Originally Posted by MNsteelers
1. If the Steelers were interested in paying Hope top five safety money and that wasn't an issue, they would have at least franchised him when they had the chance. From the looks of it, and we all know how Pittsburgh operates largely in silence in regards to these things, Clark was their guy all along, and weren't particularly interested in signing Hope to a long, expensive deal. Keep in mind, this is far from unusual for Pittsburgh to do. El and Hope are not the kinds of players Pittsburgh is going to keep around for another five years. Troy, Ben, hopefully Porter...those are the guys with nearly guaranteed extensions, but that's about it.
(but don't be surprised to see Joey leave after next season when he is a FA if Pittsburgh drafts Carpenter)
What was 2.?
I'm not sure they had a bead on Clark, but they definitely were in control of the situation and would have signed someone to fill Hope's shoes.
Now the question is, who signs Hope? I don't think he's even visited any teams yet, has he? And what if the market isn't as receptive as it once was? Adam Archeluta signing for way too much money is going to up the ante for other teams, and most that need safeties aren't owned by idiots like Snyder.