Roundup: Steelers sign first-round pick Najee Harris to rookie deal

The first running back selected in the 2021 NFL Draft is under contract.

The Pittsburgh Steelers announced Tuesday that they have signed RB Najee Harris to his fully guaranteed four-year rookie deal worth around $13.1 million. As with all first-round rookies, Harris' contract includes a fifth-year team option.

Pittsburgh also signed second-round tight end Pat Freiermuth.

The No. 24 pick in April's draft, Harris is expected to jump right into the starting lineup in Pittsburgh and play a major role in turning around of the league's most lackluster running games.

He's already made a fine first impression on his coach and teammates. Mike Tomlin said of Harris during rookie minicamp, "He is as highly conditioned as anybody out there." Steelers defensive leader Cameron Heyward suggested Pittsburgh defenders are excited about Harris joining the roster, getting "30 to 40" touches per game and helping ease the burden on their side of the ball.

With Harris on the books for at least the next four seasons, Steelers fans, coaches and players alike can enjoy what he brings to Pittsburgh's backfield as the latest in a long line of stellar Steelers backs.

Elsewhere around the NFL on Tuesday:

  • San Francisco 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan confirmed center Weston Richburg is planning to retire after seven years in the NFL. Richburg missed all of last season after suffering a torn patellar tendon in December of 2019. San Francisco signed former Falcons center Alex Mack in March. After ending the 2020 campaign on injured reserve with an ankle injury, 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo returned to the field at OTAs and by his head coach's account looks good to go. "His ankle seems totally healed," Shanahan said. "I haven't even asked him about it cause it looks so good. I'd be surprised if there's anything lingering from it. He's had a good two days of practice."

However, there was some bad news on the 49ers injury front, as running back Jeff Wilson recently underwent surgery to repair a torn meniscus and is expected to miss four to six months, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported. The time frame means Wilson is expected to be sidelined through the start of the regular season.

  • Quarterback Ryan Finley cleared waivers and is a free agent, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported. The Texans waived Finley on Monday in the wake of signing Jeff Driskel. Finley was with the team for all of two months after the Bengals traded the 2019 fourth-round pick to Houston in March. He made four starts for Cincinnati and has completed 48.7% of his career throws.
  • Washington signed tight end Ricky Seals-Jones. The fifth-year TE spent the 2020 season with Kansas City, where he played in two games and earned one target before being released after the regular season. Seals-Jones racked up 60 catches for 773 yards and eight TDs in three previous seasons with the Cardinals and Browns.
  • The Denver Broncos promoted Ray Jackson to vice president of player development. Jackson had served as the club's director of player development for the past six seasons.
  • The Philadelphia Eagles signed defensive tackle Willie Henry and waived linebacker Joe Bachie.
  • Buffalo Bills receiver Stefon Diggs (oblique) and defensive tackle Star Lotulelei were not at OTAs on Tuesday, but coach Sean McDermott said over 70 players were in attendance.
  • The Tampa Bay Buccaneers re-signed receiver Antonio Brown and signed cornerback Dee Delaney. Quarterback Tom Brady underwent a minor surgical procedure on his knee earlier this offseason and head coach Bruce Arians said Tuesday that his Super Bowl Most Valuable Player quarterback is doing well. "He felt great yesterday," Arians said. "I talked to him this morning and he said it's the best he has felt."
  • The Seattle Seahawks are signing tight end Cam Sutton, per Pelissero.
  • The Arizona Cardinals signed veteran tight end Ross Travis and sixth-round picks Victor Dimukeje and Tay Gowan.

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