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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Freeing up the cash

With the salary cap going up to $104 million with the new CBA in place, the Steelers find themselves about $11 million under the salary cap.

That's good news for a team with four starters heading into free agency.

But don't expect the Steelers to suddenly become big spenders on the open market.

The team will need to save about $4 million in cap space with which to sign its rookies. That will leave about $7 million in "Mad Money" with which to play with.

You can expect the team to go hard to re-sign defensive end Brett Keisel. And finding a safety to replace Chris Hope will also be a must.

The team will likely look to the draft for help at wide receiver. And Charlie Batch will be brought back to back up Ben Roethlisberger.

If things get too crazy, the Steelers can still clear more cap space by restructuring the contract of one or both of their centers.

Jeff Hartings got a $750,000 roster bonus March 8, bringing his cap hit in 2006 to $8 million. Add to that the $2 million Chukky Okobi is scheduled to earn and there's some wiggle room at that position.


Captain Cocktail said...

What are they going to do with Kimo?

Dale Lolley said...

They'll re-sign Kimo to a vet minimum deal or not much more. Maybe one similar to the two-year $2 million deal they gave to Willie Williams last year.