The Pittsburgh Steelers reportedly explored adding a six-time Pro Bowler to their defensive line prior to Tuesday's trade deadline.
Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reported the Steelers discussed a potential trade for defensive tackle Fletcher Cox with the Philadelphia Eagles. However, Pittsburgh was not willing to give up the asking price of at least a third-round pick.
La Canfora explained Pittsburgh's defensive line is "in some flux" with Tyson Alualu out for the season and Stephon Tuitt yet to play in 2021.
Tuitt has not played as he recovers from a knee injury and after his younger brother, Richard Bartlett, was killed in a hit and run in June. La Canfora noted the Steelers expect him to eventually return and have provided "their full support and all of the time and space he needs."
The veteran Cox would have provided an immediate boost to the defensive front as someone coming off six straight Pro Bowl selections.
He had 41 tackles, 6.5 sacks and one forced fumble last year but has been somewhat quiet from a statistical standpoint through eight games this season with 12 tackles, one sack and one fumble recovery that went for a touchdown.
Yet Cox likely wouldn't have faced as many double-teams from opposing offensive lines on the Steelers given the presence of Cameron Heyward and T.J. Watt.
Pittsburgh started 1-3 and appeared to be on the way to a long season filled with struggles, but it has bounced back with three straight victories, one of which came over the AFC North division rival Cleveland Browns.
The Steelers will look to continue their recent winning ways Monday with a matchup against the Chicago Bears at Heinz Field.