View Full Version : Ward signs four year deal....Updated w/ Financial Terms..

09-05-2005, 10:58 AM
Three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Hines Ward, regarded as the heart and soul of the Pittsburgh Steelers offense, on Monday morning signed a four-year contract extension that will keep him with the team through the 2009 season.

Financial details of the contract were not immediately available, but it is believed that Ward will earn $17 million-$18 million in the first three years of the deal. Ward had one year left on his previous contract, at a base salary of $1.669 million. Without the add-on, he would have been eligible for unrestricted free agency next spring.


09-05-2005, 11:06 AM
Finally, it's done and over with. Everyone's happy, lol. Congrats to both the FO and Ward for getting it done. Now lets play (and win) some football!

09-05-2005, 11:08 AM
Finally....the saga is over!!! Now we can get on with our season! And looks like BF21 will be sporting Figg's sig of choice at the Lair!!!

09-05-2005, 11:08 AM
I am so happy this is resolved... and I think this is a good deal for both sides.

09-05-2005, 11:10 AM
Great news! Beat me to it!

09-05-2005, 11:11 AM

Now lets play some DAMN football!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks Hines and Management!!!!!

09-05-2005, 11:15 AM

09-05-2005, 11:34 AM
YEAH BABY! I LIKE IT LIKE THAT! Looking forward to the next 5 years including this year of Hines Greatness.

09-05-2005, 11:56 AM
Its about Friggin time. Now we need a big time wide receiver, a big deep threat.

09-05-2005, 12:11 PM
Woohooooo! So glad all this is finally done with! Glad we have our guy!!! :smile:

09-05-2005, 12:51 PM
hell yeah! this is the best news i've heard for awhile, i was afraid the jersey i ordered was going to be worthless after this season (i'm weird, i don't like to wear jerseys of a player that doesn't play for the team anymore, so i always wait to see if they are going to sign a long term deal). now ward can go out there and just play.

09-05-2005, 02:10 PM
bout damn time. Now let's play some Steeler Football.

09-05-2005, 02:26 PM
YIPPEE...I am so glad that is over with......

09-05-2005, 02:58 PM

Now lets play some DAMN football!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks Hines and Management!!!!!

Right on!!!!!!!!!! No more distractions, its time to get everyone healthy and make our run!!

Woo Hoo !! I knew they could do it!!

09-05-2005, 03:12 PM
Great news! Now let's get to business! Go Steelers!

09-05-2005, 04:54 PM

Hines Ward now knows how much he is valued in Pittsburgh. The four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver is one of the few players to walk away from contract negotiations with the Steelers with more money than he expected to get.

Ward, on the verge of becoming the leading receiver in franchise history, agreed Monday to a four-year contract that could be worth as much as $25.8 million and includes $10 million in guaranteed money and more than $2 million in incentives.

If he collects those bonuses, Ward will earn more than the $12 million in assured money he wanted before the extended negotiations began. The Steelers were believed to have originally offered $8 million to $9 million in guaranteed money.

"I think they went out of their way," Ward said of an organization that has long set its own value on player contracts and ignored the huge money deals given by other teams. "It was far more than what I expected."

Ward had one year left on his previous contract, worth $1.67 million this year, and is now signed through 2009. The total value is far less than the $49 million, seven-year deal Eagles wide receiver Terrell Owens wants renegotiated. But Ward, an all-around receiver rather than a gamebreaking downfield threat, was determined to end his career in Pittsburgh.

"I look good in black and gold," he said. "The contract is going to make me work even harder, just to prove I'm worth every penny of what they gave me."

Ward's two-week holdout when training camp began was the first by a veteran Steeler since running back Barry Foster in 1993, and Ward returned Aug. 15 only because the franchise held to its policy of not negotiating with holdouts. The Steelers traditionally don't negotiate during the season, either, which led to a busy weekend of talks between agent Eugene Parker and the team.

"These things can get ugly and can become major distractions," team president Art Rooney II said. "While these things can be difficult, it was something we got through without having it become the kind of distraction that can really disrupt a team."

Ward had something else going for him in his negotiations: fan support. Ward's physical style of play and passion for the game, at a skill position, have come to so personify the Steelers that the fans clearly sided with him.

It also helped that his current contract was so undervalued he was barely among the NFL's top 40 highest-paid receivers.

"I was a little worried with the holdout, of people questioning my character and being put in the category of a T.O.," Ward said. "But I went to pick up my wife and son at the airport yesterday and the lady at the Great Steak place said, `I can't give you a million dollars, but I can give you a steak sandwich for free.' I got a kick out of that."

Relieved at finally reaching a deal the Steelers previously called their top offseason priority, Ward went out Monday and had what he called "a great practice" before Sunday's opener against Tennessee.

"I can go into the season focused now. ... I'm going to play until the wheels fall off," he said. "I know only one style and one way to play it, and that's how I have to play."

Ward, 29, has four of the top five receptions seasons in club history, but he is also widely regarded as the league's best blocking receiver. He has caught at least 61 passes in every season but one since he became a starter in 1999.

Ward averaged 95 catches over the last four seasons, including a franchise-record 112 in 2002, when he also had a career-high 12 touchdown catches. He had 80 receptions last season, his fewest since 2000, and four touchdowns as the Steelers ran the ball 61 percent of the time, but was chosen for his fourth consecutive Pro Bowl.

A 1998 third-round draft pick from Georgia, Ward has caught 505 passes in his career, 32 behind Hall of Famer John Stallworth's franchise record. His 88 consecutive games with at least one catch, an ongoing streak that began in 1998, is a club record.

Last month, the Steelers gave nose tackle Casey Hampton a five-year contract that included a $6.975 million signing bonus. But while wide receiver Antwaan Randle El and safety Chris Hope can become free agents after this season, Rooney said it is unlikely any more deals will be reached this season.

09-05-2005, 05:05 PM
"I can go into the season focused now. ... I'm going to play until the wheels fall off," he said. "I know only one style and one way to play it, and that's how I have to play."

I think things may get a little INTERESTING THIS YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

09-05-2005, 05:05 PM
Hines Ward is the kind of guy that just fits in Pittsburgh. He has that tough blue collar work ethic and I think the fans love that about him. I'm just glad he is going to stay in the black and gold. Can't wait for football season especially since he is signed and ready to go!

09-05-2005, 05:07 PM
With all that guarenteed money, I wonder what's the first big toy he's going to buy???

09-05-2005, 05:11 PM
With all that guarenteed money, I wonder what's the first big toy he's going to buy???

Brass Knuckles. :chuckle:

09-05-2005, 11:43 PM
OK, so here's the numbers from the Post Gazette.. alittle different, but still the same ballpark,

esterday morning, Ward signed a new five-year contract worth $27.5 million, according to sources familiar with the deal. It includes the largest signing bonus in club history, $9 million, plus a $1 million roster bonus that, combined with his salaries in the first three years of the deal, delivers to him the so-called "guaranteed" money he was seeking at $17 million, also the largest in club history.

That $17 million puts him among the top five receivers in guaranteed money in the NFL, according to those same sources.

If he plays the way he has over the past four years, Ward will receive incentives that push the total take to $30 million through 2009.

He receives a $5 million bonus now and another $4 million in early March when he receives another $1 million roster bonus. His annual salaries, starting this year, are $665,000, $2.75 million, $3.585 million, $4.7 million and $5.8 million.

"It was far more than I expected," Ward said.

09-06-2005, 12:10 AM
I'm glad he was able to lock up another 5, that'll let us have a consistent WR for a while. Hopefully some of these newer recievers turn out like he did, and not end up like Plaxico.

09-06-2005, 12:17 AM
lol, forget plax that selfish punk, rather get paid then get a ring. if ARE those good this season i wonder if he'll be a hoe and not want to resign with us cuase he thinks he can be a superstar for another team.

09-06-2005, 08:34 AM
I'm glad they were able to load some incentive money into the contract...it's a nice way to get the critics to shut up...

09-06-2005, 09:51 AM
I was just re-reading his numbers.. WOW,, He got $5 million for a bonus while he made $1.7 million salary for the last 3 years..

Imagine taking your salary over the last 3 years and somebody just handing you a check for it.. How AWESOME would that be...???

Steel - X
09-06-2005, 10:14 AM
How awesome would it be to play a sport and make that much money period. Way to go Hines this should be a good year as long as the Runningbacks can stay consistent.

09-06-2005, 11:36 AM
The best part was that they gave it to him, he didn't demand it. He's worth it, once Bettis is gone he'll be the primary motivator on offense.

09-06-2005, 12:05 PM
The best part was that they gave it to him, he didn't demand it. He's worth it.

HOw true those words are, now we all feel secure knowing that Hines is here for the duration

09-06-2005, 01:43 PM
Awesome!When I saw this on NFL Network yesterday I flipped running around my house yelling and screaming like I was set on fire.

09-06-2005, 03:28 PM
I think we all new that this deal would get done! But it is nice to see that it is over. Steelers front office couldnt handle the backlash, if they were to let Ward go.

09-06-2005, 03:45 PM
I agree. But I think it was getting to the point where they all had us very nervous. Claims that the talks were having no progress or crawling. Just glad to see this whole thing behind us.

09-06-2005, 04:49 PM
Interesting that once all the hype about getting the deal done had subsided, then they somehow pull it together and finish the deal!