Is Heath Miller Worth 8 Million / Year Now?
This is a question that is going to get laughed at and get people riled up. Now, before that happens, let me ask you guys this - is he really worth 8 million dollars in 2013 / 2014? Let's look at his cap hit -
2013 - 7 958 500
2014 - 7 966 500
Over the next two years, we're paying a 30 year old Tight End 15 925 000. Now, this isn't any 30 year old TE - it's Heath Miller for God sake. Heeeeaaaaaatttthhhhhh Miller. The guy that has been Ben's most reliable target for the last 8 years. He's probably the most beloved man in the city of Pittsburgh and nothing he could do could change that. I hope you guys sensed the "but" coming.
But - he's not worth that money. In the first four games he had 6 TDs in 4 games and he was the redzone target for Ben. He's the guy that Ben finds open every time, no matter how long he's scrambling for his life when everything breaks down. We're treading in unfamiliar waters here - we're going to lose a lot of our guys that were here for the '08 title either this offseason or next. There's only a few guys on this team that have two rings and they only have a year left with this team as well. Heath Miller is one of these guys. He's coming off of a very serious knee injury - an ACL tear isn't something to scoff at. Not every single player is Adrian Peterson and expecting him to be back in time for the season is a pipe dream. Miller might be surehanded, but he's no AD. He's going to need time to rehab and get healthy and, quite frankly, it's time we don't have. We're seeing the tail end of that with Polamalu - we don't have time to give guys that are coming off of serious injuries time to rehab. More importantly, we don't have the cap room to do so.
Troy Polamalu - 10,137,500
Heath Miller - 7 958 500
James Harrison - 10,035,000
Brett Keisel - 4,500,000
Ryan Clark - 4,750,000
Those five players, all of whom are on the wrong side of 30 and had injuries at some point this season make up 37 381 000. We're focusing on Heath Miller here, though. Is he surehanded? Yes. Is he a fan favorite? No question. That being said, he's simply not worth the 8 million dollars he's going to count against the cap next season. There's a very good chance the next time he sees the field, he'll be 31 (October 22).
If we're serious about getting younger and getting more explosive on offense, these guys (with the exception of Clark) have to go. If we're serious about reloading and not rebuilding this team while maintaining the young guys we have on it (Allen, Lewis, Sanders) as the future of this team, these guys have to go. Miller is coming off of an injury that he might never be able to fully recover from. Not only that, how many healthy years does he (realistically) have left? With the cap situation we're in, this would easily be the hardest cut to make. I do think that it's a necessary one as I don't see him being extended beyond 2014 anyway.
I know this is going to get me crucified on here and I'm willing to take it so as long as you guys see where I'm coming from. I wouldn't pay Heath 8 million this year or any year after last. We can find free agents options for cheap that are very similar players to Miller and have shown it. Martellus Bennett was a reliable option for Eli last year. Delanie Walker was sitting behind Vernon Davis for his time in San Fran, but he showed his potential in that offense. We could find pieces in the draft, too. Guys like Escobar and Williams in the mid-to-late rounds would be suitable replacements.
We have to get younger and getting younger means making hard decisions. He's not the first place we should look to get to cap compliance and bring in the 'new generation' of Steelers, but he's definitely an option to look at to get younger this offseason.
Last edited by SteelersCanada; 02-23-2013 at 04:25 PM.
Reason: keep Clark, not Troy.