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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Steelers restructure deals, other tidbits

The Steelers opened up $9.5 million in cap space by restructuring the contracts of Marcus Gilbert, Mike Mitchell and Maurkice Pouncey.

It's interesting timing since they have until Monday to make a decision on whether or not to tag outside linebacker Jason Worilds once again.

It would cost the Steelers around $11 million to tag Worilds for the second consecutive year.

And GM Kevin Colbert sounded as if the Steelers were leaning toward not tagging Worilds again this year.

But Worilds is considered one of the top free agents available this year when the market opens March 10 and the Steelers might want to cover their behinds. They also have only Jarvis Jones under contract of their top four outside linebackers from 2014.

While $11 million is a big chunk of change, it would also again only be a one-year deal. The Steelers seem intent on drafting a young outside linebacker as well, so they could move forward after this year by resigning Worilds to a long-term deal - if Jones doesn't work out - or allow Worilds to leave after 2015 and go with Jones and the other young guy - if Jones is what they think he can be.

@ Another move that would create cap space would be the retirement of Troy Polamalu.

But I heard last week at the NFL combine that Polamalu isn't ready to retire and then this week, Ike Taylor told Joe Starkey Polamalu is training for 2015.

That's bad news for the Steelers, who don't want Polamalu, the player, back. Polamalu, the person, is beyond reproach.

This puts the Steelers in a difficult position.

Polamalu is clearly not what he once was, but if he adjusts his game to play more of a traditional safety, a player with his experience and instincts could be of value.

It just likely won't be in Pittsburgh, where the Steelers are ready to turn things over to Shamarko Thomas.

@ The post-combine release of players has started around the league as big-name players such as Mathias Kiwanuka and Tedd Ginn Jr.

Some of these type of players can be valuable but not too costly.

First, they don't count as true free agents, since they were released by their current team. Therefore they don't count against you when the NFL starts figuring out compensatory picks.

Second, you can sign them now instead of waiting for free agency to begin.

Brice McCain and Lance Moore were among the early cuts last year.

The Steelers, however, prefer to sign free agents coming off their first contract - veterans who are still young enough to have some upside - or younger free agents such as McCain.

@ The Steelers expect, by the way, to get a sixth or seventh round compensatory pick this year.

21 comments:

ibygeorge said...

Would Polamalu take a pay cut? Is it feasible?

ibygeorge said...

Would Polamalu take a pay cut? Is it feasible?

marc said...

if #43 is willing to be a backup, then so be it, I guess. as long as he takes a pay cut as well. otherwise, it's just time to move on.

marc said...

if #43 is willing to be a backup, then so be it, I guess. as long as he takes a pay cut as well. otherwise, it's just time to move on.

Zeke R said...

Maybe Butler can convince Troy to play the safety position and not to freelance.. May the best man win the position during camp..

Dale Lolley said...

As I said, the Steelers don't want him back - at least the coaching staff. Maybe Art overrules that. But at $6-million plus, it might not be feasible. And you don't bring a player like Troy Polamalu back as a backup. The team has too much respect for him to do that.

Anonymous said...

I won't be able to bear seeing the headline "steelers cut polamalu: :(

Pistol said...

It is sad to see the end for Polamalu who is basically the end of Cowhers guys. It is time and I don't want to see those guys (Pola, Keisel and Harrison) Play too long. They all brought a different dynamic and are all time Stillers!
It will be cool to see who emerges from Tomlins guys as leaders now.

Eric T said...

It will be cool to see who emerges from Tomlins guys as leaders now.

You mean besides Antonio, Timmons, Pouncy, Beachum and Heyward?

Zeke R said...

Bush to backup Bell?

marc said...

I still think they are going to tag worilds. they just don't have a choice. if they let him enter free agency he gains significant leverage and probably more than what they are willing to deal with.

Dale Lolley said...

Reggie Bush isn't the kind of back they need to back up Bell. They need a bigger, short-yardage type who can play in those situations while also being a fourth-quarter hammer.

I like Will Johnson from N. Iowa, a 230-pound back with a similar skill set to Bell in the middle rounds of the draft.

Patrick said...

Transition tagging worilds makes sense. If he gets a deal that is too big, oh well. At least you gave yourself a chance to keep him

Pistol said...

If Pouncey is a leader that's scary. Brown and Timmons are definitely guys that will command a locker room though and Beachum I totally forgot about but great point.

Dale Lolley said...

Why is it scary if Pouncey is a leader? On the field, he's as intense and dedicated as anyone. Has he made some mistakes? Sure. But I'd hate anyone to look into things I did when I was 21 and 22 years old.

Pistol said...

I respect your opinion as always Dale.Your around these guys daily,but when your a professional athlete your life is different from an average citizen. Is that right? Probably not but it is.

Henigin said...

Harry Douglas was just released by the Falcons and at first glance sure seems like the type of veteran #3 WR that the Steelers like to have around

Dale Lolley said...

They already have their Nos 1 2 and 3 receivers in place. Lance Moore is still under contract - at least for now.
I like Harry D. but I think he'll get a shot to start somewhere.

And yes, pro athletes live different lives than you or I.

ibygeorge said...

How's the FO's feeling about Moats? You would think he's more of a easier deal than Worilds. I wouldn't mind 1 more year of Harrison/Moats on the outside as long as they had someone at CB that has Taylor's skills. Harrison/ Moats is a lot cheaper than 1 Worilds.

ibygeorge said...

How's the FO's feeling about Moats? You would think he's more of a easier deal than Worilds. I wouldn't mind 1 more year of Harrison/Moats on the outside as long as they had someone at CB that has Taylor's skills. Harrison/ Moats is a lot cheaper than 1 Worilds.

kelly said...

I think the Johnson you like out of N. Iowa is David, not Will. And yeah, I like the looks of him too. How long do you think he will last? He had a pretty solid combine.