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hawaiiansteel
03-30-2011, 02:19 AM
Hines Ward, Casey Hampton Are Everything That Is Right About Loyalty

Posted by Tom Jenkins March 27, 2011

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3286/2348759568_5b3a92ee4d.jpg?v=0

In this day and age, loyalty doesnít mean much more than the paper that itís printed on. Itís become a lost cause, where oneís whim can change in a second and with it, any former family and alliances can easily be thrown into the street, right?

This rings true in the NFL, though not as severe or macabre as the scenario above, loyalty is tested not only by dollar signs, but also by three numbers that appear after a decimal point Ė win percentage.

Loyalty is one thing that some players will never know, they are modern day mercenaries selling their talents to the highest bidder. How many NFL players will enjoy a long, moderately successful career and still retire with the team that drafted them?

Even all time greats canít claim that feat. Some of the biggest names of the last two decades either didnít make the cut with their original teams, or attempted to prolong their career with a change of scenery.

While in the back of my mind, this was brought to the forefront during my daily perusing of all things Steelers related. I was reading Behind The Steel Curtainís Steelers Six Pack today and saw the question posed: Which current players will retire with the Steelers?

Quite a few came to mind, James Farrior, Charlie Batch, Hines Ward, Casey Hampton, etc. Those four were the most prominent, most likely names in my eyes, and while theyíll retire Steelers both Farrior and Batch were not drafted by the franchise and thus canít claim the illustrious title that I mentioned earlier.

Thatís not to say that Batch and The Ultimate Farrior arenít loyal, because they most definitely are. Batch has been a great stand in for Ben Roethlisberger when called upon and Farrior has been a stalwart on a defense that has consistently ranked among the best in the league, and nearly won the Defensive Player Of The Year Award.

But, looking at all of the big names that were drafted by the Steelers, only Hampton and Ward stand out as retirements that are on the horizon that will have remained with their drafting team throughout their careers. When you think of the immense talent that both men have, the market in the NFL for dominating nose tackles and great receivers, and Pittsburgh penchant of being fairly cheap when it comes to retaining and signing talent, itís a surprise that both of them made it this far with the Steelers.

But, that just goes to show what the organization, no, family means to these two men. Sure, they probably could have tested the waters and made a lot more money elsewhere, especially Hampton Ė what with everyone and their cousin wanting to attempt a 3-4 defense sometime in the past 10 years.

But, they never even questioned it. Just did their jobs Ė very, very well, and let nature take itís course until here they are, years and years down the road and somehow theyíve managed to stay home throughout all of those years.

There are great football players, and there are great men. But itís only rarely that you find the two coincide.

http://www.steelerschronicle.com/2011/0 ... alty.html/ (http://www.steelerschronicle.com/2011/03/hines-ward-casey-hampton-are-everything-that-is-right-about-loyalty.html/)

Oviedo
03-30-2011, 08:20 AM
Aaron Smith?????????

flippy
03-30-2011, 08:31 AM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.

birtikidis
03-30-2011, 10:22 AM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.
Harrison doesn't qualify because he played for several teams (even though he was cut). Totally agree with the others... the only guy I think may leave from that group is Ike...

Oviedo
03-30-2011, 10:31 AM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.
Harrison doesn't qualify because he played for several teams (even though he was cut). Totally agree with the others... the only guy I think may leave from that group is Ike...

If Ike leaves I hope the entire 2011 season is lost in the CBA dispute. I paid too much for my TV to ruin it by throwing things at it :wink:

Watching our secondary without Ike would be painful (nothing more so than watching Anthony Madison try to cover someone) and the frustration level would lead to a huge increase on cardiac conditions within the Steeler Nation.

sentinel33
03-30-2011, 10:31 AM
Personally, I gotta lump Harrison in there. While he did go to other teams to try and make it in this league, he was initially picked up by the Steelers and eventually landed with them. He's in as one of the above in my book. He's one of the great Steeler stories as far as i'm concerned.

feltdizz
03-30-2011, 12:45 PM
Aaron Smith?????????

Aaron Smith didn't have the opportunity to cash in elsewhere... Hines and Hampton did. Especially Hampton.

MeetJoeGreene
03-30-2011, 01:06 PM
I am highly surprised that Crash hasn't chimed in on this trhead to voice his steadfast opionion of #86.

:D :Beer :tt1

ikestops85
03-30-2011, 01:14 PM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.
Harrison doesn't qualify because he played for several teams (even though he was cut). Totally agree with the others... the only guy I think may leave from that group is Ike...

If Ike leaves I hope the entire 2011 season is lost in the CBA dispute. I paid too much for my TV to ruin it by throwing things at it :wink:

Watching our secondary without Ike would be painful (nothing more so than watching Anthony Madison try to cover someone) and the frustration level would lead to a huge increase on cardiac conditions within the Steeler Nation.

Reminiscent of the days of Chad Scott and DeWayne Washington :cry:

PSU_dropout43
03-30-2011, 01:28 PM
Hines was under contract when he held out in 2005. So no I wouldn't call that loyal.

birtikidis
03-30-2011, 01:47 PM
Aaron Smith?????????

Aaron Smith didn't have the opportunity to cash in elsewhere... Hines and Hampton did. Especially Hampton.
Felt, he didnt' sign a 15 year contract. Resigning is an act of loyalty. In fact I would say that Aaron is the most loyal steeler we have. He wanted to sign and stay well before his contract ended. Never complained. Never showed up out of shape. He IMO is the consumate, loyal Steeler.

RuthlessBurgher
03-30-2011, 03:46 PM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.
Harrison doesn't qualify because he played for several teams (even though he was cut). Totally agree with the others... the only guy I think may leave from that group is Ike...

Harrison was signed by the Ravens, but he never played for them. They sent him to the Rhein Fire in Europe, then cut him. When you look at his actual games played in the NFL, he's never been anything but a Steeler.

D Rock
03-30-2011, 04:14 PM
From what I've heard about the relationship Ike Taylor has with the Rooney's I don't expect him to leave at all. He will retire a Steeler IMO.

birtikidis
03-30-2011, 04:34 PM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.
Harrison doesn't qualify because he played for several teams (even though he was cut). Totally agree with the others... the only guy I think may leave from that group is Ike...

Harrison was signed by the Ravens, but he never played for them. They sent him to the Rhein Fire in Europe, then cut him. When you look at his actual games played in the NFL, he's never been anything but a Steeler.
Doesn't matter. Did he not sign with them?

BackwoodsSteeler
04-01-2011, 05:17 PM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.
Harrison doesn't qualify because he played for several teams (even though he was cut). Totally agree with the others... the only guy I think may leave from that group is Ike...

Harrison was signed by the Ravens, but he never played for them. They sent him to the Rhein Fire in Europe, then cut him. When you look at his actual games played in the NFL, he's never been anything but a Steeler.
Doesn't matter. Did he not sign with them?
After he was cut by the Steelers who he never played a game for.

I guess he sould have just pulled up tent and went to work for Giant Eagle. Christ.

And I agree with your assesment of Smith....he is very loyal.

birtikidis
04-01-2011, 05:36 PM
Aaron Smith, Brett Keisel, James Harrison, Ike, Troy, Ben, Heath, Starks, etc. I don't see any of these guys going elsewhere. And there's a load of younger guys that should be here for a long time too.
Harrison doesn't qualify because he played for several teams (even though he was cut). Totally agree with the others... the only guy I think may leave from that group is Ike...

Harrison was signed by the Ravens, but he never played for them. They sent him to the Rhein Fire in Europe, then cut him. When you look at his actual games played in the NFL, he's never been anything but a Steeler.
Doesn't matter. Did he not sign with them?
After he was cut by the Steelers who he never played a game for.

I guess he sould have just pulled up tent and went to work for Giant Eagle. Christ.

And I agree with your assesment of Smith....he is very loyal.
well the article stated, players that had never played or signed with another team. I agree he is a loyal player, but, he signed with our biggest rival...