Trade Hines Ward...No, I don't like the sound of that. While I'm sure we could get one or two good players and maybe a draft pick, if we want to win the Super Bowl, I think we need Hines in the fold. Without Hines, I still think we can make the playoffs, without him, I don't know if the recieving corps is good enough to win in Detriot in January. It's all about this year in the Burgh.
I've heard alot on this topic as I'm sure everyone in western PA has, but I'm still on the fence. It sounds strange, but I have to agree with both sides, with Hines AND with management. Hines is a 4-time Pro Bowler entering his prime, with a strong work ethic and incredible tenacity. He wants, and deserves in my opinion, money relative to the numbers of the best WRs in the game, which he is among, no doubt. Being the 37th highest paid reciever in the game isn't gonna cut it anymore. Now, I don't think the Steelers should break the bank, but I do think they should pay the man for his services somewhere in the neighborhood of, say, Javon Walker's, Chad Johnson's, Torry Holt's numbers. Not T.O's or Randy's, but you get the idea.
But then, even Hines isn't bigger than the Steelers. It sucks, but the Steelers policy is that they simply won't negotiate with you unless you are in camp (Maddox situation aside). That is, and always has been their policy; Hines has to have known this. The Rooneys are in charge, and the people in charge make the rules. If you want to play, you have to play by the rules, whether you agree with them or not.
I really hope Hines reconsiders, which I think he will, and report to camp, spend a few days up there and finally reach a fair deal for everyone involved. I'd hate to see him miss the whole preseason and be a question mark coming into what was supposed to be a Super Bowl run-type season.
The silver lining in this dark cloud that I really haven't heard about is all the reps the OTHER Steeler WRs are recieving. Anyone remember Zamir Cobb last year? This is a chance for him to get off the practice squad and make the opening day squad. Wilson seems to be better than most were expecting, and Randle El is seeing what being a #1 is like. Mays, Morey, and Gibson should all be getting good experiences and more attention from coaches and QBs. There are no Pro Bowlers without Hines, but this group has TONS of potential and should be hungry to make a name for themselves.