The Pittsburgh Steelers salary cap problems are all but gone (well, sort of), but it has come at the expense of lot of great players who helped bring two Super Bowl championships to the city of Pittsburgh.
Any time a team has to release a veteran who is a fan favorite, it is tough to swallow. It is not something that anyone likes to do, but sometimes it is necessary.
Aaron Smith even admitted in early January that he may not know when to quit playing.
"I'm sure they'll have to come to me,'' Smith said (via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette). "I'm sure it will be more along the lines of, 'Hey, you might want to make that call.'"
Pittsburgh made that call more than once in the past week as they released Smith, Hines Ward and James Farrior among others.
While some of these players may latch on with another team, Pittsburgh felt they were no longer able to contribute on the field, at least not to the amount that their contracts called for.
But with so much lost in such a short amount of time, will the Steelers suffer next season?
Here is a look at what the Steelers are losing from each player who has retired or been released so far.