, that is what they believe. Everybody knows Heath was a great guy, a great player. If you went in there thinking about trying to replace him, that would be a tough job to do. He is so great. I can only hope to do half of what he has done for this organization in my game and help this team any way I can."
In his four seasons with the Chargers he had 77 receptions for 1,087 yards and seven touchdowns. He had his best season in 2015 catching 37 passes for 429 yards and four touchdowns. He is looking forward to being a part of the Steelers explosive offense, and working with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
"He is a tough guy, he is a resilient guy, and he is an amazing quarterback," said Green, who will wear No. 80. "I haven't met him yet, but I am excited. Everybody knows who he is and I am excited.
"If you watch any of the games, you know this offense is dynamic. It's great to be a part of that. I am working on my blocking too. It's something I want to keep working on. I think I am growing and getting better. I am going to just be myself, be an outlet for Ben. I need to learn the offense first and foremost."
The Steelers are still grooming second-year tight end Jesse James and have veteran Martavis Bryant at tight end, but adding the 6-6, 250-pound Green definitely completes the package. Green, who goes by the nickname Peewee because of his height growing up before he hit a huge growth spurt, is honored the Steelers considered him.
"It's a great feeling, signing the paper, meeting the coaches," said Green. "Everybody knows the Steelers keep their players around, they don't sign a lot of players. It's good to know they wanted to sign me; that they believe in me. Now I want to get on the field and catch some passes."