Keisel, Hampton have one year remaining on their current contracts
There has been a growing sense since the Steelers drafted DT/DE Ziggy Hood with their first round pick that Brett Keisel will be the odd-man out as the Steelers have not held any substantive talks on a new contract with Keisel’s camp.
Infact, the Steelers have also held minimal talks with defensive tackle Casey Hampton.
Hampton, 31, enters the season with a $6.6 cap hit and has not been a dominating force down the middle since the 2006 season.
The Steelers drafted Ziggy Hood with the idea of him eventually moving to defensive end which would put Brett Keisel’s future in doubt but scouts around the league favor the 30 year old Keisel over Hampton for the present and the future.
Inside the Numbers
Hampton is looking for one last pay-day and arrived to mini-camp, OTA’s in much better shape than he was last year.
There doesn’t appear to be any concerns that Hampton will end up on the Physically Unable to Perform List this training camp and there are plenty of risks involved, in signing Hampton to another big pay day.
Signing Hampton to another contract in the $4-$5 million range will be cap suicide for the Steelers as the team has to keep building around their franchise quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, as Santonio Holmes and Heath Miller will be in line for new extensions very soon.
Hampton had 22 tackles last season and his total tackles per season have dropped over the past four years.
2005: 16 GP – 42 Tackles
2006: 15 GP – 41 Tackles
2007: 15 GP – 33 Tackles
2008: 13 GP – 22 Tackles