Dec 26, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Joe Haden (23) talks with Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) before the game at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Steelers activate Joe Haden, Kendrick Green off COVID list

Pittsburgh Steelers veteran cornerback Joe Haden and rookie center Kendrick Green were activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list on Saturday.

The move comes one day after wide receiver Diontae Johnson was activated from a one-day stint on the reserve/COVID-19 list.

The Steelers (8-7-1) visit the Baltimore Ravens (8-8) on Sunday in the regular-season finale. Pittsburgh can clinch a playoff berth win a win as well as an Indianapolis Colts’ loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars and any result other than a tie in the Las Vegas Raiders-Los Angeles Chargers game.

Haden, 32, has 34 tackles in 11 games (all starts) this season. The three-time Pro Bowl selection has 611 tackles and 29 interceptions in 157 games (148 starts) in 12 seasons with the Cleveland Browns (2010-16) and Steelers.

Green, 23, started the Steelers’ first 15 games this season before sitting out their 26-14 victory over the Browns on Monday with a calf injury. He was selected by Pittsburgh in the third round of the 2021 NFL Draft out of Illinois.

The Steelers also placed wide receiver James Washington on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Saturday.

–Field Level Media

Dec 2, 2020; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;  Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Joe Haden (23) celebrates his fourteen yard interception return for a touchdown with teammates against the Baltimore Ravens during the first quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Agent: Joe Haden to test free agency in 2022

The agent for Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Joe Haden said the three-time Pro Bowl player will play out his current deal and test free agency in 2022.

Haden earlier this month said he wanted to sign an extension with the club to remain in Pittsburgh beyond this season. But the Steelers don’t negotiate contract extensions during the regular season, which begins Sept. 12.

Further, the Steelers are still engaged with pass rusher T.J. Watt on a new deal, one that is expected to make him the highest-paid defensive player in the league.

“Joe has never been an unrestricted free agent before and is excited about that opportunity,” agent Drew Rosenhaus told ESPN on Wednesday. “We expect him to have a very strong market.”

The salary cap is expected to increase significantly in 2022.

Haden, 32, has started all 56 games in which he’s played for the Steelers since joining the team in 2017. He played his first seven seasons in Cleveland, making the Pro Bowl twice with the Browns. He made the Pro Bowl with the Steelers after the 2019 season.

For his career, Haden has 29 interceptions and 149 passes defensed since being taken No. 7 overall by the Browns in the 2010 draft.

–Field Level Media

Dec 2, 2020; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;  Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Joe Haden (23) warms up before playing the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field. The Steelers won 19-14. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Steelers CB Haden tests positive for COVID-19

Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Joe Haden tested positive for COVID-19, ESPN reported on Saturday.

Players who test positive must isolate for at least 10 days, therefore Haden will miss Pittsburgh’s season finale against the host Cleveland Browns on Sunday as well as the team’s game in the first round of the playoffs.

Haden, 31, appeared to reference the situation on Saturday with a post on social media.

“I’m so (angry) and sad at the same time….. stay safe out here,” Haden wrote on Twitter.

Cam Sutton and Mike Hilton likely will see an added uptick in snaps in place of Haden, who has recorded 52 tackles and two interceptions — including one he returned for a touchdown — in 14 games this season.

A three-time Pro Bowl selection, Haden has 577 tackles, 29 interceptions, six forced fumbles and five fumble recoveries in 146 career games (137 starts) with the Browns (2010-16) and Steelers.

Pittsburgh (12-3) secures the No. 2 seed in the AFC with a win against Cleveland (10-5) and a loss or tie by the Buffalo Bills (12-3) against the Miami Dolphins (10-5). The Bills hold the tiebreaker over the Steelers by virtue of their 26-15 win versus Pittsburgh on Dec. 13.

–Field Level Media