Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin once shouted at Patrick Queen, telling the young linebacker that he wasn’t a Raven.

Two years later, Queen, who said he took that trash talk personally, became a Steeler instead.

The Ravens All-Pro linebacker, who helped set the tone for a hard-hitting defense, is now taking that relentless play to Baltimore’s rival, reportedly agreeing to a three-year, $41 million deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers on Tuesday, a source confirmed to the Banner.

He joins a defense that stars outside linebackers T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith. ESPN projects him to play alongside Cole Holcomb as the right inside linebacker.

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Queen was named second-team All-Pro and was selected to his first Pro Bowl after tallying 133 combined tackles, 3.5 sacks and nine tackles for loss in 2023. Sixteen of those tackles were in the two games against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Last season, Queen recalled when he was a rookie and Tomlin told him: “You’re not a Raven. You’re not a Raven. You’re not supposed to be there. You’re not one of them.”

Queen said that stuck with him.

“So every time I play them, it’s something personal. ... I don’t care if he was joking,” he said. “I don’t care if he was serious, at the end of the day, I’m on your sideline, you’re telling me I’m not a Raven, it’s kind of disrespectful.”

The Pittsburgh coach had a much nicer assessment when talking with reporters in 2023.

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“On the defensive side of the ball, man they’re just really getting after people,” Tomlin said. “It starts with that inside linebacker tandem of Roquan [Smith] and Patrick Queen. They’re a tandem for all circumstances. They’re good in the run game, whether it’s downhill or on the perimeter. They’re good in the passing game whether it’s coverage or as blitzers or rushers. They’re a catalyst for a lot that goes on with that group.”

Queen was the Ravens’ first-round pick in the 2020 draft and started immediately. He has not missed a game over the course of his NFL career and has played almost every defensive snap despite dealing with injuries (he played 92% in 2023 while fighting through an injury to his collarbone and shoulder).

As a rookie, Queen totaled more than 106 tackles and also had three sacks, two forced fumbles and an interception. He finished third in the AP’s voting for Defensive Rookie of the Year.

The following year, Queen saw his numbers dip, but he surged back in the 2022 season. Many pointed to the Ravens’ trade for Roquan Smith as the turning point for Queen. The two of them are smaller, faster linebackers who contribute in all parts of the game — pass rush, run defense and coverage. Queen finished with 117 tackles, five sacks, one forced fumble and two interceptions that season. However, the Ravens, after signing Smith to a five-year, $100 million contract, did not pick up Queen’s fifth-year option.

“He taught me how to lead,” Queen said of Smith. “He taught me how to be who you’re supposed to be on the field and then off the field as well. There’s just so much stuff that he taught me. … There’s definitely stuff that I’ll take with me for the rest of my life, even though if I’m not here, that he taught me. The dude — there is a reason why he got what he got and why he’s here. Just all the respect to him.”

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In 2023, the final season of Queen’s rookie contract, the linebacker duo was the only one in the NFL to have both linebackers finish with 130 tackles or more. While Queen said he would, in theory, like to return, the Ravens’ cap situation did not allow for that, and Queen was aware of that when he spoke following the AFC Championship loss.

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“It’s where I started it at, so it would definitely be nice if I’m back,” Queen said. “At the same time, I just have to do what’s best for me, do what’s best for my family. Then, they have to do what’s best for them on the other side as well. Wherever that leads to, it’s up to God.”