NortCoast is right on the money. Every time someone mentions not signing Lewis I have to laugh. It's not as if the Steelers just walked away. Lewis was VERY clear at the time about it being his dream to play for his hometown team. I'm sure the highest contract in the history of the NFL might have made a difference, but barring that, as soon as NO offered a fair contract not other team had a shot. Let it go. It's a silly discussion based on what Lewis himself stated.
FYI.. I did a "Search"...and didn't find any info related to the questions I asked you. That's why I asked. It's interesting how, the "Money" that Lewis was talking about can't be attached to a team/s. I am led to believe that he was speculating as well (since no formal offers have been identified). If someone can send me a link to an offer that was made to Lewis, that exceeded what he signed for with the Saints, I will stand corrected.
and Ghost, if the steelers didn't "Walk away" as you put it... please let me know what steps they took to keep him. What was their offer? In this day and age, if there was an offer, you would be able to do a "Search" and find it somewhere.
Last edited by Ernie; 03-09-2014 at 05:35 PM.
I went back and searched again...and found a few links that led to a statement by Lewis saying that he "Loved the steeler fans, but they didn't offer me a contract"...
I also read an article that gave an interesting sequence of events.. in that, initially, the FO was interested in signing Lewis...but, when Willy Gay hit the market, they snatched him up...then Lewis became less of a priority. Seems like (at that time) they had Tez and Ike penciled in at the corners, and picked up Gay for what they thought would be depth/nickel,etc... while saving money with letting Lewis go. The FO definitely missed the boat with thinking that Ike still had some gas left in the tank...but, hindsight is 20/20.. I am glad they picked up Gay... because he was our best DB this year IMO.. Lewis also outperformed Ike and Tez.
I'm not saying with 100% certainty that Lewis would have stayed...had the steelers made an offer... it's about as accurate as folks "Speculating" that he was 100% gone, regardless of the offer.
I would like Verner to sign here...but he's going to ask for too much. I like the drafting Darqueeze Dennard (Round 1) or Kyle Fuller (Round 2) route in the draft.
Round 1, Pick 15 (15)- Ryan Shazier, ILB; Ohio State
Round 2, Pick 14 (46)- Stephon Tuitt, DE; Notre Dame
Round 3b, Pick 33 (97)- Dri Archer, RB; Kent State
Round 4, Pick 18 (118 )- Martavis Bryant, WR; Clemson
Round 5, Pick 17 (157)- Shaquille Richardson, CB; Arizona
Round 5b, Pick 33 (173)- Wesley Johnson, OT; Vanderbilt
Round 6, Pick 16 (192)- Jordan Zumwalt, OLB; UCLA
Round 6b, Pick 39 (215)- Daniel McCullers, DT; Tennessee
Round 7, Pick 15 (230)- Rob Branchflower, TE; Massachusetts
I think drafting one of those two guys is our most realistic option at this point (to improve on what we have). Would love to be able to sign a FA that could "Plug and play" though.
I'm warming up to the idea of a trade back in round 1 or taking Dennard.
Fuller would be good between 22-28 I think. I would also be ok with Kelvin Benjamin at that point if Fuller isn't available.
Would love to somehow get another maybe late 2nd or early 3rd and also look at Terrence Brooks, FS from Florida State.
Or maybe trade with the 49ers if they think a stud at 15 can get them over the hump...
We could maybe get 1.29, 2.24, 4.29, and 5.30 out of them based on the value chart.
What is indisputable is that the Steelers never made Lewis an offer. Of course, once he signs with New Orleans, he's gonna say things like, "This is the only place I ever wanted to play." Why would that be surprising? That's where he's from and all his family lives there...and as would be expected, now, he's all in with that team.
I'm sure he did give the Saints a "hometown discount" over teams like the Browns that wanted him. But who really knows if he would have given the Steelers the same kind of deal if they'd made any indication they wanted him? I can find no evidence that the Steelers ever even talked to him about staying. Maybe he wouldn't have ever considered coming back. But maybe he would have.
I suspect, as you do, that the Steelers didn't really value Lewis that much, and that once they signed Gay, they believed they were set with Willie, Cortez, and Ike. They didn't anticipate Cortez's injury and slow start, and Ike's continued decline in performance.
Last edited by BradshawsHairdresser; 03-09-2014 at 07:23 PM.