The Pittsburgh Steelers have made tender offers to four players in the wake of March 4th’s deadline.
The Steelers tendered offers to cornerback William Gay, tight end Matt Spaeth, punter Daniel Sepulveda and starting right tackle Willie Colon.
The Steelers made Gay the lowest possible tender and will receive a 5th round pick if Gay signs elsewhere and the Steelers don’t match. The Steelers placed a 3rd round tender on Matt Spaeth and a 4th round tender on punter Daniel Sepulveda.
The decision to tender William Gay did not come as a surprise as it was widely expected that the Steelers will give Gay another opportunity to win a starting job in 2010.
The wildcard of the bunch is starting right tackle Willie Colon. The Steelers placed the second-highest tender on Colon, which guarantees them a first round pick as compensation if Colon signs elsewhere and the Steelers refuse to match.
Colon, 26, who has made 54 consecutive starts at right tackle, is regarded by the organization as the Steelers best offensive linemen but they have yet to show any interest in negotiating a long-term deal.
Due to their being no CBA in place, there is no pressure on the Steelers to lockup Colon long-term as Colon will be a restricted free agent for the next two years.
However, Joe Linta, the agent for Willie Colon is not happy and is expected to actively seek a deal elsewhere with the hope of forcing the Steelers hand to match a long-term offer.
It is unlikely that a team will risk giving up a first round pick for Colon but I’m told not to completely rule it out. Colon is regarded around the league as one of the best young tackles in the game.
Colon though is very close to star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and has stated on multiple occasions that he will be back this season.
Ryan Clark Contract Talks
I touched base with Joel Turner, the agent for Ryan Clark this evening, and Turner told me both sides are still talking and talks haven’t broken off but there continues to be no movement towards a deal.
According to a Steelers a source, the parameters of a five year deal in the $15 million range was presented to Clark’s camp late last week, however, a source in Ryan Clark’s camp has denied any such offer in that range.
Sources tell me Clark was initially seeking a 5 year deal in the $20-$22.5 million range but would settle for a deal in the $18.5 million range if the amount of guaranteed money worked out.
So far it hasn’t and the sides are miles apart in that department.