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Fire Haley
03-11-2013, 08:45 AM
Even after releasing James Harrison on Saturday, the Steelers don't have as much room as other teams to be a big player once the signing period starts at 4 p.m. Tuesday. (The negotiating has long since begun; NFL teams and agents were permitted to start talking with one another Saturday.)

Since Kevin Colbert took over as general manager in 2000, the Steelers haven't made a single splash transaction in free agency. They've signed mostly stable, solid players with a history of performing and stayed away from risky players who might cost too much and produce too little.

Of late, they've used free agency to pick up affordable players to supplement their special teams (like linebacker Brandon Johnson a year ago). They could do that again this year, though there would seem to be affordable players on the market who might help them.

Here are five:

• Tight end Anthony Fasano, Dolphins. He had 41 catches and five touchdowns last season and, given the importance of the tight end in Todd Haley's offense, would supply protection in case Heath Miller isn't ready when the season starts.

• Running back-kick returner LaRod Stephens-Howling, Cardinals. They need a running back and a kick returner. He's both in a smallish package. And he'd be returning home; the former Johnstown High star played at Pitt.

• Linebacker Lorenzo Alexander, Redskins. Think new special teams coach Danny Smith wouldn't like to be reunited with this guy? Alexander led all players with 21 special teams tackles last season and ended up in the Pro Bowl.

• Outside linebacker Jonathan Casillas, Saints. Casillas has shown enough as a backup in New Orleans to suggest he would produce more with more playing time.

• Safety Rashad Johnson, Cardinals. The Steelers took away former Cardinals defensive back William Gay. Why not another, especially given the ages of Clark and Troy Polamalu?



The Steelers have 17 unrestricted free agents, and it's not likely many will return. The most likely to come back are long snapper Greg Warren and fullback David Johnson. The others could be summed up thusly:

Not coming back: WR Mike Wallace, RB Rashard Mendenhall, QB Byron Leftwich.

Probably not coming back: S Will Allen, WR Plaxico Burress, G Ramon Foster, T Max Starks, NT Casey Hampton, LB Brandon Johnson, CB Keenan Lewis, S Ryan Mundy.

Possibly coming back: QB Charlie Batch, LB Larry Foote, OL Doug Legursky, TE Leonard Pope.

Of their restricted free agents, running backs Jonathan Dwyer and Isaac Redman, receiver Emmanuel Sanders and nose tackle Steve McLendon are coming back. Linebacker Stevenson Sylvester might not


http://triblive.com/sports/steelers/3623897-74/free-teams-steelers#axzz2NEp9xLsr

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Of their restricted free agents, running backs Jonathan Dwyer and Isaac Redman, receiver Emmanuel Sanders and nose tackle Steve McLendon are coming back.

I'm not so sure about that statement.

We could lose a couple of them too.

wwhickok
03-11-2013, 08:51 AM
Jonathan Casillias is a strong possibility.

TRH
03-11-2013, 08:54 AM
i know everybody's been talking about wanting to re-sign Lewis - i just have a feeling he'll sign w/someone else.

Fire Haley
03-11-2013, 09:10 AM
The Steelers have 17 unrestricted free agents, and it's not likely many will return.

scary stuff

Steelers>NFL
03-11-2013, 09:41 AM
S - Will Allen : they should bring him back. He played very well alongside Clark when Polomalu was out with the injury. Better than Mundy ever did.

VaDave
03-11-2013, 10:06 AM
Killer,

It's only scary if you are just won the SuperBowl. When you are 8-8, you need to have some turnover. Frankly, last years team was not good enough with a boatload of players who have already played the best football they ever will.

That said, this is not all doom a gloom, it's a step in the right direction.

Fire Haley
03-11-2013, 10:29 AM
Killer,

It's only scary if you are just won the SuperBowl. When you are 8-8, you need to have some turnover. Frankly, last years team was not good enough with a boatload of players who have already played the best football they ever will.

That said, this is not all doom a gloom, it's a step in the right direction.


so an 8-8 team gets gutted of it's dependable starters and I'm supposed to feel better?

are you saying it's a total rebuild year?

Steelers better have the draft of the century - and no more Ziggys in the 1st rd please - we need immediate impact players

VaDave
03-11-2013, 10:52 AM
Killer,

It's been in rebuilding ( the FO's term is called retooling, but it amounts to the same thing) mode since 2010.... just compare the roster from our last Superbowl to now.

The bottom like is we need better play across the board to be a superbowl contender. What is the likely hood of us expecting better play out of the following, Harrison, Wallace, Mendenhall, Sylvester, Hampton, David Johnson, Foster, Starks? I can go on about a couple that more than likely will stick for 2013, do you expect to see improved play out of Keisle, Palamalu, Hood, Colon, Legursky, Brandon Johnson, Curtis Brown?

If you are honest, the answer is not likely. So what's the answer? Looks like we need new players, and a lot of them. Like as many as 15 or more new squad members going into 2013.

I do agree, that the draft is key, and we can't afford too many muffs here. The other thing I agree with you is, we don't need anymore Ziggies.

Fire Haley
03-11-2013, 11:08 AM
yes, I know our window is pretty much gone

but i expect, no, make that DEMAND we get better play out of guys we have left like Troy, Woodley, Ben and his receivers.

They need somebody to light a fire under their asses.

VaDave
03-11-2013, 11:12 AM
Killer,

I heard that on more than one occasion, but we've seen the best football we're likely to see out of Troy. Ben as a QB is going to be limited to the talent around him.

Woodley on the other hand doesn't need a fire under his butt, he needs a hand grenade, and even that might not be enough to get his lard butt moving.....lol!!!

Fire Haley
03-11-2013, 11:36 AM
I'll wait till after all the FA dominoes fall before getting too depressed, I promise

VaDave
03-11-2013, 12:00 PM
LOL!!! You're alright man! Chin up. Walk it off.....

austinfrench76
03-11-2013, 12:12 PM
Will Allen was strong in Troy's place! He shouldn't command alot of money and if they are letting Mundy walk they will need him. I would love to have Lewis back but who knows. The guy I really like is Stephens-Howlings. He is a little mighty mouse. I remember the 80-90 yard TD run he had against us, I think 2 years ago, and man I have always liked him. If he's cheap, that would be a good fit. Would like another TE, not Pope but again who knows. They could grab one of these guys and get Mahan/Staley or Bettis/Moore. Let's hope we at least take a swing this year.

VaDave
03-11-2013, 12:31 PM
Austin,

Agreed.I though once he settled in, Will Allen did a nice job. He was a little rocky for the first game or so, but after that, the whole secondary seemed to tighten up. Allen also was a key contributor on special teams.

We are going to draft another TE, especially with Heath's injury. Paulson is not near a good enough blocker to be an heir apparent. A David Johnson or Matt Spathe redux, I don't think so. I read somewhere they have an interest of some kid that played for Nevada....