The Pittsburgh Steelers announced they've traded outside linebacker Melvin Ingram III to the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for a 2022 sixth-round draft pick ahead of Tuesday's 2021 NFL trade deadline.
Ingram had confirmed his impending move to CBS Sports' Josina Anderson. Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network provided further details about the deal:
Ian Rapoport @RapSheet
Melvin Ingram had quietly asked to be traded and Pittsburgh accomodated. Now, he lands in KC, which had held talks with the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Steelers?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Steelers</a> for the last few weeks. <a href="https://t.co/csZBBRVD70">https://t.co/csZBBRVD70</a>
The 32-year-old edge-rusher signed a one-year, $4 million contract with Pittsburgh in July. He ended up making just six appearances for the organization.
Ingram was previously one of the NFL's most consistent pass-rushers. He recorded 43 sacks in the five-year span from 2015 through 2019 with the Los Angeles Chargers, including at least seven sacks in each season. He earned three straight Pro Bowl selections during that stretch (2017-19).
The University of South Carolina product failed to record any sacks across seven games for the Bolts last season amid two stints on injured reserve because of a knee injury, though.
Although there were some sporadic promising signs during his short stay in Pittsburgh, he still didn't look like the game-changing player he was for L.A. He tallied 10 total tackles, one sack and one pass defended for the Steelers.
Ingram played just 26 percent of the team's defensive snaps in a Week 6 win over the Seattle Seahawks and, coming out of the team's Week 7 bye, missed Sunday's win over the Cleveland Browns with a groin injury.
Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin said the linebacker's absence from Friday's practice was because of the injury, not the rumored discontent with his diminishing role.
"I've had some conversations with Melvin, but I will leave those between he and I," Tomlin told reporters. "The reason he didn't work today is because of his groin."
Now Ingram will attempt to provide a boost to a Chiefs pass rush that's been one of the reasons for the team's sluggish start to the 2021 campaign. They've recorded just 11 sacks through eight games, which is the lowest rate in the league.
Kansas City, which reached the Super Bowl the past two seasons, owns a 4-4 record and is on the outside looking in at the AFC playoff picture, so it wouldn't be a surprise to see the front office make another move or two before the deadline seeking a spark.
Next up for the Chiefs is a marquee clash with the Green Bay Packers (7-1) on Sunday. It's unclear whether Ingram will be ready to return from his groin injury for that contest.