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Thread: Miller's Restructuring Highlights Steelers' Salary-Cap Mess

  1. #1

    Miller's Restructuring Highlights Steelers' Salary-Cap Mess

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com...lary-cap-mess/

    Heath Miller restructuring highlights Pittsburgh’s salary-cap mess
    Posted by Mike Florio on September 14, 2013, 7:04 AM EDT


    It’s bad enough that the Steelers currently seem to be as bad as they’ve been in more than two decades. On top of the issues with football talent, the Steelers don’t have the cap space to make fixes on the fly.

    As they try to change a flat tire of a moving car, the Steelers have had to also pour more gas in the tank. Of a moving car.

    In the wake of a Week One injury debacle, tight end Heath Miller agreed to a restructured contract, as reported by Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Per a league source, the deal gives the Steelers an extra $1.5 million in cap space, reducing Miller’s 2013 cap number from $7.96 million to $6.46 million.

    The Steelers accomplished the move by paying him $3 million of his 2013 base salary now, as a signing bonus. That pushes half of the guaranteed payment into 2014.

    Which means that, come 2014, the Steelers will have an even bigger cap mess. Miller’s cap number for the next league year has gone up by $1.5 million, pushing it to $9.46 million.

    It’s one of many contracts bloated by restructurings that the Steelers will have to deal with in the offseason, when the car finally stops rolling and they decide how many more pieces they’ll need to replace.

    But the move became necessary given the Week One season-ending injuries to center Maurkice Pouncey, linebacker Larry Foote, and running back LaRod Stephens-Howling. The Steelers desperately needed the cap space to sign replacements.

    Eventually, they’ll have to start getting rid of recognizable names. Based on how this season could go, Steelers fans probably won’t be all that upset about it.

  2. #2
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    The cap is why the Steelers are in this mess. Holding onto players too long, mostly on defense, because they know the system and not getting younger players ready to contribute sooner.

    Expect a couple of bad years until this all sorts itself out. Then gain, isn't this exactly what the NFL wants? Reward success with low draft picks. Put a salary cap in place so that teams can't keep talent without causing problems elsewhere.
    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!

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    Legend RuthlessBurgher's Avatar
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    Ben and Heath will need actual contract extensions (not more restructuring) this offseason in order to make their cap charges more palatable.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Oviedo View Post
    The cap is why the Steelers are in this mess. Holding onto players too long, mostly on defense, because they know the system and not getting younger players ready to contribute sooner.

    Expect a couple of bad years until this all sorts itself out. Then gain, isn't this exactly what the NFL wants? Reward success with low draft picks. Put a salary cap in place so that teams can't keep talent without causing problems elsewhere.
    Yup, the NFL is all about parity. From a business perspective, it makes sense. Rooting for a perennial bottom dweller is no fun.

    The Steelers used to do an excellent job of not keeping guys past two contracts, even if they let some go a few years too soon. However, the Steelers always had a guy waiting in the wings, and now they don't always have that, in part due to recent drafting issues.

    A draft like 2008 kills you. Look at the Steelers first three selections this year - OLB, RB and WR. If Mendenhall, Sweed and Bruce Davis panned out, the Steelers could have developed other areas this year.

    Jarvis Jones and Shmarko are both playing key roles tonight. Talent plays for the Steelers, regardless of age. The problem has been that there is not enough talent.

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    Quote Originally Posted by phillyesq View Post
    Yup, the NFL is all about parity. From a business perspective, it makes sense. Rooting for a perennial bottom dweller is no fun.

    The Steelers used to do an excellent job of not keeping guys past two contracts, even if they let some go a few years too soon. However, the Steelers always had a guy waiting in the wings, and now they don't always have that, in part due to recent drafting issues.

    A draft like 2008 kills you. Look at the Steelers first three selections this year - OLB, RB and WR. If Mendenhall, Sweed and Bruce Davis panned out, the Steelers could have developed other areas this year.

    Jarvis Jones and Shmarko are both playing key roles tonight. Talent plays for the Steelers, regardless of age. The problem has been that there is not enough talent.

    I disagree talent always plays. Jones and Shmarko are playing tonight because things have gotten as bad as they have gotten and LeBeau is forced to use them. If he had the same roster as two years ago they would play special teams and nothing else.
    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!

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    Legend papillon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RuthlessBurgher View Post
    Ben and Heath will need actual contract extensions (not more restructuring) this offseason in order to make their cap charges more palatable.
    Is this the last year of Ben's contract or is next year the last year of his contract?

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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Oviedo View Post
    I disagree talent always plays. Jones and Shmarko are playing tonight because things have gotten as bad as they have gotten and LeBeau is forced to use them. If he had the same roster as two years ago they would play special teams and nothing else.
    We've gone back and forth on this before, and it's always tough to find examples of talented young guys who were ready to play who did not.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by papillon View Post
    Is this the last year of Ben's contract or is next year the last year of his contract?

    Pappy
    He has two years after this. He would be an unrestricted free agent in 2016.

  9. #9
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    "The Steelers used to do an excellent job of not keeping guys past two contracts, even if they let some go a few years too soon. However, the Steelers always had a guy waiting in the wings, and now they don't always have that, in part due to recent drafting issues."

    Spot on.

    Generally it's 'contract 3' where the player value outweighs the production the player provides as his body starts to break down & slow.

    The players contract value keeps going up, while their production, invariably, will reduce during the course of the 3rd contract.

    You can blame bad drafting to a degree, but also you need to look at the guys they held onto for too long- James Harrison, Troy Polamalu, Aaron Smith, James Farrior, Casey Hampton etc, etc... while the individuals were declining, the defense continued to succeed. You can see HOW the FO thought it was worth holding on to them, to squeeze another year out, here & there, until they fell over.

    Chadman still believes that the biggest issue this team has is that while they held these guys too long, they swung & missed on Offensive players during the same period- meaning that suitable replacements for the aging Defensive guys were pushed down the list of 'team need'. Well, that's one of the problems at least, if not the biggest one.

    It's not fair to completely blame Tomlin & Colbert for the situation. Well, it is... but Chadman thinks we need to look at it objectively- had Tomlin gutted the squad given to him by Cowher in order to get younger, faster- does he win a SB? Would lack of success, early, changed his coaching fortunes- plenty of pressure on the first African American coach of the Steelers to prove the Rooney Rule works. Had he struggled early, just how much pressure would he have been under?

    So he stuck with what he had, a known commodity, and rolled the dice hoping to get a few years out of it. Worked for a while, but now we start to see the results. But to be honest, Chadman is very hopeful that guys like Jarvis Jones, Shark, Mike Adams, DeCastro, Bell, Vince Williams, Cortez Allen...these guys all look to be potentially special. We could be seeing a rocky start to the next great Steeler dynasty, but we might need to ride a bumpy road to start with.
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