PDA

View Full Version : Bires: Business is business, so Ward has to go


mesaSteeler
03-01-2012, 07:02 AM
Bires: Business is business, so Ward has to go
http://www.timesonline.com/columnists/bires-business-is-business-so-ward-has-to-go/article_164a4865-dada-596c-adf3-d433ada67fe5.html?mode=print
Mike Bires Times Sports Staff | Posted: Wednesday, February 29, 2012 11:00 pm

After the Steelers announced that Hines Ward would be cut, my mind flashed back to the summer of 1984. That's when Chuck Noll uttered that famous "Franco who?" quote.

That was Noll's stone-faced reaction when asked about Harris' holdout over a contract dispute.

Harris may have been one of the greatest Steelers ever and the man responsible for the most famous play in NFL history (that would be the "Immaculate Reception," of course). But his time was up in Pittsburgh, so he was unceremoniously cut and forced to finish his career with a year in Seattle.

Such is life in the NFL where business is business.

That's why Ward had to go.

No doubt Ward will forever be revered in Steeler Nation as one of the most productive and popular players to ever wear the Black & Gold but no longer does he fit into the Steelers' plans.

Ward may be the Steelers' all-time leading receiver and holder of numerous team records, but he's only a shell of the player he once was. The Steelers are going with youth as in Mike Wallace, Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders (yes, the Steelers will find a way to keep Wallace, a restricted free agent, in the fold).

Obviously, the Steelers are going to get $4 million in salary-cap relief when Ward is cut. But despite his pleas to stay for one more year at a reduced pay rate, the Steelers just don't want him around.

The "Young Money" trio no longer needs Ward's leadership.

Late this past season when it was apparent that Ward was being fazed out -- he lost his starting job in the Nov. 13 game at Cincinnati and played less and less as the season went on -- he said he wasn't about to retire.

Ward said he wanted to play at least one more year even if it meant playing somewhere else in a different uniform.

Ward may end up someplace. There may be a team that can use the services of a 36-year-old possession receiver. Knowing what a competitor Ward has been the past 14 years as a Steeler, he may want to prove he can still get the job done.

It just won't be in Pittsburgh.

The man who endeared himself to Steeler fans with those 1,000 career receptions, all those bone-crunching blocks and that infectious smile is history.

steelax04
03-01-2012, 07:25 AM
How about a sticky thread for Hines, starting with all of mesa's articles?

Go 'Lers
03-01-2012, 07:36 AM
This post and it's title hits the nail on the head. Business is business.

It reminds me how we, as Steeler fans, laughed when Baltimore cut Heap, Houshmanzadeh, and a bunch of others last year and said they were going to be in serious rebuilding mode for a while...then the season happened.

Reality is we need to develop our younger guys, get under the $alary cap, and players like Roethlisberger are still in their prime (but age only goes forward).

Pittsburgh is in great position to win another title and their is zero room for error or keeping players for sentimental value. Between restructuring major contracts, letting veterans go, and hiring a big name like Haley as OC shows the Steelers are going HARD for no. 7 and they want to get it NOW...and no. 8, and 9 if there is time!

LVSteelersfan
03-01-2012, 01:30 PM
Also bye bye to Aaron Smith who is another of my favorite players. I defended him to the max the past couple of years but he is obviously done. Farrior's age is showing big time. Harrison is getting up there in age as is Hampton. Both have missed major time due to injuries over the past couple years. Although they will be here for another year at least I see both of them gone by next year or the year after that. It is a business and keeping old washed up players does not make good business sense. There are a lot of good young players waiting in the wings and I think the likes of Heyward, Gilbert, Worilds (yes, I am one who thinks he will be a good player) Sylvester, Baron Batch and others (names escape me now) will be household names soon enough. Contrary to popular belief by those on these boards who give no one a chance if they are not pro bowlers by their second season, the Steelers draft players who fit their mold and give them a year or two to learn the system. It is a system that works.

steeltheone
03-01-2012, 01:47 PM
Also bye bye to Aaron Smith who is another of my favorite players. I defended him to the max the past couple of years but he is obviously done. Farrior's age is showing big time. Harrison is getting up there in age as is Hampton. Both have missed major time due to injuries over the past couple years. Although they will be here for another year at least I see both of them gone by next year or the year after that. It is a business and keeping old washed up players does not make good business sense. There are a lot of good young players waiting in the wings and I think the likes of Heyward, Gilbert, Worilds (yes, I am one who thinks he will be a good player) Sylvester, Baron Batch and others (names escape me now) will be household names soon enough. Contrary to popular belief by those on these boards who give no one a chance if they are not pro bowlers by their second season, the Steelers draft players who fit their mold and give them a year or two to learn the system. It is a system that works. Problem is Sylvester never saw the field last year at linebacker, that scares me.

6RingsAndCounting
03-01-2012, 02:02 PM
How about a sticky thread for Hines, starting with all of mesa's articles?

:thumbsup:

Bayz101
03-01-2012, 02:07 PM
How about a sticky thread for Hines, starting with all of mesa's articles?

I'll consider it, but to be honest, there's not much going on this off-season. Probably because it's the off-season :chuckle:

It's not like the Ward articles are going to bury all the exciting off-season discussion, but i'll make a thread if the media blow's up even more over the subject.

Goldsteel86
03-01-2012, 03:53 PM
This post and it's title hits the nail on the head. Business is business.

It reminds me how we, as Steeler fans, laughed when Baltimore cut Heap, Houshmanzadeh, and a bunch of others last year and said they were going to be in serious rebuilding mode for a while...then the season happened.

Reality is we need to develop our younger guys, get under the $alary cap, and players like Roethlisberger are still in their prime (but age only goes forward).

Pittsburgh is in great position to win another title and their is zero room for error or keeping players for sentimental value. Between restructuring major contracts, letting veterans go, and hiring a big name like Haley as OC shows the Steelers are going HARD for no. 7 and they want to get it NOW...and no. 8, and 9 if there is time!

Reality is this, better hope the Steelers re-sign Wallace, if not then releasing Ward might bite them in the ass. Plainly put, salary cap or not the Steelers better know what they are doing, here's a serious question would "The Chief" have cut Hines Ward? Business my ass, don't blow your load too soon, this WR corp and offense may be in a mess if Wallace isn't signed.

pancake
03-01-2012, 04:09 PM
How long till Ward is in Pittsburgh West playing with Fitz?

tugnut1
03-01-2012, 04:24 PM
I've been saying for years that Hines Ward is the best all around WR in the league. I know that might have been an overstatement, but I just love the way he was a guy you could always count on. Be it catch a ball over the middle, fight for that extra yard, or make the crucial monster block down field that receivers just aren't good at. I am going to miss him in a Steeler's uniform, but its the right call.

The Steelers are getting old at quite a few positions and if they don't fill there needs in the next few years, we could see the 80's type seasons come back. I'm sure the Steelers organization realize this and they have done a great job at developing talent in the past decade or so.

I'm sad to see Hines and Aaron Smith go, but excited about what the future holds.

I'm pretty sure they will get a deal done with Wallace.