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Thread: Can we handle it?

  1. #11
    Legend RuthlessBurgher's Avatar
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    Re: Can we handle it?

    Chris Hoke and Aaron Smith, defensive linemen: Local reports indicate Hoke will retire. Smith also seems likely to retire if the Steelers donít bring him back. Both players are free agents. Smith has meant so much to the team, the Steelers could offer him a low-cost one-year deal to see how he looks in camp.
    I don't think Aaron Smith is a free agent. His contract was originally due to expire at the end of the 2011 season, but a year ago, in order to make his cap number more manageable, I believe they extended his contract by another year in order to restructure.

  2. #12

    Re: Can we handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by RuthlessBurgher
    Chris Hoke and Aaron Smith, defensive linemen: Local reports indicate Hoke will retire. Smith also seems likely to retire if the Steelers donít bring him back. Both players are free agents. Smith has meant so much to the team, the Steelers could offer him a low-cost one-year deal to see how he looks in camp.
    I don't think Aaron Smith is a free agent. His contract was originally due to expire at the end of the 2011 season, but a year ago, in order to make his cap number more manageable, I believe they extended his contract by another year in order to restructure.
    As usual, Ruthless, you are correct.

  3. #13
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    Re: Can we handle it?

    The standard is the standard!
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  4. #14
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    Re: Can we handle it?

    Farrior and Foote I think need to go too. IMO both have lost enough that they are liabilities in a league where our opponents are passing more and more.
    While I agree with the passing statement who are we left with?
    Timmons, Sly and Ivy?
    IMO Farrior is and should be done.His heart is there but his legs are gone.
    Foote could restrucure and stay as a backup and spot starter.

  5. #15
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    Re: Can we handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by pittpete
    Farrior and Foote I think need to go too. IMO both have lost enough that they are liabilities in a league where our opponents are passing more and more.
    While I agree with the passing statement who are we left with?
    Timmons, Sly and Ivy?
    IMO Farrior is and should be done.His heart is there but his legs are gone.
    Foote could restrucure and stay as a backup and spot starter.
    Unless we get a veteran FA, Sly is the guy. No way a rookie, even if drafted in the 1st Round, gets into the starting line up as long as LeBeau is running the show.

    It just gets back to we have to see what these young guys have. Sly may be the real deal but we won't know playing him less than 20 downs a season and having him run down on special teams.
    Playing Fantasy Football does not qualify you to be the in the front office or on the coaching staff of the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are professionals and you are not!

  6. #16
    Pro Bowler Steelgal's Avatar
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    Re: Can we handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by pittpete
    Farrior and Foote I think need to go too. IMO both have lost enough that they are liabilities in a league where our opponents are passing more and more.
    While I agree with the passing statement who are we left with?
    Timmons, Sly and Ivy?
    IMO Farrior is and should be done.His heart is there but his legs are gone.
    Foote could restrucure and stay as a backup and spot starter.
    I think if Farrior split playing time he would be far more effective. while he's still in excellent shape for his age, he's play has diminished over the past few seasons. For the amount of money he's getting paid, which I don't think is a lot, he would do very well to play 1/2 the snaps and give the defensive calls to someone else.

  7. #17
    Legend hawaiiansteel's Avatar
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    Re: Can we handle it?

    Changes lie ahead for Steelers

    By F. Dale Lolley, Staff writer dlolley@observer-reporter.com
    Jan. 17, 2012


    PITTSBURGH - Too old and too slow became the Steelers' rallying cry in the 2011 season.

    In the end, however, parts of NFL Network analyst Warren Sapp's early-season description of the Steelers rang true.

    The Steelers weren't done, as Sapp wrongly offered following a 35-7 loss at Baltimore in the regular season opener. After all, they went 12-4 and led the NFL in total defense and points allowed.

    But age certainly played a factor in the Steelers' demise as injuries derailed a once-promising season after they recovered from that beating in Baltimore.

    The Steelers lost nine players to season-ending injuries during the regular season and would have been without three more last Saturday in New England - defensive linemen Brett Keisel and Casey Hampton and left tackle Max Starks - had they beaten Denver in the opening round of the playoffs instead of losing.

    Four players placed on injured reserve - defensive end Aaron Smith, right tackle Willie Colon, running back Rashard Mendenhall and punter Daniel Sepulveda - were starters, testing the depth greatly.

    "We don't live in that world," head coach Mike Tomlin said when asked if the injuries helped finish the Steelers off.

    "We don't make excuses in regard to injuries."

    Tomlin might not want to make excuses, but there is little doubt the Steelers were affected by injuries.

    And that's where the age issue comes in.

    Pittsburgh starters missed 60 games because of injuries during the regular season. Older players tend to get hurt more often and take longer to recover.

    Getting younger, particularly on defense, will continue to be a priority in the offseason. The team must figure out a way to get stronger up the middle, on offense and defense.

    The Steelers are more than $20 million over the projected 2012 salary cap and need to trim some salaries moving forward.

    For the offense, getting younger won't be an issue. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who will turn 30 this offseason, was often the oldest player on the field as the Steelers phased out wide receiver Hines Ward.

    In fact, by season's end, the Steelers were starting the youngest offense in the AFC.

    In his 14th season, Ward surpassed 12,000 career yards and 1,000 career receptions, but was seldom a factor in the second half.

    Ward would like to return for a 15th season, but with a salary cap figure of $4.6 million in 2012, he'll have to take a pay cut to do so.

    Neither the Steelers nor Ward want to see the

    franchises' all-time leading receiver finish his career in another uniform.

    Ward also doesn't want his Pittsburgh career to end with the overtime loss at Denver.

    "To end it like that in overtime, to go 12-4 and have it come down to an overtime loss the way it did is sad," Ward said. "This will stick with us as one of the worst games we ever lost. I thought last year losing the Super Bowl (was tough), but this is fresh in our minds."

    The Steelers must also figure out why an offense that had a Pro Bowl quarterback and two Pro Bowl receivers in Mike Wallace and Antonio Brown often struggled so greatly to score touchdowns.

    Roethlisberger readily admitted throughout the season that an offense he felt had the potential to be the best since he joined the team in 2004 never reached its potential.

    "It's always disappointing (when) offensively you feel like you can do so much more and you don't do it," Roethlisberger said.

    But Wallace and Brown rarely made big impacts at the same time. Wallace did most of his damage in the first half of the season as Brown dominated the second half.

    "We feel like we have great potential to be a really good offense," Roethlisberger said. "We can be great, we just have to put the work in during the offseason. A lot of that's going to fall on me. We're young. We have to try to stay healthy and see what happens."

    Defensively, a number of old standards might have played their final game in Pittsburgh.

    Hampton suffered a partially torn ACL in the loss to Denver. Given his previous issues controlling his weight, the 34-year-old nose tackle could balloon if he is unable to work out because of the injury.

    Hampton counts just over $8 million against the 2012 salary cap and the team could realize savings of nearly $6 million by releasing him. He is also a candidate to restructure his deal.

    Defensive end Aaron Smith missed 12 games, ending yet another season on injured reserve. At 35, he's likely to announce his retirement, saving the team $2.1 million in cap space. Reserve nose tackle Chris Hoke is also expected to retire, though he is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent.

    And inside linebacker James Farrior, the defensive captain, split time with Larry Foote in 2011. Farrior, 37, counts $3.825 million against the 2012 cap and will like need to take a pay cut to return.

    Others who could find themselves on the chopping block include guard Chris Kemoeatu ($2.4 million in savings), offensive tackle Jonathan Scott ($2.2 million) and cornerback Bryant McFadden ($2.5 million).

    The Steelers need to save as much money as possible because a number of key players are heading into restricted free agency. Offers must be tendered or they lose the first right of refusal and forfeit any compensation if they sign elsewhere.

    Wallace, offensive linemen Ramon Foster and Doug Legursky, cornerback Keenan Lewis and safety Ryan Mundy fall into this group. The Steelers would like to have all five back.

    To receive compensation equal in that of the round in which the player was selected, the cost is $1.26 million. To receive a second-round pick as compensation, the tender is $1.92 million, while a first-round tender is $2.74 million.

    Wallace and Lewis were third-round picks, while Mundy was a sixth-round selection. Foster and Legursky, the team's preferred starting guards, were undrafted.

    The team's unrestricted free agents include quarterbacks Charlie Batch, Byron Leftwich and Dennis Dixon, wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery, offensive linemen Trai Essex and Starks, Sepulveda, cornerback William Gay and running back Mewelde Moore.

    The Steelers would like Cotchery to return and would be open to bringing back Gay, Starks, Batch or Leftwich, but likely won't have the money to get into bidding wars for their services.

    "There will be some changes," said Tomlin. "We will see where this all takes us."

    http://www.observer-reporter.com/or/spo ... eason-wrap

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