Free Agency begins on February 27th
The Steelers have been involved in contract talks with James Harrison for about 7 days now. Reports indicate Harrison‚Äôs agent will meet with the Steelers at the combine.
Talks with Heath Miller will begin in March once the Steelers priorities in free agency are taking care of. Miller is just as much of a priority for the Steelers as anyone. They have no intention of him entering 09 without a long-term extension. Jason Witten received a $6 year – $28 million contract a few seasons ago. Miller doesn‚Äôt put up the numbers Witten does but is regarded as the most complete tight end in the game.
Here‚Äôs some new stuff on Nate Washington, Bryant McFadden and Penn State’s Derek Williams
Steelers to meet with Drew Rosenhaus the agent for Bryant McFadden this week.
No offer has been made yet. Appears management is torn on McFadden whether they want to make a big offer to keep him. Might not have the money to do so with big extensions coming for Miller and Harrison but I still expect a competitive offer to be made prior to FA. Will it be enough? Lions, Browns, Dolphins, Patriots & Jets already being mentioned as potential suitors.
For Washington, the Steelers will only go as high as two years – $5-$6 million with two years worth $5 million the more likely number. Could see him hit the market and both sides see what’s out there.
Penn State’s Derek Williams will be a player the Steelers will be keeping a close eye on at the combine. They came away fairly impressed with his versatility at the Senior Bowl and If Nate Washington signs elsewhere, Williams could be on the Steelers radar in the 2nd round. Seems like wide receiver is a need every year but it is again with Ward in his last year of his contract and Washington possibly signing elsewhere.
Indications are the Steelers still plan to make offers to both Marvel Smith and Max Starks before free agency. I don‚Äôt like the talk that if they miss out on both players they will look to Trai Essex as a fall back option.
Expected to make an offer worth $5.5 million annually to Starks.
They are in a really tough position with Marvel Smith. I‚Äôve heard Steelers may make a offer worth $1.5 – $2 million annually with a lot of incentives. Steelers Insider Dale Lolley recently speculated the Steelers would only offer the league minimum but according to people I’ve talked to the Steelers don’t want to insult Smith. The league minimum with incentives is all I would offer based on Smith’s inability to stay healthy.
Doesn‚Äôt appear Hines Ward and Deshea Townsend will receive extensions during the off-season. Both players are entering the final year of their contract.
There has been no speculation regarding the Steelers initiating talks with LG Chris Kemoeatu who becomes a free agent on February 27th
Will have some updates on the combine when some leaks come out regarding some players the Steelers may be eyeing.
Last year Mike Tomlin came away raving about Limas Sweed and that‚Äôs who he landed in the 2nd round.