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Friday, August 05, 2011

Woodley signs, what's next

LaMarr Woodley signed a six-year deal worth $61.5 million to stay in Pittsburgh early Friday morning, also clearing up some cap space for the Steelers.

The question now is who's next?

Both Lawrence Timmons and Troy Polamalu are scheduled to become unrestricted free agents at the conclusion of the 2011 season, while wide receiver Mike Wallace will be restricted.

That's three pretty key components to this team.

Some would argue that if Timmons is now given a long-term deal, it would lock up quite a bit of money at the linebacker position.

James Harrison just signed a six-year, $51.75-million deal a couple of years ago, while James Farrior is pulling down around $2.5 million.

The question is, do they want to take a chance at losing a young star such as Timmons and what exactly is he worth. Do you take the chance on signing him now based on his current level of play or do you roll the dice and if he has a great season, as many expect, does he now cost $10 million per season as well?

Timmons has played well to this point in his career - great in some stretches. But he has yet to do it over the course of a season.

Polamalu, on the other hand, is a completely proven player, albeit one who is going to miss some games here and there. But the Steelers' record with him on the field is remarkably better than it is without him. He's also one of the faces of the franchise, if not the NFL.

It would be hard to imagine him playing elsewhere.

In Wallace, you have a player who took over the No. 1 receiver role in 2010 and is a blossoming star. With Hines Ward near the end of his storied career, it's up to Wallace to become the leader of the wideouts.

The bet here is that the Steelers try to work something out with Timmons and Polamalu now, with Polamalu being the bigger priority.

They could possibly get something done with him before the season begins that will not only lock him up for another four seasons after this one - making that his last contract - but also lower his cap number slightly for this season.

And if they can't get something done with Timmons, they'll have the franchise tag available once the season ends.

As for Wallace, he'll likely become a restricted free agent - though the Steelers will place the highest-level tag on him and continue to work on a new deal.

There's also the chance that the money saved with Woodley's new deal will be used to bring back one of the two offensive tackles cut last week, Max Starks or Flozell Adams.

© Former Steelers coach Bill Cowher is in camp and will be attending the team's 7 p.m. practice tonight at Latrobe High School Stadium.

© Woodley, Ben Roethlisberger and James Farrior will be at Heinz Field Saturday filming a scene for the upcoming Batman movie being shot in Pittsburgh.


Anonymous said...

Timmons is a more of a priority than Troy in my opinion. I love Troy--what a special player and even better person. I think though his age is becoming a factor. I have a feeling that injuries are starting to creep on him. The fact that his Achilles does not appear to be fully healed in scary. Hope I am wrong.

BoJangles said...

I hope you're wrong as well but I do share in your thinking. Timmons is special in both coverage & run support. He could also get 10 sacks at OLB. He deserves to be paid on versatilty alone. But w/ his payday Timmons MUST take it to the next level this year & become a household name. I was pleased w/ his development last season & I expect a huge season from Lawrence.

It will be interesting to see the financial decision making process play out as Colbert & Tomlin continue to stockpile young talent in the coming seasons.

Anonymous said...

Guess what...there are far more players in this league that can do what Timmons does. Think about it for a minute and you'll come up with a dozen or more athletic middle linebacker that can play in coverage, and several more come into the league every year. There is only one Troy. That being said, I hope and think they'll lock them both up.

Robbie said...

Timmons and Troy are going nowhere.

The one guy they might let walk is Wallace. Except for Ward, the Steelers just don't sign WRs to extensions.

Anonymous said...

Wallace is a RFA next year. Hes not going anywhere.

Anonymous said...

If the steelers dont have farrior and ward on the roster next year it would be easier to retain Timmons and Wallace/Troy ...

Anonymous said...

Solution to contract issues? Win another super bowl

lots of the older guys will start retiring. We'll missthem, but would have seen 3 championships with themm

Robbie said...

"Wallace is a RFA next year. Hes not going anywhere."

I know, I'm saying they might not sign him to an extension next offseason because they might be willing to let him play out his contract and walk after next year.

BoJangles said...

If we let Wallace walk Sanders and Brown will have to show a hell of a lot in the next couple seasons. I can't see it happening. We'll pay Wallace and shuffle the group around him in coming years like we did Ward. This is a QB's league & your QB has to have toys to play w/.

Anonymous said...

Robbie - stfu u r an idiot

Mark said...

It's up to Wallace if he stays or goes. If he wants to be a Steeler (like Ward), he will get a good contract. If he is looking for the biggest buck, there are plenty of other teams that will seriously overpay for a quality WR.

Anonymous said...

So I read on PFT that the Steelers voted against the CBA 78-6. I have two questions about that.
1. I read that the reason many of them voted against it was that they didn't know what they were signing, any info on why?
2. Does the CBA need to be ratified by half plus one players or half plus one teams?

Robbie said...

"Robbie - stfu u r an idiot"

LOL, I'm an idiot because I think there's a chance the Steelers might not sign Wallace to an extension before next season? Whatever.

Anonymous said...

"1. I read that the reason many of them voted against it was that they didn't know what they were signing, any info on why?"

Where did you read that? sounds like one of Mike florio's subtle steelers insults

Anonymous said...

"Where did you read that? sounds like one of Mike florio's subtle steelers insults"

They received copies of the 300+ page CBA one hour before the vote. Only Congress (and apparently the NFLPA) votes on items of such magnitude without first reading them. As far as I am concerned, the Steelers players were the only ones smart enough to object to voting on something that they hadn't read and seems to give Roger Goodell excessive control over the discipline process.

adamg said...

First, Charlie Batch was on the executive cmte that negotiated the CBA.

Second, personal conduct policy was an item negotiated after the basic CBA was approved and NFLPA reconstituted as a union.

Third, there will now be an appeals board independent of the commisioner proper.

Last, the Steelers had their little fit of pique protest vote. Time to move on.